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The Best Comedy, Film, Readings and More in Chicago This Month

From Amy Schumer and Bill Cosby to the South Side Irish Parade, there’s still a lot to do in March.

Amy Schumer plays the Auditorium Theatre on Friday, March 28.   Photo: Courtesy Amy Schumer



Amy Schumer

3/28 at 8 With a movie produced by Judd Apatow in the works, the ribald comedienne is on a tear. Catch her standup set before she gets too famous. $37.50–$47.50. Auditorium Theatre, 50 E Congress. ticketmaster.com


Bill Cosby

3/29 at 2 and 8 The veteran comic, who stops in Naperville in support of his latest comedy special Far from Finished, really is making good on that title: NBC recently announced Cosby is in talks to produce a new sitcom for the channel. $50–$75. Pfeiffer Hall, 310 E Benton, Naperville. finearts.northcentralcollege.edu


Chicago Improv Festival

3/31–4/6 Divided into nine categories this year, including the new dramatic improv, this festival provides a macrolevel look at one of the city’s most famous exports. $10–$25. Various venues. chicagoimprovfestival.org

Katt Williams

3/21 at 8 Once upon a time, the name Katt Williams was uttered in the same breath as Eddie Murphy and Dave Chappelle. Williams stepped away from the spotlight, dealing with a host of personal issues, so consider his return to the road a hopeful sign. $58–$42. Arie Crown Theater, 2301 S Lake Shore. ariecrown.com

W. Kamau Bell

3/14 at 7 His little-watched but much-buzzed-about talk show, Totally Biased was cancelled late last year. But the comedian shows no signs slowing down, as evidenced by this “Oh, Everything!” tour. $20–$23. Lincoln Hall, 2424 N Lincoln. lincolnhallchicago.com

Festivals, Parades, Parties

Chicago Beer Festival

3/22 at 1 Once again, Union Station transforms into a beer nerd’s heaven, with 55 domestic and international companies offering spring and fall wares for sampling. Act quickly; the event always sells out. $40. Union Station, 210 S Canal. eventbrite.com

South Side Irish Parade

3/16 at noon It’s not really St. Patrick’s Day until Beverly hosts this annual parade. No alcohol allowed along the way, but of course the neighborhood is chock-full of Irish bars. Free. Starts at 103rd Street. southsideirishparade.org



Doc Films

The University of Chicago’s student-run film society offers a number of compelling series this month, including a showcase of movies by black female directors that includes Ava DuVernay’s drama The Middle of Nowhere (3/13), and screenings of some Academy Award winners. $5. Ida Noyes Hall at University of Chicago, 1212 E. 59th. docfilms.uchicago.edu

Gene Siskel Film Center

Through 5/6 The American New Wave. While France and Italy are the countries most associated with new wave films, the curators at the Siskel argue that there was also a U.S. cinematic renaissance happening during the late 1950s and 1960s. Their defense? Fourteen lectures and screenings of some idiosyncratic treasures, including the Andy Warhol film Tarzan and Jane, Regained (3/11) and a documentary by dancer Shirley Clarke, Portrait of Jason (3/18). $11. Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N State. siskelfilmcenter.org

Readings & Lectures


Chicago Zine Fest

3/14–15 The fifth annual celebration of print media’s punky younger sibling celebrates its format with youth readings, games, and, of course, the selling of locally published zines. Conaway Center at Columbia College, 1104 S Wabash. chicagozinefest.org

Moshin Hamid

3/11 at 6 A former banker turned award-winning novelist, the Pakistan-born Hamid reads from his latest novel, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia. $5–$15. First United Methodist Church, 77 Washington. chicagohumanities.org


Story Week

3/16–21 Theatre director Kimberly Senior, Little Known Facts author Christine Sneed, and up-and-coming novelist Roxane Gay are people to see at this week-long free dedication to the written word and its local practitioners. Free. Various locations. colum.edu



Dinosaur Zoo Live

3/25–3/30 Audience members can explore ancient Australia as they “interact” with large-scale dinosaur puppets developed with the help of paleontologists. $47. Broadway in Chicago at the Broadway Playhouse, 175 E Chestnut. dinosaurzoolive.us, broadwayinchicago.com



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