Chicago’s theater scene soars this spring with these must-see productions.
Choreographer Jennifer Archibald showcased “Our North” as a 2015 honoree of Winning Works, which will recognize this year’s winners March 5-6.
Thirty years after taking the artistic reins at the Goodman Theatre, Tony Award-winning visionary Robert Falls marks another milestone with the world premiere of 2666 (February 6-March 13, 170 N. Dearborn St., 312-443-3800). Based on Roberto Bolaño’s posthumous epic, Falls’ five-hour adaptation with Goodman playwright-in-residence Seth Bockley boasts a 15-member ensemble cast and—in a twist as fascinating as the play itself—was underwritten by a grant from Episcopal monk-turned-Powerball winner Roy Cockrum.
The Joffrey Academy of Dance welcomes the next generation of choreographers with the sixth installment of Winning Works (March 5-6, 220 E. Chicago Ave., 312-397-4010). Talents Jeffrey Cirio, Christian Denice, and Mariana Oliveira will debut works along with Joffrey Academy artistic director Alexei Kremnev’s brand-new Coco + Igor, inspired by Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky.
Steppenwolf Theatre Company continues its 40th year in grand form with Tracy Letts’ newest drama, Mary Page Marlowe (March 31-May 29, 1650 N. Halsted St., 312-335-1650). Anna Shapiro directs the 19-member cast (among them Critics’ Choice Awards winner Carrie Coon of HBO’s The Leftovers), seven of whom portray the titular character throughout her lifetime.
Slept through history class? Prepare to be schooled by Taylor Mac. The outré New York artist takes the MCA Stage with A 24-Decade History of Popular Music: 1956-1986 (April 12-16, 220 E. Chicago Ave., 312-397-4010), a three-hour event—tackling the Stonewall riots and disco this iteration—that is the latest installment in Mac’s one-of-a-kind ode to America.
With 2016 marking 400 years since the death of William Shakespeare, Chicago is paying homage to the literal Renaissance man with no fewer than 850 events throughout the city for Shakespeare 400 Chicago. From the Lyric Opera production of Charles-François Gounod’s Romeo and Juliet to Hamburg Ballet’s Othello at Harris Theater, it’s a yearlong, world-class tribute that’s not to be missed.