Tuesday, March 21, 2023


ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar

APRIL 12-JUNE 4, 2023

“We pledge allegiance - to the band - of Mr. Schneebly”


Paramount Theatre's cast for School of Rock features (top, left) Nick Druzbanski (Dewey Finn), (row 2, from left) Julia Dale (Katie), Omi Lichtenstein (Summer Hathaway), David Mattle (Freddy Hamilton), Jaxon Mitchell (Billy Sanford), Kayla Norris (Tomika Spencer-Williams), Leighton Tantillo (Lawrence), (row 3) Julian Wanderer (Zack Mooneyham), Jackson Evans (Ned Schneebly), Veronica Garza (Rosalie Mullins), Lucy Godinez (Patti Di Marco), Mary Robin Roth (Ms. Sheinkopf), and 13 ensemble members: Alex Benoit, (row 4) Alley Ellis, Andrés Enriquez, Dakota Hughes, Greta Kleckner, Em Modaff, Timothy Michael Quinn, (row 5) Jason Richards, Andrew Sickel, Allison Sill, Ana Silva, Ryan Stajmiger and Christopher Wayland.

Paramount Theatre has announced its roster for School of Rock, the Chicago professional regional premiere of the good-time musical based on the hit Jack Black movie, featuring new music from the genius mind of Andrew Lloyd Webber, directed by Trent Stork. Performances are April 12-June 4. I'll be out for opening night, April 21st, so check back soon for my full review. For tickets and information, visit ParamountAurora.com, call (630) 896-6666.

Nick Druzbanski will play wannabe-rocker-Dewey Finn-turned-substitute teacher-Ned Schneebly. Druzbanski’s signature roles at Paramount to date include Franz in Rock of Ages, LeFou in Beauty and the Beast, and ensemble roles in Groundhog Day and Kinky Boots.

Nick Druzbanski (right) played LeFou in Paramount’s 2020 production of Beauty and the Beast, opposite Emmett O’Hanlon as Gaston. Photo by Liz Lauren


Nick Druzbanski played Franz and Michael Ehlers was Hertz in

Paramount’s Rock of Ages in 2022. Photo by Liz Lauren

Seven amazing lead young actor/singer/musicians have pledged allegiance to the band of Mr. Schneebly: Julia Dale (Katie), Omi Lichtenstein (Summer Hathaway), David Mattle (Freddy Hamilton), Jaxon Mitchell (Billy Sanford), Kayla Norris (Tomika Spencer-Williams), Leighton Tantillo (Lawrence) and Julian Wanderer (Zack Mooneyham). And yes, they will all play their own instruments live in the show.

Factor in four favorite Chicago actors in other adults roles: Jackson Evans (Ned Schneebly), Veronica Garza (Rosalie Mullins), Lucy Godinez (Patti Di Marco) and Mary Robin Roth (Ms. Sheinkopf), and 13 ensemble members: Alex Benoit, Alley Ellis, Andrés Enriquez, Dakota Hughes, Greta Kleckner, Em Modaff, Timothy Michael Quinn, Jason Richards, Andrew Sickel, Allison Sill, Ana Silva, Ryan Stajmiger and Christopher Wayland.

Young actors rotating on stage as schoolmates and roadies include (top, from left) Charlie Long and Savannah Lumar (AJ); Lily Martens and Roxy Salzman (Jamie), Gabriel Solis and Eli Vander Griend (Madison), (row 2) Maya Keane and Clare Wols (Marcy), Elias Totleben and Levi Merlo (Mason), Meena Sood and Genevieve Jane (Shonelle), and (row 3) Naya Rosalie James and Annabel Finch (Sophie).

Plus 14 more kids rotating on stage as schoolmates and roadies: Charlie Long and Savannah Lumar (AJ); Lily Martens and Roxy Salzman (Jamie), Gabriel Solis and Eli Vander Griend (Madison), Maya Keane and Clare Wols (Marcy), Elias Totleben and Levi Merlo (Mason), Meena Sood and Genevieve Jane (Shonelle), and Naya Rosalie James and Annabel Finch (Sophie).

And that’s a full 39-member cast for Paramount’s 11th Broadway Series finale, with a 7-member live band in the orchestra pit.

Enough math. Let’s rock!

Previews of School of Rock start April 12. Opening Night is Friday, April 21, at 8 p.m. Performances run through June 4: Wednesdays at 1:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.; Thursdays at 7 p.m.; Fridays at 8 p.m.; Saturdays at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.; Sundays at 1 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. (exception: No 1:30 p.m. matinee on Wednesday, April 12). Single tickets are $28 to $79.  

Paramount Theatre is located at 23 E. Galena Blvd. in downtown Aurora. For tickets and information, visit ParamountAurora.com, call (630) 896-6666, or stop by the Paramount box office Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and until show time on show days. For group discounts, contact Melissa Striedl, melissas@paramountarts.com or (630) 723-2461. 

For the latest updates, visit ParamountAurora.com or follow @ParamountAurora on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, @paramountarts on Tik Tok, and on LinkedIn.  

Pay What You Can Performances

Paramount will offer two Pay What You Can performances of School of Rock: Thursday, April 13, at 7 p.m., and Saturday, April 15 at 3 p.m. Both days, starting at 10 a.m., visit the Paramount box office in-person to request tickets. Limit four per person. Subject to availability. See paramountaurora.com/pay-what-you-can for details. 

Access Services

Paramount will offer open and closed captioning on Wednesday, May 24, at 7 p.m.

The performance on Friday, May 26, at 8 p.m. will be interpreted in American Sign Language.

Paramount offers assistive listening devices free of charge at all performances. Check in at the coat room before the show to borrow a listening device.

If you require wheelchair or special seating or other assistance, please contact the box office at (630) 896-6666 or boxoffice@paramountarts.com in advance.

Paramount’s School of Rock study guide

Wannabe rocker Dewey Finn has just been kicked out of his band. He can’t pay rent and his life is falling apart. When Dewey scams his way into a teaching job at a prestigious prep school meant for his roommate, he turns a class of straight-A students into a guitar-shredding, bass-slapping, mind-blowing rock band. Dewey’s love of music and rock soon inspires the kids to pursue what they love. 

The 2003 hit movie School of Rock, credited for launching Jack Black’s career, was written by Mike White. White also played Dewey’s friend Ned Schneebly in the film, and more recently, created HBO’s The White Lotus.

