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updated: 5/12/2017 7:19 AM

Theater events: Genesis Theatricals examines life of Marie Curie in 'The Radiant'

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  • Debbie Ruzicka plays Marie Curie in Genesis Theatrical Productions' "The Radiant."

    Debbie Ruzicka plays Marie Curie in Genesis Theatrical Productions' "The Radiant."

 
 

'The Radiant'

Shirley Lauro examines the personal life of acclaimed scientist Madame Marie Curie in her 2011 bio-drama "The Radiant." Genesis Theatrical Productions show stars Debbie Ruzicka as Marie Curie, whose discovery of radium helped usher in the Atomic Age and whose affair with her younger, married assistant nearly cost her her career. Opens at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 18, at the Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport Ave., Chicago. $17, $32. (773) 935-6875 or athenaeumtheatre.org.

Desperate housewives

Kristin Anderson, Beaumont Bacon and Joanie Fagan -- actress/comedians known collectively as 3 Blonde Moms -- explore the ups and downs of motherhood and life in a suburban cul-de-sac onstage at the Raue Center for the Arts. 8 p.m. Saturday, May 13, at 26 N. Williams St., Crystal Lake. $31-$37. (815) 356-9212 or rauecenter.org.

Ice follies

American Theater Company concludes its season with the world premiere of "T." a dark comedy inspired by the attack on then Olympic hopeful Nancy Kerrigan, weeks before the 1994 Olympic Games, orchestrated by cohorts of her archrival Tonya Harding. Margot Bordelon directs Dan Aibel's examination of the price people are willing to pay for success and fame. Previews begin at 8 p.m. Thursday, May 18, at 1909 W. Byron St., Chicago. The show opens May 22. $20-$38. (773) 409-4125 or atcweb.org/.

Other theater events

Courtesy of Jon Cole MediaStrawdog Theatre concludes its season with "The Night Season," a romantic comedy by Rebecca Lenkiewicz.
Courtesy of Jon Cole MediaStrawdog Theatre concludes its season with "The Night Season," a romantic comedy by Rebecca Lenkiewicz.

• Strawdog Theatre Company concludes its season with a production of Rebecca Lenkiewicz's romantic comedy "The Night Season." Set in an Irish coastal village, where a crew is filming a biopic about writer W.B. Yeats, it centers on the Kennedy family whose brush with filmmaking convinces them it's time to live life instead of letting it pass them by. Previews begin Friday, May 12, at The Factory Theater, 1623 W. Howard St., Chicago. The production, directed by Elly Green, opens May 22. See strawdog.org.

• Refuge Theatre Project, which stages its productions in pop-up venues, returns with "Things to Ruin: The Songs of Joe Iconis." Described as a "theatrical rock concert," it showcases songs by Iconis, who composed "Be More Chill" and had two numbers featured on the NBC-TV series "Smash." Previews begin Friday, May 12, at Exit Chicago, a longtime punk rock bar located at 1315 W. Chicago Ave., Chicago. The show opens May 14. See refugetheatre.com.

• Chicago poet and Pulitzer Prize winner Gwendolyn Brooks inspired "Among All This You Stand Like a Fine Brownstone," Vantile E. Whitfield's adaptation of Brooks' works into a portrait of African-American life in Chicago during the 1950s. Eta Creative Arts Foundation's revival opens Friday, May 12, at 7558 S. South Chicago Ave., Chicago. Loyola University professor Jonathan Wilson directs. (773) 752-3955 or etacreativearts.org.

• Ten drag performers come together for "The Drag Queens of Comedy" a pair of comedy shows taking place Friday, May 12, at the Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport Ave., Chicago. The performers include standup comedians as well as veterans of "RuPaul's Drag Race." (773) 935-6875 or thedragqueensofcomedy.com.

• The sketch comedy group GayCo hosts its annual fundraiser from 8 to 11 p.m. Friday, May 12, at the Waterhouse Tavern & Grill, 3407 N. Paulina St., Chicago. The events include a "Wizard of Oz"-themed costume contest and a raffle. See gayco.com.

• Adventure Stage Chicago will showcase 10-minute plays by three finalists and national winner Fletcher Fraher of the Fourth Annual Young Playwrights for Change competition. The performances take place Saturday, May 13, at Vittum Theater, 1012 N. Noble St., Chicago. (773) 342-4141 or adventurestage.org.

• Katelyn Douglass and Audrey Polinski debut their original show "Leap Dog" at 10 p.m. Sunday, May 14, at iO Chicago, 1501 N. Kingsbury St., Chicago. Also opening that day at iO Chicago is the improvised musical "Fraudway" in which the audience chooses an existing musical whose song list serves as an inspiration for a new show. The show runs at 8 p.m. Sundays through June 11. Continuing at the theater is comedian Dave Maher's show "Listen & Ask Questions: A Protest Show." It runs at 10 p.m. Thursdays. (312) 929-2401 or ioimprov.com/chicago.

• Porchlight Music Theatre veterans Angela Ingersoll ("End of the Rainbow") and Donica Lynn ("Dreamgirls") are among 40 Chicago-area musical theater artists performing at "Chris' Birthday Belt Fest: Duets Edition!" a benefit concert organized by director/producer Christopher Pazdernik for Howard Brown Health. It takes place at 8 p.m. Monday, May 15, at the Uptown Underground, 4707 N. Broadway, Chicago. Tickets are $25. (773) 867-1946 or uptownunderground.net.

• The International Voices Project, showcasing plays from Spain, Romania, Serbia, India, Wales and other countries, concludes at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 16, at the Instituto Cervantes, 31 W. Ohio St., Chicago, with a performance of Welsh playwright Kaite O'Reilly's "The 9 Fridas." For information, see ivpchicago.org.

