Don’t-miss picks for September 20 through September 26, 2017
1 Chicago Human Rhythm Project
Dance:Chicago’s longest-running tap company gets cozy in this mixed bill at Columbia College’s intimate Dance Center. A range of works spanning seven decades complement world premieres by artist-in-residence Dani Borak.
9/21–23. $10–$30. The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago. colum.edu/dance-center
2 Reeling 35
Film:One of the longest-running LGBTQ+ film festivals in the world, Reeling revels in both the strides made by queer actors and the tremendous amount of work left to be done. Expect a range of stereotype-smashing works that straddle nearly every genre of cinema. Last year’s lineup included a documentary about a New Orleans gay club destroyed by arson and a heartfelt comedy about two teens obsessed with sci-fi erotica.
9/21–28. $8–$130. Various venues. reelingfilmfestival.org
3 Becky Shaw
Theater:There are bad blind dates, and then there are blind dates that end at the police station. The latter sparks the bad romance in Gina Gionfriddo’s pitch-black comedy, which abounds with terrible choices, worse sex, and blackmail.
9/21–11/12. $15–$55. Windy City Playhouse. windycityplayhouse.com
4 Open Mike Eagle
Hip-Hop:On his new album Brick Body Kids Still Daydream, released on Friday, Hyde Park native Open Mike Eagle memorializes the now-demolished Robert Taylor Homes where he grew up visiting his aunt. Though Eagle decamped for LA more than a decade ago, consider this stop on his Tour of the Robert Taylor Homes Tour the runaway hometown show.
9/22. $13, $15 at the door. Schubas Tavern. lh-st.com
5 Anne-Sophie Mutter
Classical:The glamorous violin virtuoso plays concertos in two programs with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. In the CSO’s season opener (also the preamble to its Symphony Ball gala), Mutter whirls out Mozart’s “Turkish” concerto before the orchestra alone does Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty suite. On September 23 and 26, Mutter plays the crowd-pleasing Tchaikovsky concerto before the orchestra performs Schumann’s Symphony No. 2.
9/22–26. $15–$255. Symphony Center. cso.org
6 Natya Dance Theatre
Dance:Chicago’s premier Indian dance company performs two works by Mallika and Revanta Sarabhai, which probe contemporary political themes such as global warming and sexuality within the strictures of the ancient dance form bharatanatyam.
9/23 at 5 p.m. $20–$25. Oswego East High School. natya.com
7 Garrison Keillor: Just Passing Through
Lecture:While this Minnesotan may have left Lake Wobegon for the last time (he stepped down as host of the long-running NPR show A Prairie Home Companion last year), Keillor continues to find outlets for his homespun humor and old-timey charm. On this national tour, expect reflective stories, wry anecdotes, live music, and poetry delivered in Keillor’s legendary one-of-a-kind timbre.
9/23 at 8 p.m. $64–$90. North Shore Center for the Performing Arts. northshorecenter.org
8 The Hideout Block Party
Festival:The beloved bar and music venue throws its 21st annual block party—possibly its last—with a re-expanded two-day lineup (after going down to a single day last year). Sunday’s roster (Screaming Females, Man or Astroman?, Nina Nastasia) toasts the 20th anniversary of Steve Albini’s Electrical Audio studio, while Saturday, less explicably, honors the 60th anniversary of the Sputnik satellite (Eleventh Day Dream, Jon Langford, Condo Fucks).
9/23–24. $20. The Hideout. hideoutchicago.com
9 Hyde Park Jazz Festival
Jazz:In its 11th year, the annual alternative to Chicago Jazz Fest toasts Thelonious Monk’s centennial. The mercurial pianist is the focus of four different events, including a lecture by Monk biographer Robin D. G. Kelley. Also on the bill: Ari Brown, Nicole Mitchell, Dana Hall, Dee Alexander, Katie Ernst, Makaya McCraven, Xavier Breaker, and a collaboration by Tomeka Reid and Nick Mazzarella.
9/23–24. $5 donation. Various venues. hydeparkjazzfestival.org
10 William Blake and the Age of Aquarius
Art:For years, Blake was just another genius artist who died in obscurity. But during the Summer of Love in 1967, the work of the 19th-century mystic, printmaker, and poet was adopted as hippie credo. In the first exhibit of its kind, Blake’s psychedelic artwork and poetry are paired with works by those they inspired: Jimi Hendrix, Diane Arbus, Allen Ginsberg, Agnes Martin, and more.
9/23–3/11. Free. Block Museum of Art. blockmuseum.northwestern.edu