WBEZ | Prop Thtr http://www.wbez.org/tags/prop-thtr Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Don't-Miss List November 29-December 5: Two Gilbert & Sullivans, a family drama and a first-rate 'Annie' http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-11/dont-miss-list-november-29-december-5-two-gilbert-sullivans-family <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/RS6717_Paramount_Annie_1-scr.jpg" style="height: 474px; width: 620px;" title="'Annie' at the Paramount in Aurora (Courtesy of the theater)" /></div><p><u>The Gilbert &amp; Sullivan Reperatory, <a href="http://www.the-hypocrites.com">The Hypocrites</a> at Chopin Theatre, 1543 W. Division; 773-989-7352; $28; runs through Jan. 13.</u><br /><br />Wildly challenging and sometimes pig-headedly wrong, The Hypocrites are never dull in their reinvention of the classics. Sometimes, however, the great works merely need to be presented and not reinvented. Ya&#39; pays yer money, ya&#39; takes yer choice. They had a super big hit last year with a version of Gilbert &amp; Sullivan&#39;s <em>The Pirates of Penzance</em> and so they&#39;re repeating it this year along with <em>The Mikado</em>, staged in rotating repertory. Company co-founder Sean Graney is the director and skilled musician/composer Kevin O&#39;Donnell has &quot;re-imagined&quot; the music. Both shows are presented in promenade style, meaning the audience and cast both move about the performance space, a presentation style which Mr. Graney often has favored. Accommodations are made for audience members with mobility issues. Also, in both shows the cast members double as musicians and performers (a trick also on display currently in <em>Failure: A Love Story</em> at Victory Gardens Theater). Fair warning: As brilliant as he can be, Mr. Graney&#39;s interpretations of the classics often are much more about Sean Graney than they are about the classic. &ndash;JA</p><p><u><em>The Feast</em>, <a href="http://propthtr.org">Prop Thtr</a>, 3502 N. Elston, 773-539-7838; $20; runs through December 16</u></p><p>This world premiere skillfully weaves a family drama set at that most family-dramatic of times, Thanksgiving day, with an examination of the way health care is meted out (or not) in this country. Though the play has a strong political view, it&#39;s never pedantic; we see politics through the eyes of the characters, whose family business is running a for-profit HMO. Director Brian Bell wrings every ounce of tension, meaning and humor out of Tony Fiorentino&#39;s script, which deserves as many productions as he can find for it. Any subsequent version would be hard-pressed, though, to match the stark beauty and eerie intensity of Joseph Lark-Riley&#39;s sets, Nevena Todorovic&#39;s costumes and Katherine Campbell&#39;s props.&nbsp;<em>The Feast</em> plays only for a few more weekends; get yourself to Elston and Addison (cati-corner from Chief O&#39;Neill&#39;s Pub) before it disappears. &ndash;KK</p><p><u><em>Annie</em>, <a href="http://paramountaurora.com/">Paramount Theatre</a>, 8 East Galena Boulevard in Aurora 630-896-6666; $34.90-$46.90; through December 30</u></p><p>If Rachel Rockwell were a man, she would long since have been recognized as a genius of musical theater.&nbsp; However belatedly, let me hail her as one now.&nbsp; Certainly it would be hard to beat her range: After directing last year&#39;s extraordinary production of <em>Sweeney Todd</em> at Drury Lane, she&#39;s turned her hand to <em>Annie</em>. I&#39;m a certified curmudgeon and was accompanied by another, and we both loved it. Gene Weygandt is such a perfect Daddy Warbucks that his abundance of hair doesn&#39;t even seem strange, and Christine Sherrill is a riotous Miss Hannigan; but when every performer is this good, credit rightly goes to the director. Rockwell gets particular kudos for directing a troupe of children (led by the able 12-year-old Caroline Heffernan in the title role) AND a dog while keeping the show wonderfully lively and treacle-free. This perfect family production even contains just enough Christmas to remind you of the season without drowning you in it. Brava, Madame Director! &nbsp;&ndash;KK</p></p> Thu, 29 Nov 2012 05:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-11/dont-miss-list-november-29-december-5-two-gilbert-sullivans-family Daily Rehearsal: Sudeikis to stay at SNL, for now anyway http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-09/daily-rehearsal-sudeikis-stay-snl-now-anyway-102367 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/jason sudeikis snl.