1. The Real Thing opens today at Writer's Theatre. "A married playwright blurs the line between reality and his dramas on the stage as his personal life unravels before his very eyes." It was written by Tom Stoppard (and thought to be loosely based on his life).
2. Court Theatre's Spunk opened this past weekend, and time will tell if it'll reach the popularity of Porgy and Bess (I'm doubting it). The play combines some interesting elements; the story of Zora Neale Hurston has been adapted by George C. Wolfe with heavy use of the blues, to bring to life the Harlem Renaissance.
3. Wondering why Time Out Chicago featured such ridiculously thorough coverage of the Chicago Fringe Festival? Word on the street is that Theater Editor Kris Vire is a big fan and supporter of the festival. In more Fringe news, they explain why they picked Pilsen for their location, how they had to be creative with their spaces because of that, and what they're all about.
4. Chris Jones takes us through his thoughts on the New York version of Follies, a show that's going up at the Chicago Shakespeare Theater this fall. "The hardest part of Follies, now at least, is making us believe that the actual live-changing revelations and life-and-love decisions being made at the reunion — for some an excuse to wallow, for others a call to action — are happening, credibly, in real time, even as the pastiches of the past and present are unfolding," writes Jones.
5. Our old friend Joe Frank will be at Steppenwolf on October 10, performing his new show Too Close to Home, about visiting his parents in their Florida retirement home. He'll be joined by James Harrah on guitar. Frank's show airs on WBEZ on Sunday nights.
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