Spotlight: Illusionist Scott Silven creates virtual 'Journey' for Chicago Shakespeare Theater

  • Illusionist and performance artist Scott Silven takes audiences on a virtual tour of his home in rural Scotland in "The Journey," part of Chicago Shakespeare Theater's livestreamed WorldStage series.

    Illusionist and performance artist Scott Silven takes audiences on a virtual tour of his home in rural Scotland in "The Journey," part of Chicago Shakespeare Theater's livestreamed WorldStage series. Courtesy of David Wilkinson, Empirical Photography

 
 
Updated 1/8/2021 1:19 PM

Virtual 'Journey'

Chicago Shakespeare Theater presents "The Journey," a virtual event created and performed by illusionist/performance artist Scott Silven, as part of its online WorldStage series.

 

After the COVID-19 pandemic forced the cancellation of his tours and confined him to his home outside Glasgow, Scotland, Silven devised a "virtual experience exploring our collective sense of home and the transformative power of place." The audiovisual platform he incorporates allows viewers to share the experience through projections.

"I realize just how lucky I am to connect with people across the world and share something positive from this time," Silven said in a prepared statement, "to take a moment to step back and reflect and realize that, even in fragmented times, we can still find new forms of connection."

Livestreams at 6 and 8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, Jan. 12-16, and Jan. 19-23, and 4:30 and 6:30 p.m. Jan. 17 and 24 at chicagoshakes.com/journey. Tickets range from $45-$65.

First Folio Theatre artistic associate Nick Sandys shares a Sherlock Holmes mystery to conclude the Oak Brook theater's virtual reading series.
First Folio Theatre artistic associate Nick Sandys shares a Sherlock Holmes mystery to conclude the Oak Brook theater's virtual reading series. - Courtesy of First Folio Theatre
Mystery tale

First Folio Theatre's virtual reading series concludes with artistic associate Nick Sandys performing the Sherlock Holmes mystery "The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle." In this short story by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Holmes and Dr. Watson investigate the theft of a priceless jewel known as the Blue Carbuncle from the hotel suite of its owner. Also streaming on the theater's YouTube channel is artistic associate Michael Goldberg reading "Uncle Wiggily's Adventures," from Howard R. Garis' series of children's stories about an endearing, elderly rabbit.

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Additionally, First Folio artistic associate Heather Chrisler's adaptation of "Little Women" will be presented in a digital workshop production courtesy of Ohio State University students.

First Folio readings stream online through Sunday, Jan. 10, at First Folio's YouTube channel. The "Little Women" digital workshop streams at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 8, and Sunday, Jan. 10, and at 1 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 9, at littlewomendigitalworkshop.com.

In other news

• PrideArts' live virtual reading series continues at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 12, with William Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night," a comedy about love and mistaken identity that centers around a shipwrecked young woman who disguises herself as a man then ends up serving as an intermediary for a lovesick duke and the object of his affection. Tickets are $10. They're available at pridearts.org/tickets.

• Hell in a Handbag Productions announced an extension for its virtual production of "The Rip Nelson Holiday Quarantine Special," a parody about a fading television comedian worried he'll be replaced as host of a longtime Christmas special. Performances of the adults-only production run online through Jan. 17. Tickets are $25 and are available through handbag productions.org or stage773.com.

• New York City's The Public Theater hosts the Under the Radar Festival, a showcase of new and cutting-edge theater works, online through Jan. 17. The festival showcases plays and other works by theater artists from the U.S., the United Kingdom, Chile and Iran. Performances will be streamed live and on demand. Admission is free. See publictheater.org for shows and the schedule.

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