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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Wednesday, April 17

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Burlesque Thu Oct 17 2013

A Complete Guide to Halloween Performances & Theater

zombieprom2013.jpgThe weather is getting crisp, the leaves are turning colors and costumes of all kinds are festooning store windows. Must be getting close to Halloween! If you're like me, you want to start celebrating early. Check out some of these performances to whet your Halloween whistle.

For traditional spookiness, check out Nightfall with Edgar Allen Poe, theatrical adaptations of The Telltale Heart and The Raven, among others, at Center Stage Theater in Naperville now through Oct. 20 ($16) or Creature Feature Radio Hour: The Wolfman on Mummy Island -- a ghostly Halloween radioplay -- at Chemically Imbalanced Theater. If you're into camp, take yourself to Nightmares on Lincoln Avenue, B is for Blood at The Cornservatory Oct. 17 - Oct. 31 ($7-$15) or The Rocky Horror Show (the classic, sans "Picture", with a steampunk theme) at the Chopin Theatre Oct. 24-27 ($20).

If you like a side of showtunes with your horror? Check out Zombie Prom at Mayne Stage (Oct. 19, Oct. 25 and Oct. 31, $20) with a special zombie prom-themed afterparty on Halloween and The Musical of the Living Dead at Stage 773 now through 11/9 ($25).

Do your tastes run more ribald? Halloween was made for burlesque and the local troupes have got you covered. Head to Gorilla Tango Theater for Boobs of the Dead (Tagline: The apocalypse has never been hotter), a send-up of Walking Dead, Fridays and Saturdays until Halloween; Kiss-Kiss Cabaret presents Peek-a-Boo: An Ooky Spooky Burlesque at the Greenhouse Theater on Fridays until Nov. 8 ($15); Vaudezilla's Peepshow Creepshow plays Saturdays at Stage 773 until Oct. 28 ($18); Ties N' Tassels (a queer burlesque monthly) shows us A Boo-tiful Night on Saturday, Oct. 19 at Lizard's Liquid Lounge ($10); and on Halloween night, Untitled presents an All Hallows Eve show with members of the Dead Man's Carnival ($15).

Want something you can take your kids to? The City is once again presenting its annual Monster Bash in Franken Plaza (Daley Plaza) on October 26 with hay rides, performances by Midnight Circus, trick-or-treating, and the annual costume contest. (With a special "Wicked" themed category -- winners will receive a pair of tickets to Wicked, re-opening in November at the Oriental Theatre). Further north, Raven Theater's Boo-Ha-Ha is also happening on Saturday, October 26. Featuring a bounce house, trick-or-treating, face painting, and free funnel cakes and drinks, the event is also an open house for the theater, with classes from 1:30 - 3:30. Email for more information or to reserve a spot.

Looking for something more off the beaten path? Go see Blacula: Young, Black and Undead by Pegasus Players, a world premiere by Chicago Dramatists' resident playwright Reginald Edmund. Hipsters, vampires and African princes all weave into this comedy-horror love story. For the hearty and outdoorsy types, there is Theatre-Hikes' The Passion of Dracula, an adaptation of the original Bram Stoker novel. The production, which occurs in multiple outdoor locations with the audience moving, takes place in the heart of Pullman, at the Pullman Factory Complex (Oct. 26-27, $15). And finally, if you're at loose ends the night before Halloween, check out the All Hallow's Eve Variety Show fundraiser for the Chicago Publishers Resource Center at the California Clipper. With performances by famed Chicago author and multimedia artist Audrey Niffenegger ("The Time Traveler's Wife"), shadow puppeteers Jill Summers and Susie Kirkwood, Incurable Theater's Jennifer Friedrich and Damien Hinojosa and many more (Oct. 30, 8:30pm, $7 at the door).

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Architecture Tue Nov 03 2015

Paul Goldberger Describes the "Pragmatism and Poetry" of Frank Gehry's Architecture in His New Book

By Nancy Bishop

Architecture critic Paul Goldberger talks about Frank Gehry's life and work in a new book.
Read this feature »

Steve at the Movies Fri Jan 01 2016

Best Feature Films & Documentaries of 2015

By Steve Prokopy

Read this column »


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