Wednesday, May 16, 2018

FLASH GIVEAWAY: WIN a Pair (2) of Tickets to Lyric Opera of Chicago's Acclaimed Jesus Christ Super Star!

Enter through midnight TONIGHT! One of ChiIL Mama's lucky winners is going to see this stunningly epic production for FREE. 
Tickets range from $35-$219. Fill out the entry form at the bottom of this post and check back tomorrow to see if you've won!

Photo by Bonnie Kenaz-Mara

Grand-scale North American premiere of the
Olivier Award-winning London production of
Now playing at Lyric through May 20 

 All production photos by Todd Rosenberg

Lyric's decadently dark Jesus Christ Superstar is nothing short of epic, with over 80 artists on stage and 90 pound of gold confetti at every show. 

This production is a spectacle you have to see and hear to believe, and pure Broadway gold. It was my great pleasure to catch opening night and the audience was enthralled, singing along and on their feet even before the rousing standing ovation. This is a superb choice for a family theatre outing, with multigenerational appeal.

Photos by D'Arcy Mies

I particularly liked the incorporation of live instruments on stage. Jesus, Peter and Pilate all play guitar, in addition to the 37 musicians! 

The scope and magnitude of this production boggles the mind. There are 150 costumes, 112 pairs of sneakers, King Herod's 28 foot long gold cape, 

56 mics, 101 lights illuminating the 37 foot cross and 7 full sized trees. The visual is stunning of Judas' silver stained hands, when he sold out his master and friend for money and betrayed him with a kiss. 

The women are wonderful.

Jesus' lashes with a whip, complete with sound effects and explosions of gold, was a hauntingly dramatic point as well.

The choreography is a joy to see and the entire cast is a visual and auditory feast. 

Lyric Opera Chicago has a world class reputation and here at ChiIL Mama and ChiIL Live Shows we've particularly enjoyed their annual Broadway at Lyric crossover productions for years. The popularity of these adaptations of musicals extends well beyond the usual opera buffs, and with Jesus Christ Super Star, they have outdone themselves. Highly recommended. 

The North American premiere of Timothy Sheader’s explosive Olivier Award-winning production of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar opens at Lyric tonight, April 27, with performances through May 20 (press opening April 28). Lyric is the only place to experience the grand scale of this acclaimed production in its first staging outside London.

The Lyric production features Heath Saunders (Jesus), Ryan Shaw (Judas), Jo Lampert (Mary Magdalene), Michael Cunio (Pilate), Mykal Kilgore (Simon Zealotes), Shaun Fleming (Herod), Joseph Anthony Byrd (Annas), Cavin Cornwall (Caiaphas) and Andrew Mueller (Peter), with a total of 48 cast members and 37 musicians, including members of the Lyric Opera Orchestra and Chorus. The London performances comprised 11 musicians and 27 cast members.

Single tickets for Jesus Christ Superstar at the Lyric Opera House, 20 N. Wacker Drive, start at $35 and are on sale now at, in person at the Lyric box office, or by calling 312-827-5600. To guarantee a front-row rock-concert experience, Lyric is also offering exclusive, $99 stage-front seating over the orchestra pit – the closest possible position to the stage – for the first time in the company's history of presenting Broadway musicals.

Three-time Olivier Award winner Timothy Sheader directs the North American premiere of his acclaimed 2016 production from Regent’s Park Open-Air Theatre. Sheader is joined in Chicago by the original creative team, including conductor Tom Deering, Olivier Award-winning choreographer Drew McOnie, Tony Award-nominated set & costume designer Tom Scutt, and Olivier Award-nominated lighting designer Lee Curran.

Jesus Christ Superstar is an iconic rock opera that reinvented musical theater for the modern age. With music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Tim Rice, this global blockbuster tells the story of the final weeks in the life of Jesus Christ, from the perspective of Judas Iscariot. As Christ’s followers grow more fervent, Judas must make his fateful choice between faith and betrayal. Filled with an exciting mix of musical styles that draw upon 1970s rock, gospel, folk and funk themes, this contemporary imagining of the biblical tale features high-energy dance and powerful visual storytelling.

Lyric’s premiere of Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar generously made possible by Lead Sponsor The Negaunee Foundation and cosponsors an Anonymous Donor and Mr. and Mrs. J. Christopher Reyes. Major in-kind audio support provided by Shure Incorporated. Production by The Regent’s Park Theatre London.

Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Lyrics by Tim Rice. In Association with The Really Useful Group Limited. Production by The Regent's Park Theatre London. 

