Pivot Arts, a recently launched organization with the mission of fostering the arts on Chicago's far North Side, will play host to a multidisciplinary arts festival to take place in a number of nontraditional venues in Uptown and Edgewater in June.
The Pivot Multi-Arts Festival will present a blend of music, dance and theater June 6–22, in such locales as Senn High School, Francesca's Bryn Mawr, the former Essanay Studios building on Argyle Street and the onetime vaudeville theater (and most recently a TCF Bank branch) at 1050 W Wilson Ave. Presenters will include the likes of Molly Shanahan/Mad Shak Dance Company, Mucca Pazza, the Neo-Futurists, Theater Oobleck and Manual Cinema. See pivotarts.org for a full schedule.
Steppenwolf Theatre Company today announced the lineup for this summer's eighth annual First Look Repertory of New Work, to be presented in its Garage theater. They include Edith Freni's family drama Buena Vista, set in an isolated Colorado cabin; Aaron Carter's The Gospel of Franklin, about a devout man who loves to witness to his factory coworkers but needs saving himself; and Janine Nabers's Annie Bosh is Missing, a portrait of a troubled young woman navigating the post-Katrina Gulf Coast in search of her estranged father.
The three plays run in rep July 29–August 25. The lineup will also include free readings of three additional works during Steppenwolf's Professionals' Weekend, August 8–11: Tempo, by Mike Batistick; Your Name Will Follow You Home, by Carlos Murillo; and Barbecue, by Robert O'Hara. Tickets go on sale Friday at 11am.
Lookingglass Theatre Company has announced plans for its 2013–14 season, beginning with a new adaptation of Marguerite Duras's The North China Lover, written and directed by Heidi Stillman (September 25–November 10).
In the winter, David Catlin will direct Rick Cummins and John Scoullar's stage version of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's The Little Prince (December 4–February 2). The season closes with the world premiere of Sara Gmitter's In the Garden: A Darwinian Love Story, about the romance between Charles Darwin and his future wife, Emma Wedgwood. Jessica Thebus directs (April 16–June 15).
Interrobang Theatre Project, one of Chicago's most promising young theater companies, has announced plans for its fourth season, to be presented entirely at the Athenaeum Theatre. The 2013–14 slate opens with a new production of Mark O'Rowe's Terminus, a collection of interlocking monologues that was previously seen in a 2011 performance by Dublin's Abbey Theatre at the Museum of Contemporary Art. Interrobang's production will star Christina Hall, Michaela Petro and Kevin Barry Crowley (September 12–October 6).
That's followed in the new year by The Pitchfork Disney, the surreal, dark fairy tale by Mercury Fur playwright Philip Ridley that's credited with kickstarting the "in-yer-face" era of British drama. The cast is set to include Andrew Goetten, Aislinn Kerchaer, Mark Lancaster and Josh Salt (February 6–March 2). Both Terminus and The Pitchfork Disney will be directed by Jeffry Stanton. The season closes with a new adaptation of Ibsen's A Doll's House by Chicago playwright Calamity West, directed by James Yost (May 8–June 8); casting remains to be announced.
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Chicagoans will soon reap the benefits of Time Out Group’s digital offerings which, in addition to an improved website, means that we’ll soon be rolling out the same mobile and iPad apps currently enjoyed by fans in Los Angeles, New York, Paris and London. Completely free, the apps will bring all of Time Out Chicago’s reviews, features, and event listings to your fingertips. There will be changes to the ways in which you get your recommendations, listings and reviews and we’ll keep you up to date with these developments as they happen.
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In the midst of a 35th anniversary year that's seen performances of Mats Ek’s brilliant Casi-Casa, Alejandro Cerrudo’s monumental One Thousand Pieces, and the one-of-a-kind collaboration between HSDC and Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet this spring, Hubbard Street has announced its 2013–14 lineup. The focus for season 36: Hubbard Street’s international Fab Five, with additional surprises in the mix.