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><span style="font-size:14px;"><span style="font-family: georgia, serif; "><strong>- Straight off of <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-09/daily-rehearsal-snl-taps-three-chicagoans-new-season-102317">the recent new Chicago-full line-up</a> at <em>Saturday Night Live,</em></strong></span></span> former Chicagoan Jason Sudekis <a href="http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/12/jason-sudeikis-and-his-romney-impression-to-stay-at-saturday-night-live/">will be with <em>SNL</em></a> at least through January, reports the <em>New York Times</em>. &quot;He&rsquo;s a fiercely loyal guy, both to the show and to me,&rdquo; said Lorne Michaels. Also, they don&#39;t have anyone else to play Mitt Romney.</p><p style="text-align: center; "><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="288" mozallowfullscreen="" scrolling="no" src="http://www.hulu.com/embed.html?eid=jok29krxxejfdnlz-impyq" webkitallowfullscreen="" width="512"></iframe></p><p><span style="font-size:14px;"><span style="font-family: georgia, serif; "><strong>- More options for those trying to find ways</strong></span></span> to get those kids entertained during the CTU strike. Head to Prop Thtr&#39;s&nbsp;<a href="http://www.neurokitchen.org">Neurokitchen&#39;s </a>Curiosity Club Strike Camp which &quot;will nurture kids inquisitiveness and encourage them to take initiative for their own learning&quot; and costs $40 a day.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.brainsurgeontheatre.org">Brain Surgeon</a>&#39;s Make a Movie Camp (also at Prop Thtr) teaches kids how to make a movie at $45 a day.<a href="http://www.studio-be.org/alternative-arts-programming-registration/"> Studio BE</a> is doing a variety of things, including dance, and for only $20. Hubbard Street Dance also has dance classes for $60 a day.</p><p>Questions? Tips? Email <a href="mailto:kdries@wbez.org">kdries@wbez.org</a>.</p></p> Wed, 12 Sep 2012 08:43:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-09/daily-rehearsal-sudeikis-stay-snl-now-anyway-102367 Don't-Miss List March 22-28: Irish theater, war stories http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2012-03-22/dont-miss-list-march-22-28-irish-theater-war-stories-97507 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2012-March/2012-03-21/Light in the Piazza_Theo Ubique.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2012-March/2012-03-21/Light in the Piazza_Theo Ubique.jpg" style="width: 630px; height: 473px;" title="Theo Ubique's 'A Light in the Piazza.' (Courtesy of Theo Ubique/Adam Veness)"></p><p><strong>Dueling Critics on <em>Eight Forty-Eight,</em> WBEZ 91.5 FM and streaming live at wbez.org<br> Friday, March 23, 9 to 10 a.m., FREE</strong></p><p>First, of course, don't miss Jonathan and me as we duel over <a href="http://theoubique.org/">Theo Ubique's <em>The Light in the Piazza</em></a>, a musical (or is it an opera?) set in Italy after the Second World War that asks the following musical question: Can a girl from Winston-Salem who's been kicked in the head by a pony find love with a boy from Florence whose parents run a tie shop? (No, I'm not making this up.)</p><p>With a score by composer-lyricist Adam Guettel, whose <em>Floyd Collins</em> was equally unconventional and showed him to be a major new talent, and a book by Craig Lucas whose <em>Prelude to a Kiss</em> is one of the most romantic plays of the past couple of decades,<span style="font-style: italic;"> </span><em>Piazza </em>offers us plenty to talk about. We're on the radio Friday morning, and if you happen to miss the live segment you'll find it <a href="http://wbez.org/848">here on the site</a>.</p><p><a href="http://seanachai.org/"><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2012-March/2012-03-22/A Moon Misbegotten_Senachai Theater_Jackie Jasperson.jpg" style="width: 400px; height: 267px; margin: 5px; float: left;" title="Brad Armacost and Carolyn Klein star in 'A Moon from the Misbegotten.' (Seanachai Theatre Company/Jackie Jasperson)"></a><strong><a href="http://seanachai.org/"><em>A Moon for the Misbegotten</em> at Seanachai Theatre Company</a><br> March 23-April 29, Irish American Heritage Center, tickets $24-$28</strong></p><p>What's so great about Seanachai is that it's transcended the default setting of Irish theater, namely, works about The Troubles. It certainly does work of that kind, like last year's spectacular <em>Shadow of a Gunman</em>; but it also does work from the Irish-American canon, and that's what's on tap beginning Friday night. Eugene O'Neill's <em>A Moon for the Misbegotten</em> is even more romantic than <em>Prelude</em> . . . (see above) and has all the richness of his best work without the egregious length of the magisterial <em>Iceman</em> and <em>Long Day's Journey.