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The Top Five Things to Do in Chicago This Week

The very best in comedy, art, music, and more.

BOY WONDER Go see Matthew Aucoin’s opera for kids this weekend.   Photo: Todd Rosenberg

The Five

Don’t-miss picks for Wednesday, August 19 through August 25, 2015

1 Second Nature

Opera: The New York Times recently bestowed upon Matthew Aucoin the no-pressure title of “opera’s great 25-year-old hope.” Find out if he’s up to snuff at Second Nature, a piece for children he wrote for the Lincoln Park Zoo.
8/19–8/20. Free. Lincoln Park Zoo, 2021 N. Stockton. lyricopera.org

2 Terrain Biennial

Art: Sabrina Ott thinks big. What began as a quirky artist-run alternative gallery on the front porch of the Oak Park home has now grown into a 75-artist biennial, with dozens of nearby homes lending their front lawns to some of Chicago’s best emerging talent.
8/23–9/30. Free. Terrain, 704 Highland, Oak Park. terrainexhibitions.tumblr.com

3 Tamara Winfrey Harris

Readings: The blogger and author of The Sisters are Alright: Changing the Broken Narratives of Black Women in America talks about her new book.
8/19 at 7:30. Free. Women and Children First, 5233 N. Clark. womenandchildrenfirst.com

4 Grant Park Music Festival

Classical: Don’t miss a performance of composer Howard Hanson’s gorgeous Elegy.
8/19 at 6:30. $25–$85 (sold out), free available. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, 201 E. Randolph. grantparkmusicfestival.com

5 Comedy Secrets

Comedy: Local stand-up comic Stephanie Hasz hosts this monthly showcase, where comics divulge embarrassing secrets and the audience is sworn to silence.
8/25 at 9:30. $5. Beat Kitchen, 2100 W. Belmont. beatkitchen.com

What I’m Doing This Weekend

Thrisa Hodits
Thrisa Hodits Photo: Courtesy of Thrisa Hodits

Up next in our series of weekend plans from notable, in-the-know locals—a.k.a. people we like: freelance stage director Thrisa Hodits.

“Friday night I’ll go to Jackalope Theatre for their Living Newspaper Festival, which is made up of six short plays. That’s up in Edgewater, and then usually after their shows, I like to go to the beach.

“Saturday I’ll go to Longman & Eagle for brunch at OSB, their off-site bar. It’s their overflow space, but it’s the best breakfast hack in Logan Square because they have a pop-up donut shop every weekend. I’ll have a Longman breakfast, then head over to Fleur, the flower shop, and look around there. I might also go to King Spa, which is the weirdest, best place ever—and get a scrub.

“Saturday night I’m going to the Fly Honey Show, which is The Inconvenience’s late night burlesque show that is all about celebrating the skin you’re in. They have a DJ or band at the end of the show, so it always turns into a dance party.

“Sunday morning, I’ll head over to Logan Square Farmers Market and get iced coffee. There’s a wonderful flower lady at the farmers market. I like to get a bouquet from her because she makes the most beautiful ones. Then I’ll go to the Hamlin Park Pool, the public pool over by Roscoe Village. They have lounge chairs and it feels like a country club, and it’s free.” —As told to Hannah Nyhart

Freebie of the Week


Unloaded

Art: Artist Mel Chin melds AK-47s into sculpture—one of the highlights in this powerful exhibition about America’s gun culture.
8/25–10/24. Free. Northern Illinois University Art Museum, 116 Altgeld Hall, DeKalb. niu.edu/artmuseum

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