All stories by Chris Jones on BroadwayStars

Friday, March 5, 2021

Chicago Shakespeare and Drury Lane Theatre announce live shows for fall by Chris Jones

First show at Chicago Shakes will be “As You Like It” with Beatles music. Drury Lane plans to reopen with "Forever Plaid."

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 12:47PM
Thursday, March 4, 2021

Ed Judge, a dentist who chose tending bar at Petterino’s instead, is dead at 55 by Chris Jones

If you were an exhausted actor straight from the dressing room, Petterino's bartender Ed Judge would know your drink and have it waiting.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 06:18PM

Column: A quarter-century later, the musical ‘Rent’ still resonates by Chris Jones

"Rent" is still as powerful now as it was when it opened on Broadway in 1996.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 10:46AM

Column: A restaurant room and inside of the Auditorium Theatre both capped at 50 people? Pritzker’s plan needs a new Phase 4.5 by Chris Jones

Pandemic limits for restaurants are relaxed and baseball may have live fans in the stands this summer. But the rules for indoor live entertainment in Illinois remain stuck, and make little s…

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 07:56AM
Wednesday, March 3, 2021

House Theatre of Chicago announces new artistic director by Chris Jones

Chicago artist Lanise Antoine Shelley takes the lead at the Chicago theater company operating out of the Chopin in Wicker Park.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 10:51AM
Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Column: Require proof of a COVID vaccine to get into a show in Chicago? It’s a very tricky issue by Chris Jones

Are vaccine passports for audience members the quickest way back for the performing arts in Chicago?

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 03:18PM
Monday, March 1, 2021

Stratford Festival of Canada announces a modest outdoor summer season by Chris Jones

The popular annual Canadian theater festival plans shows in outdoor tents, with titles to be announced at a later date.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 03:21PM

Review: In ‘Taking Up Serpents’ by Chicago Opera Theater, a young woman tries to escape a snake-loving father by Chris Jones

In the new opera "Taking Up Serpents," set in rural Alabama, a young woman wrestles with her Pentecostal upbringing.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 03:00PM
Sunday, February 28, 2021

Review: Joffrey Ballet’s virtual, bursting ‘Boléro’ brings us a rite of spring by Chris Jones

The Joffrey Ballet's new streaming production is free to watch on the company's website, a fine reminder of this Chicago institution, and of the spring that is coming.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 01:44PM
Thursday, February 25, 2021

Milwaukee Rep announces reopening for live theater in April by Chris Jones

Wisconsin's leading theater plans to reopen with “Ella Fitzgerald: First Lady of Song,” starring the Chicago actress Alexis J Roston.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 03:32PM

Column: Will people come back to live entertainment in Chicago? About 150,000 people already have. by Chris Jones

With 150,000 tickets sold, "Immersive Van Gogh" is a huge pandemic hit in Chicago and there are lessons here for the future of live entertainment.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 08:00AM
Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton inspire the new Steppenwolf play ‘Duchess! Duchess! Duchess!’ by Chris Jones

Talking to the young playwright Vivian J.O. Barnes, who has written a play inspired by the British royal family, now being virtually staged for Steppenwolf subscribers.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 11:16AM
Thursday, February 18, 2021

Column: On Second City, private equity and the sad lack of a Chicago comedy savior by Chris Jones

A private equity firm is swooping into Chicago and buying Second City, the legendary comedy theater now at a low point. How did we allow this to happen?

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 08:00AM
Wednesday, February 17, 2021

At Court’s ‘Theatre for One: Here We Are,’ audiences are all alone with an actor by Chris Jones

It's just you on a video call with a Court Theatre cast member for a 10-minute monologue. And the actor can see you, too.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 01:35PM
Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Second City nears sale to a private equity company ZMC, also owner of ‘Grand Theft Auto’ by Chris Jones

Chicago’s famed comedy theater Second City is close to a deal that would see it sold to Strauss Zelnick's ZMC.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 12:28PM
Thursday, February 11, 2021

Column: New York just announced a pop-up arts fest with Chris Rock, Amy Schumer and other celebs: 5 things Chicago could learn by Chris Jones

“NY PopsUp,” a spring series of events with the backing of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, shows New York's willingness to take small steps to return to live arts. A teachable moment for us.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 08:00AM
Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Column: When should massive musical festivals like Lolla return? The answer is in how much we value live art by Chris Jones

When should massive festivals like Glastonbury, or Chicago's Lollapalooza, return? How about big weddings? We need to keep in mind there are different ways of looking at those questions.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 08:07AM
Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Sideshow Theatre announces virtual season of readings by Chris Jones