</em> This production features Steve Pickering as the tortured Jim Tyrone, and that would be reason enough to see the show even if the company weren't so reliably excellent.&nbsp;</p><p><strong><a href="http://www.propthtr.org/"><em>". . . drumming in the night"</em> at Prop Thtr</a><br> March 23-April 29, 3502 N. Elston, tickets $15</strong></p><p>Prop Thtr offers its own take on the current craze for work about World War I (<em>War Horse, Downton Abbey</em>, the soon-to-be-released <em>Birdsong</em>) in Bertolt Brecht's first produced play <em>". . . drumming in the night."</em>&nbsp; The company uses a new translation of this tale of a German soldier trying to reconstruct his life and reconnect with his love in defeated postwar Berlin. Brecht was one of the leading critics of the Nazi regime during its rise; look to this early piece to see how the First World War gave birth to the Second.&nbsp;</p></p> Thu, 22 Mar 2012 11:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2012-03-22/dont-miss-list-march-22-28-irish-theater-war-stories-97507 The Don't-Miss List: Putting on 'The Ritz', 'Winter Fire' and 'Man Boobs' http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2012-02-15/dont-miss-list-putting-ritz-winter-fire-and-man-boobs-96425 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2012-February/2012-02-16/manboobs.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><u><strong>Kelly Kleiman</strong></u></p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2012-February/2012-02-16/the ritz.jpg" style="margin-left: 10px; margin-top: 10px; margin-bottom: 10px; float: right; width: 254px; height: 300px; " title="'The Ritz' at Circle Theatre">Solo performers have a hard time finding outlets for their work; African-American solo performers have a doubly hard time. This is the theory behind <a href="http://MPAACT.org/">MPAACT's <strong>Solo Jam</strong> series</a>, a late-night showcase of performance pieces at the Greenhouse in Lincoln Park. Every Friday and Saturday through March 10, a different artist will present a piece of his/her own devising. A preview of the work showed a wide range of styles and themes: I was particularly taken with next weekend's pairing, Osiris Khepera's <em>The Fag-tionary</em> and Jonathan Kitt's <em>Superman, Black Man, Me! A Stage Essay</em>, but there doesn't seem to be a bad one in the bunch. The shows begin at 11 p.m. (after MPAACT's mainstage production <em>Sweet Home</em>; a ticket to that will get you a discount to the Solo Jam); tickets $12 for a single show or $20 for the weekend.</p><p>And if you think the world of solo performance is daunting for actors of color, consider the nearly monochromatic world of sketch comedy.&nbsp; Taco Flavored Eggrolls storms those alabaster barricades with the irresistably-named <strong><em>It Takes Juan To Know Wong (a colored commentary)</em></strong>, which begins an 8-week run at the <a href="http://www.propthtr.org/">PROP THTR</a>&nbsp;Friday. 10:30 every Friday through April 6 at 3502 N. Elston Avenue; tickets are $12, $10 for students and seniors (though really, what senior stays up that late?)</p><p>Or, if you're in the mood for an actual comic play, check out <a href="http://www.circle-theatre.org/">Circle Theater's newly-opened production of <strong><em>The Ritz</em></strong></a>, a very early farce by Terrence McNally. (Early enough that the words "gay bathhouse" had no over- or undertones.) Fridays and Saturdays at 8, Sundays at 3; tickets $24-$28 with various discounts; performances at 1010 West Madison Street in Oak Park.&nbsp;</p><p><u><strong>Laura Molzahn</strong></u></p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2012-February/2012-02-16/trey mcintyre.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 400px; " title="(Photo courtesy of Preservation Hall Jazz Band)"></p><p>Fat Tuesday is right around the corner—and so is New Orleans on Friday night, when the <a href="http://www.cso.org/"><strong>Trey McIntyre Project</strong> dances to the swinging Preservation Hall Jazz Band</a> at Symphony Center. Don’t expect cheek-to-cheek, though. In McIntyre’s macabre <em>Ma Maison</em>, the dancers cavort in skull masks. And as Lewis Segal of the LA Times describes <em>The Sweeter End</em>, it’s a “high-speed amalgam of ballet steps, gymnastic feats, ballroom fragments and eruptions of snake-hips undulation.”