The musical debuted on Broadway in 2015, was nominated for four Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and ran for 1,309 performances before closing in 2019. Andrew Lloyd Webber came on board to create new music for the musical version of School of Rock. Webber composed the scores of some of the world’s most famous musicals including The Phantom of the Opera, Cats, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Evita. Book is by Julian Fellowes and lyrics are by Glenn Slater.

Paramount’s School of Rock production team (at press time) is Trent Stork, director; Isaiah Silvia-Chandley, choreographer; Kory Danielson, music director, conductor and music supervisor; Michelle Lilly, scenic designer; Izumi Inaba, costume designer; Greg Hofmann, lighting designer; Adam Rosenthal, sound designer; Mike Tutaj, projection designer; Katie Cordts, wig, hair and makeup designer; Jesse Gaffney, properties designer; Ethan Deppe, electronic music designer; Max Fabian, intimacy director; Darren Patin, associate director; TJ Tapp, associate choreographer; Celia Villacres, associate music director and associate conductor; Cindy Moon, associate costume designer; Stark Winter, assistant lighting designer; Matthew Silar, stage manager; Lanita VanderSchaaf and Mary Zanger, assistant stage managers; and Bailey O’Neil and Katie Dreher, young performer supervisors.

Trent Stork, Paramount’s Associate Artistic Producer and Casting Director, won their first Jeff Award, Director-Musical-Large, for Paramount’s Kinky Boots in 2022. Stork’s Paramount directorial debut was in 2018 with Legally Blonde (Broadwayworld.com Award – Best Direction of a Musical.) Currently, Stork is busy co-directing Paramount’s Into the Woods with Artistic Director Jim Corti, running through March 19. 

Looking ahead:

Paramount announces 2023-24 Broadway and BOLD Series 

Light the marquee, roll out the red carpet and open the doors to the largest subscription theater in the nation, because downtown Aurora’s Paramount Theatre has announced four blockbuster musicals on tap for its 2023-24 Broadway Series: Little Shop of Horrors (August 30-October 15, 2023), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (November 8, 2023-January 14, 2024), Billy Elliot: The Musical (February 7-March 24, 2024), and Beautiful: The Carole King Musical (April 24-June 16, 2024).

Just as it has since it launched its first Broadway Series in 2011, Paramount still offers the same “Buy Two Shows, Get Two Shows Free” offer, with Broadway subscriptions starting as low as $56. In fact, subscribers pay no more than $39.50 per show, and that’s the most expensive ticket. Fees not included.

In addition, Paramount will present three more fresh, fervent and emotionally intoxicating plays set in its second BOLD Series in 2023-2024 in Paramount’s sleek new Copley Theatre: the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Next to Normal (July 26-September 3, 2023), the recent Off-Broadway sensation What the Constitution Means to Me by Heidi Shreck (October 4-November 12, 2023), and Tennessee Williams’s classic drama A Streetcar Named Desire (March 13-April 21, 2024). Three-show BOLD Series subscriptions start at $75.

To subscribe to either series, visit ParamountAurora.com, call

(630) 896-6666, or visit the Paramount box office, 23 E. Galena Blvd. in downtown Aurora, Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and until show time on show days. 

Paramount Theatre’s Covid-19 commitment to and safety and protocol

Paramount Theatre has followed, and will continue to follow, the requirements of the State of Illinois and the Kane County Health Department. Therefore, at press time, Paramount is following the guidance of the State of Illinois and recommends, but no longer requires masks, proof of vaccination or negative COVID test for patrons. Mask wearing is encouraged, but will be optional. For complete details, please read Paramount’s full Covid Policy. 


Old Second Bank is the sponsor of School of Rock. Paramount Theatre Broadway Season sponsors include the Dunham Foundation, the City of Aurora, BMO Harris Bank, ComEd and the Illinois Arts Council. Paramount’s BOLD Series is sponsored by Old National Bank.

About Paramount Theatre

Paramount Theatre, 23 E. Galena Blvd., is the center for performing arts in Aurora, the second largest city in Illinois. The beautiful, 1,843-seat theater, graced with a strong 1930s Art Deco influence and original Venetian décor, nationally known for its high-quality productions, superb acoustics and historic grandeur, has been downtown Aurora’s anchor attraction since 1931.

After launching its own Broadway Series in 2011, Paramount Theatre has rapidly grown to be the largest subscription house in the U.S. In 2022-23, more than 35,000 subscribers enjoyed Paramount’s critically acclaimed, Broadway-caliber productions, along with an array of internationally known comedians, musicians, dance troupes and family shows.

For over 50 years, the Joseph Jefferson Awards has recognized excellence in Chicago area theater. Last season, Paramount took home six Jeff Awards for Kinky Boots, including Best Musical-Large, Paramount’s fourth win in that category following Sweeney Todd (2017), West Side Story (2016) and Les Misérables (2015). Over the last 11 years, Paramount has been honored to earn 97 Jeff nominations and 27 wins.

Paramount Theatre is one of four live performance venues programmed and managed by the Aurora Civic Center Authority (ACCA). Paramount’s new “sister stage” is the newly renovated 165-seat Copley Theatre, home to Paramount’s new BOLD Series, across the street in the North Island Center. ACCA also oversees RiverEdge Park, the city’s 6,000-seat outdoor summer concert venue, Stolp Island Theatre, an immersive space opening in 2024, and the Paramount School of the Arts.

Monday, March 20, 2023



ChiIL Mama’s ChiIL Picks List








A charming thief and a band of unlikely adventurers undertake an epic heist to retrieve a lost relic, but things go dangerously awry when they run afoul of the wrong people. Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves brings the rich world and playful spirit of the legendary roleplaying game to the big screen in a hilarious and action-packed adventure. 

I'll be out for an advance screening this Saturday, March 25th, so check back soon for my full review. Both my son and daughter play D & D, so we're pretty excited to check out this new release, out in theatres everywhere on my birthday, March 31st.

TRAILER: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HGvv-Hhft3U 

WEBSITE: https://www.dungeonsanddragons.movie/



Paramount Pictures Presents

In Association with eOne

A Jonathan Goldstein & John Francis Daley Film

Directed by:

Jonathan Goldstein & John Francis Daley


Screenplay by:

Jonathan Goldstein & John Francis Daley and Michael Gilio


Story by:

Chris McKay & Michael Gilio




Produced by:

Jeremy Latcham, p.g.a., Brian Goldner, Nick Meyer


Executive Producers:

Denis L. Stewart, Jonathan Goldstein,

John Francis Daley, Chris Pine, Zev Foreman, Greg Mooradian


Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez, Regé-Jean Page, Justice Smith, Sophia Lillis, Chloe Coleman, Daisy Head and Hugh Grant


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DungeonsandDragonsMovie/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dungeonsanddragonsmovie/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DnDMovie

TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@dungeonsanddragonsmovie



Wednesday, March 8, 2023

FLASH GIVEAWAY: WIN Tickets to The 2nd Annual Chicago Circus and Performing Arts Festival March 9-12, 2023

ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar   

Chicago Circus and Performing Arts Festival


ENTER AT THE END OF THIS POST FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN A Family 4 Pack of Tickets to Any Family Show and/or 

A Pair of Tickets to Any Adult Circus Act!

