Lords of the Ring

Our top five picks for things to do this week: The Building Stage does rock ’n’ roll Wagner… Keaton does Sherlock … art does a disappearing act … plus, stand-up tryouts at the Lakeshore and ice dancing to the King of Pop in Millennium Park

Redmoon's latest extravaganza, Spectacle '09, runs through Sunday at Belmont Harbor.
THEY’VE GOT YOUR BACK The Building Stage’s six-hour adaptation of The Ring Cycle includes a dinner break and a cash bar.  

THE FIVE

Don’t-miss picks for Wed 02.03.10 through Tue 02.09.10:

 

1

theatre The Ring Cycle
Not the 16-hour Wagner version but a six-hour adaptation: In place of operatic arias, you get plot-propelling rock ’n’ roll leitmotifs by our fave local composer for the stage, Kevin O’Donnell. With its hefty running time (including two intermissions plus a dinner break) Ring isn’t exactly theatre for the Twitterature set—but you can drink during it.
GO: Previews through Feb 7; $20. Regular run through Mar 14; $32-$40. BYO snacks or buy a boxed dinner onsite for $10; cash bar. The Building Stage, 412 N Carpenter. buildingstage.com

2

theatre The Silver Project, Part One
Another ambitious local staging: In celebration of its 25th anniversary, the embattled but spunky American Theater Company is launching a five-part series of new short plays, with each work based on a year that’s elapsed since the troupe’s 1985 founding. The lineup of scheduled playwrights reads like a who’s who of contemporary Chicago theatre: Chad Deity’s Kristoffer Diaz; Ski Dubai’s Laura Jacqmin; Magnolia’s Regina Taylor; plus the master of intolerable cruelty, Neil LaBute. For this first installment, we can’t wait to hear 2003 as envisioned by Yussef El Guindi (Our Enemies: Lively Scenes of Love and Combat) and 2004 by Stephen Karam (Speech & Debate). Although ticket prices are TBD, ATC promises us Monday’s staged readings are on; keep an eye on the theatre’s website for updates.
GO: Feb 8 at 7:30. American Theater Company, 1909 W Byron. atcweb.org

ALSO THIS WEEK: I Am a Camera, an unconventional look at the history of the photo from the father of Neo-Futurism, Greg Allen, opens at the Neo-Futurarium.

3

film/classical Sherlock, Jr.
Better than Downey? We say he’s incomparable, but you be the judge: Buster Keaton stars in this classic silent flick at Symphony Center. No Jude Law as sidekick, but the CSO performs a brand-new score by Timothy Brock alongside.
GO: Feb 5 at 8. $29-$82. Symphony Center, 220 S Michigan. cso.org

ALSO THIS WEEK: Hipster alert: Mumblecore godfather Andrew Bujalski (Funny Ha Ha, Mutual Appreciation) hosts chats following four weekend screenings of his new film, Beeswax, at the Siskel.

4

classical Kronos Quartet
The acclaimed string ensemble has commissioned works by the world’s biggest minimalist composers—Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Arvo Pärt—and has performed with the likes of David Bowie and Tom Waits. Here they play eight pieces written or arranged just for them, including works by Terry Riley and Osvaldo Golijov.
GO: Feb 5 at 8. $34-$44. McAninch Arts Center, College of DuPage, 425 Fawell, Glen Ellyn. atthemac.org

ALSO THIS WEEK: Pinchas Zukerman’s soprano of an offspring, Arianna, joins Music of the Baroque in Mozart’s Requiem; The Bad Plus, that jazz trio of Midwestern iconoclasts, plays the U of C. 

5

galleries Now You See It and Now You Don’t
It’s a party! It’s an opening! It’s a happening! For the past month, Flat Iron resident artists and guests have been collaborating on a giant mural that, when finished, will snake continuously through the building’s second and third floors. The work gets its brief public premiere Friday before vanishing into urban legend; at 10 p.m., participating artists will roller over the entire mural with white paint. We’ve been suckered into apartment-painting parties before, but with drinks included and no need to lift a finger, this is one whitewash we can get behind.
GO: Feb 5: 6-10. $5 suggested. Flat Iron Arts Building, 1579 N Milwaukee. wpbfirstfriday.com

FREEBIES OF THE WEEK

comedy Open Mic Casting Call
Don’t make us revoke our “best place to see comedy” honorific: For the first time in its history, Lakeshore Theater is hosting an open-mic night. Wannabe comedians should prep five minutes of their best material and jest to impress; the Lakeshore’s artistic director and talent booker, Chris Ritter, will be sitting in. There’s no cover and drinks are cheap—just go easy on the $2 PBRs until after your set, unless you want to end up like this guy.
GO: Feb 6, 18 at 7:30. Lakeshore Theater, 3175 N Broadway. To sign up, e-mail your name and contact info to booking@lakeshoretheater.com.

farrago Michael Jackson night at McCormick Tribune Ice Rink
You know it: It’s bad. As part of the month-long festival Chicago Winter Dance, the skating rink in Millennium Park offers extended weekend hours, with ice-dancing demos and late-night themed parties. Saturday night’s soundtrack: Michael Jackson and the music of the 1980s. Moonwalking on ice? We are so there—with glove(s) on.
GO: Feb 6: 7-11; ice-dancing demos at 7, 8:30, and 10. Admission is free; skate rental $10. McCormick Tribune Ice Rink, Millennium Park, Michigan and Randolph. Chicago Winter Dance continues Fri-Sun through Feb 28; see explorechicago.org for full schedule.

Photography: Courtesy of The Building Stage

 

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