</p><p>The <a href="http://www.auditoriumtheatre.org/wb/pages/home/performances-events/performances.php?event_id=353">Joffrey Ballet heats up with “<strong>Winter Fire</strong>,”</a> a program of three works by contemporary names-you-can-drop: William Forsythe, Christopher Wheeldon, and Wayne McGregor—who’s moved seamlessly from modern dance into the classical world as resident choreographer of London’s Royal Ballet. On video, McGregor’s spiky <em>Infra</em>—a U.S. premiere for the Joffrey—looks spectacular: technically challenging, tech-savvy, and moving to boot. This weekend and next, plus next Thursday, at the Auditorium.</p><p>Chicago Dance Crash reinstates its KTF (“Keeper of the Floor”) dance battles with a <a href="http://www.maynestage.com/Dance-Crash-Feb.aspx">post-Valentine’s show, “<strong>Love Is a (Dance) Battlefield</strong>,”</a> reportedly dedicated to “the hopelessly single, recent dumpees, and generally jaded demographic.” Friday at 8 PM at the Mayne Stage in Rogers Park.</p><p><u><strong>Jonathan Abarbanel</strong></u></p><p><img alt="" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2012-February/2012-02-16/manboobs.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 386px; " title=""></p><p>Since the demise of the original Bailiwick Repertory Theater in 2009, director David Zak has re-emerged as head of Pride Films and Plays, a Chicago-based organization&nbsp;that reaches nation-wide to find and develop writing for screen and stage on LGBT subjects. Some of the works are serious and some are not. I’m not certain about the current project, J. Julian Christopher’s self-described “dark comedy” entitled <a href="http://www.pridefilmsandplays.com/manboobs.html"><strong><em>Man Boobs</em></strong></a>. Well, now, I’ll bet THAT got your attention! I’m fairly certain <em>Man Boobs</em> isn’t a medical drama about gynecomastia, but may be about love, body image and acceptance both by oneself and others. Previously produced in New York, Los Angeles, Montreal and Australia, <em>Man Boobs</em> launches Pride Films and Plays’ 2012 season, running through March 10 at Mary’s Attic in Andersonville.</p><p>Porchlight Music Theatre has not built its reputation by spinning gold from dross, but currently is attempting just that with the regional premiere of <a href="http://porchlightmusictheatre.org/a-catered-affair/"><strong><em>A Catered Affair</em></strong></a>, a failed 2008 Broadway musical based on the 1956 film (script by Gore Vidal) and the 1955 live TV drama (by Paddy Chayefsky) before that. Set in the 1950’s Bronx, it concerns a lower-middle-class family planning a lavish wedding for their only daughter. <em>A Catered Affair</em> is composer John Bucchino’s first Broadway show, but features a book by multiple Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein, who created a role for himself, that of the bride’s gay uncle. The Broadway reviews called it restrained and almost like a chamber musical, which may work well in Porchlight’s intimate production at Stage 773 in Wrigleyville. The artistic team of Nick Bowling (director) and Douglas Peck (musical director) is impeccable. <em>A Catered Affair</em> runs through April 1.</p></p> Thu, 16 Feb 2012 15:38:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2012-02-15/dont-miss-list-putting-ritz-winter-fire-and-man-boobs-96425 The Don't-Miss List: Merce Cunningham's last hurrah http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-11-17/dont-miss-list-merce-cunninghams-last-hurrah-94102 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-November/2011-11-17/5187509060_37f4cde975(2).jpg" alt="" /><p><p><u><strong>Kelly Kleiman</strong></u></p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-17/hunger.jpg" title="" width="550" height="198"></p><p style="text-align: left;">The weather outside may be frightful (or not--there's no knowing) but onstage at <a href="http://explorechicago.org/city/en/things_see_do/attractions/dca_tourism/jay_pritzker_pavilion.html">the Pritzker Pavilion</a> you can be snug and warm while enjoying concert readings of shows by Chicago companies. It's called the <a href="http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/dca/provdrs/theater/news/2011/oct/_in_the_works_theaterlabseriesatmillenniumparkreturnsforathirdse.html">In The Works Theater Lab</a>, and it will open tonight (Thursday) at 7:30 p.m. with <a href="http://www.lifelinetheatre.com/performances/11-12/hunger/index.shtml">Lifeline Theatre's adaptation of <strong><em>Hunger</em></strong>.