Essential Events

Essential Events: Things to do in the Shore region

2014-05-19T00:00:00Z Essential Events: Things to do in the Shore regionBy Shore Staff nwitimes.com
May 19, 2014 12:00 am  • 
 

HAPPENINGS

Indiana

Through Oct 25 Chesterton's European Market, Broadway & 3rd St, Chesterton. 219.926.5513. chestertonseuropeanmarket.com. This European Market offers a quality shopping experience, live entertainment and a festive community environment. The artists, chefs, merchants and farmers come from Indiana, Michigan and Illinois to offer visitors an extraordinary collection of products and services.

Jun 6 21st Annual Beaux Arts Ball, 6pm, Center for Visual and Performing Arts, 1040 Ridge Rd, Munster. 219.836.1839 ext. 100. southshoreartsonline.org. This black tie affair features cocktails, dinner and dancing, plus a live and silent auction. All proceeds from the event help support and grow the South Shore Arts everykid program, which provides art opportunities for more than 28,000 children and youths every year.

Jun 7 Cobe Cup Cruise, 1-2pm, Cedar Lake Eagles #2529, 13140 Lake Shore Dr, Cedar Lake. 219.663.2134. regionalstreeters.com. The historic Cobe Cup antique car cruise returns to Northwest Indiana. The cruise route will be lengthened this year to include much of the original 23-mile race route, running from Cedar Lake, through Lowell and Crown Point, and back to Cedar Lake. The Cobe Cup Cruise is intended to feature classic antique cars and trucks, but vehicle models through the 1980s are welcome to participate.

Jun 7 Jammin with Save the Dunes, 5-11pm, Washington Park, 115 Lakeshore Dr, Michigan City. 219.879.3564. savedunes.org. This annual fundraiser for Save the Dunes features four live bands and great local grub from Rolling Stonebaker Pizza, Shoreline and Soda Dog, as well as amazing local craft beer from Shoreline Brewery, Figure Eight Brewing, Burn ‘Em Brewing and Hunter’s Brewing. All ages welcome.

Jun 20-21 Food and Arts Festival, 11am-11pm Fri, downtown Crown Point. 219.769.6223. crossroadschamber.org. Arts and crafts vendors fill the downtown square, as the aroma of delicious delicacies permeate the air. This family-friendly event was formerly the Taste of Crown Point.

Jun 28 Eat, Shop & Rock, 10am-4pm, Hohman Ave & Williams St, Hammond. 219.512.4298. downtownhammond.org. This sidewalk sale and fest celebrates the 60s and 70s and features a wide array of vendors; singing, look-a-like and trivia contests; live music; vintage cars; delicious food and more.

Jun 28-29 Garden Walk, 9am-5pm walk, Lowell. 11am-1pm lunch, Gardens of Niemeyers, 3242 W 169th Ave, Lowell. 219.696.8282. lowellgardenclub.com. The Lowell Garden Club presents its 18th annual garden walk, featuring a stroll through some of the town’s most beautiful gardens with a garden luncheon held at Gardens of Niemeyers.

Michigan

Through Oct 5 Antique on the Bluff, 10am-5pm every first Sat, Lake Bluff Park, St. Joseph. 269.985.1111. stjoetoday.com. Antiques line the bluff the first Saturday of each month at this premier event for St. Joseph and antiquers around Southwest Michigan.

May 22-Aug 28 Riverfront Concert Series, 7pm Thu, Riverfront Park on Water St, South Haven. 269.637.0772. south-haven.com. During this summer-long concert series, music lovers can experience a variety of musical performances—including jazz, classical, folk and contemporary—while enjoying views of boats traveling on the river and fantastic sunsets over the lake. Concerts are free to the public and attendees should bring their own lawn chair or blanket, as well as a light coat.

Jun 7 Festival of Cars, downtown South Haven. 269.637.0345. southhaven.com. Fun awaits the entire family at this annual festival dedicated to cars. Admission is free for spectators but donations are accepted. A portion of the proceeds from the t-shirt sale and all of the proceeds from the silent auction benefit Hunt for a Cure, which targets Cystic Fibrosis.