October 10–13, former HSDC dancer and rising choreographer Robyn Mineko Williams presents a new work for the company, along with Ek’s Casi-Casa and Ohad Naharin’s Passomezzo. Rounding out the programs is the “Compass” quintet from Alonzo King’s AZIMUTH.
The winter program, December 12–15, features an encore presentation of Cerrudo’s deftly crafted One Thousand Pieces, the company’s first evening-length work, set to music by Philip Glass and using members of the main company and dancers from Hubbard Street 2.
March 13–16, it’s all about two-time Prix Benois de la Danse–winner Jirí Kylián. The bill includes two premieres for HSDC: Sarabande—set for an all-male ensemble—and Falling Angels for an all-female cast of eight. Returning fare: the enigmatic 27'52'' and the sensuous audience-favorite Petite Mort.
Season 36 concludes June 5–8, with Nacho Duato’s Gnawa, created for the company in 2005, and William Forsythe’s daring Quintett. Capping things off is a world premiere from resident choreographer Alejandro Cerrudo, his 13th for the company.
As usual, all performances happen at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance (205 E Randolph Dr).
Subscriptions to season 36 are available beginning April 9. Single-ticket availability will be announced at a later date. For more info, contact the Hubbard Street Box Office at 312-850-9774, or visit hubbardstreetdance.com/36.
Gnit, the last play I saw Sunday afternoon at the 37th Humana Festival, is classic Will Eno. By that, I mean I was thrilled by it, but another critic seated in front of me loudly declared it "shit" before walking out at intermission. The premiere is helmed by Actors Theatre of Louisville artistic director Les Waters, who directed Eno's similarly divisive Middletown at Steppenwolf in 2011. Eno's latest is a loose comic adaptation of Ibsen's unwieldy Peer Gynt, itself based on Norwegian folklore. Ibsen's Peer is the son of a man ruined by his indulgences, who rather than face his own reality and responsibilities travels the world aimlessly in search of meaning. Eno's Peter Gnit (Dan Waller) is similarly abdicative; he explains the origin of his surname as being a typo the family just came to accept.
Roger Ebert was remembered Sunday as a loving and devoted husband and an extraordinary friend who enriched, inspired and uplifted all those around him.
More than 200 close friends and family members gathered in the chapel of Graceland Cemetery for a private visitation and a chance to share their remembrances of the beloved film critic and media trailblazer who died at 70 Thursday after a long battle with cancer.
“Roger never acted superior to anyone. But the truth is, he was a king — and he was my prince,” said his wife, Chaz, who began the impromptu tributes with her reflections on their life together and on Roger’s final days.
The final weekend of the 37th Humana Festival here at Actors Theatre of Louisville coincides with Louisville's appearance in the Final Four—"the men's and the women's teams," a charming local theater supporter pressed upon me at a Thursday night cocktail party held to welcome the visiting industry professionals and press. She lamented (jokingly, I think) that I'd likely be seeing a play when the Cardinals face off against the Wichita State Shockers tonight.
Yet downtown Louisville seems nearly as proud of its theater this weekend as its college basketball teams. "Enjoy the Humana Festival," a security guard at my hotel said Friday upon noticing my red lanyard. And the energy created by the mixing of industry types and eager locals is enjoyable indeed, even if my first day's offerings were decidedly mixed.
On the night Gene Siskel died, Roger Ebert and I spent an hour on the phone together, talking about the loss of our dear friend and lamenting that we never knew how gravely ill he was.
There was no question that Roger respected Gene’s decision to keep the extent of his illness private. But it saddened Roger that he was never able to reach out to Gene in a meaningful way at the end. Just weeks earlier, Gene had told us he was taking an indefinite leave of absence, but was in a hurry to get well “because I don’t want Roger to get more screen time than I.” We both believed he’d be back.
I’ll never know for sure, but I always suspected that Roger’s experience with Gene had a lot to do with how open and forthright he chose to be about his own health problems in the years that followed. He shared everything. Even when some of those closest to him discouraged him from showing his disfigured face in public, Roger set vanity aside and moved forward with courage and grace that inspired us all.