The Mix: Cool things to do in Chicago Nov. 10-16

An interactive Harry Potter experience, a CSO-Joffrey collaboration and Beth Orton concert are among the week’s highlights.

SHARE The Mix: Cool things to do in Chicago Nov. 10-16

Visitors can learn about their Hogwarts house in the Great Hall at “Harry Potter: Magic at Play.”




Kai Ealy and Ronald L. Conner in “The Island.”

Joe Mazza

In Athol Fugard, John Kani and Winston Ntshona’s drama “The Island,” two South African political prisoners (Kai Ealy and Ronald L. Conner) toil by day in a quarry and secretly spend their evenings rehearsing a two-man version of “Antigone,” finding solace and strength in their friendship. Gabrielle Randle-Bent directs. From Nov. 11-Dec. 4 at Court Theatre, 5535 S. Ellis. Tickets: $40.50-$82. Visit

The Lyric Opera season continues with “Le Comte 0ry,” Rossini’s rarely performed comic opera. During the French Crusades, a countess (Kathryn Lewek) shutters herself in her castle while a wily count (Lawrence Brownlee) concocts a misguided plan to sweep her off her feet. From Nov. 13-26 at Lyric Opera House, 20 N. Wacker. Tickets: $40+. Visit


John Gregorio, Kasey Foster and Anthony Irons in “The Steadfast Tin Soldier.”

Liz Lauren

“The Steadfast Tin Soldier” is Mary Zimmerman’s adaptation of a Hans Christian Andersen tale about a little soldier who never gives up has quickly become a holiday classic. The spectacle of music and movement is directed by Zimmerman. From Nov. 13-Jan. 8 at Lookingglass Theatre, Water Tower Water Works, 821 N. Michigan. Tickets: $50+. Visit

Interrobang Theatre and Rivendell Theatre present “A Mile in the Dark,” Emily Schwend’s drama about a daughter searching for answers after her mother’s untimely death. Georgette Verdin directs. From Nov. 11-Dec. 11 at Rivendell Theatre, 5779 N. Ridge. Tickets: $35. Visit

“It Runs in the Family” is Ray Cooney’s farce set in a hospital three days before Christmas as a doctor (Tim Walsh) tries to fend off an ex-wife, a punkish son and various other lunatics. Pat Murphy directs. From Nov. 16-Dec. 18 at Citadel Theatre, 300 S. Waukegan, Lake Forest. Tickets: $40, $45. Visit

A Theater in the Dark presents “A Christmas Carol in the Dark,” an audio play adaptation of Dickens’ classic story told through voice, music, recorded sound and foley effects. Mack Gordon directs. Streams to Jan. 1. Tickets: $15. Visit

The Conspirators present their “125th Anniversary Jubilee, Feat. The Ineptidemic.” The neo-commedia style ensemble visits years of political satire with a medley of musical numbers from past productions as well as Octave Mirbeau’s 1895 one-act “L’Epidemie (The Ineptidemic).” Directed by Wm. Bullion. To Nov. 19 at Otherworld Theater, 3914 N. Clark. Tickets: $25. Visit



Beth Orton

Eliot Lee Hazel

English singer-songwriter Beth Orton returns to touring after the release of her acclaimed new album, “Weather Alive.” It’s the first album created after the passing of two of Orton‘s closest musical compatriots, producers Andrew Weatherall and Hal Willner, as well as after period of incorrectly diagnosed health issues for the performer, who found that newfound clarity could be as disempowering as the previously unanswered questions about her well-being. Heather Woods Broderick opens at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 10 at Mayfair Theatre, Irish American Heritage Center, 4626 N. Knox. Tickets: $40. Visit

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra and dancers from The Joffrey Ballet come together for an evening that includes world premieres from choreographers Cathy Marston, who set her ballet to Wagner’s “Siegfried Idyll,” and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, who set her piece to Rameau’s Suite from “Platee.” Conductor Harry Bicket also leads the CSO in performances of Ravel’s “Le tombeau de Couperin” and Mozart’s Symphony No. 34. At 7:30 p.m. Nov. 10 and 8 p.m. Nov. 11-12 at Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan. Tickets: $49+. Visit



“Exact Dutch Yellow”

Chicago Cultural Center

For “Exact Dutch Yellow,” an immersive exhibit by Chicago-based artists Petra Bachmaier and Sean Gallero of Luftwerk. the Chicago Cultural Center’s Exhibit Hall has been converted into a series of immersive color and light installations using botanical colors in combination with color-changing light conditions that transform into abstracted, atmospheric experiences. To Jan. 29 at Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington. Admission is free. Visit

“Shannon Bool: 1:1” is the first solo U.S. show by the artist known for her unconventional use of materials in works that probe the history of modernist architecture. Also opening is “Refracting Histories,” an exhibit featuring eight artists who take a critical look at the cannon of the history of photography. From Nov. 10-April 2 at Museum of Contemporary Photography, 600 S. Michigan. Admission is free. Visit



Al Pacino and James Caan in “The Godfather.”

Paramount Pictures

In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Francis Ford Coppola’s masterpiece “The Godfather” is screened with the Chicago Philharmonic performing the film’s score composed by Nino Rota, whose film work also included music for “White Nights,” “The Leopard,” “La Dolce Vita” and “8½.” At 8 p.m. Nov. 12 at Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Ida B. Wells. Tickets: $70.75-$142.50 (under 17 must be accompanied by an adult). Visit

“Southeast: A City Within a City” is Steven Walsh’s documentary about the Southeast side of Chicago, an often overlooked neighborhood. The project began as an effort to learn more about his grandfather, Roger “Coco” Gomez, a Mexican American former steel mill worker. But it morphed into a more expansive story about once-thriving communities depleted after the closing of the steel mills. Walsh, Gomez and artist Roman Villarreal will take part in a post screening Q&A. At 5 p.m. Nov. 12 at Intuit, 756 N. Milwaukee. Free with admission, $5. Visit

Family Fun

“Harry Potter: Magic at Play” gives fans of J.K. Rowling’s iconic books the chance to explore the world of their favorite wizard from the Dursleys’ living room and Hogwarts’ classes to the fundamentals of Quidditch, Hagrid’s pumpkin patch and much more. From Nov. 11-May 14 at Water Tower Place, 835 N. Michigan. Tickets: $37.50+. Visit

Lifetime Theatre’s KidSeries returns with James R. Grote’s musical adaptation of “Dooby Dooby Moo.” Doreen Cronin and Betsy Lewin’s children’s book tells the story of farm animals who join a talent contest with hopes of winning a trampoline. Heather Currie directs. From Nov. 12-Dec. 11 at Lifeline Theatre, 6912 N. Glenwood. Tickets: $20. Visit


Open Books Pilsen will unveil a new façade mural.

Chris Salmon

Open Books Pilsen celebrates its reopening with the unveiling of a colorful façade mural by artist Diosa (Jasmina Cazacu) and the rollout of a new sales model: All kids’ books are free and adult books are pay-what-you-can. The event also includes activities for all ages throughout the store. From 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Nov. 12 at Open Books Pilsen, 905 W. 19th. Admission is free. Visit

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