Jun 14 Rhumbline Regatta, St. Joseph River Yacht Club, 1 Lighthouse Ln, St. Joseph. 269.983.6393. sjryc.com. This single race yacht regatta has four divisions and a five-hour maximum time limit. A party follows the race, with delicious food served riverside and awards presented to the top three boats in each section, plus a performance by P.S. Dump Your Boyfriend.

Jun 21 Fernwood Annual Garden Party, Fernwood Botanical Garden, 13988 Range Line Rd, Buchanan. 269.695.6491. fernwoodbotanical.org. This beautiful evening under the stars has it all—music, live and silent auctions, and dinner prepared by Chef Tim Carrigan. The event supports Fernwood Botanical Garden.

Jun 28-29 Artigras, 10am-5pm, Whittaker & Merchant Sts, downtown New Buffalo. newbuffalo.org. Original works of art take center stage at this annual festival. More than 130 juried artists from around the world, as well as a select group of Harbor Country artists, present works in all mediums—paintings, sculptures, glass, photography, drawings, jewelry, fiber, wood, ceramics, mixed media and furniture. The event also features live entertainment, artist demonstrations, great food and more.

Illinois

Through Jun 15 Envisioning China—A Festival of Arts and Culture, various locations around the University of Chicago Campus, Chicago. 773.702.2366. arts.uchicago.edu. This five-month festival features more than 40 events and exhibitions related to Chinese cultural history. The diverse selection of art, film, music and performance events are free and open to the public, supporting the festival’s mission of creating a dialogue around Chinese art and heritage.

May 29-Aug 28 Rockin' in the Park, 7-9:45pm Thu, MB Financial Park at Rosemont, 5501 Park Pl, Rosemont. mbparkrosemont.com. Admission is free to this weekly concert series boasting music of classic cover bands, as well as fireworks, food and beverage tents on the park's great lawn.

May 30-Jun 1 Millennium Art Festival, 11am-6pm Fri, 10am-6pm Sat, 10am-5pm Sun, Lake St & Michigan Ave, Chicago. amdurproductions.com/millennium-art-festival. Located in the heart of downtown, this annual art festival offers original works from more than 110 acclaimed artists in every medium—including ceramics, fiber, glass, jewelry, sculptures, mixed media, painting, drawing, photography, wood and furniture. The event also features live music and festival fare from neighborhood restaurants.

Jun 6 Adults Night Out, 6-10:30pm, Lincoln Park Zoo, Cannon Dr at Fullerton Pkwy, Chicago. lpzoo.org. Guest who are 21 years of age and older are invited to this new evening event for a rare opportunity to explore the zoo after hours. Food, beer and wine will be available for purchase.

Jun 6-8 Ribfest Chicago, 5-10pm Fri, noon-10pm Sat-Sun, Lincoln, Damen & Irving Park, Chicago. 847.677.8273. ribfest-chicago.com. Chicago's most anticipated street festival draws more than 50,000 attendees. In addition to a selection of mouthwatering BBQ, this festival features a BBQ master cook-off, an eating contest, an Indie music fest and a kids' event area.

Jun 7 The Goldfish Ball 2014 Gala, 6pm, John G. Shedd Aquarium, 1200 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago. 312.692.2713. sheddaquarium.org/gala. Chicago’s most prominent philanthropic leaders will gather for a night of cocktails, dinner, entertainment by the Simone Vitale Orchestra and dancing at the aquarium’s annual black tie gala.

Jun 7-Oct 11 Downtown Tinley Farmers Market, 8am-1pm, Zabrocki Plaza, 174th & Oak Park Ave, Tinley Park. downtowntinley.com. This weekly market offers the best selection of fruits, vegetables and fresh flowers.