• Previews begin Wednesday, May 17, for Irish Theatre of Chicago's world premiere of "The My Way Residential" by Geraldine Aron ("My Brilliant Divorce"). Set in a London nursing home, the play chronicles the unlikely friendship that develops between an elderly woman from Galway, Ireland, and a young man from South Africa. The show opens May 19 at The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago. See irishtheatreofchicago.org.

• Pride Films & Plays celebrates the start of Pride Month with a staged reading of "The Boys in the Band." Matt Crowley's seminal 1968 play about nine gay men gathering for a birthday party, was among the first gay-themed plays to attract mainstream attention. The 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 17, performance takes place at 4139 N. Broadway, Chicago. (800) 737-0984 or prideartscenter.com.

• Shocked after their late father leaves the family home to his partner's son, a pair of siblings uncover other family secrets in Richard Greenberg's "Three Days of Rain." BoHo Theater Company's revival begins previews Thursday, May 18, at Heartland Studio, 7016 N. Glenwood Ave., Chicago. The show, directed by Derek Van Barham, opens May 21. (866) 811-4111 or bohotheatre.com.

• Jennifer Vollen-Katz, executive director of The John Howard Association, a group that monitors conditions in Illinois prisons, will participate in a talkback session following the 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 18, performance of Raven Theatre's "Not About Nightingales." Tennessee Williams' drama is about the inmates of a Philadelphia prison who stage a hunger strike to protest the warden's brutality. Performances run through June 4 at 6157 N. Clark St., Chicago. (773) 338-2177 or raventheatre.com.

• "Robot Girlfriend," a "sketch comedy novella" about a part-female, part-robot and all-American heroine, continues Mondays through May 22 at The Annoyance Theatre, 851 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago. Also at The Annoyance, "Pope Kevin," about a Boston guy tapped to lead the Catholic faithful, continues Wednesdays through May 31. (773) 697-9693 or theannoyance.com.

• Shattered Globe Theatre has extended its revival of Sarah Ruhl's "For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday," a play written for her mother Kathleen, about five siblings reuniting as their aging father fades. Kathleen Ruhl stars in her daughter's play, which runs through May 27 at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago. (773) 975-8150 or shatteredglobe.org or theaterwit.org.

Courtesy of Michael BrosilowWheeler (Ian Barford, left) tries to move on after a messy divorce with help from best friend Paul (Tim Hopper) in Steppenwolf Theatre Company's premiere of Tracy Letts' "Linda Vista."
Courtesy of Michael BrosilowWheeler (Ian Barford, left) tries to move on after a messy divorce with help from best friend Paul (Tim Hopper) in Steppenwolf Theatre Company's premiere of Tracy Letts' "Linda Vista." -

• Steppenwolf Theatre has extended its world premiere of Tracy Letts' dramedy "Linda Vista," about the messy romantic life of a middle-aged divorced man. Performances run through May 28 at 1650 N. Halsted St., Chicago. (312) 335-1650 or steppenwolf.org.

• Adam Jacobs, star of "Aladdin" currently running at the Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph St., Chicago, will lead a workshop June 5 with finalists for the Illinois High School Musical Theatre Awards. The awards recognize outstanding achievement in musical theater by high school students. The winners will be announced June 5 at the Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place, 175 E. Chestnut St., Chicago.

• Season of Concern board of directors announced Lifeline Theatre will receive the first Biscotto-Miller Award honoring theater companies who conduct collections for Season of Concern, which assists theater artists unable to work due to illness or injury. The award, named in memory of stage manager Tommy Biscotto and actor J. Pat Miller, will be presented at the non-equity Joseph Jefferson Award ceremony on June 5 at The Athenaeum Theater, 2036 N. Southport Ave., Chicago.

• Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre announced its final season in Chicago begins Sept. 15 with the William Finn-James Lapine musical "A New Brain." Inspired by Finn's actual health crisis, it's about a composer who fears he will die with his greatest songs still inside him. Next up is the good-natured sendup "Altar Boyz" (Dec. 1-Jan. 14, 2018) about a Christian boy band on the last night of its national tour. That's followed by the two-piano concert version of "Finian's Rainbow" (March 9-April 29, 2018), about an Irish dreamer and his daughter who travel to America to buy a pot of gold and the quirky folks they encounter. The season concludes with a salute to the company's 13 years in Chicago titled "Last Call at No Exit: A Summer Cabaret" (June 15-July 22, 2018). Performances for the 2017-2018 season will take place at No Exit Cafe, 6970 N. Glenwood Ave., Chicago. The company will move to Evanston in fall 2018. Season tickets will go on sale soon. (800) 595-4849 or theo-u.com.

• Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, will open its 2017-2018 season with a production of Sophie Treadwell's "Machinal" (Aug. 11-Sept. 24). Produced in association with North Central College in Naperville, the play centers on an unhappily married woman who finds brief solace in the arms of a lover. That's followed by Laurence Leamer's one-woman show "Rose" (Jan. 12-March 11, 2018), about Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy compiled from his interviews with the Kennedy family matriarch. The season concludes with the Chicago-area premiere of "Birds of a Feather" (April 27-June 10, 2018), Marc Acito's comedy about a air of gay penguins at New York City's Central Park Zoo who raise a chick together. The three-play subscription package is $93. The two-play flex pass is $63. They're available at (773) 404-7336 or greenhousetheater.org. Single tickets will go on sale at a later date.

• Northlight Theatre named literary manager Lauren Shouse its new artistic associate. She will direct "The Legend of Georgia McBride" during the company's 2017-2018 season.

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