Don’t-miss picks for August 30 through September 5, 2017
1 The Chicago Onscreen Local Film Showcase
Film:Nine area parks will screen projects by local filmmakers, each centered on the themes of assumption and perception.
FREE 8/29–9/2. Various venues. chicagoparkdistrict.com
2 Chicago Fringe Festival
Theater:This annual celebration of all things freaky jams 50 “weird and untried” troupes from across the country into one neighborhood (Jefferson Park). Theater, dance, stage magic, comedy, spoken word—if you can perform it, it’s probably on the roster.
8/30–9/2. $5–$175. Various venues. chicagofringe.org
3 Chicago Jazz Festival
Jazz:The long-running fest, presented by the Jazz Institute of Chicago, returns for Labor Day weekend. Headliners this year include Jason Moran, Jon Faddis, Dee Alexander, and many others.
FREE 8/31–9/3. Chicago Cultural Center. millenniumpark.org
4 Mount Eerie
Folk:Few artists churn out music as feverishly as Phil Elverum. The Washington State native has penned dozens of albums—first as the Microphones and later as Mount Eerie—each of them as confessional as a diary entry. His latest, this year’s A Crow Looked at Me, is a breathtaking eulogy for his recently deceased wife, French Canadian artist Geneviève Castrée.
9/5 at 8:30 p.m. $18–$20. Thalia Hall. thaliahallchicago.com
5 Alias Grace
Theater:Jennifer Blackmer adapts Margaret Atwood’s acclaimed novel based on the real-life case of 16-year-old Grace Marks, convicted of murder in 1843. Imprisoned for life, Marks becomes an object of fascination for a young psychiatrist whose interviews gradually reveal the mind of the infamous Canadian criminal.
9/1–10/15. $18–$50. Rivendell Theatre. rivendelltheatre.org
6 North Coast Music Festival
Festival:One of the summer’s last remaining music festivals, this EDM- and hip-hop-centric affair will include headliners like Gucci Mane, Deadmau5 and Eric Prydz, and Damien “Jr. Gong” Marley.
9/1–3. $59–$297. Union Park. northcoastfestival.com
7 Taste of Polonia
Festival:Experience the full gamut of Polish culture in the city’s historically Polish northwest side, complete with food, music, shopping vendors, and a host of carnival rides.
9/1–4. $5–$10. Copernicus Center. topchicago.org
8 African Festival of the Arts
Festival:Every Labor Day weekend, Africa International House hosts this massive celebration, resplendent in art, food, and music of diasporic cultures from across the continent. The crown jewel this 28th year? A Sunday night performance by Haitian rapper and actor Wyclef Jean.
9/1–4. $5–$40. Washington Park. aihusa.org
9 United Flight 232
Theater:The House Theatre remounts its acclaimed docudrama about a 1989 flight bound for Chicago. When the plane suffers engine failure in midair, it coasts for 44 minutes toward a crash landing, the passengers and crew helpless. Tense and riveting, the play takes audiences on a trip that’s both tragic and transcendent.
9/1–10/21. $15–$50. House Theatre at Chopin Theatre. thehousetheatre.com
Electronic:Coinciding with its own 35th anniversary, the legendary Lake View dance club Smart Bar toasts 20 years of Superjane, the country’s first all-female DJ collective. Since its formation in 1997, the members—most famously DJ Heather and Colette—have found global success, individually and with their bandmates. Consider this basement set a househead reunion for the ages.
9/2 at 10 p.m. $15. Smart Bar. etix.com