Jun 13-15 Chicago Blues Festival, 11am-9:30pm, Grant Park, Columbus Dr & Congress Pkwy, Chicago. choosechicago.com/chicago-blues-festival. The largest blues festival in the world, this three-day musical experience spans five stages as more than 500,000 blues fans take over the park. Past performers include Bonnie Raitt, Ray Charles, B.B. King, the late Bo Diddley, Buddy Guy and the late Koko Taylor.

EXHIBITIONS

Indiana

Through Jul 26 Material Possessions, Lubeznik Center for the Arts, 101 W Second St, Michigan City. 219.874.4900. lubeznikcenter.org. This intimate group showing features the work of five esteemed artists of the highest artistic practice in the field of contemporary fiber arts. These established and emerging artists incorporate a redemptive sensibility in the use of methods and materials in this innovated 2-D and 3-D exhibit. Also, through Jul 26: Ignorance with Wings by Michael Bill Smith.

Through Aug 10 Parallel Pursuits--Tom Brand's Finding Form and Carole Stodder's Shaping Space, Brauer Museum of Art, Valparaiso University Center for the Arts, 1709 Chapel Dr, Valparaiso. 219.464.5365. valpo.edu/artmuseum. This exhibit offers an opportunity to compare and contrast the abstract works of two Michigan City, Ind. artists. Brand’s art features carefully composed shapes with an expressive or painterly surface, while Stodder’s paintings feature geometrical patterns with hard edges. Also, through Aug 10: Drawings by Fred Frey, New Acquisitions and Paintings by Eleanor Lewis.

Opens Jun Fur, Feather, Skin & Scales—Artworks of the Animal, Southern Shore Art Association, 724 Franklin St, Michigan City. 219.369.9028. southernshoreartassociation.com. Animal-inspired paintings, sculptures, photography and other media comprise this exhibit.

Jun 15-Aug 31 Baby Boom or Bust! Center for Visual and Performing Arts Atrium Gallery, 1040 Ridge Rd, Munster. 219.836.1839. southshoreartsonline.org. This exhibit takes a fond look back at the iconic, often innocent, images of life in the nuclear age with iconic imagery by artist Brian J. Sullivan and memorabilia—including Hanna Barbera characters, Barbie and Ken, Howdy Doody, space toys and robots, lunch boxes, presidential memorabilia and vintage paint-by-numbers from an atomic childhood. Also, through May 25: 40th Annual Tri-County Junior/Senior High School Art Show.

Michigan

Through Jun 7 Kristin Hosbein—Light and Shadow, Box Factory for the Arts, 1101 Broad St, St. Joseph. 269.983.3688. boxfactoryforthearts.org. A native of St. Joseph and a Box Factory studio artist, Kristin Hosbein paints in the plein air tradition, using color, form and values to interpret the unfolding scene and in the studio using a similar process with the occasional addition of wax and alkyd mediums to the oil colors. She also uses charcoal sticks to draw into paintings, creating textures that might not be accomplished by brush alone.

Through Jun 15 Northern Indiana Artists—Curated Exhibit, Fernwood Botanical Garden and Nature Preserve, 13988 Range Line Rd, Niles. 269.695.6491. fernwoodbotanical.org. This exhibit by the Northern Indiana Artists group features their latest work.

Through Jun 22 Krasl Art Center Biennal Sculpture Invitational and Ken Thompson, Krasl Art Center, 707 Lake Blvd, St. Joseph. 269.983.0271. krasl.org. A selection of 25 sculptures by some of the finest and most creative sculptors working today grace the KAC grounds and other nearby locales. Working models and sketches are on display indoors, plus a solo show by 2012 Purchase Award winner, Michigan sculptor Ken Thompson. Also, through Jun 22: The Crossing By Shannon Eakins; Jun 27-Sept 14: Waves.

Through Aug 16 West Michigan Area Show, Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, 314 S Park St, Kalamazoo. 269.349.7775. kiarts.org. Since the 1960s, this annual juried exhibition has showcased the exceptional work of area artists in all media. Also, through May 25: Inside Steinway—Photographs by Christopher Payne; through Jul 5: Cultural Encounters—India, Burman and Tibet; May 31-Aug 24: Louis Comfort Tiffany.

