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The Top Ten Things to Do This Week in Chicago

Evanston Literary Festival, New Media Art from China, Chicago Jazz String Summit, Chicago Critics Film Festival, and more

Father John Misty plays the Chicago Theatre on Monday.   Photo: Armando L. Sanchez

The Ten

Don’t-miss picks for May 10 through May 16, 2017

1 Evanston Literary Festival

Books:Catch the final few events of the third annual Evanston Literary Festival, including readings by Aleksandar Hemon on Wednesday and John Keene and Kevin Coval on Thursday.
Through 5/11. Free. Various locations. evanstonlit.org

2 Don’t Kid Yourself: “Hey Ma!”

Comedy:In this week’s Don’t Kid Yourself, a monthly sketch show about the “weirdness of childhood,” the theme, just in time for Mother’s Day, is moms. Featuring standups Arish Singh, Kristen Toomey, and more.
5/10 at 7:30 p.m. $8–$10. Hungry Brain. ticketfly.com

3 New Media Art from China

Art:This screening of video pieces by young Chinese media artists—curated by Zhang Peili, who has his own retrospective in the Modern Wing—shows how today’s artists use moving-image technology to develop their own points of view.
5/11 at 6 p.m. Free. Art Institute of Chicago. artic.edu

4 Chicago Jazz String Summit

Jazz:Local jazz cellist Tomeka Reid helms a two-day festival spotlighting improvisational string players like, featuring violist Eyvind Kang, Reid’s own band Hear in Now, and more. This year’s summit doubles as a tribute to the late violinist Michael White.
5/12–13. $15. Friday at Elastic Arts; Saturday at Constellation. elasticarts.org

5 Chicago Critics Film Festival

Film:Expect a stellar lineup at this five-year-old film fest. Last year, the Chicago Film Critics Association presented a bellwether selection of indie hits-to-be, among them Taika Waititi’s Hunt for the Wilderpeople, a New Zealand comedy that sneaked onto some high-profile year-end lists after receiving the festival’s Audience Award.
5/12–18. $10–$15. Music Box Theatre. chicagocriticsfilmfestival.com

6 Patricia Lockwood

Reading:The internet’s favorite poet reads from her recent memoir Priestdaddy, which relays her experience moving back in with her parents in Kansas City, Missouri.
5/13 at 7 p.m. Free. The Book Cellar. bookcellarinc.com

7 School of the Art Institute Design Show

Design:In Whatnot, a group of Art Institute students present highly refined household objects, from a tabletop mirror to an incense burner. Click here for more.
5/13–30. Free. Chicago Design Museum. chidm.com

8 Ty Segall

Rock:With half a dozen musical projects to his name, Segall ranks as one of indie rock’s most prolific figures. His most recent solo effort (his ninth overall) is a self-titled, Steve Albini–produced jam. Much of his studio work skews psychedelic, but don’t be surprised if Segall goes full-on punk in a live setting.
5/14 at 8:30 p.m. $24–$30. Thalia Hall. thaliahallchicago.com

9 Chicago Home Theater Festival

Festival:Over the course of 14 nights, a group of professors, journalists, activists, actors, and artists open up their homes for live music, theater, and art—a means of fostering community and conversation in intimate settings. Among those involved: WBEZ reporter Natalie Moore (May 21), education whiz Bill Ayers (May 18), poet Avery R. Young (May 28), and musician Mykele Deville (May 23).
5/14–29. Free–$65. Various locations. chicagohtf.org

10 Father John Misty

Folk:On Pure Comedy, his third record since stepping down as drummer of Fleet Foxes, this California folksinger (real name Joshua Tillman) explores themes of technology, politics, and human nature. The April release finds Tillman at his best: blending the line between pop rock and performance art, sincere and sarcastic. As always with the guy who performed on Letterman with a laugh track, expect some serious theatrics live.
5/15 at 7:30 p.m. $30–$50. Chicago Theatre. ticketmaster.com

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