Making entertainment plans for the coming week? We’ve got some suggestions for you when it comes to theater, music, family fun and more:
THEATER: ‘A Gentleman’s Guide to Murder’
Stephen Lutvak and Robert L. Freedman’s musical comedy “A Gentleman’s Guide to Murder” tells the tale of an heir to a family fortune who decides to jump the line of succession by eliminating the relatives who stand in his way. Directed by Stephen Schellhardt, the show runs to March 10 at Porchlight Music Theatre at Ruth Page Center for the Arts, 1016 N. Dearborn. Tickets: $39-$66.
POETRY: ‘Happy Birthday Langston Hughes’
Start Black History Month with Happy Birthday Langston Hughes, a celebration in poetry, prose and song of the life and work of the American author and activist. The evening includes readings of Hughes’ poetry and performances of music that he wrote, inspired and/or enjoyed. Participants include actress Regina Taylor, singer Terisa Griffin, poet-activist Malcolm London, actress and recording artist Ta’Rhonda Jones, poet Janice “Mz. Gifted” Mckenzie, singer and spoken word artist Maggie Brown, actor Russell Hornsby and more. At 8 p.m. Feb. 3, Chicago Winery, 1200 W. Randolph. Tickets: $35-$48.
MUSIC: The Count Basie Orchestra
The Count Basie Orchestra first hit stages in 1935, and it’s still going strong today. Under the direction of Scotty Barnhart, the orchestra won the 2019 Downbeat Reader’s Poll and is a 2019 Grammy nominee. Everett Greene is the guest vocalist for two shows, a rare chance to see one of the classic big bands in an intimate club setting. At 1 and 3:30 p.m., FitzGerald’s, 6615 W. Roosevelt, Berwyn. Tickets: $30.
MOVIES: ‘Police Story’ & ‘Police Story 2’
New restorations of Jackie Chan’s action-packed “Police Story” and “Police Story 2” are screened Feb. 1-7 at the Music Box Theatre. The first, filled with Chan’s brand of martial-arts comedy, transformed the one-man stunt machine into an icon of the daredevil spectacle. The second was an even bigger box-office hit and cemented his status. At Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport. Tickets: $11, $16 for double feature.
POP CULTURE: Game of Thrones Pop-Up
Winter isn’t coming; it’s here and that’s the perfect time for Replay’s Games of Thrones Pop Up. As fans look forward to the wildly popular show’s final season (beginning April 14 on HBO), they can step into the world of the seven kingdoms of Westeros as interpreted by the Lincoln Park bar and find White Walkers, dragons, the throne room, “GOT” trivia and even a Red Wedding. Begins Feb. 1 at Replay, 2833 N. Sheffield. Admission is free. Replay also is introducing a VIP package for $20 that among other things offers express entry.
THEATER: Chicago Musical Theatre Festival
Underscore Theatre presents its fifth annual Chicago Musical Theatre Festival. Nine new musicals are featured in full productions: “Oh Hi, Johnny” by Alex Syiek and Bryan Jager, “An Artist and the Ember: A Self-Love Story” by Evan Cullinan, “My Dear Watson” by Jami-Leigh Bartschi, “Unison” by Adina Kurskal and Elyse Anderson, “The Incredible Six Thousand-Foot Ladder to Heaven” by Ryan Martin, “Cancerman” by J. Linn Allen, “Moonshiner: A Musical Fabulism” by Barton Kuebler, “Lucky: A Musical” by Sarah Frasco and Gabriella Hirsch and “Brooke Astor’s Last Affair” by Rachael Migler and Eric Grunin. Feb. 4-24, Underscore Theatre at The Edge Theater, 5451 N. Broadway and 1133 W. Catalpa. Tickets: $20, $150 festival pass.
MUSIC: Cory Wong
Minneapolis-based musician Cory Wong is best know for his guitar work with the funk band Vulfpeck as well as playing alongside Ben Rector, The Blind Boys of Alabama and Bootsy Collins. Now he’s taking his Stratocaster on tour with his own band for a show that is both an audio and video experience. Emily Browning opens. At 8:30 p.m. Feb. 7 at Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln. Tickets: $20.
MUSEUMS: ‘Solidary & Solitary’
The new exhibit “Solidary & Solitary” explores the history of art by African-American artists, with an emphasis on abstraction. Compiled from the Pamela J. Joyner and Alfred J. Giuffrida Collection, it brings together artists from the 1940s to the present to tell a complicated story of how to represent blackness, social struggle and change, global migrations and diasporas. To May 19, Smart Museum of Art, University of Chicago, 5550 S. Greenwood. Admission is free.
THEATER: Chicago Theatre Week
Presented by the League of Chicago Theatres, Chicago Theatre Week returns Feb. 7-17. During the annual celebration, theatergoers can find tickets to more than 100 productions that highlight the rich, varied traditions of local theater. Tickets are $15 and $30. For a complete list of participating theaters, visit choosechicago.com