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Private Time

Our top five picks for the week of 01.06.10 through 01.12.10; plus, freebies for a fabulously frugal start to 2010

Redmoon's latest extravaganza, Spectacle '09, runs through Sunday at Belmont Harbor.
SASSY NOEL  Previews of Noel Coward’s Privates Lives, directed by Gary Griffin, begin this week at Chicago Shakespeare Theater.


Don’t-miss picks for Wed 01.06.10 through Tue 01.12.10:


theatre Private Lives
Noel Coward makes voyeurs of us all in a deliciously catty, scathingly intelligent portrayal of honeymooners who hook up with their exes (so much for New Year’s resolutions). Trust director and Chicagoan Gary Griffin—whose Lyric Opera staging of The Merry Widow runs through Jan 16 at the Civic—to instill the proceedings with equal parts humanity and fanged wit.
GO: Previews Jan 6-12; $44. Regular run though Mar 7; $55-$75. Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Navy Pier, 800 E Grand. chicagoshakes.com


concerts Kevin O’Donnell’s Second Annual Epiphany Spectacular
We just love him—and we’re not the only ones: The Northwestern grad and composer-about-town (who has penned scores for everyone from the theatre troupes Lookingglass and Redmoon to the choreographers Shirley Mordine and Margi Cole) has four Jeff noms in his pocket. Here he wraps up the holiday season with a swinging set on the drums, with plenty of local musicians in tow.
GO: Jan 6 at 8. $8. Martyrs’, 3855 N Lincoln. martyrslive.com


theatre Killer Joe
We would like to describe the scene with the chicken leg, but we don’t have the vocabulary to do such mind-blowing depravity justice. Suffice it to say, it’s a wonder KFC hasn’t put out a cease-and-desist order on the revival of this uproariously violent, hilarious tale of death, sex, and fast food, by August: Osage County’s Tracy Letts.
GO: Previews Jan 8-13. Run continues through Feb 28. All tickets $25-$35. Profiles Theatre, 4147 N Broadway. profilestheatre.org


classical Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Soak up the pure tones of Mathieu Dufour while he’s in town: The CSO’s in-demand principal flutist pulls double duty in L.A. this season. This week he solos in a program—also featuring the twisted one-act opera Bluebeard’s Castle—led by birthday boy Pierre Boulez (happy 85th, Maestro).
GO: Jan 7, 9 at 8; Jan 8 at 1:30; Jan 12 at 7:30. $18-$199. Symphony Center, 220 S Michigan. cso.org


museums Pioneers to the Past
Part Indiana Jones, part history lesson, the Oriental Institute’s new exhibition retraces its founder’s 1919-1920 trek across a turbulent Middle East. No fedora included—but expect plenty of intrigue and adventure.
GO: Jan 12–Aug 29. Open Tue, Thu-Sat 10-6; Wed 10-8:30; Sun noon-6. $4-$7. U of C, 1155 E 58th. oi.uchicago.edu


lit/lectures Marcus Sakey and Laura Caldwell
Your homework assignment, in advance of this chat by two of Chicago’s top crime-fiction writers: Peruse their blog, then check out our recent profile of Sakey, whose books have been optioned by the likes of Ben Affleck and Tobey Maguire.
GO: Jan 12. Social hour at 6; talk at 7. Free; donations accepted for the Society of Midland Authors. Cliff Dwellers Club, 200 S Michigan, 22nd floor. midlandauthors.com

farrago Origami Open House
In paper-folding withdrawal now that the holidays have wrapped? Breeze through the onsite winter flower show for inspiration, then fashion your own 3-D flora at this kid-friendly session at the Garfield Park Conservatory, with guidance from the Chicago Area Origami Society.
GO: Jan 9 at 1. 300 N Central Park. garfield-conservatory.org

Photography: Michael Brosilow


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