Valentines: The House Theatre’s "Love-O-Rama", Giordano Dance Company toasts Valentine

 

Love-O-Rama to benefit The House Theatre

housetheatre-icon Hosted by The Vanguard, the Young Professionals Board of The House Theatre of Chicago, Love-O-Rama is an annual pre-Valentine’s Day benefit.  The party is on Thursday, February 5th at Nick’s Uptown (4015 N Sheridan Rd) from 7 to 11 p.m.  Guests can mingle with company members of The House as they enjoy drink specials throughout the evening along with a DJ, dancing, raffle prizes, a make-out booth and other surprises! Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.loveorama.net.  Proceeds benefit The House Theatre of Chicago.

 

GJDC's Meghan McDermott in Pyrokinesis Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago performs Impulse Photo Pedro Brenner 

 

    Centre East presents Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago Valentine’s Day

 

Centre East, in Skokie, will present the critically acclaimed Evanston-based Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago on Valentine’s Day, Saturday, Feb. 14 at 8 p.m. at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie. They will perform an encore of selections from their acclaimed program of new and revived works by choreographers mentored or inspired by the late founder Gus Giordano, including:

  • Jon Lehrer’s A Ritual Dynamic.
  • Gus Giordano’s solo piece “Wings, recreated by former GJDC dancer Susan Quinn Williams.
  • Sherry Zunker’s The Man That Got Away. a “pas de deux for one”
  • “Giordano Moves” (2005) co-choreographed by Nan Giordano and former GJDC dancer and company Associate Director, Jon Lehrer. This piece features 10 dancers performing to an original jazz score by George McRae.

The evening will be capped with Post-Show Champagne with the dancers!

 

GJDC's Cesar Salinas in Gus Giordano's WINGS Photo by Pedro Brenner

Chicago Theater tidbits: Goodman’s partnership, Auditorium Theatre’s "America in the Age of Obama" concert

 

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Chicago’s Goodman Theatre has announced a new partnership with the Austrian steel town of Linz.  Read Chris Jones‘ (from the Trib) article here.
   

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The Auditorium Theatre, in partnership with City Lights Orchestra, will be holding a special one-time concert  on Wednesday, Feb. 11th at 7:30, entitled “America in the Age of Obama: A Concert Honoring Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” 

This special benefit concert will feature music by Grammy-winner Linda Clifford, jazz-trumpet legend Orbert Davis, The Soul Children of Chicago, and Walter Payton College Prep Concert Choir.  CBS Chicago anchor Jim Williams will emcee, and special guests include Attorney General Lisa Madigan, Boeing Company VP Anna Eleanor Roosevelt and Roosevelt University President Charles Middleton.  

For more info, visit AuditoriumTheatre.org. For tickets, call 312.902.1500 or visit Ticketmaster.com.

   
  Soul Children of Chicago
 

Soul Children of Chicago

"Addams Family – The Musical" – Nathan Lane, Bebe Neuwirth participate in first public reading

 

UPDATE: Read our review3 stars!!    review

 

bebeneuwirth nathanlane 

Wow – Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have this same list of Broadway stars headline the pre-Broadway Chicago production?  And doesn’t Bebe Neuwirth seem like the perfect Morticia Addams? 

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Excerpts from the Playbill-Online article:

The cast of this developmental workshop includes Nathan Lane as Gomez, Bebe Neuwirth as Morticia, Kevin Chamberlin as Fester, Zachary James as Lurch, Mary Louise Burke as Grandmama, Terrence Mann, Jan Maxwell and more. As is often the case with readings and workshops, this does not necessarily reflect what the final production casting will be.

As previously announced, the musical will make its world premiere Nov. 13, 2009-Jan. 10, 2010, at the Ford Center for the Performing Arts, Oriental Theatre in Chicago, prior to a spring 2010 launch on Broadway.

With a book by Marshall Brickman and partner Rick Elice (librettists of the 2006 Tony Award-winning Best Musical, Jersey Boys) and music and lyrics by Drama Desk Award-winning composer-lyricist Andrew Lippa (The Wild Party), the musical is wholly original and not based on Addams Family material from other media.

Produced by Elephant Eye Theatrical and Roy Furman, The Addams Family has direction and design by Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch, the creators of Shockheaded Peter.

The Addams Family creative team also includes choreographer Sergio Trujillo, lighting designer Natasha Katz and musical director Mary-Mitchell Campbell.

For more information on the premiere engagement of The Addams Family, visit www.BroadwayInChicago.com.  Read the entire article here.

UPDATE: Addams Family opens in Chicago!!!

Aside: This Chicago ticket broker offers a great selection of tickets in the city – Purchase tickets for Blue Man Group in Chicago and nationwide tours like Jersey Boys – which is now celebrating its second year of sellout performances!

