"Hizzoner" announces Spring 2009 schedule

The hugely popular (and critically-acclaimed) “Hizzoner: Daley The First”, which ran for over 300-performances, will be seen again on Chicago stages this coming spring.  The producers, Gipeti Entertainment, have announced the 2009 performance schedule, including a month-long stay at the Skokie Theatre, 7924 N. Lincoln Ave., Skokie (Feb. 6 – 22, 2009) and a return to the Chicago stage at the Theatre Building, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. (April 2 – May 17, 2009). Tickets for 2009 dates are available at each box office or at hizzonertheplay.com, Skokie Theatre dates are currently on sale and Theatre Building dates go on sale Friday, Dec. 5.

This upcoming production will include many of the original performers: Neil Giuntoli, Don Schroeder, William Bullion, Nick Leininger, Diane Honeyman, Gordon Gillespie; and some new additions; Chas Vrba, Cecil Burroughs, Chuck Jacobson, Mike O’Brien.

Read our glowing review here.

Cousin Itt coming to Broadway in Chicago!

A family shot of the popular 60's sitcom, "The Addams Family"Yep, you read right.  The creepy yet lovable Addams family is getting a musical of their own, courtesy of Broadway in Chicago.  Making its world premier here in Chicago at the Oriental Theatre (aka Ford Center for the Performing Arts), The Addams Family – A New Musical will begin its pre-Broadway run in November 2009.

Like many other Gen X-ers, I grew up watching “The Addams Family” after school, my favorite characters being mother Morticia and the oh-so-hairy gibberish-speaking Cousin Itt. (and, yes, being an avid crossword enthusiast, “Itt” is spelled with 2 t’s!).

Judging from the creative team, this show has a lot of promise: composer/lyricist Andrew Lippa (The Wild Party), choreographer Sergio Trujillo (The Jersey Boys), and Olivier Award-winning director/designers Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch (Shockheaded Peter). 

By the way, does anyone know what these original Addams Family actors are up to now?

TimeLine Theatre to hold panel disussion: "Race in America"

TimeLine Theatre announces “Race in America: A Discussion With No Walls,” a panel discussion open to the public on Tuesday, December 2, 2008, from 6 – 8 pm. The event will be held at the International House at the University of Chicago (map). Admission is free but reservations are encouraged; call (773) 281-8463 x24.

A House With No Walls is a provocative and innovative play that addresses not only race relations in this country, but also the challenges that come from trying to even discuss race relations,” said TimeLine Artistic Director PJ Powers. “Honestly, it’s not a conversation we’ve had enough at TimeLine, and we’re very much looking forward to engaging in that dialogue with a diverse audience from around Chicago at this special event.”

The discussion panel will include Dr. Harvette Grey, Dr. Eric Arnesen, Melissa Barton, Dr. Valerie Johnson and Dawn Turner Trice.

“A Discussion With No Walls” is inspired by and presented in conjunction with TimeLine Theatre’s Chicago premiere of Thomas Gibbons’ A House With No Walls, now playing through December 21.

Other Christmas Theater and Cultural Events

lawfer_ongreen Strawdog Theatre Company is presenting their annual holiday benefit “Strawdog Yuletacular 2008” on Monday, December 8th, 7-10pm, at Morseland in Rogers Park. The evening will feature a retro-style variety show with comedic sketches, a holiday cooking demonstration, a raffle and silent auction, and live, big-band style music provided by Strawdog’s guest band, The Jenn Rhoads Project. Sounds like fun to me!  Find more info here.



Steppenwolf Theatre has announced the final extension of their Christmas hit “Dublin Carol”, by playwright Conor McPherson.  The extended closing date will be Sunday, January 4th.  More info here.

comedysportzDue to popular demand, ComedySportz Theatre, now in their new home on Belmont and Clark,  has added extra performances for during the weeks of Thanksgiving and Christmas.  More info here.

UPDATE: ComedySportz will also be offering New Years Eve performances, at 6pm and 10pm.





On Wednesday, December 3rd, at 7:30, Loyola University will present its annual Holiday Concert, Joyola,  with performances from the Loyola Orchestra, Chamber Choir, Wind ensemble, University Chorus and Jazz band.  More info here.


Elton John to write AIDS musical

eltonjohn3Looks like Elton John plans to write an AIDS musical.  EJ says that the production is “about a guy on Broadway who is gay, has HIV and AIDS, and has to go back and face his wife and kids that he left”.   Remarkably he adds “It’s very funny.  The premise doesn’t sound funny, but it is.  Alright?”

I love this – when asked about his attitude regarding musicals in general, he responds:

I’m quite fussy about it. I don’t really like them unless I’m involved in them, for some reason.

Can anyone say “ego”?

Sunday Night Sondheim – “Take Me To The World” (1966)

“Take Me to the World” from Stephen Sondheim and James Goldman’s Evening Primose, produced for ABC’s Stage67. With Anthony Perkins and Charmian Carr.