</a>&nbsp;This world premiere, which will receive a full production at Lifeline in February, is set during the World War II siege of Leningrad, a nearly unbelievable true story of people defying starvation to defend their country and future. The cast includes Lifeline stalwarts Peter Greenberg and Jenifer Tyler, who should be seen whenever and wherever they appear. Tickets for the reading, which runs only through Saturday, are $15; call 312-742-TIXS or go to <a href="http://explorechicago.org/city/en/millennium.html">millenniumpark.org</a>.&nbsp;</p><p>And if you'd like to do a little defending of country and future yourself, consider spending part of November 19 or 20 at the <a href="http://anti-stasis.org/post/12300905648/defend-occupy-chicago">benefit for the <strong>Occupy Chicago Legal Defense Fund</strong></a>.&nbsp; Beginning at 10 p.m. on Saturday and at 6 p.m. on Sunday at <a href="http://www.propthtr.org/">Prop Thtr</a>, 3502 North Elston, the benefit includes a mix of speeches, music, performance art and a 45 minute work in progress documentary about the Occupy Chicago movement. (Saturday night features <a href="http://www.thisamericanlife.org/contributors/beau-oreilly"><em>This American Life</em> contributor</a> and <a href="http://curioustheatrebranch.com/">Curious Theatre Branch</a> resident genius Beau O'Reilly, among others.) Pay what you can to attend, and/or purchase donated artwork to support the movement and its lawyers, who (as <a href="http://www.suite101.com/news/occupy-wall-street-court-allows-protesters-to-return-to-plaza-a396670">New York has just demonstrated</a>) have their hands full keeping speech free.</p><p><u><strong>Laura Molzahn</strong></u></p><p>As everyone knows (but <a href="http://timeoutchicago.com/arts-culture/dance/15011513/live-review-dance-chicago-2011-first-night">Zac Whittenburg discusses</a> with enviable skill), <strong><a href="http://www.dancechicago.com/">Dance Chicago</a></strong> is a complete crapshoot. Now in the third week of its 17th season, and featuring some 250 companies or choreographers, the fest this weekend consists of two “Urban Movement” shows. Translation: “flat-out fun hip-hop acts.” This is the first year there’ve been two such programs—other years there’s been one, always sold out. Dance fans have an opportunity to see companies like M.A.D.D. Rhythms, Culture Shock Chicago, RFSF (“Raw Funky Street Flav,” which—full disclosure—is the creation of my hip-hop teacher, Viola Elkins) and literally dozens more Friday and Saturday at Stage 773.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="http://www.wbez.org/sites/default/files/blog/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-17/Merce%20Cunningham%20Dan%2348D57C.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 399px;" title=""></p><p style="text-align: left;">And for those in a genuflecting mood: this weekend the <a href="http://www.merce.org/">Merce Cunningham Dance Company makes its final appearance</a> in Chicago—one of its last anywhere. Merce died in 2009, and when the company’s<strong> </strong>“<strong>Legacy Tour</strong>” concludes on NYE 2011 in NYC, the troupe will be disbanded. Those who’ve never seen his work and are curious, take note: Merce didn’t act like an icon. His sense of humor courses through the dances being performed here, three on Friday and one (<em>Roaratorio</em>—I love it) on Saturday <a href="http://www.colum.edu/dance_center/performances/mercecunninghamdancecompany/index.php">at the Harris</a>.</p><p>My other fabulous dance teacher, Idy Ciss of Muntu Dance Theatre, is also performing this weekend, Friday night at the OTSFM with Erika Ochoa of Baladina Dance. <strong><em><a href="http://www.oldtownschool.org/concerts/2011/11/18_kayfetch.php">Kay Fetch</a>&nbsp;</em></strong>(no, I don’t know what it means) reportedly takes viewers on a music-and-dance trip to West and North Africa.</p><p><u><strong>Jonathan Abarbanel</strong></u></p><p><img alt="" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-17/thecaretaker.jpg" style="margin-right: 10px; margin-top: 10px; margin-bottom: 10px; float: left; width: 180px; height: 266px;" title="">Distinguished actor William J. Norris at last is ancient and decrepit enough to play the roles he’s been playing for the last 30 years, among them Davies, the bullied title character of <a href="http://www.writerstheatre.org/boxoffice/production?id=0082"><strong><em>The Caretaker</em></strong></a>, an early masterpiece by Harold Pinter now at Writers’ Theatre in Glencoe. Norris may be a doddering old bag of bones who can barely walk or talk, but audiences love him, so whatcha’ gonna’ do?