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posted: 1/17/2014 6:00 AM

Theater events: Live it up at Marriott's 'Cabaret'

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Marriott's 'Cabaret'
Broadway veteran Megan Sikora stars as Sally Bowles, the British chanteuse who seduces aspiring writer Clifford (Patrick Srb) in Marriott Theatre's revival of "Cabaret," John Kander and Fred Ebb's classic tuner inspired by Christopher Isherwood's "The Berlin Stories." David H. Bell directs the show, which features Matt Raftery's choreography and Ryan T. Nelson's music direction.
Previews continue through Tuesday, Jan. 21, at 10 Marriott Drive, Lincolnshire. The show opens at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22. $40-$48. (847) 634-0200 or marriotttheatre.com.

Old-fashioned fun
A young scamp with a fondness for the fairer sex and a penchant for misadventure serves as the titular character in Northlight Theatre's production of "Tom Jones," newly adapted from Henry Fielding's 18th-century picaresque novel by Jon Jory ("Sense & Sensibility"). William Brown directs the production, which stars Northlight newcomer Samuel Ashdown as Tom.
Previews begin at 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 17, at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie. $25-$75. The show opens Jan. 24. (847) 673-6300 or northlight.org.

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'Frankenstein' sings
Halloween may be long past, but that isn't stopping Drury Lane Theatre from delivering some frightful fun courtesy of "Young Frankenstein," the musical inspired by Mel Brooks' affectionate, 1974 stand-up of Mary Shelley's classic Gothic novel. Artistic director William Osetek directs the show, which stars Devin DeSantis as the ambitious scientist, Johanna McKenzie Miller as his betrothed and Jeff Dumas as his bumbling sidekick, Igor.
Previews continue through Wednesday, Jan. 22, at 100 Drury Lane, Oakbrook Terrace. The show opens at 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 23. $35-$49. (630) 530-0111 or drurylane.com.

Theatre Week tickets
Tickets priced at $15 and $30 are available for Chicago Theatre Week, a celebration of Chicago-area theater running Feb. 11-16 at various venues in the city and suburbs. Tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis. See chicagotheatreweek.com.

Other theater events:

• Previews begin Friday, Jan. 17, at 4041 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, for Filament Theatre Ensemble's "The Snow Queen." Adapted from Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tale about Gerda and her best friend Kai, who is lured away by the wicked Snow Queen, prompting Gerda to travel to the ends of the world to save him. Directing is Allegra Libonati, who directed Tyler Monroe's original adaptation three years ago at the American Repertory Theater's premiere in Massachusetts. The show, which opens Sunday, Jan. 19, marks the debut of Filament's acting company. (773) 270-1660 or filamenttheatre.org.

• Curios Theatre Branch's 25th annual Rhinoceros Theater Festival celebrating Chicago's off-Loop and fringe theater scene continues through Feb. 23 at Prop Thtr, 3502 N. Elston Ave., Chicago. Among the companies participating is AstonRep Theatre whose double-bill of "The Dumb Waiter" -- Harold Pinter's one-act about two hit men awaiting their next assignment -- and "In The Moment," by Jeffrey Helgeson, which picks up after "The Dumb Waiter" concludes. In it, two actors argue over the importance of theater. The double-bill runs Friday, Jan. 17 and 31 and Feb. 7 and 14. See astonrep.com. Other participating ensembles include Mir Theater ("Cereus Moonlight" about a woman who meets a series of unusual characters after she washes ashore in Florida); Prop Thtr (the black comedy "Extraordinary Rendition: Torture, Music, Frivolity"); The Ruckus ("The Strange" about a girl and a woman who meet occasionally to witness changes in each other and "Tell It & Speak It & Think It & Breathe It: Short Plays Inspired by Great Lyrics" from Neil Young, The Mekons and Neko Case among others). Tickets are $12 online, $15 (or pay what you can) at the door. Call (773) 492-1287 for tickets. See rhinofest.com for a schedule.

