Friday, January 18, 2013

MLK Day Chicago 2013 #ChiILpicks

ChiIL Mama's checkin' out Bud, Not Buddy at the press opening TONIGHT, and we'll have a full review shortly.   We'll be hangin' with the author Christopher Paul Curtis.   You can too, on MLK day.

Teach your children well.   MLK day means more than a 3 day weekend and a chance to snuggle down in the covers and sleep in.   We love living in a major city, as there's always too much to do.   Many museums, theatres, and organizations are having Martin Luther King Jr. events and activities.   These are our ChiILpicks for 2013:

1.  “Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah” JANUARY 19 – 20

2.  Black Ensemble Theater-MLK Day Celebration

3.  Bud, Not Buddy Author Event

Top left  is Christopher Paul Curtis, author, Bud, Not Buddy.
  Photo credit for all:  Margaret Strickland.  



All outdoor photos feature actor Travis Turner as Bud in Chicago Children's Theatre's new production of Bud, Not Buddy.

Chicago Children's Theatre (CCT) invites families to meet Christopher Paul Curtis, author of Bud, Not Buddy, on Monday, Jan. 21, 2013 at 1 p.m. at the ChaseAuditorium, 10 S. Dearborn St. in downtown Chicago.  

Admission is complimentary for this Chicago Children's Theatre Community Event, but reservations are required.  Please rsvp at .

Kids will be out of school for Martin Luther King Day, so bringing them downtown to meet Curtis - one of the most prolific African American writers of contemporary children's literature today, and author of the only book to win both the Newbery Medal and the Coretta Scott King Author Award - is an ideal way to honor the holiday.

Bud, Not Buddy follows the heartwarming, unforgettable journey of a young African-American orphan as he searches for his father in Depression-era Michigan. Full of laugh-out-loud humor and wonderful characters from the world of jazz, the book is afavorite with children 8 and up and, at many schools, is required reading for February, Black History Month.

CCT's free event includes a Q&A with Curtis introduced by Chicago Children's Theatre Artistic Director Jacqueline Russell, co-moderated by Talia Garg (12) and Olivia Garg (10). Curtis will meet fans and sign books after the discussion.

Curtis is visiting Chicago for the opening weekend of Chicago Children's Theatre's newest production, a live stage adaptation of his book Bud, Not Buddy. The production is directed by Derrick Sanders, director of CCT's 2011 smash hit Jackie and Me

School and public performances of Bud, Not Buddy run Jan. 12-Feb. 24, 2013 at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts, 1016 N. Dearborn St., Chicago.  Single tickets start at $20. To purchase, visit or call (872) 222-9555. For group rates, visit or call (773) 327-3778. 

JPMorgan Chase, Official Education Sponsor of Chicago Children's Theatre, is generously providing their 400-seat downtown auditorium for this community event.

About Christopher Paul Curtis

Born in Flint, Michigan, Christopher Paul Curtis was always a great reader, but as a youth he could not find books "that were about me." He spent his first 13 years after high school on the assembly line of Flint's historic Fisher Body Plant #1, hanging 80-pound car doors on Buicks. He wrote during his breaks to escape the noise of the factory, while attending college at night. Curtis made an outstanding debut in children's s literature with The Watsons Go to Birmingham-1963. His second novel, Bud, Not Buddy, is the first book ever to receive both the Newbery Medal and the Coretta Scott King Author Award. 

Curtis' writing - and his dedication to it - has been greatly influenced by his family members. He modeled characters in Bud, Not Buddy after his two amazing grandfathers - Earl "Lefty" Lewis, a Negro Baseball League pitcher, and 1930s bandleader Herman E. Curtis, Sr., of Herman Curtis and the Dusky Devastators of the Depression.  For more information, visit his website

About Chicago Children's Theatre

Itinerant no longer, Chicago Children's Theatre has happily moved in to its first-ever permanent home, the Ruth Page Center for the Arts, 101N. Dearborn Street, a lovely tree-lined street in the heart of Chicago's Gold Coast neighborhood, just steps from the Magnificent Mile.

Chicago Children's Theatre focuses on the production of first-rate children's theatre in Chicago, with top writing, performing and directorial talent and high-quality design and production expertise. Chicago Children's Theatre aspires to enrich our community through diverse and significant theatrical and educational programming that engages and inspires the child in all of us.    

Launched in 2005, Chicago Children's Theatre strives to provide affordable and accessible theatre for families and area school children. To enhance the impact of any given production's themes, Chicago Children's Theatre offers educational materials and programs for families and educators. 

In addition to its mainstage programming for families, schools and groups, Chicago Children's Theatre is expanding its theater class and camp offerings for children at the Ruth Page, and continuing its Red Kite Project, creating multi-sensory, interactive theater programming tailored specifically to the needs and interests of children on the autism spectrum. 
Chicago Children's Theatre's 2012-2013 season is made possible in part by the generosity of its sponsors: ComEd is the Official Lighting Sponsor. Goldman Sachs Gives is the Official Season Sponsor. JPMorgan Chase is the Official Education Sponsor.Target is the Official School Field Trip Sponsor. United is the Chicago Premiere Sponsor as well as the Official and Exclusive Airline Sponsor.     

For more information about Chicago Children's Theatre, call CCT's new dedicated box office line, (872) 222-9555, or the administrative office, (773) 227-0180.

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