Photo by Bonnie Kenaz-Mara

About Lyric
Lyric Opera of Chicago’s mission is to express and promote the life-changing, transformational, revelatory power of great opera. Lyric exists to provide a broad, deep, and relevant cultural service to Chicago and the nation, and to advance the development of the art form.

Founded in 1954, Lyric is dedicated to producing and performing consistently thrilling, entertaining, and thought-provoking opera with a balanced repertoire of core classics, lesser-known masterpieces, and new works; to creating an innovative and wide-ranging program of community engagement and educational activities; and to developing exceptional emerging operatic talent.

Under the leadership of General Director, President & CEO Anthony Freud, Music Director Sir Andrew Davis, and Creative Consultant Renée Fleming, Lyric strives to become the great North American opera company for the 21st century: a globally significant arts organization embodying the core values of excellence, relevance, and fiscal responsibility.

 All production photos by Todd Rosenberg

Short and sweet. ENTER HERE for your chance to WIN. Tickets range from $35-$219.


Enter through midnight 5/16/18. Tickets are good for winner's choice of this weekend's matinee performances of Jesus Christ Super Star at Chicago's Lyric Opera. Winner will be e-mailed by Thursday noon and posted here on our site and via ChiIL Mama and ChiIL Live Shows' social media outlets. Good luck!

MAY 19, 2018 1:30 PM

MAY 20, 2018 1:30 PM

For more information check out: You can also join the conversation with @LyricOpera on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. #LyricJCS  #Lyric1718 #LongLivePassion  #LyricJCS  #Lyric1718 #LongLivePassion

WIN Dinner For 4 and a Free Ticket to Ride Download On Steam ($58) Via Old Country Buffet, Ryan’s, Hometown Buffet, Country Buffet – and Furr’s Fresh Buffet

Ticket to Ride Launches at Ovation Brands’ restaurants and Furr’s Fresh Buffet locations

Here at ChiIL Mama, we're pleased to partner up on a sponsored post with Ovation Brands. They're providing one of our lucky readers with Complimentary Dinner For 4 and a Free Ticket to Ride Game Download (Approximate value up to $58). Enter at the bottom of this post through midnight on June 12th, 2018. Open nationwide anywhere there's an Old Country Buffet, Ryan’s, Hometown Buffet, Country Buffet or Furr’s Fresh Buffet.

Ovation Brands’ restaurants and Furr’s Fresh Buffet are running a new Family Night promotion featuring the popular game, Ticket to RideThis board game, which is also digitally available, can be learned in under 15 minutes while providing players with intense strategic and tactical decisions every turn. Players collect cards of various types of train cars they then use to claim railway routes in North America. The longer the routes, the more points they earn. Additional points come to those who fulfill Destination Tickets – goal cards that connect distant cities; and to the player who builds the longest continuous route. 

Each Thursday, from May 17th through June 21st between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m., kids may participate in different interactive and educational activities at Old Country Buffet, Ryan’s, Hometown Buffet, Country Buffet – and Furr’s Fresh Buffet locations. PLUS kids eat for $1.99 from 4 p.m. to close with the purchase of a regular-priced adult or senior meal.

The featured activities are as follows:
May 17 – Let’s Get On Track!
May 24 – Signs of the Times
May 31 – Take the Express Route to Fun
June 7 – Great Destinations!
June 14 – Connect the THOUGHTS
June 21 – Follow the Engineer


Enter here for your chance to WIN a special prize pack (Up to $58 Value)
Prize includes the following: four (4) free meal passes for you and your family to enjoy a meal at any of Ovation Brands’ locations as well as one (1) Ticket to Ride Digital Game Download Code. Enter through midnight June 12, 2018. One of ChiIL Mama's lucky readers will win. 

Disclosure: Thanks to Ovation Brands for partnering with on this sponsored post and providing us with meal passes and game tickets for our winner and for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

GIVEAWAY: WIN a Pair of Tickets ($30 Value) to See The Grammy Award Winning Okee Dokee Brothers On Mothers Day at Chicago's Lincoln Hall

ChiIL Mama's Chi, IL Picks List:

Ready for a Rockin' Mothers Day Morning? You should be thinkin' Lincoln!

The littles are going to wake you anyway. 
You might as well hang out with 
The Grammy Award Winning Okee Dokee Brothers 
this Sunday at 11am 
at Lincoln Hall in Lincoln Park on Lincoln Ave. 

Photo by Alex Johnson.