May 23-Aug 17 David Nash—From Kew Gardens to Meijer Gardens, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, 1000 E Beltline Ave, NE, Grand Rapids. 888.957.1580. meijergardens.org. This broad and comprehensive presentation features sculptures, installations and drawings by British artist David Nash. Also, through Oct 31: Bernar Venet at Meijer Gardens.

Jun 8-Jul 20 From Coloma to Covert—Barbara Crane Photographs, South Haven Center for the Arts, 600 Phoenix St, South Haven. 269.637.1041. southhavenarts.org. Native to Southwest Michigan Barbara Crane exhibits the views she has seen for years of the stretch between Coloma and Covert. Also, through Jun 1: Impressions of South Haven.

Illinois

Reopens May 23 Colleen Moore's Fairy Castle, Museum of Science and Industry, 57th St and Lake Shore Dr, Chicago. 773.947.3133. msichicago.org. After a recent conservation project, this beloved exhibit is now more magical than ever. This elaborate house full of hand-crafted miniatures and artifact was completed by silent film star Colleen Moore in 1935 and has delighted generations of museum goers with it's tiny treasures and imaginative presentation. Also, through Sept 1: 80 at 80 and Earth Explorers; through Oct 31: THINK.

Through Jan 4 The Machine Inside—Biomechanics, The Field Museum, 1400 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago. 312.922.9410. fieldmuseum.org. The marvels of natural engineering are on display during this exhibit, which explores how living things—including humans—are machines built to survive, move and discover. Also, through Sept 7: Opening the Vaults—Wonders of the 1983 World’s Fair; through Feb 1: Before the Dinosaurs—Tracking the Reptiles of Pangaea; through Jun 7, 2015: Bunky Echo-Hawk—Modern Warrior.

Opens Apr 18 Modern Masters Return, The Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S Michigan Ave, Chicago. 312.629.6635. artic.edu/aic. This renowned collection of modern European painting and sculpture returns to its home on the third floor of the Modern Wing with more than 100 works by artists such as Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Marc Chagall, Constantin Brâncusi and Salvador Dalí. Also, through Jun 1: Dayanita Singh; through Jun 15: The Thrill of the Chase—Drawings for the Harry B. and Bessie K. Braude Memorial Collection; through Jun 16: Hired Hand; through Jul 27: When the Greeks Ruled Egypt; through Oct 5: Nairy Baghramiam—French Curve/Slip of the Tongue.

Through Oct 5 Unbound—Contemporary Art After Frida Kahlo, Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E Chicago Ave, Chicago. 312.280.2660. mcachicago.org. Stemming from the artist's interest in language and poetry, this exhibition is organized like a poem and divided into several sections or stanzas, with each section featuring works in several media. Pieces on display range from sculpture and ceramics to drawing, textiles and painting. Also, through Jun 15: Warhol and Marisol; through Jul 13: Alexander Calder; through Aug 3: Isa Genzken—Retrospective; through Sept 16: Zachary Cahill.

Indiana

Cinemark at Valparaiso, 700 Porter’s Vale Blvd, Valparaiso. 800.326.3264, 219.464.0260. cinemark.com. Playing new releases as well as the Cinemark Classic Series, Cinemark is the leading motion picture exhibitor. Cinemark at Valparaiso features roomy stadium seating and RealD 3D and digital presentations for an all-around quality movie viewing experience.

Portage 16 IMAX, 6550 US Hwy 6, Portage. 219.764.7569. portage16imax.com. The brand-new Portage 16 IMAX showcases blockbusters as well as electrifying 3D films that are uniquely suited to the IMAX format. With projected images up to eight stories high and a spectacular, wraparound digital surround-sound system, this theater offers a total-immersion moviegoing experience.

Michigan

The Vickers Theatre, 6 N Elm St, Three Oaks. 269.756.3522. vickerstheatre.com. Home of the annual “Sound of Silents Film Festival,” this painstakingly restored turn-of-the-century art house screens a variety of notable independent films. A lofty, two-story gallery space, showcasing the works of Midwestern artists, is open to the public before and between shows. Further enhancing its art-house cachet, the Vickers hosts live music, performance art and poetry readings on its stage.

