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Performing Arts

From critically acclaimed dramas and hilarious comedies to upbeat musicals and performances just for kids, there's a performance for everyone. See this season's lineup below.

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Now - January 26, 2020
WORKING A MUSICAL
A musical based on Studs Terkel's best-selling book of interviews with American workers, WORKING paints a vivid portrait of the working men and women that the world so often takes for granted. Featuring songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Stephen Schwartz, Craig Carnelia, Mary Rodgers, Micki Grant and James Taylor.
Location: Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre, 721 Howard St., Evanston
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Now - March 1, 2020
JAKE'S WOMEN
Jake's Women: America’s premier comic playwright, Neil Simon, makes another hilarious foray into the world of modern relationships. Jake, a novelist who is more successful with fiction that with life, faces a marital crisis by daydreaming about the women in his life. The wildly comic and sometimes moving flashbacks played in his mind are interrupted by visitations from actual females. Jake’s women include a revered first wife who was killed years earlier in an accident, his daughter who is recalled as a child but is now a young woman, his boisterous and bossy sister, an opinionated analyst, his current wife who is leaving Jake for another man, and a prospective third wife. Jake, played by Alan Alda on Broadway, and his women definitely deliver.
Location: Oil Lamp Theater, 1723 Glenview Road, Glenview
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Now - January 26, 2020
CAPITOL STEPS: THE LYIN' KINGS
The Capitol Steps: The Lyin' Kings. Can you feel the love tonight? If news and politics are eating away at you like a pride of lions feasting on a wildebeest carcass on the African savannah, it’s time to just chuckle and say, “Hakuna Matata!” No worries! The circle of life and laughter continue with our annual visit from the Capitol Steps with a menagerie of fresh musical parodies. No matter who or what is in the headlines, you can bet the Capitol Steps will tackle both sides of the political spectrum with their hilariously biting musical satire. What more would you expect from the group that put the “MOCK” in Democracy?!
Location: North Shore Center for Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie
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Now - March 1, 2020
HOW A BOY FALLS
How A Boy Falls: A world premiere from one of America’s essential playwrights will keep you on the edge of your seat! A newly hired au pair is thrust into the midst of a mystery when the loss of a young boy casts suspicion on her and the boy’s wealthy parents. The parents are each seeking answers and retribution while the au pair is hatching a dangerous scheme of her own, and no one is exactly who they seem to be in a new psychological thriller that asks who can we trust… if we can trust anyone.
Location: Northlight Theatre, 9501 Skokie Blvd, Skokie
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January 31, 2020 - February 9, 2020
JULIUS CAESAR
An all-powerful ruler, a skeptical public, and noble, but perhaps sinister ambition. Witness a new staging of Shakespeare’s great tragedy in which a group of people go to extremes to remove a leader with devastating consequences.
Location: Northwestern Wirtz Center, 20 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston
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February 1, 2020
GIORDANO DANCE CHICAGO: TAAL
Giordano Dance Chicago: Enjoy a pre-performance conversation with GDC Artistic Director, Nan Giordano, before witnessing the return of her stunning work, “Taal." In Hindi, Taal means rhythm. Choreographer Nan Giordano creates a unique blend of Indian and jazz dance movement. Eight dancers intertwine with 100 feet of fabric to the music’s beautiful sounds and percussive beats, evoking the look and feel of India. “Taal” was created as a testament to the power, triumph and absolute necessity of surrounding ourselves with beauty, even in the presence of great loss and darkness.
Location: North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd, Skokie
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February 5, 2020 - March 15, 2020
STICK FLY
Stick Fly: What begins as a relaxing summer weekend on Martha’s Vineyard escalates when the LeVay brothers bring their new girlfriends home to meet their affluent and imposing parents. But even as the newcomers find themselves under familial scrutiny, long-hidden family tensions bubble to the surface and by the end of the weekend, almost everyone at the Vineyard finds themselves under a microscope as they grapple with arguments about class, race and cultural expectations.
Location: Writers Theatre, 325 Tudor Court, Glencoe
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February 14, 2020 - March 1, 2020
LEGALLY BLONDE: THE MUSICAL
Elle Woods appears to have it all but her life is turned upside down when her boyfriend Warner dumps her so he can attend Harvard Law. Determined to get him back, Elle ingeniously charms her way into the prestigious law school. While there, she struggles with peers, professors and her ex. With the support of some new friends, though, Elle quickly realizes her potential and sets out to prove herself to the world.