ChiIL Mama's Chi, IL Picks List:

The Okee Dokee Brothers have long been kindie (kids' indie) favs of ours here at ChiIL Mama. I even did a video interview with them & shot live footage at their Chicago shows back in 2011 through 2013 when they were pre-famous:

Here's a fun flashback interview interspersed with live show footage. Check it out. 



Come on out and celebrate Mothers' Day in Chicago with a rockin' live 11am show. Dance with the little reasons you're a mom to begin with! The Okee Dokee Brothers are a ton of fun live and we highly recommend their shows. 

Enter through midnight tonight 5/10/18
2 ticket ($30 value) giveaway from ChiIL Mama to catch The Grammy Award Winning Okee Dokee Brothers On Mothers Day at Chicago's Lincoln Hall. 11am. Winner will be e-mailed and announced here and on ChiIL Mama's social media outlets midday Friday 5/11/18.

ENTER HERE for your chance to WIN

$12.00 /$15.00 DOORS,
11:00 AM 

The Okee Dokee Brothers
As childhood friends growing up in Denver Colorado, Joe Mailander and Justin Lansing were always exploring the outdoors. Whether it was rafting down their neighborhood creek or discovering hiking trails through the Rocky Mountains, Joe and Justin were born adventurers. Now, as the GRAMMY® Award-winning Okee Dokee Brothers, they have put this passion for the outdoors at the heart of their Americana Folk music.

Joe and Justin record and perform family music with a goal to inspire children and their parents to get outside and get creative. They believe this can motivate kids to gain aJoe and Jusin as kids 1 greater respect for the natural world, their communities and themselves.

The four-time Parents’ Choice Award winners have garnered praise from the likes of NPR’s All Things Considered and USA Today, and have been called “two of family music’s best songwriters.” Click HERE to purchase your tickets. 

Friday, May 4, 2018

Mom Zip Lines FREE For Mothers Day at Edge Adventures Deep River Aerial Park With Purchase

Elevate your gift giving this Mothers Day With Zip Line Adventures The Whole Family Can Enjoy!

Special Mother’s Day Promotion – 
Brunch is Boring 

Try something different on Mother’s Day this year. Instead of another boring brunch, take mom out to Edge for some fun in the trees with her favorite fan club. On Saturday, May 12 and Sunday, May 13 when you purchase two regular priced tickets for the 2 or 3 hour adventure, mom joins you for free! Promo code: BRUNCHISBORING.

Here at ChiIL Mama, my husband and teens LOVE zip lining. We haven't checked out Edge Adventures Deep River Aerial Park, but plan to go soon and do a whole photo/GoPro video feature. 

Edge Adventures Deep River Aerial Park Now Open For The Season!

Edge Adventures Deep River Aerial Park, the only Aerial Park in Northwest Indiana, opened for the season the first weekend in May. Edge Adventures Aerial Park is a tree-to-tree adventure course that features over 50 challenging treetop obstacles and zip lines that provide thrills for guests at every skill level. It also features a kid’s park with elements closer to the ground that are designed for children ages 4-7. Edge Adventures Deep River Aerial Park is open weekends beginning May 5, and will be open daily May 26 through mid-November.

Visitors can harness up and climb up into the trees to embark on adventures that include traversing across rope bridges, balancing on log beams, climbing on cargo nets and much more. They can also glide along on zip lines as they explore the beauty of nature while hanging out high up in the trees. The aerial park is positioned beside Deep River Water Park, giving visitors the opportunity to visit two major attractions in one day.

Edge Adventures provides experienced and novice adventurers with the chance to test their skills and daring over various obstacles inter-connected by zip lines laced through the canopy of the forest. Edge Adventures provides all safety equipment - helmet, harnesses, belays and gloves. Guests will participate in a safety briefing and practice course, and are assisted by Edge Adventures trained staff throughout each of the course routes.

Certain age, height and weight limits apply for the larger courses. Adventurers must be at least 8-years old, with a minimum weight 40lbs and a maximum of 275lbs. Hands must reach 66" high with feet flat on the ground. The two-hour adventure is $42 for adults and $32 for children 8-12. The three-hour adventure is $49 adults, $39 children 8-12. And an all-day adventure is $79 for adults and children 8-12.

In addition to the larger courses, there is also a smaller kid’s course for the littler adventurers. The kid’s park includes low to the ground elements and zip lines. Tickets are $10 for the one-hour kid’s park adventure (ages 4-7).