March 9-12 at Wicker Park’s Den Theatre, Opening Gala March 9

Chicago-Based Ensembles Offer Circus, Burlesque, Dance & Comedy

Chicago Circus & Performing Arts Festival, the Windy City’s newest multidisciplinary fest, will run March 9-12, 2023, at Wicker Park’s Den Theatre at 1331 N. Milwaukee. Thirteen unique performances from Chicago-based companies include traditional circus acts, avant-garde sideshow and burlesque offerings, family-friendly juggling and clowning shows, queer-themed work, plus several evening-length pieces that also include dance. Several shows are double features: twice the fun for the same price!

Single tickets are $15-40 and are available online or at 773-697-3830. The lobby features cashless cocktails from the newly renovated Haven Lounge before and after performances. The Opening Gala is on March 9, from 6-10 PM and includes vendor tables from local businesses and Chicago circus schools, door prize giveaways, and a silent auction. Exclusive previews for media and donors will be performed throughout the night. Metered street parking is available, and the apps ParkChicago, Spot Hero, Park Whiz, and Parq Ex are recommended to secure a spot. The venue is also accessible to the Blue Line (north of Division, south of Damen stops) and via various bus routes. The Festival’s media sponsors are The Actors Gymnasium and CircusTalk.



Thursday, March 9

Heath Mainstage & Lobby: 

6:00-10:00 pm Opening Gala: Show previews for media and donors, silent auction, local vendors.


Friday, March 10

Bookspan Stage: 

6:00-7:30 pm Creature Double Feature by Such Creatures (circus + dance fusion, queer-themed)

7:45-9:15 pm BIPOC Circus Alliance Midwest (classic circus cabaret, all BIPOC cast)

9:30-11:00pm the Back Side Show by Yes Ma’am Circus (side-show, burlesque, circus, ages 18+)


Saturday, March 11 

Bookspan Stage: 

12:45- 2:15 pm Distillations & Don't Try This At Home- Double Feature by Luther Bangert & Dinder Brothers’ Circus (juggling solo show, family circus troop, side-show, family friendly)

2:30- 4:00 pm Double Feature- Poised & The Reluctant Mind Reader by Raphael Entertainment (solo juggling + solo magic, family friendly)

4:15- 5:45 pm BIPOC Circus Alliance Midwest (classic circus cabaret, all BIPOC cast)

6:00- 7:30 pm Autobiography of a Late Bloomer by Lucid Banter Project (dance, queer-themed, ages 13+)

7:45- 9:15 pm Circus Dungeon Crawl by Yes Ma’am Circus (circus cabaret, burlesque, nerd-themed, ages 18+)

9:30- 11:00 pm Queer Double Feature: And They Were Shipmates, A Queer Pirate Romance Adventure & Queer Dance Freakout by Counterfeit Combat & Gender Fucked Productions


Sunday, March 12 

Heath Mainstage: 

10:30 am- 12:00 pm Serious Cirque by Duo Refraction+ (circus, clown, family friendly)

12:15- 1:45 pm Circus Cabaret of Wonder by the Amazing Prizzini Brothers (classic circus cabaret, clowning, family friendly)


Bookspan Stage: 

12:15- 1:45 pm Double Feature- Poised & The Reluctant Mind Reader by Raphael Entertainment (solo juggling + solo magic, family friendly)

2:00- 3:30 pm Distillations & Don't Try This At Home- Double Feature by Luther Bangert & Dinder Brothers’ Circus (juggling solo show, family circus troop, side-show, family friendly)


The Amazing Prizzini Brothers’ Circus Cabinet of Wonder: The Amazing Prizzini Brothers’ classic circus cabaret features family-friendly circus acts and clowning. The goal is simple: to make the audience complicit in the mischief. 

Autobiography of a Late Bloomer: Lucid Banter Project presents Autobiography of a Late Bloomer, a collection of work created over a span of 15 years, following the choreographer's coming-out journey. Following Paula, Lucid Banter Project's director, through professional growth, family drama, religious realizations, sexual awakenings, relationship highs and lows, injury, and emotional abuse, the audience is brought along through the experiences, emotions, and growth of a late bloomer lesbian.

BIPOC Circus Alliance Midwest Showcase: This circus cabaret features circus artists of Color as they share individual stories that depict human emotions and unique challenges faced by POC in contemporary America. Disciplines will include rope, straps, aerial hammock, diabolo, and silks. For ages 13+

The Back Side Show: Produced by Yes Ma'am Circus, the Back Side Show features burlesque, sideshow, and variety acts from around Chicago. For ages 18+

Circus Dungeon Crawl: Yes Ma’am Circus’ longest running cabaret! Come see the Chicago debut of Circus Dungeon Crawl, previously only shown to the elite crowd of gamers at GenCon in Indianapolis! Journey with Marcus the Bard as they attempt to drink, seduce, and thieve their way through the Multiverse, along with a cast of aerialists, clowns, and burlesque dancers.

Creature Double Feature: Creature Double Feature brings you not one, but TWO new works by Such Creatures Co-Directors Luke Greeff & Ashaand Simone. Missile Kid by Luke Greeff shows a punk-rock apocalyptic horror movement suite on unmasking the Autistic soul within the confines of an Allistic world … or a dancey existential crisis to good tunes… you decide. intimate youniverse by Ashaand Simone transports the audience into an 8-bit arcade world where they’re in charge of helping the protagonist’s disparate parts work towards some amount of peace. In doing so, they will learn firsthand what it looks like to re-wire the brain away from the impacts of (Complex) Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and towards acceptance of intimacy and connection.

Distillations & Don't Try This At Home- Double Feature: A family friendly double feature. A solo contemporary juggling show performed by Luther Bangert, Distillations takes the audience on a multimedia and multidimensional journey through the anatomy of a moment, investigating causality, and emerging into the ground state of the juggling universe. Dinder Brother's Circus is proud to present the "DONT TRY THIS AT HOME SHOW!!!" Seen across the midwest since 2015 this blend of circus, magic, and danger is sure to entertain anyone ages 4 and up!  With mystifying aerials, feats of death, and astounding illusions everyone will find something they enjoy.

