Dynamite Divas: A Tribute to Women of Soul

    Dynamite Divas, Black Ensemble Theater’s contribution to holiday celebrations, is subtitled “A Tribute to Women of Soul.” And it’s a worthy tribute to those talented and charismatic singers, with performances of songs of the ‘60s and  ...

Fallen Angels

In staging Noel Coward’s 1920s comedy, “Fallen Angels,” director Shannon Cochran has shaken it up and mixed a cocktail of ‘20s fun and fashion with a wink of sly gender role reversal. Remy Bumppo’s new production runs almost two  ...

Disgraced

Photo caption: L to R, White, Sturgis, Young, Crane. Photo by Liz Lauren. “Disgraced” won a 2013 Pulitzer Prize for playwright Ayad Akhtar. But that doesn’t mean you won’t be squirming in your seat in mental discomfort as the  ...

The Tempest, Chicago Shakespeare Theater

  Chicago Shakespeare’s bewitching new production of “The Tempest” was adapted and directed by Aaron Posner and Teller (the silent member of the Penn & Teller duo). The play has all of its poetry and more music and magic  ...

Charles Ray: Sculpture, 1997-2014

Nineteen sculptures by Chicago-born sculptor Charles Ray fill three large galleries on the second floor of the Art Institute’s Modern Wing through October 4. Most of the pieces are figurative and tell their own stories, like “Sleeping Woman,” a life-size  ...

Things You Shouldn’t Say Past Midnight

Three couples, three bedrooms and a conference call. That’s the scenario. It’s two hours of pillow talk (and pillow shouting) among people who are trying to get their needs and desires met, but keep running into complications. “Things You Shouldn’t  ...

Stupid Fucking Bird

Early in Anton Chekhov’s “The Seagull,” Konstantin, the tortured artist playwright, laments the need for new expression in theater: “… to my mind, the modern theater is nothing but tradition and conventionality.” I mused about that speech during Sideshow Theatre’s  ...

Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash

“Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash,” now extended through August at the Mercury Theatre on Southport, deserves to be called a jukebox musical. It’s a rousing evening of Johnny Cash’s music—some 30 songs by Cash and other songwriters—performed  ...

E. Faye Butler, actor, Chicago

Faye Butler describes herself as an actor who sings, not a singer who acts. She’s a theater and musical star in Chicago and nationally and has won many awards and honors for her work. She currently plays the cleaning lady,  ...

Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

  “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” is not a Chekhov parody, but Christopher Durang’s play set in an old farmhouse in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, could have been set in a dacha in the Russian countryside. It retains  ...