The Five

Don’t-miss picks for Wednesday, October 21 through October 27, 2015

1 Chicago Humanities Festival

Readings This sprawling lit bacchanal—130 events over two weeks—kicks off with highly anticipated talks from Ta-Nehisi Coates, Russian-American reporter Masha Gessen, and Pulitzer Prize–winning Going Clear scribe Lawrence Wright.
10/24–11/8. Various locations and prices.

2 Music Box of Horrors

Film Obscure cult horror film enthusiasts, this one’s for you. Watch films such as director Wes Craven’s The Serpent and the Rainbow and the Chicago premiere of The Devil’s Candy at this 24-hour flick festival.
10/24–10/25. $30–$35. Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport.

3 1984

Theater Part of Steppenwolf’s Young Adult programming, the Lincoln Park theater mounts Andrew White’s chilling adaptation of George Orwell’s seminal novel.
10/21–11/20. $20. Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted.

4 The Halloween Gathering

Festivals Hosted by the non-profit org the Chicago Cultural Mile, this new daylong fest includes a nighttime costumed parade, a Thriller dance mob, and performances from the Chicago Opera Theater, youth poetry group Louder than a Bomb, and other arts organizations.
10/24 at 2. Free. Grant Park, 337 E. Randolph.

5 Niv Sheinfeld and Oren Laor

Dance Partners in dance and in life, Sheinfeld and Laor bare it all (literally!) in their reimagining of the revered Israeli duet Two Room Apartment. Contemporary dance company Same Planet Different World Theatre sponsors this event, which will also include a world premiere of Vanishing Point, a work set to Janis Joplin’s music.
10/22–10/25. $10–$30. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E. Chicago.

What I’m Doing This Weekend

Geoffrey Todd Smith
Geoffrey Todd Smith Photo: Courtesy of Geoffrey Todd Smith

Up next in our series of weekend plans from notable, in-the-know locals: painter Geoffrey Todd Smith. His self-titled exhibition opens on Saturday, October 24.

“Friday night, I’m going to see some painted sculptures by my friend Paul Erschen at the art gallery The Learning Machine. There’s also a performance by artist Melina Ausikaitis. Then I’ll get some beers at Gold Star Bar. It’s an old dive that I’ve been going to for 10, 15 years.

“Saturday is my opening for my show at Western Exhibitions from 5 8 p.m. I made a lot of abstract paintings that reference video games, old ’70s game shows, and science fiction—a lot of things I’ve been interested since I was a kid. There are other openings in the building, so I’ll probably check out Document afterwards.

“Sunday morning, I have plans to try Charlatan on Chicago Avenue. It’s supposed to have a good brunch, with twists on a normal Italian menu. Then, I’ll probably watch the Cubs game. I’ve been going to the bar The Beetle; it’s close to my apartment and they have these really great pineapple shots.” —As told to Tomi Obaro

Freebie of the Week

Sheree Hovsepian: Reveries of a Solitary Walker

Art The Iranian-born artist integrates photography with sculpture, using mainly photograms, or prints created on light-sensitive paper with no need for a camera.
10/29–1/2. Free. Monique Meloche Gallery, 2154 W. Division.