Spotlight: Live reading of 'The Glass Menagerie' at redtwist, Hershey Felder channels George Gershwin

  • Courtesy of Mark GarvinHershey Felder channels George Gershwin in his solo show, "George Gershwin Alone," livestreamed from Florence, Italy.

    Courtesy of Mark GarvinHershey Felder channels George Gershwin in his solo show, "George Gershwin Alone," livestreamed from Florence, Italy.

 
 
Posted9/11/2020 6:00 AM

Redtwist live

Former Goodman Theatre producer/director and redtwist theatre ensemble member Steve Scott helms the company's live reading of "The Glass Menagerie," Tennessee Williams' classic tale of a quietly desperate family with unrealized dreams. Elizabeth Argus, Jacqueline Grant, Ted Hoerl, Peter Oyloe and Brian Parry are among the ensemble members participating in the reading.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11. $15 suggested donation. See redtwisttheatre.org.

Solo show fest

The Agency Theater hosts a virtual festival showcasing solo works centered around love, loss and family written and performed by artistic director Jack Schultz, ensemble members Audrey Gladson and Anna Yee along with Amer Abdullah, Amit Rana and Hannah Rumsey. "Each performer has written something that makes me want to sit down and ask them a 1,000 questions about their lives," said Schultz in a prepared statement. "We planned on doing this festival before the pandemic hit and we're lucky this form can translate so easily to the digital space."

Performances run at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday from Sept. 11 through Sept. 26. Pay what you can; $15 suggested donation. See wearetheagency.org. For tickets, see dime.io/events/story-fest.

Hershey Felder live

For his next livestreamed performance, pianist/adapter/director Hershey Felder channels George Gershwin in his solo show, "George Gershwin Alone," from Florence, Italy. Felder incorporates such standards as "Fascinating Rhythm," "Embraceable You" and "I Got Rhythm" along with selections from "Porgy and Bess" and "Rhapsody in Blue" in the performance, which is part of this ongoing series.

7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 13. Tickets are $55 per household. Proceeds will benefit theaters in North America and Europe. See hersheyfelder.net.

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'Destinos al Aire'

The Chicago Latino Theater Alliance hosts an outdoor screening of the 2017 film "American Curious" as part of its "Destinos al Aire" series. A romantic comedy from Mexico, "American Curious" -- in Spanish and English with English subtitles -- is about a Chicago comedian who discovers his late Mexican biological mother has left him a Mexico City restaurant. WGN TV reporter Ana Belaval and comedian/producer Mike Oquendo host the event, which is preceded by messages and vignettes from local Latino theater companies Aguijón Theater, Repertorio Latino Theater Company, Teatro Vista and UrbanTheater Company.

6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17, at Chi-town Movies, 2343 S. Throop St., Chicago. Tickets are $30 per car with a maximum of six people per car. Space is limited to 140 cars. Audience members may bring lawn chairs to sit outside their vehicles while adhering to physical distance and mask requirements. Tickets are available at clata.org.

Courtesy of Vicki QuadeLiz Cloud plays bingo caller Mary Margaret O'Brien in the streamed version of "Holy Ghost Bingo: God, Goblins & Games."
Courtesy of Vicki QuadeLiz Cloud plays bingo caller Mary Margaret O'Brien in the streamed version of "Holy Ghost Bingo: God, Goblins & Games." -
'Holy Ghost Bingo'

Liz Cloud plays former nun turned bingo caller Mary Margaret O'Brien who shares Halloween trivia and Catholic humor in "Holy Ghost Bingo: God, Goblins & Games." Nuns4Fun Entertainment streams a taped version of the show online through Oct. 31 at eventbrite.com. Written by Vicki Quade, co-creator of "Late Nite Catechism," "Holy Ghost Bingo" premiered last year at the Royal George Theater. The production marks the first in a series of Nuns4Fun streamed events. Tickets are $20. A portion of every ticket sold will benefit retired Benedictine Sisters of Chicago, whose habit inspired the one worn in "Late Nite Catechism."

In other news

• Rivendell Theatre Ensemble hosts its socially distanced Blue Jean Ball, a virtual benefit titled "Howdy From Home," at 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12, and 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19, online at rivendelltheatre.org. The event, which includes an online silent auction from Sept. 12-19, also features performances by ensemble member Jane Baxter Miller and jazz bassist Kent Kessler.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

• BrightSide Theatre, which Naperville Magazine named the city's best entertainment venue for the second year in a row, has postponed its 10th anniversary season to 2021. That includes its planned revival of "Mamma Mia!" According to BST artistic director Jeffrey Cass and artistic director Julie Ann Kornak, BrightSide is developing online and pop-up performances along the Naperville Riverwalk.

• Steel Beam Theatre presents the fifth installment of its ongoing "Short Takes" YouTube series featuring videotaped performances by actors, supporters and volunteers associated with the St. Charles company. The performances -- which include a monologue from "Spoon River Anthology" and a short, black-and-white film by Neeti Kejriwal and Chase Pottinger -- are part of the theater's efforts to raise funds and stay connected to subscribers during the theater shutdown. To access the video, type "Steel Beam Theatre short takes" on youtube.com.

• Trap Door Theatre has extended its digital production of "Alas" from Romanian playwright Matei Visniec's "Cabaret of Words." Produced in association with its sister company, Trap Door International in Barcelona, Spain, "Alas" is about people confronting their privilege and complicity and is performed in Afrikaans, Catalan, Italian, Spanish and English. Performances run through Sept. 24 at trapdoortheatre.com. $10 suggested donation.

• Music Theater Works announced it will relocate next year to the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie. "Music Theater Works' move to its new performance home at the North Shore Center is a testament to our community's support for our art. In addition, this outlet strengthens Music Theater Works' pledge to explore the full spectrum of music theater with the availability of multiple performance spaces within the North Shore Center," said artistic director Kyle A. Dougan in a prepared statement.

• Congo Square Theatre announced its 21st season will begin in October with a digital sketch comedy show titled "Hit' Em on the Blackside" featuring Ron Conner, Alexis J. Roston, Tiffany Addison and Kelvin Roston Jr. 2020 webisodes will be released beginning Oct. 9 with next year's webisodes released March 20, 2021. Festival on the Square, a virtual, multimedia event incorporating film, music, dance and a 10-minute play, is centered on the theme "Building the Community." The theater intends to resume live productions next spring or summer in accordance with Illinois Department of Public Health guidelines. "Congo Square Theatre has spent the past 20 years ... producing raw, real and relevant work reflecting and elevating the voices of Black and African Diasporic artists," said managing director Charlique C. Rolle in a prepared statement. "Even as the unknowns of producing stand before us ... we are even more committed to creating transformative Black theater for all versions of the 'stage' in these times." (773) 296-1108 or congosquaretheatre.org.

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