• A girl named Rose tries to rescue a magic coin from the clutches of the Rime Witch to rescue her friends and family from perpetual winter in The House Theatre of Chicago's latest original play "Rose and the Rime," beginning previews Friday, Jan. 17, at the Chopin Theatre, 1543 W. Division St., Chicago. Created by company members Nathan Allen, Chris Mathews and Jake Minton, the play features acrobatics, dance and music and stars Paige Collins as Rose and guest artist Brandon Holmes as her love interest Jimmy. Suitable for ages 6 and older, the show opens Jan. 26. (773) 769-3832 or thehousetheatre.com.

• Amy J. Carle and Laura Hooper star in Profiles Theatre's Midwest premiere of "Gidion's Knot," Johnna Adams' examination of bullying, free expression and personal responsibility. The action unfolds during a parent/teacher conference between a grieving mother and a harried teacher over a suspension and a boy named Gidion who may or may not have been bullied. Previews begin Friday, Jan. 17, at Profiles Alley Stage, 4147 N. Broadway, Chicago. Director Joe Jahraus' production opens Jan. 25. (773) 549-1815 or profilestheatre.org.

• Silk Road Rising presents a staged reading of "Yasmina's Necklace," at 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 17, and 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 18-19, at the Historic Chicago Temple Building, 77 W. Washington St., Chicago. Rohina Malik's play centers on a man -- the child of an Iraqi father and a Puerto Rican mother -- eager to "shed his cultural identity" until he meets a beautiful woman from Iraq. (312) 857-1234, ext. 201, or silkroadrising.org.

• Playwright Rebecca Gilman and Goodman Theatre artistic director Robert Falls team up for the world premiere of "Luna Gale," their fourth collaboration, which begins previews Saturday, Jan. 18, at 170 N. Dearborn St., Chicago. The production stars Mary Beth Fisher as a social worker assigned to the case of a baby girl who's been neglected by her drug-addicted, young parents. The social worker subsequently places the infant in the care of her grandmother, sparking a family conflict that reveals unpleasant secrets. The show opens Jan. 26. (312) 443-3800 or goodmantheatre.org.

• Previews begin Saturday, Jan. 18, for Sideshow Theatre Company's Chicago premiere of Roland Schimmelpfennig's dark comedy "The Golden Dragon," named for the restaurant where the action takes place. Over the course of a summer evening, stories of the Dragon's staff, customers and neighboring proprietors unfold and intertwine. Artistic director Jonathan L. Green and Marti Lyons direct five actors who play 20 characters. The show opens Jan. 23 at Victory Gardens Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago. (773) 871-3000 or victorygardens.org or sideshowtheatre.org.

• Chicago soul singer Yaw Agyeman stars as the titular Mr. Chickee in Chicago Children's Theatre's world premiere of "Mr. Chickee's Funny Money," a family-friendly, R&B musical beginning previews Saturday, Jan. 18, at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts, 1016 N. Dearborn St., Chicago. Adapted from Christopher Paul Curtiz's young-adult novel, "Mr. Chickee's Funny Money" centers on the misadventures of 10-year-old, self-proclaimed spy Steven, who works to save his Flint Future Detectives Club from financial ruin. The show opens Jan. 24. (872) 222-9555 or chicagochildrenstheatre.org.

• Chicago Shakespeare Theater and the Chicago Chamber Musicians collaborate on "Fairy Tales," their 13th annual family concert scheduled for 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, at CST's Courtyard Theater on Navy Pier, 800 E. Grand Ave., Chicago. CST actors perform Grimm Brothers' favorites including "The Frog Prince" and "The Fisherman and His Wife" in this show introducing young children to live performance. William Bolcom directs. (312) 595-5600 or chicagoshakes.com.

• Previews begin Monday, Jan. 20, for The Side Project's "Request Concert," F. X. Kroetz's solo show examining an evening in the life of a 40ish woman played by Meg Elliott, who does not speak throughout the 55-minute performance. The only words come from the announcer for a radio program titled "Request Concert." The show, directed by Mary Ellen O'Hara, opens Wednesday, Jan. 22, at 1439 W. Jarvis Ave., Chicago. (773) 340-0140 or thesideproject.net.