Edge Adventures Deep River Aerial Park NWI is the newest Edge Adventures Aerial Park, joining two other Indiana locations: Edge Adventures South Bend and Edge Adventures Koteewi near Indianapolis.

Edge Adventures Deep River Aerial Park NWI is located at 9001 E. Lincoln Highway, Crown Point, IN 46307. The park is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. with the last adventure beginning at 4 p.m.

For general and advanced ticket information for Edge Adventures, call 800-590-8347, email us at, like us on Facebook or go to our website:

About Edge Adventures: 
Edge Adventures are treetop trails ranging from 16-60 feet in the air. Participants choose their own self-guided course and engage in a combination of obstacles and zip lines as they maneuver their way through different trails with a progressive degree of challenges. ACCT-trained staff assist all guests. Edge provides all safety equipment - helmet, harnesses, belays and gloves. Guest will participate in a safety briefing and practice course. Edge Adventures feature 100 percent ON BELAY system Quick Trekker System. Participants have the thrill of climbing, zipping and working through the courses with the security of knowing that they are 100 percent on the safety line from start to finish.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Enter to WIN: True Citrus - Be Healthy, Be Happy, Be True Sweepstakes

Here at ChiIL Mama we're part of the US Family Bloggers and we're happy to partner up with True Citrus on this sponsored post. Enter for your chance to win. We have been compensated for sharing this sweepstakes with our readers.

I haven't had a chance to try this brand yet, but they're sending samples our way. The #HealthyHappyTrue Sweepstakes was created by True Citrus to celebrate how people live their healthiest, happiest and truest life possible.

Entering provides the chance to win a grand prize including a $10,000 cash prize, a Vitamix Professional Series Blender ($600 value), Fitbit watch ($200 value), a True Lemon thermal water bottle and a sampling of all True Citrus products. 

To enter the sweepstakes and for details on how to increase chances of winning, visit  through June 15. 


Interested in trying True Citrus for yourself? Save 40% on your order at by entering the code TRUEFAMILY40US at checkout.

Disclosure: We're part of the US Family Bloggers network and we're happy to partner up with True Citrus on this sponsored post. We have been compensated for sharing this sweepstakes with our readers. As always, all opinions are our own.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

WIN 4 Tickets To The National Tour of The Wizard of Oz at The Chicago Theatre on Tuesday, May 8th at 7pm

Chi IL Live Shows On Our Radar:


Limited Engagement Runs May 8 Through May 20, 2018 
Tickets On-Sale Now

Here at ChiIL Mama, we're elated to partner up with The Madison Square Garden Company and “THE WIZARD OF OZ”, for a great giveaway for our readers. Enter early and often, like we vote in Chi, IL. I'll be out for the press night on May 9th, so check back soon for my full review. In the meantime, here's my video and photo recap of a press sneak peek and meet and greet with Dorothy (Kalie Kaimann). I was amused to learn we grew up in the same place. She's from my home town, Cincinnati. There's no place like home, indeed!

Dorothy (Kalie Kaimann) with her mini me, Dorothy (Chiara)

Just 2 Cincinnati girls ChiILin' in Chi, IL  

Truly Magical Sparkly Cupcakes from Magnolia Bakery!

The Legendary Ruby Slippers

The Madison Square Garden Company will bring one of the most beloved family musicals, “THE WIZARD OF OZ”, to Chicago at The Chicago Theatre (175 N. State St.) from May 8 – May 20, 2018. Tickets for “THE WIZARD OF OZ” are on-sale now ranging from $39 - $129. Tickets are available online at and are also available at The Chicago Theatre box office, all Ticketmaster outlets, and Ticketmaster phone charge. 

This magical production is a celebration of the classic 1939 MGM movie, and will be presented with breathtaking special effects that will sweep audiences away, from the moment the tornado twists its way into Kansas. Featuring the classic songs, composed by Harold Arlen with lyrics by E.Y. Harburg, “Over the Rainbow,” “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead” and “If I Only Had A Brain,” along with the beloved characters, “THE WIZARD OF OZ” will have the entire family captivated as they travel down the yellow brick road for an unforgettable day at the theater.

Dean Sabon is the Director and previously created the national tours of “Fiddler on the Roof” and “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.” Amy McCleary created the magical choreography and was the Director/Choreographer of the national tour of “Memphis, the Musical” and the choreographer of the national tour of “The Wedding Singer.” The team of Sobon and McCleary will take Dorothy, Toto and their friends the Cowardly Lion, Tin Man and Scarecrow “Over the Rainbow” to adventures in Munchkin Land, the Haunted Forest and the Emerald City.