Double Feature- Poised & The Reluctant Mind Reader: A funny and dazzling 1-man duo show! Welcome to an experience that aims to have you question the absolute limits of what is humanly possible. Brought to you by one of Chicago's top jugglers, Poised is a family friendly show full of laughs and amazing feats of balance and coordination. Then stay and watch as someone with the ability to read minds shows off his powers while talking about the pains and annoyances that come with always hearing what people are thinking. The Reluctant Mind Reader showcases how some gifts aren’t what they’re cracked up to be.

Serious Cirque: Serious Cirque is a not so serious deconstruction of contemporary circus performance. It transparently and unabashedly reveals the hilarity, failures, successes and discoveries that come out of circus creation. What happens when Siri tries to third wheel your adagio duet opener? What if the duo trapeze porter loses his flyer and must perform only with sock puppets?

Queer Double Feature- And They Were Shipmates, A Queer Pirate Romance Adventure & Queer Dance Freakout: First, Counterfeit Combat presents a gay pirate show full of fights and fun that you can’t miss! Join us onboard Calico Jack’s ship, The Ranger, as we follow the tale of the infamous female pirates, Anne Bonny and Mary Read. This occasionally true story based on historical facts will have you laughing, sighing, and gasping, oh aye! Then stick around for Queer Dance Freakout, an interactive, choose your own adventure spectacle produced by Gender Fucked Productions. This company of queer, trans, and nonbinary choreographers and storytellers will perform up to 30 dances that will have audiences booty shaking, grooving, and connecting with the queer community.

*Click HERE for your chance to WIN a FREE Family 4 Pack of Tickets to your choice of any family friendly show at the 2nd Annual Chicago Circus and Performing Arts Festival!

**Click HERE for your chance to WIN a FREE Pair of Tickets to your choice of any Adult Show at the 2nd Annual Chicago Circus and Performing Arts Festival!

Winners announced at noon Thursday, March 9th.

ChiIL Mama and ChiIL Live Shows are thrilled to partner up with the 2nd Annual Chicago Circus and Performing Arts Festival to give away A Family 4 Pack of Tickets to Any Family Show and/or A Pair of Tickets to Any Adult Circus Act!

Monday, March 6, 2023


ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar

Music Theater Works presents

Avenue Q

Hilarious, charming and a little profane, Avenue Q will turn your expectation of acceptable discourse on its head

Book by Jeff Whitty

Music and Lyrics by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx

Based on an original concept by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx

Directed and Choreogrpahed by Christopher Pazdernik

Assistant Directed by Ashley Keys

Music Directed by Eugene Dizon

Run time, including the intermission, is 2 hours and 30 minutes

Launch of Music Theater Works 43rd Season with the adult music comedy Avenue Q in the North Theatre at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts In Skokie, 9501 Skokie Blvd, Skokie. The Tony Award-winning musical comedy with book by Jeff Whitty, music and lyrics by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, based on an original concept by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx and is directed and choreographed by Christopher Pazdernik, assistant directed by Ashley Keys and music directed by Eugene Dizon.

Music Theater Works’ 43rd Season Begins with the Musical Comedy That Won the Tony Award for Best Musical, Directed and Choreographed by Christopher Pazdernik, Assistant Directed by Ashley Keys and Music Directed by Eugene Dizon

Music Theater Works is proud to announce the cast and creative team for the first production in its 43rd season, Avenue Q in the North Theatre at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts In Skokie, 9501 Skokie Blvd, Skokie, March 9 - April 2. The Tony Award-winning musical comedy with book by Jeff Whitty, music and lyrics by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, based on an original concept by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx and is directed and choreographed by Christopher Pazdernik, assistant directed by Ashley Keys and music directed by Eugene Dizon. 

The performance schedule includes a preview performance Thursday, March 9 at 1 p.m.

I'll be out for the press opening March 10th, so check back soon for my full review. The performance schedule is Wednesdays at 1 p.m., Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m. with a Saturday matinee, March 18 at 2 p.m. and two Thursday performances on March 23 and 30 at 7:30 p.m. 

Tickets are now on sale from $39 to $106 with tickets for guests 25 years old and younger available at half-price at MusicTheaterWorks.com or by calling the Music Theater Works box office at the North Shore Center, 847.673.6300. Group discounts are available for groups of 10 or more by contacting 847.920.5360.

Join the irreverent denizens of Avenue Q - part flesh, part plushy, people, puppets and all fun. Hilarious, charming and a little profane, Avenue Q will turn your expectation of acceptable discourse on its head. Follow our hero Princeton, fresh out of college, to his shabby New York apartment all the way out on Avenue Q which, it soon becomes clear, is not your ordinary neighborhood. Laugh out loud, funny, toe-tappingly singable and full of warmth and humor, Avenue Q won the Tony for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book.

The cast of Avenue Q includes Jimmy Hogan (Princeton); Brandy Miller (Kate Monster); Adam Ross Brody (Rod); Andres J. DeLeon (Nicky/Trekkie Monster/Bad Idea Bear); Melissa Crabtree (Lucy/Mrs. Thistletwat/ Bad Idea Bear); Thomas E. Squires (Brian) and Mai Hartwich (Christmas Eve) and Whitney Dottery (Gary Coleman).

The Avenue Q understudies include Zoe Maroko (Kate Monster U/S); David Blakeman (Nicky/Trekkie/Bad Idea Bear U/S); Rachel Livingston (Lucy/Mrs. Thistletwat/Bad Idea Bear U/S); Mark Bartishell (Brian U/S) and Ashley Saul (Gary Coleman U/S).

The Avenue Q creative team currently includes Christopher Pazdernik  (director/choreographer); Ashley Keys (assistant director); Eugene Dizon (music director); Ben Lipinski (scenic designer); Justin LeBlanc (costume designer); Andrew Meyers (lighting designer); Rick Sims (sound designer); Bob Stilton (props designer); Nick Zabel (technical director); Kristi Martens (puppeteer); Peter Jacob Ruiz (dramaturg); Cameron Koniarski (master electrician); Will Hughes (scenic shop technical director); David Sajewich (media designer); Tony Churchill (associate media engineer); Alexis Lotspeich (assistant costume designer); Chelsea Lynn (lighting programmer); Elena Patterson (stage manager); MaK Cole (assistant stage manager); Jennifer King Russell (company manager); Chris Chase (production manager) and Kyle A. Dougan (producing artistic director). 