Illinois

The Gene Siskel Film Center, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 164 N State St, Chicago. 312.846.2600. siskelfilmcenter.org. This film center—renamed in 2000 for its most passionate supporter, the late film critic Gene Siskel—has been exhibiting critically acclaimed, as well as entertaining “motion picture art” in its state-of-the-art facilities since its inception in 1972. Presenting more than 100 films each month, the center showcases cutting-edge, independent features and classic revivals, as well as premieres of new American and foreign films. From hosting the “Annual Festival of Films from Iran” to The Grapes of Wrath, the diverse offerings have quality in common. A focus on education is supported by guest lecturers, discussions and courses, and film-related exhibits can be viewed at the on-site gallery/café.

PERFORMANCE

Indiana

Chicago Street Theater, 154 W Chicago St, Valparaiso. 219.464.1636. chicagostreet.org. Now in its 58th season of bringing live theatrical entertainment to the greater Northwest Indiana region, the CST presents a variety of plays and musicals each season, in addition to regularly scheduled theater classes for both adults and children. May 23-Jun 7: Rabbit Hole.

Festival Players Guild, Mainstreet Theatre, 807 Franklin St, Michigan City. 219.874.4269. festivalplayersguild.org. Since 1969, Festival Players Guild has been dedicated to nurturing and producing performing arts of the highest order in Northern Indiana. Home of the guild, Mainstreet Theatre offers an intimate setting with 130 seats, which assures every patron a seat no further than 12 rows from the front. Jun 18-21: Crimes of the Heart; Jun 25-Jul 5: Why Do Fools Fall in Love?

Footlight Players, 1705 Franklin St, Michigan City. 219.874.4035. footlightplayers.org. This community theater group has been entertaining audiences in Michigan City for more than 50 years with its productions of dramas, comedies and musicals. Jun 6-8, 12-15: I Hate Hamlet.

Horseshoe Casino, 777 Casino Center Dr, Hammond. 866.711.7463. horseshoehammond.com. World-class gambling and top-name entertainment combine to create an unprecedented experience at this 350,000-square-foot casino. The Venue, the casino’s 90,000-square-foot entertainment facility, hosts some of the hottest Chicagoland entertainment. May 30: Staind and Theory of a Deadman; Jun 13: Huey Lewis and the News.

The Memorial Opera House, 104 E Indiana Ave, Valparaiso. 219.548.9137. mohlive.com. This renovated, 364-seat building—with red, white and blue stained-glass windows—was built as a living memorial to the Civil War veterans of Porter County. Built in 1893, the theater has a rich history as a venue for musical and dramatic performances. May 25: Moonlight Cabaret and Cabernet featuring the Leading Ladies of the Opera House; May 31: Shoes; Jun 7: Variety-ville; Jun 13-15, 20-22, 27-29: The Glass Menagerie.

Northwest Indiana Symphony Orchestra, various venues. 219.836.0525. nwisymphony.org. Conducted by the charismatic Kirk Muspratt, this professional orchestra performs concerts that range in atmosphere from the whimsical pops series to the edifying and inspirational maestro series, many of which offer pre-concert discussions with the conductor an hour before the concert. Jun 22: Symphony Goes to the Movies (Crown Point High School Auditorium, 1500 S Main St, Crown Point).

Star Plaza Theatre, I-65 & US 30, Merrillville. 219.769.6600. starplazatheatre.com. With 3,400 seats arranged in two intimate seating levels, the theater consistently hosts premier performers year-round. With its convenient location in the heart of Northwest Indiana’s shopping and dining district and its proximity to the adjoining Radisson Hotel, the Star Plaza offers a total entertainment package to area theatergoers. May 31: The Monkees.