Location: Virginia Wadsworth Wirtz Center, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston
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February 14, 2020
VALENTINE'S DAY
In 1970s USSR, a young couple, Valentine and Valentina are madly in love and want to get married, but their parents object to the relationship for practical reasons, destroying the love and lives of their children. This age-old story is retold in a famous Soviet-era play by Mikhail Roshchin, “Valentine and Valentina,” which eventually became a popular film. In Valentine’s Day by Ivan Vyrypayev, one of Russia’s young generation of post-modernist theatrical provocateurs, we witness the continuation and eventual outcome of that story in the modern times.
Location: North Shore Center for Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie
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February 16, 2020
SHAKEY GRAVES
Shakey Graves “FOR THE RECORD” is both an acoustic retrospective and a glimpse into what’s coming next. An evening of experimental arrangements of familiar music and a glimpse into the inner workings of an unborn album. Shakey Graves is using specific rooms and multiple nights in a row to create a unique environment in order to explore and find the best, strangest, and perhaps first version of each song.
Location: Evanston SPACE, 1245 Chicago Avenue, Evanston
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February 17, 2020
SHAKEY GRAVES
Shakey Graves “FOR THE RECORD” is both an acoustic retrospective and a glimpse into what’s coming next. An evening of experimental arrangements of familiar music and a glimpse into the inner workings of an unborn album. Shakey Graves is using specific rooms and multiple nights in a row to create a unique environment in order to explore and find the best, strangest, and perhaps first version of each song.
Location: Evanston SPACE, 1245 Chicago Avenue, Evanston
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February 18, 2020
SHAKEY GRAVES
Shakey Graves “FOR THE RECORD” is both an acoustic retrospective and a glimpse into what’s coming next. An evening of experimental arrangements of familiar music and a glimpse into the inner workings of an unborn album. Shakey Graves is using specific rooms and multiple nights in a row to create a unique environment in order to explore and find the best, strangest, and perhaps first version of each song.
Location: Evanston SPACE, 1245 Chicago Avenue, Evanston
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February 21, 2020 - March 8, 2020
THE EMPEROR'S NEW CLOTHES
The frivolously fashionable Emperor and his opinionated daughter Sam just can’t get along. But with the help of some fun new characters and colorful new threads, the two come to see themselves—and appreciate each other—for the first time. This new family musical based on the classic Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale promises to shows us that it’s not the clothes that make the person, it’s what’s inside that matters the most. 
Location: Northwestern Wirtz Center, 1949 Campus Drive, Evanston
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February 28, 2020
PIFF THE MAGIC DRAGON
Piff the Magic Dragon is back! After earning national acclaim as the standout star of NBC’s America’s Got Talent andPenn & Teller: Fool Us, Piff The Magic Dragon continues to win over audiences across the globe with his mythical mixture of wizardry, wit and sarcasm that ignites a one-of-a-kind comedy magic show you must see to believe! Joined by his trusty sidekick Mr. Piffles, The World’s Only Magic Performing Chihuahua™, the dynamic duo performs nightly to sold out rooms at his residency at the world-famous Flamingo Casino in Las Vegas in the newly renamed Piff the Magic Dragon Theatre. In addition to the residency, Piff along with Jade Simone, a genuine Las Vegas Showgirl, are currently performing across the US and Canada as part of their 2019 tour The Lucky Dragon.
Location: North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie
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April 24, 2020 - May 3, 2020
PETER AND THE STARCATCHER
A young orphan and his mates are shipped off from Victorian England to a distant island ruled by and evil King. On board, they know nothing of the mysterious trunk in the captain’s cabin, which contains a precious, otherworldly cargo. While at sea, the boys are discovered by a precocious young girl named Molly, a Starcatcher-in-training who realizes that the trunk’s precious cargo is a celestial substance so powerful that it must never fall into the wrong hands. When the ship is taken over by pirates their fearsome leader Black Stache is determined to claim the trunk and its treasure for his own.
Location: Northwestern Wirtz Center | Ethel M. Barber Theater, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston
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May 1, 2020 - May 10, 2020
THE WAA-MU SHOW
The Waa-Mu Show is Northwestern University’s own original musical, written, performed, and presented by Northwestern students. The Waa-Mu Show’s quirky name stands for the two organizations that banded together to present the first show in 1929, the Women’s Athletic Association (W.A.A.) and the Men’s Union (M.U.). Since then, Waa-Mu has become a virtual institution for budding young theatrical talent. 
Location: Northwestern Wirtz Center, 30 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston
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October 2, 2020 - October 11, 2020
RICHARDS RODGERS' GREATEST HTIS
Show-stopping songs from the classic musicals OKLAHOMA!, CAROUSEL, PAL JOEY, SOUTH PACIFIC, BABES IN ARMS and others.
Location: Music Theater Works, 1490 Chicago Avenue, Evanston
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