Health Safety Procedure:

All guests are recommended to wear face masks during the performance regardless of vaccination status.


Christopher Pazdernik makes his Music Theater Works debut with Avenue Q. Pazdernik is best-known for his work as artistic director of Refuge Theatre Project (Jeff Awards, Best Director and Best Production of a Musical, High Fidelity); a long association with Porchlight Music Theatre, including directing eight Porchlight Revisits productions and his current role as producing director at Theo, where he directed Godspell earlier this year. Also an openly HIV+ artist, Pazdernik is the creator and producer of the annual benefit concert “Belting for Life” and co-captain of Team Option Up! for AIDS Run/Walk Chicago.


Eugene Dizon is currently the executive director at Mercury Theater Chicago with his husband L. Walter Stearns. He has been musical directing for over two decades garnering six Jeff Awards while at Porchlight Music Theatre (Ragtime, Sweeney Todd, Amadeus, Company, Into the Woods, Merrily We Roll Along), as well as Jeff nominations for A Grand Night for Singing (Mercury); Candide, Nine the Musical, Closer Than Ever, A Little Night Music, Passion, Colette Collage, and Falsettos; four After Dark Awards (Ragtime, Sweeney Todd, A New Brain, Merrily We Roll Along (Porchlight), a BroadwayWorld Award for Mercury’s Avenue Q and BroadwayWorld nominations for Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Little Shop of Horrors, Hair, Mary Poppins and The Color Purple, all at the Mercury. Additionally at the Mercury, he has musical directed Spamalot, Pippin, Company, The Producers and Barnum. He has been inducted into the Chicago Filipino Hall of Fame (class of 2004) and has co-produced six “Season of Carols” CDs for which Season of Concern awarded him the 2013 Larry Sloan Advocate Award and the Season of Concern 2018 Larry Sloan Legacy Award for “consistently and passionately being a trailblazer on behalf of Season of Concern.” Dizon most recent projects include TO BE (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre) and Mr. Burns – a post-electric play (Theater Wit). Upcoming projects include The Producers at Music Theater Works and Young Frankenstein at Mercury.


Music Theater Works is a resident professional not-for-profit music theater founded in

1980. During its 42-year history it has presented more than 150 productions and intimate

presentations. Music Theater Works is a professional theater company whose mission is

to present works for the musical stage including historic repertoire, revitalizing the Golden Age of Broadway and earlier works, celebrating the Great American Songbook and introducing modern classics. 

JOYCE SAXON is the 2023 Music Theater Works Season Sponsor.

Preview: Thursday, March 9 at 1 p.m.

Press Performance: Friday, March 10 at 8 p.m.

Saturday, March 11 at 8 p.m.

Sunday, March 12 at 2 p.m.

Wednesday, March 15 at 1 p.m.

Friday, March 17 at 8 p.m.

Saturday, March 18 at 2 and 8 p.m.

Sunday, March 19 at 2 p.m.

Wednesday, March 22 at 1 p.m.

Thursday, March 23 at 7:30 p.m.

Friday, March 24 at 8 p.m.

Saturday, March 25 at 8 p.m.

Sunday, March 26 at 2 p.m.

Wednesday, March 29 at 1 p.m.

Thursday, March 30 at 7:30 p.m.

Friday, March 31 at 8 p.m.

Saturday, April 1 at 8 p.m.

Sunday, April 2 at 2 p.m.

Tickets: $39 to $106, tickets for guests 25 years old and younger are available for half-price.

Music Theater Works Box Office: (847) 673-6300

Website: MusicTheaterWorks.com

Tuesday, February 28, 2023


ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar

Tony Award®-winning Best Musical


Co-Directed by Tony Award® Winning Director Diane Paulus and 

MTV Music Video Award-winning choreographer Jeffrey L. Page

“Deeply meaningful. A remarkable revival.” 

– The Washington Post

“Thought-provoking and an absolute delight.”

 – The Wall Street Journal

“The great power of this 1776 will stay with you and 

will resonate on Broadway and across the country.”

– The Boston Globe

The Chicago Premiere of the Broadway Revival of 1776 is now playing a limited engagement at the CIBC Theatre (18 W. Monroe) through March 12, 2023. Tickets are on sale now at www.BroadwayInChicago.com. I'll be out for the press opening March 1st, so check back soon for my full review.

This production was developed and premiered by the American Repertory Theater at Harvard University before playing on Broadway with Roundabout Theatre Company at the American Airlines Theater. The national tour of 1776 makes its premiere engagement in Chicago at the CIBC Theatre as part of a major national tour across North America. 

The 1776 company includes Shelby Acosta (she/her) as ‘Sec. Charles Thomson,’ Gisela Adisa (she/her) as ‘John Adams,’ Nancy Anderson (she/her) as ‘Thomas Jefferson,’ Tiffani Barbour (she/her) as ‘Andrew McNair,’ Dawn Cantwell (she/her) as ‘Col. Thomas McKean,’ Julie Cardia (she/her) as ‘Stephen Hopkins,’ Sara Gallo (she/her) as a Standby, Joanna Glushak (she/her) as ‘John Dickinson,’ Anissa Marie Griego (she/her) as ‘Roger Sherman,’ Kassandra Haddock (she/her) as ‘Edward Rutledge,’ Shawna Hamic (she/her) as ‘Richard Henry Lee,’ Lisa Karlin (she/her) as a Standby, Connor Lyon (she/her) as ‘Martha Jefferson/Dr. Lyman Hall,’ Liz Mikel (she/her) as ‘Benjamin Franklin,’ Oneika Phillips (she/her) as ‘John Hancock,’ Lulu Picart (she/her) as ‘Samuel Chase,’ Ariella Serur (she/they) as ‘Judge James Wilson,’ Brooke Simpson (she/her) as ‘the Courier,’ Sav Souza (they/them) as ‘Dr. Josiah Bartlett,’ Tieisha Thomas (she/her) as ‘Abigail Adams/Rev. Jonathan Witherspoon,’ Jill Vallery (she/her) as ‘Caesar Rodney,’ Zuri Washington (she/her) as ‘Robert Livingston,’ Gwynne Wood (she/they) as ‘George Read,’ and Candice Marie Woods (they/them) as ‘Joseph Hewes.’

