11/1 at 8 p.m.
High-school sophomore Hadiya Pendleton became the face of Chicago’s crime epidemic when she was gunned down in a park last January. Deeply Rooted Dance Theater pays homage to the 15-year-old with the world premiere of its eulogistic piece Hadiya.
$45–$65. Harris Theater, 205 E. Randolph. harristheaterchicago.org
It’s the Political Economy, Stupid
When two dozen artists take on a topic like the Great Recession, things get irreverent.
Free. Gallery 400, 400 S. Peoria. gallery400.uic.edu
11/2 at 8 p.m.
Ask the humorist your pressing questions after he reads from his latest book, Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls.
$43–$58. Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Congress. auditoriumtheatre.org
After 20 years, this glass-and-sculpture fair—a “bougie” version of the craft fair Renegade—is the city’s signature design event.
$15. Navy Pier, 600 E. Grand. sofaexpo.com
Chicago International Children’s Film Festival
Fortunately for parents, the films at this fest—featuring 250 movies from more than 40 countries—are interesting enough to hold the attention of both you and your little ones.
$6–$9. Times and locations: cicff.org
Umbrella Music Festival
All the improvisational jazz that can fit in four days.
Free–$20. Times and locations: umbrellamusic.org
11/7, 9 at 7:30 p.m.
Praise Yeezus! Hip-hop’s talented megalomaniac is back for his first solo tour in five years. Fellow emcee Kendrick Lamar opens.
$40–$200. United Center, 1901 W. Madison. unitedcenter.com
11/8–9 at 8 and 10:30 p.m.
He might be the quietest comic on the circuit, but the laughs he generates are loud enough that even Louis C.K. and Conan O’Brien are fans.
$22. Up Comedy Club, 230 W. North. upcomedyclub.com
As Tennessee Williams would have attested, family drama on a plantation is a ripe setting for stunning theatre.
$35–$50. Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln. victorygardens.org
The Way of the Shovel: Art as Archaeology
If 20 artists created a History Channel special that surveyed the early 2000s, it might look something like this hotly anticipated show.
$7–$12. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E. Chicago. mcachicago.org
Chicago Humanities Festival
This year’s guest speakers take on the topic “What makes us human?” The lineup includes Americanah scribe Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (11/3), The New Yorker staple Atul Gawande (11/7), author Sherman Alexie (11/9), autistic animal scientist Temple Grandin (11/9), tennis star Martina Navratilova (11/9), and chef Rick Bayless (11/10).
$5–$28. Times and locations: chicagohumanities.org
University of Chicago Presents
11/10 at 3 p.m.
New-music string group Spektral Quartet plays Thomas Adès’s gorgeous Arcadiana and pieces by Ferneyhough, Britten, and Bartók.
$15. Logan Center, U. of C., 915 E. 60th. chicagopresents.uchicago.edu
11/13 at 8 p.m.
For all Blake’s synths, hi hats, and piano loops, it’s his heart-wrenching voice that demands hushed attention.
$29. Riviera Theatre, 4746 N. Racine. jamusa.com
If you missed Timothy Edward Kane’s virtuosic one-man telling of Homer’s Greek epic last year, don’t pass it up again.
$35–$65. Court Theatre, 5535 S. Ellis. courttheatre.org
11/13 at 12:15 p.m.
This piano trio has been playing for only two years, but it has attracted more critical raves than groups twice its age.
Free. Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington. cityofchicago.org
River North Dance Chicago
The athletic jazz troupe has a lot going on, to say the least. Its fall engagement—three premieres by choreographers Kevin Iega Jeff, Ashley Roland, and Adam Barruch—kicks off a dizzying season of touring performances.
$30–$75. Harris Theater, 205 E. Randolph. harristheaterchicago.org
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
11/14–16 at 8 p.m.
The Grant Park Music Festival may have just staged Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem in June, but the composer’s orchestral-choral masterwork is worth another listen.
$32–$246. Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan. cso.org
A Christmas Carol
If you go to only one holiday-themed play this season, make it this adaptation of the classic Dickens novel, starring the indefatigable Larry Yando.
$25–$83. Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn. goodmantheatre.org
A Raisin In The Sun
The reviews have been rhapsodic for this staging of Lorraine Hansberry’s hard hitting classic, directed by Ron OJ Parson (The Mountaintop).
$25–$48. TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington. timelinetheatre.com
The trending New York director Arin Arbus helms this Lyric Opera production, which features the Latvian soprano Marina Rebeka as Violetta.
$34–$264. Lyric Opera, 20 N. Wacker. lyricopera.org
Doris Kearns Goodwin
11/21 at 6 p.m.
Daniel Day-Lewis couldn’t have nabbed his Oscar for Lincoln without this presidential historian, who wrote the book that became the much ballyhooed award-winning film. She discusses her latest project, a look at journalism during the Theodore Roosevelt and William Taft years.
Free. Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State. chipublib.org
Joshua Redman Quartet
11/22 at 8 p.m.
The quick-fingered saxophonist comes to town with his thrilling quartet. The Chicago pianist Muhal Richard Abrams opens, ensuring that this will be one of the best jazz concerts of the fall, period.
$28–$88. Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan. cso.org
11/26 at 8:30 p.m.
Like Jay Leno said after the former Chicagoan’s network TV debut on Late Night with Craig Ferguson: “White men are on their way out! Lesbians rule!”
$15 plus two-item minimum. Zanies, 1548 N. Wells. chicago.zanies.com
Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives
Bond with your Jack Sparrow–loving child at this exhibition featuring more than 300 artifacts from the Disney empire. Put it on your day-after-Thanksgiving to-do list.
$7–$9, not including general admission. Museum of Science and Industry, 5700 S. Lake Shore. msichicago.org
Wreathing of the Lions
11/29 at 10 a.m.
It’s not the holidays till those big cats are clad in their annual finery. Usher in the good cheer with the Maxwell Street Klezmer Band and free hot chocolate.
Free. Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S. Michigan. artic.edu