Sideshow Theatre has announced a 2021 season of virtual readings, its first slate under new artistic director Regina Victor.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 02:00PM

Steppenwolf cancels planned L.A. filming, creates audio play from ‘I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter’ by Chris Jones

Steppenwolf Theatre will bring back "I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter" as an audio adaptation, based on the book by Erika L. Sánchez and once again starring Karen Rodriguez.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 10:00AM
Sunday, February 7, 2021

‘Missed Connections’ at Red Orchid is proof that magicians are skilled connectors, rocking the lockdown by Chris Jones

The new livestreaming magic show via A Red Orchid Theatre is very persuasive, and even therapeutic in these isolating pandemic times.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 03:04PM
Thursday, February 4, 2021

Hubbard Street Dance hires former company member as new artistic director by Chris Jones

Linda-Denise Fisher-Harrell first danced at HSDC at the invitation of Lou Conte, then spent more than a decade as a principal dancer with Alvin Ailey in New York.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 01:00PM

Whoopi Goldberg, Gilda Radner, John Leguizamo and many more: They all owe a solo debt to Hal Holbrook by Chris Jones

At one time, theater producers thought no one would be interested in solo shows. Hal Holbrook as Mark Twain changed that. Everyone from Gilda Radner to the upcoming "Fillet of Solo" at Lifel…

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 08:00AM
Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Column: Why the British hero Captain Tom Moore mattered so much, dead now from pneumonia and coronavirus by Chris Jones

Captain Tom, the 100-year-old veteran, is best known for his fundraising walks around his garden. But he came to symbolize so much in the COVID-19 moment.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 04:27PM
Sunday, January 31, 2021

Column: A critic’s ‘Snowmaggedon’ memoir: Was ‘Burn the Floor’ worth risking my life? by Chris Jones

A theater critic, trying to live up to his colleagues, reviews a show in a blizzard only to end up in a dangerous snowdrift. A memory of a fateful night at "Burn the Floor."

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 02:16PM
Friday, January 29, 2021

Column: Late in life, do you want to surround yourself with oldsters? Florida-set documentary ‘Some Kind of Heaven’ exposes the pitfalls by Chris Jones

Second City founder Bernie Sahlins had some wisdom about staying young — it was on my mind as I watched a new documentary set at the Florida retirement community The Villages.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 08:00AM
Thursday, January 28, 2021

Review: In Steppenwolf Theatre’s ‘Red Folder,’ Carrie Coon battles with school supplies by Chris Jones

In Rajiv Joseph's animated new short play, a first grader voiced by Carrie Coon must face down his fear.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 01:24PM
Tuesday, January 26, 2021

How are small Chicago arts groups doing? New survey suggests Zoom is here to stay by Chris Jones

Fundraising works better online, and Zoom performances can reach bigger audiences from all over the country, according to a new survey of Chicago arts groups by Gaylord & Dorothy Donnell…

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 03:35PM
Friday, January 22, 2021

Sideshow Theatre Company adds new collaborators by Chris Jones

Sideshow Theatre Company adds new collaborators

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 03:27PM
Thursday, January 21, 2021

Column: Will Chicago have music and arts this summer? It will if we think small and local, and start now. by Chris Jones

We have to be spontaneous and organic, letting Chicago artists and street festivals lead the way, and DCASE and the city must with the plans. And soon.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 08:00AM
Wednesday, January 20, 2021

ComedySportz has been an online winner with its improv shows — and vows to stay ‘digital first’ by Chris Jones

Even after the pandemic has passed and Chicago comedy theaters are back to doing live shows, the popular ComedySportz chain wants to keeps its successful e-shows running.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 08:00AM
Thursday, January 14, 2021

Review: Scott Silven’s ‘Journey’ via Chicago Shakes creates the illusion we’re all connected — believe that one if you want by Chris Jones

This new show, livestreamed from Scotland, is on the cutting edge of translating old-school magic into our new online worlds. Worlds where ostensibly we're all connected.

Linked From Chicago Tribune Subscription at 02:25PM

All that Chat

2019-2020 BROADWAY SEASON
Oct 06, 2019: Slave Play
Oct 17, 2019: The Sound Inside - Studio 54
Feb 01, 2020: The Minutes
Mar 12, 2020: BROADWAY SHUTDOWN
Mar 31, 2020: Diana - Longacre Theatre
Apr 19, 2020: Sing Street - Lyceum Theatre