The Tony Award-winning Best Musical 1776 has catapulted to blazing new life in a thrillingly new production, and New York Magazine/Vulture says, “it’s an absolute blast!” Suddenly, the songs, humor, and passion of this musical masterpiece soar as never before. A glorious multiracial cast of female, transgender, and nonbinary actors portrays the fiery founders of this country, putting history in the hands of the humans who were left out the first time around—and the result is an epic show of passion, debate, and roof-raising musical fireworks. Experience “a 1776 worth celebrating!” (Variety) “It pulsates with energy and snaps with attitude.”

1776 features music and lyrics by Sherman Edwards and a book by Peter Stone. It is based on a concept by Sherman Edwards.  Tony Award-winning director Diane Paulus (Jagged Little Pill, Waitress, Pippin) and MTV Music Video Award-winning choreographer Jeffrey L. Page (Beyoncé’s “Run the World (Girls)” video, Memphis in Tokyo; Violet starring Sutton Foster at Roundabout Theatre Company) direct the production.

The 1776 design team includes Tony Award-winning Scenic Designer Scott Pask (Waitress, Finding Neverland, Pippin); Tony Award-nominated Costume Designer Emilio Sosa (The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess); Lighting Designer Jennifer Schriever (In the Body of the World at A.R.T./New York City Center; Fingersmith at A.R.T.); Tony Award-nominated Sound Designer Jonathan Deans (Jagged Little Pill, Waitress, Finding Neverland at A.R.T./Broadway; Pippin on Broadway) and Drama Desk Award-nominated Projection Designer David Bengali (We Live in Cairo at A.R.T., Associate Designer of Witness Uganda at A.R.T./Invisible Thread at Second Stage). 

The 1776 music team is comprised of Music Supervisor/Music Director Ryan Cantwell (Pippin); Original Music Supervisor David Chase (Finding Neverland); Tony Award nominated Orchestrator John Clancy (Fun Home; Mean Girls); Vocal Designer AnnMarie Milazzo (Finding Neverland). Casting is by Stewart/Whitley. The Associate Director is Brisa Arelis Muñoz and the Associate Choreographer is Courtney Ross.

NETworks Presentations tour stage management team of 1776 is led by Production Stage Manager Genevieve Kersh with Assistant Stage Managers Devin Day and Sage Lumsden. National Artists Management Company’s management team is led by Company Manager Katie Cortez with Safety Assistant Company Manager Ryan Buchholz. 

For more information worldwide, visit: www.1776musical.com Facebook, Instagram & TikTok: @1776Musical  • Twitter: @Musical1776  •  Hashtag: #1776Musical


Individual tickets for the Chicago premiere of a limited Broadway revival tour of 1776 are on sale now. Ticket prices range from $30 - $98 with a select number of premium tickets available. Individual tickets are available at www.BroadwayInChicago.com. Tickets are available now for groups of 10 or more by calling Broadway In Chicago Group Sales at (312) 977-1710 or emailing GroupSales@BroadwayInChicago.com



Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 7:30 pm

Wednesday, Mar. 1 at 7:30 pm 

Thursday, Mar. 2 at 7:30 pm 

Friday, Mar. 3 at 7:30 pm 

Saturday, Mar. 4 at 2 pm & 8 PM

Sunday, Mar. 5 at 2 pm & 7:30 pm


Tuesday, Mar. 7 at 7:30 pm

Wednesday, Mar. 8 at 2 pm & 7:30 pm

Thursday, Mar. 9 at 7:30 pm 

Friday, Mar. 10 at 7:30 pm 

Saturday, Mar. 11 at 2 pm & 8 PM

Sunday, Mar. 12 at 2 pm


Broadway In Chicago was created in July 2000 and over the past 22 years has grown to be one of the largest commercial touring homes in the country. A Nederlander Presentation, Broadway In Chicago lights up the Chicago Theater District entertaining up to 1.7 million people annually in five theatres. Broadway In Chicago presents a full range of entertainment, including musicals and plays, on the stages of five of the finest theatres in Chicago’s Loop including the Cadillac Palace Theatre, CIBC Theatre, James M. Nederlander Theatre, and just off the Magnificent Mile, the Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place and presenting Broadway shows at the Auditorium Theatre.


This production contains stylized representations of racialized violence, particularly related to enslavement. Additionally, this production contains haze, a brief strobe effect, a non-firing replica firearm, and a gunshot sound effect.

For more information, visit www.BroadwayInChicago.com

Follow Broadway In Chicago: ● Facebook ● Instagram ● TikTok @BroadwayInChicago

● Twitter @broadwaychicago #broadwayinchicago

Monday, February 20, 2023

REVIEW: Chicago Tap Theatre at 20: “Tempo, Rhythm, & Time” At The Den Theatre February 18 and 19, 2023

Chicago Tap Theatre Celebrates Two Decades of Performances Revisiting Classic Pieces that Shaped the Company 
Plus Two World Premieres

Chicago Tap Theatre Company Members
Photo by David Harmantas


By Catherine Hellmann, Guest Critic 

“JOY” is the word I keep circling back to in describing the 20th anniversary show and gala presentation by Chicago Tap Theatre. “Exhuberant!” is the other. 

Such a fun experience marveling at the passion and talent these folks brought to every single number. I barely took any notes because my attention was riveted to the fast-moving feet and thrilled smiles of the dancers. 

I really loved the “Under Pressure” number starring Christopher Matthews, Heather Latakas, Molly Eder, and Sara Anderson. Molly Smith and Sterling Harris each had solo numbers that were extraordinary. Artistic Director and Founder Mark Yonally also made a few appearances to share his love of the company he created. 

Act I ended with a rousing rendition of “Birdland.” A dozen tap dancers in close proximity is LOUD but glorious. (I was reminded of taking my ex to a ballet production years ago at the Auditorium Theater, and he referred to the troop of ballerinas jumping around as “a herd of swans.” He was a jerk, but he could be funny…)  Everyone was having a blast. 

Act II included a number by several women from Hope College in Holland, Michigan. Spreading the excitement West of the Lake. 

The final number was “Somebody to Love” by Queen with choreography by Mark Yonally, providing every dancer their moment to shine. The costumes were bright, vivid colors. There was singing by the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus. The musicians also deserve special note (nice pun, eh?): fabulous bass player and music director Kurt Schweitz assembled a wonderful band with Chris Greene on sax. So much power and energy filled The Den Theater. 

My elation got the better of me, and I registered for the silent auction being held after the performance. From the passenger seat of my sister’s car, I purchased a bakery gift certificate and, even more amusing, a wine tasting for “up to twenty people.” Oops. Now I need to locate 20 of my best friends to go with me. LMK if you’re interested. ;-) Cheers!  

Cath Hellmann loves discovering gems in her fair city like Chicago Tap Theatre and, apparently, a new bakery and winery. Salut! 