Leading the cast as Dorothy is Kalie Kaimann. She previously played this role for the Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati. She has also performed as Bonnie in “Anything Goes,” Logainne in “25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” Ulla in “The Producers,” Millie Dilmount in “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” Belle in “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast,” and Minnie Fay in “Hello Dolly!” She received a Best Featured Actress in a Musical by for her performance as Minnie Fay.

Chris Duir will play the role of Scarecrow/Hunk. For Prather Entertainment Group he played the role of Bert in “Mary Poppins” and Eugene in the national tour of “Grease.” Regional credits include “Crazy For You” (Bobby Child), “Damn Yankees” (Smokey), “The Drowsy Chaperone” (George), and “Singin’ in the Rain.” He was also a singer for “Celebrity Cruises” and “Galaxy Macau Resort.” 

Christopher Russell will portray Tinman/Hickory. He performed as Avram/Perchik understudy in the national tour of “Fiddler on the Roof.” Regionally he has performed in “Funny Girl” (Eddie Ryan), “The Producers” (Leo Bloom), “The Full Monty” (Jerry Lukowski), “Lend Me A Tenor” (Max), “Steppin’ Out” (Geoffrey), “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” (Freddy Benson), and “Second Chances: The Thrift Shop Musical” (Wally), for which he also composed the original score. 

Victor Legarreta will portray the Lion/Zeke. Legarreta has performed professionally in 150 productions nationally, internationally, and on cruise ships including the recent roles of The Cop in the comedy “Shear Madness”, Public Enemy #1 in “Anything Goes,” and numerous comedies for Prather Entertainment Group. Legarreta is also a director and has written many musical revues. He previously portrayed the Cowardly Lion at the “Broadway Palm” in Fort Myers, Florida.

Toto will be played by Murphy, a white Brussels Griffon/Cairn Terrier mix with scruffy fur and an adorable underbite. Murphy was rescued on February 5th, 2016 from the ASPCA in Chandler, AZ by Lizzie Webb (music director for “THE WIZARD OF OZ” tour) and was immediately welcomed into the theatre world. He has been a trusty backstage companion, a pit orchestra puppy (sleeping at mom’s feet while she plays piano and conducts shows) and within a few months of adoption he was onstage as Willoughby in “Mary Poppins.” This will be his second time playing Toto. He even has his own hashtag! #montanamurphy

For more information visit:

Tickets are available at The Chicago Theatre box office, all Ticketmaster outlets
and Ticketmaster phone charge (1.800.745.3000)
Online: and
Connect with us @ChicagoTheatre and

About The Madison Square Garden Company
The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG) is a world leader in live sports and entertainment experiences.  The company presents or hosts a broad array of premier events in its diverse collection of iconic venues: New York’s Madison Square Garden, The Theater at Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall and Beacon Theatre; the Forum in Inglewood, CA; The Chicago Theatre; and the Wang Theatre in Boston.  Other MSG properties include legendary sports franchises: the New York Knicks (NBA), the New York Rangers (NHL) and the New York Liberty (WNBA); two development league teams -- the Westchester Knicks (NBAGL) and the Hartford Wolf Pack (AHL); and one of the leading North American esports organizations, Counter Logic Gaming.  In addition, the Company features the popular original production – the Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes – and through Boston Calling Events, produces outdoor festivals, including New England’s preeminent Boston Calling Music Festival.   Also under the MSG umbrella is TAO Group, a world-class hospitality group with globally-recognized entertainment dining and nightlife brands: Tao, Marquee, Lavo, Avenue, The Stanton Social, Beauty & Essex and Vandal.  More information is available at

More of ChiIL Mama's Photos From The Dorothy Meet and Greet Press/Blogger Lunch:

Mom & Daughter fun with Dorothy & Cheryl Hanson Leahy of the blog, All Dressed Up With Nothing to Drink. 

Chiara clicks her heels! 

ChiIL Mama's Giving Away A FREE Family 4 Pack of Tickets 
for The Wizard of Oz at Chicago Theatre
Good for opening night, Tuesday, May 8th at 7pm
**Enter HERE **

Open through midnight 5/1/18 for your chance to WIN.

Enter through midnight May 1st. Winner will be e-mailed and announced here and on ChiIL Mama's social media channels. Ticket values range from $39 - $129 each.  

Disclosure: ChiIL Mama has been given complimentary tickets for review purposes and for our giveaway. As always, all opinions are my own. 

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