Allison Torem – a theatre star in the making?

UPDATE:  Excerpts from Hedy Weiss’s new article regarding Ms. Torem has been added at the bottom of this post.

I am always incredibly impressed by young theatrical talent that can hold their own among a group of professional actors.  Often these young prodigies easily steal the Torem_Cox_GreatFalls show.  Past examples include Edward Heffernan in American Theatre Company‘s The Dark At The Top Of The Stairs, by William Inge, as well as Lillian Almaguer in Steppenwolf’s controversial production of The Pain and the Itch, by Bruce Norris.

It looks like we have another one of those Chicago prodigies, per Hedy Weiss‘s glowing review of Profiles Theatre‘s Great Falls, by Lee Blessing – that being Allison Torem.

Says Weiss:

One crucial reason to catch the Profiles Theatre production of Lee Blessing’s two-character play “Great Falls” is to witness the astonishing performance by Allison Torem.  An actress of dazzling skill, fierce emotional honesty and breath-taking sophistication, she also just happens to be a senior at the Whitney Young Magnet High School.     (emphasis mine)

Ms. Weiss goes on to say that Torem “triggers memories of the young Jodie Foster“.  Wow.

Kudos to Ms.Torem, and to Profiles for presenting such an exemplary production.

Great Falls continues through March 1st. Starring Darrell W. Cox and Allison Torem, direction by Joe Jahraus, Chelsea Meyers (set design), and Kevin O’Donnell (sound design).

Read the entire review here.  Other reviews: Trib, ChicagoCritic,

Great Falls, by Lee Blessing

UPDATE: Chicago Sun-Times’ Hedy Weiss has also written a post regarding Allison Torem on her blog.  A few quotes:

She didn’t see much theater as a child, but when she broke a finger in a bowling accident at age 9, she stopped taking karate and violin lessons and enrolled in classes at Prologue Children’s Theatre. In eighth grade she took classes at the Second City, but confesses: “I was seriously insecure. It would be a whole lot more fun for me now.” She also tried her hand at musicals as part of the youth-oriented Entertainment Project.

At first I was taken aback when reading this:

Torem, a slight girl with an interesting face that can shift between beauty and something far more challenging, admits to being stunned by her glowing reviews.

But then I realized that, for the stage, an actor’s ability to manipulate their expressions is an a coveted talent.  Read the entire article here.

Once again – bravo!

Chicago Theater tidbits: Batsheva Dance Company, Village Players, "Don’t Dress for Dinner"

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A post-performance chat with Batsheva Dance Company Artistic Director Ohad Naharin will be held immediately following the Feb. 7 (opening night) performance at the Auditorium Theatre. Dance critic Lucia Mauro will moderate. Returning to Chicago for the first time in 15 years, Batsheva Dance Company of Israel will present Naharin’s signature work “Deca Dance”.  The renowned company will perform for 2 evenings only, Feb 7th and 8th.  Tickets: thru Ticketmaster or calling 312.902.1500.  (See pics above)
   

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Don’t worry, although I have my YouTube series “Sunday Night Sondheim”, I won’t add “Monday Morning Pope“.
   

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The world-premier musical “Far From Freud”, presented by Oak Park’s Village Players, has added one final performance – Friday, January 30th at 8pm.  “Far From Freud” is written by Phil Riegle and directed by Christopher Pazdernik.  [Listen to one of the show’s songs “How It’s Gonna Be” by clicking here.]
   

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On this day in history (January 27th): In 1885 stage and screen composer Jerome Kern was born in New York.  And it just so happens that another composer was also born on the 27th: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, born in Salzburg in 1756.
   

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Darren Pettie will join the cast of British Stage Company’s screwball comedy Don’t Dress for Dinner“, by Marc Camoletti and directed by John Tilling. Other members of the ensemble include Mark Harelik (Light In The Piazza) and Patricia Kalember of “thirtysomething” and “Sisters“. Running through February at The Royal George, more info can be found at the show’s website.
   

Video Clip from ‘Don’t Dress for Dinner’

This week’s Chicago theater openings:

BEERThe Neo-Futurists

CARDIFF (BOUND EAST FOR CARDIFF)Goodman Theatre

DESIGN FOR LIVINGFirst Folio Theatre

FIRES IN THE MIRROR16th Street Theater

I GOTCHABlack Ensemble Theatre

LIVING GREEN Victory Gardens Theater

MISAMERICARaven Theatre

THE SINS OF SOR JUANA Northwestern University Theatre

SLAPHAPPY Beat the Jester Productions

XANADUDrury Lane Theatre Watertower Place