&nbsp; Director Ron OJ Parson has been smart enough to surround Norris with two excellent stout lads who can hold him up through Pinter’s famous Comedy of Menace, Anish Jethmalani and Kareem Bandealy. <em>The Caretaker</em> continues at the Writers’ Theatre Books-on-Vernon location through next March 25, by which time Norris—known for his indelible performances as Scrooge at the Goodman Theatre—will be about 200 years old.</p><p>Only 14 months and $16 million from groundbreaking ceremonies—which is fast and relatively cheap by Chicago construction standards—the <strong>Black Ensemble Cultural Center</strong> is open for business at 4450 N. Clark Street in Uptown. Consisting of one brand-new building and one retrofit building, the Center includes two theaters, classrooms, offices and gallery space. It’s the fulfillment of a dream for Black Ensemble executive director Jackie Taylor, who founded the company 35 years ago. To open the Center, Taylor has mounted a new production (with a new, dynamic star) of a decade-old Black Ensemble hit, <a href="http://www.blackensembletheater.org/event/2"><strong><em>My Heart is Crying: The Jackie Wilson Story</em></strong></a>, a musical biography, which runs through Jan. 8.</p></p> Thu, 17 Nov 2011 17:07:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-11-17/dont-miss-list-merce-cunninghams-last-hurrah-94102 Morning Rehearsal: Chicago theater 5/25 http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-05-25/morning-rehearsal-chicago-theater-525-87013 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-May/2011-05-25/photo Lois Greenfield.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>1. <a href="http://leisureblogs.chicagotribune.com/the_theater_loop/2011/05/chi-shakes-to-host-australias-one-step-at-a-time-like-this.html">Chris Jones reports</a> on Chicago Shakespeare Theater's&nbsp;<em>en route</em> by One Step at a Time Like This, a group from Melbourne who specializes in city-specific performances. The most interesting detail is actually from the press release: "<em>en route&nbsp;</em>incorporates audio tracks, cell phone communication, text messaging, downtown thoroughfares, hotel lobbies, passers-by, cafés&nbsp;and the occasional brush with the artists." It all starts with a text message sent to participants instructing them where to go, all on borrowed Motorola smartphones. It's definitely a creative&nbsp;<a href="http://chitheatreaddict.com/2011/05/24/en-route-a-pedestrian-based-live-art-experience-comes-to-chicago-in-july/#more-9284">way to market</a>, presented by the Chicago Office of Tourism.&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center; "><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-May/2011-05-25/MOTHER BEAR by Jayme McGhan from Mortar Theatre Company.jpg" style="width: 400px; height: 217px; " title=""></p><p>2. Mortar Theatre has the world premiere of <a href="http://mortartheatrecompany.org/season-2/mother-bear/"><em>Mother Bear</em></a> by&nbsp;Jayme McGhan at the&nbsp;Athenaeum Theatre. It's about truckers and thugs and opens in previews tomorrow.</p><p>3. So many anniversaries!&nbsp;<a href="http://propthtr.blogspot.com/2011/04/arizona-no-roosters-in-desert.html"><em>Arizona: Roosters in the Desert</em></a> is at <a href="http://www.propthtr.org/">Prop Thtr</a> for its 30th, and they're calling it the highlight of the year. You'll see "four women trek the desert toward the American dream," but it closes on Sunday.</p><p style="text-align: center; "><img alt="" class="caption" height="275" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-May/2011-05-25/photo Lois Greenfield.jpg" title="(Photo by Lois Greenfield)" width="450"></p><p>4.&nbsp;The&nbsp;<a href="http://www.aspensantafeballet.com/performance_calendar/joyce_season.php" style="color: rgb(2, 122, 198); text-decoration: none; ">Aspen Santa Fe Ballet</a>&nbsp;was in Chicago last night as part of its 15th anniversary celebrations. The production premiered three pieces at the Harris Theater:&nbsp;Jirí Kylián's&nbsp;<em>Stamping Ground</em>, Jorma Elo's&nbsp;<em>Red Sweet</em>&nbsp;and Nicolo Fonte's&nbsp;<em>Where We Left Off.</em></p><p>5. And slightly outside of the Chicago jurisdiction; <a href="http://www.paramountaurora.com/">Paramount Theatre</a> in Aurora has just announced their 2011-12 season, and since it's their 80th anniversary, it looks more than impressive. The house has never self-produced, so this season will be an entirely new venture, presenting &nbsp;four Broadway musicals. It all starts on&nbsp;August 26 at 5 pm at the annual Season Kick-Off Party.</p><p>Questions? Tips? Email kdries@wbez.org.</p></p> Wed, 25 May 2011 14:42:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-05-25/morning-rehearsal-chicago-theater-525-87013