Don’t-miss picks for Wednesday, June 1 through June 7, 2016
1 The 3rd Annual 26th Annual Comedy Festival
Comedy: Sarah Silverman and Tracy Morgan bookend the weeklong comedy fest curated by The Onion. The bill also includes Michael Che (of The Daily Show and SNL fame), 2 Dope Queens, Chris Gethard, and the avant-garde onetime Chicagoan Ian Abramson.
6/1–5. $10–$65. Various locations. 26comedy.com
2 Do Division Street Fest and Sidewalk Sale
Festivals: This nabe favorite features live lineups booked by the Empty Bottle and Subterranean, plus food, a fashion show, and plenty of cold beer. Acts range from indie demi-royalty (Fruit Bats) to rising rappers (ShowYouSuck), with a side of glam guitarwork (Delicate Steve).
6/3–5. $5 donation. Division between Ashland and Leavitt. do-divisionstreetfest.com
3 Third Coast Percussion
Classical: The dynamic quartet has graduated to larger venues than Constellation. This concert offers a rare opportunity to catch the magic up close and personal for those unafraid of sitting face to face with the clangor.
6/5 at 8:30. $10–$20. Constellation, 3111 N. Western. constellation-chicago.com
4 Louis C.K.
Comedy: With Horace and Pete concluded and Louie on indefinite hiatus, this four-night Chicago residency gives fans a fresh chance to experience C.K.’s trendsetting strain of humor.
6/1–3. $50. Chicago Theatre, 175 N. State. ticketmaster.com
5 The Propeller Group
Art: This Ho Chi Minh City artist collective makes films to show how citizens reckon with rapid changes in the Vietnamese metropolis, such as the funerary rituals that seem at odds with a burgeoning capitalistic society.
6/4–11/13. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E. Chicago. mcachicago.org
What I’m Doing This Weekend
Up next in our series of weekend plans from notable, in-the-know locals: Ian Abramson, one-time Chicago comedian and host of the traveling show 7 Minutes in Purgatory. Ian performs 7 Minutes on Saturday, June 4 as part of the AV Club’s 3rd Annual 26th Annual Comedy Festival.
“Starting this afternoon, I’ll be promoting the festival by appearing in Lyft cars near the venues—Thalia Hall, Lincoln Hall, and the Civic Opera House—doing bits and, hopefully, making people laugh. If I end up in your car, you’ll get a free ride. Later on, I’ll be hosting the first night of festival after-parties at the Virgin Hotel. These are going to be a blast, with lots of special guests from the fest and live DJs on the rooftop. Plus, all the shows are free—you just have to RSVP and squeeze into a tiny room. We’ll be starting at around 9:30 each night through Saturday. [Friday and Saturday begin at 10 p.m.]
“Friday, I’m looking forward to kicking around my old neighborhood. I really miss just walking around Logan Square and Wicker Park, and I’ll definitely be hitting a lot of my old haunts. Quimby’s is a must for weird comics, and I also tend to end up at Uncharted Books. Also, if I have time this weekend, I’m going to see what’s showing at Music Box Theatre. I’ve both performed and been in the audience there many a time—it’s just a fantastic place. Normally, I’d go to the Edge diner in Lake View for some soup, but I just found out that it closed in January and my heart is broken. I’ll try to find some solace at Hollywood Grill on North.
“Saturday, I’ll be doing 7 Minutes in Purgatory at the Hideout. It’s a favorite venue of mine, and I can’t wait to see what we get up to this time—it’s gotten pretty crazy in the past. After my show, Jo Firestone takes the stage, and she’s definitely worth sticking around for.
“Beyond that, I’m actually staying in town into next week to catch some more comedy. There’s a DIY basement venue called the Shithole that I’m going to check out. It’s the definition of underground—so underground you have to find a poster and contact someone to get the address. I know that sounds a little esoteric, but the comics who perform there are doing some really interesting, innovative stuff, and I think the whole secretive aspect is part of the experience. Next Wednesday, I’m really excited to go see Sarah Sherman host Helltrap Nightmare at Elastic Arts on Diversey—it’s sort of a horror-comedy night, very gross and very funny, with a noise rock element. If that sounds nuts, it’s probably going to be.” —As told to John Hardberger
Freebie of the Week
The Magic of Margaret Wharton
Art: Best known for her work in Chicago in the 1970s, Wharton deconstructed gender-specific objects such as kitchen chairs, rolling pins, and baseball bats, and reassembled them as sculptural forms. Rarely on view, her whimsical works are united for a memorial survey exhibit.
6/3–7/23. Free. 215 W. Superior. jeanalbanogallery.com