Gabler, Interrupted

The Further Adventures of Hedda Gabler
Photo: Timmy Samuel, Starbelly Studios

Into the Woods meets Groundhog Day in The Further Adventures of Hedda Gabler, a campy twist on the story of Henrik Ibsen’s doomed heroine from playwright Jeff Whitty (Avenue Q). When Hedda decides to take things into her own hands and rewrite her tragic ending, she ends up in a purgatory of sorts with other archetypal female characters who have gone and jumped the page. Staged by the ambitiously unconventional Dog & Pony Theatre Co., Chicago’s 2007 pick for best local troupe, the play runs now through October 26th at The Viaduct (3111 N. Western Ave.; 773-296-6024). Tickets are $15 to $20; pay what you can on Thursdays.

Best Bets for Things to Do This Week

If you can say, “Dirty Dancing—The Classic Story on Stage,” without stifling a snort of laughter, you want to see Baby liberated from her corner wherever you can: on stage, on screen. Wherever. Catch the new musical about two young lovers’ summer of white-hot shimmying at the Cadillac Palace Theatre (151 W. Randolph St.; 312-902-1400) Sunday the 28th through December 7th. Tickets run $35 to $150.

Guts and gore galore! The Chicago Horror Film Festival runs all weekend at the Portage Theater (4050 N. Milwaukee Ave.), screening flicks with titles like Cheerbleeders. Visit for a full schedule. Tickets are $10 to $30.

In the play Amadeus, onstage now at Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Joseph II repeatedly delivers one critique to Mozart: “Too many notes.” He couldn’t quibble with the Chicago Miniaturist Ensemble, a new group whose free debut features a roster of commissioned works, each including 100 notes or fewer. Hear the ensemble at Ossia Fine Arts Space (410 S. Michigan Ave., Ste. 537; 773-220-2356), 8 p.m. Saturday the 27th.

More free performances abound at Macy’s Day of Music, featuring back-to-back acts from 2 to 10 p.m. Saturday the 27th at Symphony Center (220 S. Michigan Ave.; 312-294-3000). Highlights include local indie-rock vet The Sea and Cake playing songs from its forthcoming album Car Alarm at 8 p.m. Find a full schedule at All performances are free; no advance tickets are required. And for a one-two-free punch, stop off down the street at the Art Institute (111 S. Michigan Ave.; 312-443-3600), also free on Saturday with live performances by the likes of the gyspy-jazz band Swing Gitan.

Two events this weekend focus on keeping young readers reading, even when there’s no new Harry Potter to tempt them. The first might please as many parents as kids: Authors including the beloved, generation-spanning Judy Blume read passages aloud at Banned Books Read Out!, noon to 4 p.m. Saturday the 27th in Pioneer Court (401 N. Michigan Ave., just south of the Tribune Tower; Then on Sunday, the 57th Street Children’s Book Fair (57th Street between Dorchester and Kimbark Avenues;, billed as the Midwest’s largest indie book fair for kids, runs from 1 to 6 p.m. with storytelling, music, and blocks of books.

And one event for adults that’s less about literacy than lederhosen: Oktoberfest at Lincoln Square’s DANK-Haus (4740 N. Western Ave.; 773-561-9181) features riotous punk-polka from the Polkaholics washed down with beer and brats. The bash begins at 8 p.m. Saturday the 27th. Admission is $10.