The Theatre at the Center, Center for the Visual and Performing Arts, 1040 Ridge Rd, Munster. 219.836.3255. theatreatthecenter.com. This theater, just 35 minutes from downtown Chicago, has the distinction of being the only professional equity theater in Northwest Indiana, and showcases the artistry of professional actors, musicians and designers from throughout the Midwest. Through Jun 1: Miracle on South Division St; Jun 13-14: The Second City—Happily Ever After.

Michigan

The Acorn Theater, 6 N Elm St, Three Oaks. 269.756.3879. acorntheater.com. The 250-seat Acorn is home to a carefully reconstructed, rare Barton Theater Pipe Organ and boasts bistro tables and occasionally offbeat entertainment options.

Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra, DeVos Performance Hall, 303 Monroe Ave NW, Grand Rapids. 616.454.9451 ext 4. grsymphony.org. Recognized as one of America’s leading regional orchestras, this Grammy-nominated symphony provides the orchestra for Opera Grand Rapids and the Grand Rapids Ballet Company. The orchestra’s eight concert series with performances designed for young children through adults feature a wide range of repertoire.

Southwest Michigan Symphony Orchestra, various venues. 269.982.4030. smso.org. This versatile orchestra offers a traditional Mendel Mainstage Series, small ensemble works in the Around Town Series, and the Performing Artists series, which showcases a wide range of styles with guest artists.

Van Andel Arena, 130 W Fulton, Grand Rapids. 616.742.6600. vanandelarena.com. Ranked second on Billboard Magazine’s 2003 Top 10 Arena Venues for its size, this $75 million 12,000-plus capacity arena offers world-class family shows, concerts and sporting events to the increasingly popular Grand Rapids area.

West Michigan Symphony, Frauenthal Center for Performing Arts, 425 W Western Ave, Muskegon. 231.727.8001. westmichigansymphony.org. With eight pairs of concerts a year, the West Michigan Symphony has played a leading role in the region’s cultural community for almost 70 years. It has helped bring a renewed vitality and life to the center of Muskegon and with it, the historic Frauenthal Theater, a 1,729-seat venue with extraordinary beauty, excellent acoustics and sight lines.

Illinois

Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University, 50 E Parkway, Chicago. 312.902.1500. auditoriumtheatre.org. A National Historic Landmark and a mainstay of Chicago architecture and theatre since 1889, the Auditorium continues to provide unparalleled ballet performances and a variety of artistic productions.

Broadway in Chicago, various venues, Chicago. 800.775.2000. broadwayinchicago.com. A joint venture between the two largest commercial theater producers and owner/operators in the U.S., Broadway in Chicago offers the finest of professional stage productions in multiple theaters, all residing in Chicago’s lively Loop. Bank of America Theatre, 18 W Monroe St. Through Jun 15: Buyer & Cellar. Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W Randolph St. Through Jul 13: Motown The Musical.

Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Navy Pier, 800 E Grand Ave, Chicago. 312.595.5600. chicagoshakes.com. Prominently located on Navy Pier in Chicago, this venue mounts renowned productions of the plays of William Shakespeare, as well as works from distinguished American and international playwrights and directors. The theater’s mission to reach out to younger audiences is well accomplished with its offerings of children’s productions and student matinees. The architecturally dynamic structure houses both an engaging, 500-seat courtyard theater and a 200-seat black box theater. Through Jun 15: Henry V.

Chicago Sinfonietta, Orchestra Hall at Symphony Center, 2205 S Michigan Ave, Chicago. chicagosinfonietta.org. In its pursuit of “Musical Excellence through Diversity,” the Chicago Sinfonietta—the official orchestra of the Joffrey Ballet—presents compelling, innovative works, often by composers and soloists of color.

The Chicago Theatre, 175 N State St, Chicago. 312.462.6300. thechicagotheatre.com. The Chicago Theatre has been a prototype for area theaters since 1921. With its lavish architecture and an elegant stage, the Chicago Theatre seats 3,600 and stands seven stories high. May 20: Jerry Garcia Symphonic Celebration; May 21-22: Aziz Ansari; May 31: Patton Oswalt.