Chicago Tap Theatre - Liora Lahav

Photo by David Harmantas

Chicago Tap Theatre celebrates 20 years of critically acclaimed dance with a show that is sure to impress. As always, the dancers of CTT will be joined by some of the finest musicians in Chicago playing everything from David Bowie to Queen to Charlie Parker.

All of the funds raised from this event will help CTT continue to represent tap dance and Chicago at the highest level, while providing access to world-class tap education and shows, and ensuring the viability of tap dance as an occupation by providing training and performance opportunities for their community.

Click here for more information: ChicagoTapTheatre.com.



Artistic Director Mark Yonally and Chicago Tap Theatre (CTT) present “Chicago Tap Theatre at 20: Tempo, Rhythm and Time” at The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee Ave., February 18 and 19, 2023. The weekend celebrates CTT’s two decades as one of Chicago’s premier dance companies as well as showcasing their talent worldwide. 

Chicago Tap Theatre launches its 20th anniversary with a celebratory performance featuring classics from its 20-year history, including two world premieres as well as pieces that have not been seen in Chicago since their debut. Chicago Tap Theatre is proud to revisit pieces from some of the early choreographers that shaped the Company including Mark Yonally, Rich Ashworth, Kirsten Uttich and new works from Heather Cornell, Tré Dumas, Sterling Harris, Molly Smith and Mark Yonally.


Past dances include Molly Smith's groundbreaking "Protect Trans Kids" and Mark Yonally’s “Somebody to Love,” which originally premiered in Chicago Tap Theatre’s 2016 Pride Show. As in the original production, the Chicago Gay Men's Chorus will join Chicago Tap Theatre for “Somebody to Love.”


There will also be two new commissions seeing the stage at this performance. Concert tap dance pioneer Heather Cornell, founding artistic director of Manhattan Tap, has set her masterpiece “Scrapple from the Apple” for CTT and local tap dancer, Tré Dumas, is creating a world premiere for this production.

Chicago Tap Theatre at 20: Tempo, Rhythm and Time features choreography by Heather Cornell, Tré Dumas, Sterling Harris, Molly Smith and Mark Yonally. Kurt Schweitz returns as the production’s Music Director and dancers for “Chicago Tap Theatre at 20: Tempo, Rhythm and Time” include Mark Yonally, Molly Smith, Sterling Harris, Sara Anderson, Heather Latakas, Molly Eder, Chris Matthews, Amber Buchanan, Liora Lahav, Michelle Haskell, Abby Cooper, Kirsten Uttich, Isaac Stauffer, Jorie Goins and Earlyn Whitehead. 


Founded in 2002, Chicago Tap Theatre is a growing and vibrant dance company dedicated to preserving the quintessentially American dance form of tap while taking it to the next level of creativity, innovation and quality. CTT performs exclusively with live music provided by some of Chicago’s finest musicians playing everything from Duke Ellington to David Bowie and many artists in between. Under the dynamic direction of master teacher and performer Mark Yonally, CTT has gained a loyal and sizable following in Chicago and continues to tour both nationally and internationally. Having pioneered the “tap opera” format, which tells stories with compelling characters and intriguing plots, CTT has used the language of tap dance, live music and narration to move audiences for over 20 years.

Saturday, February 18, 2023

REVIEW: YURI POSSOKHOV’S ANNA KARENINA Via The Joffrey Ballet February 15-26, 2023

ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar

World premiere in 2019 praised for its original score and breathtaking, cinematic production by all-star creative team


By Catherine Hellmann, Guest Critic 

Posted on the Joffrey’s Website:

“Potential Protest Demonstration 

The Joffrey supports the right to freedom of expression.

Please be aware that there is a possibility of demonstrators protesting the Russian invasion of Ukraine in the vicinity of the Lyric Opera House.”

Indeed, audience members approaching the Lyric Opera on Wednesday night February 15 were greeted by peaceful protestors bearing signs, the now-familiar yellow and blue flags of Ukraine, and even a couple effigies criticizing Russia. The Joffrey Ballet’s decision to stage Anna Karenina by Russian author Leo Tolstoy was viewed as a celebration of Russian culture while Ukraine is being decimated by the Russian invasion. 

The Joffrey Ballet is to be commended for how they handled the possibly inflammatory situation. An announcement was made before the show expressing support for the country of Ukraine. Lights projected on the Lyric stage were yellow and blue. The Lyric Opera Orchestra played a beautiful symphonic piece by a Ukrainian composer to honor the Ukrainian people. 

Despite politics, art endures. 

Victoria Jaiani Alberto Velazquez Anais Bueno ensemble 
Anna Karenina 
All Production Photos by Cheryl Mann 

The ballet, choreographed by Yuri Possokhov, was stunning. The costumes by Tom Pye were beautiful. The projections by Finn Ross also added a lot of context to the production. The results are magical. 

Edson Barbosa

The tragic story of Anna and her lover, Count Vronsky, cannot end happily. Young Princess Kitty loves Vronsky, but he is obviously smitten by Anna. Family friend Constantine Levin does love Kitty, but she wants the emotionally unavailable Vronsky. (At this point, I am reminded of a love triangle that currently exists among the high school teenagers I teach, and my head hurts…)  Anna is already married to Alexey Karenin with whom she shares a son. She and Vronsky run away to Italy where Anna gets very ill.  Her husband is not allowing her to see their son anymore. Kitty accepts Levin’s latest proposal, so there is that. Anna throws herself (spoiler of a novel written in 1878!) in front of a train. What a drama queen…

Christine Rocas and Dylan Gutierrez

My favorite quote of the evening was my friend’s mother-in-law who observed, on all the movement happening in the bed at one point,”Oh, I know what was going on there.”   ;-)

The leads were spectacular. Anna Karenina was beautifully played by Victoria Jaiani. The rejected-but-gorgeous Alexey Karenin was danced by Dylan Gutierrez. Adorable and hot Alberto Velazquez was Alexey Vronsky.  Anais Bueno was a lovely Kitty.  Konstatin Levin was danced by Yoshihisa Arai, who was also the Nutcracker Prince we saw in December. I just love the diverse roster of dancers assembled by Joffrey from all over the world. It makes me so happy to see this talented assembly of artists. 

Christine Rocas and Ensemble

Politics may divide us, unfortunately. 

But art and beauty bring us together.

Catherine Hellmann is a teacher, mom, and art lover. She visited Russia in 2003 through an educator program and loved the people and culture in Vyborg, Moscow, and St. Petersburg. Russia has a very special place in her heart. The current events in Ukraine are infuriating and sorrowful.  