• Bailiwick Chicago presents a free table read of resident playwright Danny Bernardo's "Better Half" at 6 p.m. Monday, Jan. 20, at Schuba's Tavern, 3159 N. Southport Ave., Chicago. The play is about fraternal twins Thea and Teddy, competitive since birth, who must reconcile in the wake of a family tragedy. See bailiwickchicago.com.

• Emerald City Theatre presents the U.S. premiere of "The Three Little Pigs," a musical by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe (the team responsible for "Honk!" and "Peter Pan"). Emerald City producing artistic director Ernie Nolan directs the show adapted from the classic tale in which Mama instructs her three piglets to build a new pen after theirs starts to look like a sty. Performances begin Wednesday, Jan. 22, at the Apollo Theater, 2540 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago. (773) 529-2690 or emeraldcitytheatre.com.

• Oracle Productions begins 2014 with a remount of its acclaimed production of Bertolt Brecht's "The Mother." Artistic director Max Truax re-stages the show with Jonathan Guillen's original score and its original cast. Katherine Keberlein returns in the title role in the play set during the reign of Tsar Nicholas II. Keberlein plays a widow who, in attempting to protect her political activist son, is drawn deeper into a labor movement, which could have catastrophic results. The show opens Thursday, Jan. 23, at 3809 N. Broadway, Chicago. Admission is free, but donations are accepted. See publicaccesstheatre.org.

• Performances continue through Feb. 23 for A Red Orchid Theatre's U.S. Premiere of "Solstice," an examination of terrorism by Zinnie Harris. Ensemble member Karen Kessler directs the play about a candlemaker struggling to survive with his sick wife and their son in a city marked by financial, religious and political strife. Their lives change dramatically after their son acts against their oppressors. (312) 943-8722 or aredorchidtheatre.org.

• Writers Theatre this week announced an extension of its hit Midwest premiere of Conor McPherson's "Port Authority," in which three tangentially connected Irish men ruminate on their life choices. Performances continue through March 2 at Books on Vernon, 664 Vernon Ave., Glencoe. (847) 242-6000 or writerstheatre.org. Also Writers brings its production of Yolanda Androzzo's "The MLK Project: The Fight for Civil Rights" to the Chicago History Museum, 1601 N. Clark St., Chicago, for a free performance at 10 a.m. Monday, Jan. 20. Caryn Blackmore stars in the one-woman show about a student researching the Civil Rights Movement.

• The Hypocrites' Tennessee Williams Project featuring three one-act plays by the writer, continues through March 2 at the Chopin Theatre, 1543 W. Division St., Chicago. Ensemble member and Jeff Award winner Matt Hawkins directs the rarely seen "The Big Game,""The Remarkable Rooming House of Madame La Monde" and "And Tell Sad Stories of the Death of Queens," all three of which are centered on the need for love and the pain that comes from rejection. (773) 525-5991 or the-hypocrites.com.

• Lookingglass Theatre has extended for the second time its production of "The Little Prince," adapted from the Antoine de Saint-Exupery book and produced in collaboration The Actors Gymnasium in Evanston. Performances continue through March 16 at Water Tower Water Works, 821 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago. (312) 337-0665 or lookingglasstheatre.org.

• Royal George Theatre, 1641 N. Halsted St., Chicago, has extended its production of "Old Jews Telling Jokes," in which five actors perform classic jokes and songs, through March 30. Local celebrities occasionally join the cast for a single performance to raise money for various charities. ABC 7's Janet Davies performs Wednesday, Jan. 22, to benefit Fund Our Future/St. Benedict Preparatory School. Morning personality Steve Downs, of 91.1 FM, performs Jan. 24 to benefit Theater-Hikes Colorado. Author Roy Blount Jr., of NPR's "Wait Wait, Don't Tell Me," performs Feb. 19 to benefit the Authors Guild Foundation. (312) 988-9000 or ticketmaster.com or oldjewstellingjokes.com.

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