City Winery Chicago, 1200 W Randolph St, Chicago. 312.733.9463. citywinery.com. The city’s newest concert venue and only fully operational winery, will present an eclectic mix of the most respected names in pop, rock, jazz, blues and world music. May 19: Steep Canyon Rangers; May 23-24: Jackopierce; May 30: The Westies.

Court Theatre, 5535 S Ellis Ave, Chicago. 773.753.4472. courttheatre.org. The Court Theatre is a not-for-profit, professional regional theater that is located on the campus of the University of Chicago. Its mission to “discover the power of classic theater” is realized in its intimate, 251-seat auditorium. Through Jun 8: M. Butterfly.

The Goodman Theatre, 170 N Dearborn St, Chicago. 312.443.3800. goodmantheatre.org. Since 1925, the Goodman Theatre has provided entertainment to the Chicago area; however, a new, state-of-the-art two-theater complex was completed in 2000—75 years to the day after the dedication of the original—and resides in the vibrant North Loop Theater District within walking distance of fine hotels and restaurants. May 24-Jun 22: Ask Aunt Susan.

Harris Theater, 205 E Randolph, Chicago. 312.704.8414. harristheaterchicago.org. Now in its fifth season at its home in the Harris Theater for Music and Dance in Millennium Park, this modern state-of-the-art theater guarantees that the audience will enjoy a wide variety of performances in an intimate setting. May 19: Music of the Baroque—Royal Fireworks Music; May 22: Oliver Dragojevic and Dupini in Concert; May 28: The Chicago Academy for the Arts; May 31: Chicago Gay Men's Chorus—Broadway Our Way.

Lyric Opera of Chicago, Civic Opera House, Madison & Wacker, Chicago. 312.332.2244 ext 5600. lyricopera.org. The world-class Lyric Opera enraptures audiences with its spectacular artistry, performing in one of the most unique theaters in the world. The recently refurbished Civic Opera House not only is an elaborate treasure on the inside, but it is architecturally distinctive as well, shaped like a throne facing the Chicago River.

Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E Chicago Ave, Chicago. 312.397.4010. mcachicago.org. Reflecting the modern atmosphere of the adjoining museum, the state-of-the-art MCA Theater features elegant oak-paneled walls and tiered seating, which guarantees that every one of the 300 seats can boast the best seat in the house.

Orchestra Hall at Symphony Center, 220 S Michigan Ave, Chicago. 312.294.3000. cso.org. The Chicago Symphony Orchestra is consistently hailed as one of today’s leading orchestras. Performances by the CSO are much in demand at home and in the most prestigious music capitals of the world. Led by renowned Italian conductor Riccardo Muti as its tenth music director, the CSO is working to fulfill his vision for the Orchestra-to deepen its engagement with the Chicago community, to nurture the legacy of the CSO while supporting a new generation of musicians, and to collaborate with visionary artists. May 19: Civic Orchestra—Operatic Masterworks; May 22-24: CSO—Shostakovich Leningrad; May 29: CSO—Van Zweden and Weilerstein; May 30: SCP Jazz Series—Jason Moran and Theaster Gates; May 31: CSO—Prokofiev 5.

Paramount Theatre, 23 E Galena Blvd, Aurora. 630.896.6666. paramountaurora.com. Named “One of Chicago’s Top Ten Theatres” by the League of Chicago Theatres, the Paramount is renowned for the quality and caliber of its presentations, superb acoustics and historic beauty.

Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N Halsted, Chicago. 312.335.1650. steppenwolf.org. The Chicago-based cast is an internationally renowned group of 43 artists, committed to the art of ensemble collaboration. Now in its 35th season, Steppenwolf continues to fulfill its mission by offering intriguing performances and taking artistic risks. Through Jun 8: The Way West.

Victory Gardens Theater, various venues. 773.871.3000. victorygardens.org. As one of the country’s most respected midsized professional theater companies, this Tony Award-winning theater is dedicated to serving playwrights and producing world premiere plays. Programs include five mainstage productions with emphasis placed on the development of an ethnically and culturally diverse community of arts.

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