This winter, The Joffrey Ballet remounts Yuri Possokhov’s blockbuster Anna Karenina for the first time since its crowd-pleasing world premiere in 2019. Based on the novel by Leo Tolstoy, Possokhov’s immersive adaptation—winner of the 2019 “Oscars of Dance” Benois de la Danse International Prize for Best Choreography—features an original composition by award-winning composer Ilya Demutsky, costumes and sets by Emmy Award-winning designer Tom Pye, and lighting by famed designer David Finn. Anna Karenina will be presented at the historic Lyric Opera House, 20 North Upper Wacker Drive in downtown Chicago, in ten performances only, from February 15-26, 2023.

Alberto Velazquez and ensemble

Love is all-consuming for the beautiful but married Anna, who in the pursuit of passion, finds herself caught in a life-changing affair with the dashing Count Vronsky. Set in the late 19th century, Tolstoy’s classic shows the triumph of romance, family, and faith against a backdrop of fraught political and social transformation. 

Alberto Velazquez and ensemble

Victoria Jaiani Alberto Velazquez 

With countless adaptations across ballet, theatre, opera, and film, Anna Karenina is often considered the earliest example of modernist literature and one of the greatest works of literature in history. Possokhov’s immersive adaptation updates the timeless story for contemporary audiences with its captivating choreography, stunning costume design, and cinematic storytelling that unravels the profound power, passion, and desire that shapes the 19th century novel.

The Mary B. Galvin Artistic Director of The Joffrey Ballet Ashley Wheater MBE says, “Anna Karenina is a powerful universal love story animated by the highs and lows of human emotion. I am especially grateful to partner again with esteemed choreographer Yuri Possokhov to remount a multi-dimensional production that touched audiences across Chicago and beyond with its immersive artistry.” 

Christine Rocas and Dylan Gutierrez

The Joffrey Ballet President and CEO Greg Cameron adds, "The 2022-23 season represents the breadth of Joffrey's artistry, from the original work presented by Chanel DaSilva in Beyond Borders, to the modern masterpiece that is Christopher Wheeldon's The Nutcracker, to the remount of Yuri Possokhov's blockbuster Anna Karenina--an all-time classic set to an original score. Following a record-breaking return to pre-pandemic attendance with The Nutcracker, we look forward to welcoming audiences back to the iconic Lyric Opera House this winter. Not only will guests experience Anna Karenina's story that has transcended the ages; they will witness the transformative power and innovation on which the Joffrey was founded."

Known for his visceral and expressive style, Possokhov has created groundbreaking new works around the globe. A frequent guest artist with The Joffrey Ballet, Possokhov is internationally recognized for transforming iconic literature into inventive, emotionally driven story ballets. Possokhov choreographed the world premiere adaptation of Anna Karenina for The Joffrey Ballet in 2019 to critical acclaim. In addition to Anna Karenina, Possokhov’s collaborations with The Joffrey Ballet include Bells (2014), The Miraculous Mandarin (2017), and Don Quixote (2011, 2022).

Victoria Jaiani and Alberto Velazquez

Anna Karenina features live music performed by the Lyric Opera Orchestra, conducted by Scott Speck, Music Director of The Joffrey Ballet. 

Special thanks to Presenting and Commissioning Sponsor Mr. and Mrs. Joel V. Williamson, Major and Commissioning Sponsor Mary Jo and Doug Basler, and Major Sponsor The Women’s Board of The Joffrey Ballet.

Victoria Jaiani 

Ticket information
The Joffrey Ballet performs Anna Karenina from Wednesday, February 15 to Sunday, February 26, 2023, at the Lyric Opera House, 20 N. Upper Wacker Drive. The full schedule is as follows: Wednesday, February 15 at 7:30PM; Friday, February 17 at 7:30PM; Saturday, February 18 at 2:00PM and 7:30 PM; Sunday, February 19 at 2:00 PM; Thursday, February 23 at 7:30PM; Friday, February 24 at 7:30PM; Saturday, February 25 at 2:00PM and 7:30PM; and Sunday, February 26 at 2:00PM.

Single tickets start at $36 and are available for purchase at Lyric Opera Box Office located at 20 N. Upper Wacker Dr. by telephone at 312.386.8905, or online at  joffrey.org.

Victoria Jaiani and Alberto Velazquez

Anna Karenina Tour
Yuri Possokhov’s Anna Karenina travels to the Kennedy Center Opera House in Washington, D.C. from April 5 to April 9, 2023. For the full schedule, visit kennedy-center.org

Edson Barbosa and Ensemble

About The Joffrey Ballet
The Joffrey Ballet is one of the premier dance companies in the world today, with a reputation for boundary-breaking performances for more than 60 years. The Joffrey repertoire is an extensive collection of all-time classics, modern masterpieces, and original works. 

Founded in 1956 by pioneers Robert Joffrey and Gerald Arpino, the Joffrey remains dedicated to artistic expression, innovation, and first-rate education and engagement programming. The Joffrey Ballet continues to thrive under The Mary B. Galvin Artistic Director Ashley Wheater MBE and President and CEO Greg Cameron.

The Joffrey Ballet is grateful for the support of its 2022–2023 Season Sponsors: Abbott Fund, Alphawood Foundation Chicago, Daniel and Pamella DeVos Foundation, The Florian Fund, Anne L. Kaplan, Nancy and Sanfred Koltun, and Live Music Sponsors Sandy and Roger Deromedi, Sage Foundation, and The Marina and Arnold Tatar Fund for Live Music. The Joffrey also acknowledges Season Partners Chicago Athletic Clubs, and Athletico Physical Therapy, official provider of physical therapy for The Joffrey Ballet.

With gratitude to Anna Karenina Commissioning Sponsors: Producing Sponsors Margot and Josef Lakonishok and NIB Foundation; Major Sponsors Lorna Ferguson and Terry Clark, Nancy and Sanfred Koltun, Mr. and Mrs. Joel V. Williamson, The Walter E. Heller Foundation, JHL Capital Group, Jane Ellen Murray Foundation, Diane and John Patience, Poetry Foundation, Rudolf Nureyev Fund at The Joffrey Ballet; and Sponsors Mary Jo and Doug Basler, Ethel and William Gofen, Bill and Orli Staley Foundation, and the Australian Consulate-General in Chicago.

For more information on The Joffrey Ballet and its programs, visit joffrey.org. Connect with the Joffrey on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn.

Nicole Ciapponi and ensemble