Things to do in Chicago Feb. 16-22 — The Mix

The stage musicals “Les Miserables,” “Cats” and “Once” are among the entertainment highlights in the week ahead.

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Matt Mueller and Dana Saleh Omar star in “Once.”

Matt Mueller and Dana Saleh Omar star in “Once” at Writers Theatre.

Saverio Truglia


  • The annual Chicago Theatre Week (Feb. 16-26) celebrates the rich tradition of Chicago theater. More than 70 productions are participating throughout the city and suburbs. Tickets prices are $30, $15 or less. For a list of participating theaters, visit
  • The Tony Award-winning musical “Once” is the story of an Irish musician encountering a young Czech woman who, as their relationship grows, inspires him to form a band and write new songs with her. Based on John Carney’s 2007 film, the show features music by Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova and a book by Enda Walsh. Katie Spelman directs. From Feb. 16-March 26 at Writers Theatre, 325 Tudor, Glencoe. Tickets: $35-$90. Visit
  • Invictus Theatre presents “The Mountaintop,” Katori Hall’s fictional play that reimagines the final night in the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who partakes in a conversation about the fight for civil rights. From Feb. 16-March 19 at Reginald Vaughn Theater, 1106 W. Thorndale. Tickets: $35. Visit

Taylor Harres as Grizabella in “Cats.”

Matthew Murphy/Murphymade

  • The current touring production of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s “Cats,” the musical based on T.S. Eliot’s “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats,” features new sound design, direction and choreography. From Feb. 21-26 at Nederlander Theater, 24 W. Randolph. Tickets: $30-$95. Visit

Michel Rodriquez Cintra as Don Quixote in “Circus Quixotic.”

Actors Gymnasium

  • The Actors Gymnasium presents “Circus Quixotic,” a circus theatre production adapted from Miguel de Cervantes’ “Don Quixote.” Adapted and directed by David and Kerry Catlin with circus choreography by Sylvia Hernandez-DiStasi. From Feb. 18-March 26 at Noyes Cultural Arts Center, 927 Noyes, Evanston. Tickets $35, $20 students (not recommended for children under 5). Visit
  • Donja R. Love’s “One in Two” is a drama about a young man diagnosed with HIV and his journey through various life experiences. Directed by Jordan Ratliff. From Feb. 16-March 19 at Pride Arts Center, 4139 N. Broadway. Tickets: $35. Visit
  • In Shannon O’Neill’s “The Kelly Girls,” set in 1960s Belfast, two young Irish women join the Provisional IRA but begin to question how much they are willing to destroy in the name of unity. Directed by Spenser Davis. From Feb. 17-April 1 at Factory Theater, 1623 W. Howard. Tickets: $25. Visit
  • Saint Sebastian Players present “The Book of Will,” Lauren Gunderson’s comedy-drama about two actor friends of Shakespeare who after his death attempt to compile the First Folio and preserve his words. Directed by Jim Masini. From Feb. 17-March 12 at St. Bonaventure, 1625 W. Diversey. Tickets: $30. Visit
  • BrightSide Theatre stages Neil Simon’s classic comedy “The Odd Couple” about two incompatible divorced men who room together to catastrophic results. Directed by Jason Harrington. From Feb. 17-March 5 at Meiley-Swallow Hall, North Central College, 31 S. Ellsworth, Naperville. Tickets: $33. Visit
  • Black Circus Alliance Midwest presents the Black History Month Circus Cabaret, featuring movement artists specializing in silks, straps, flying pole and more. At 8 p.m. Feb. 18 at Aloft Circus Arts, 3324 W. Wrightwood. Tickets: $30; proof of vaccination required. Visit
  • Cameron Mackintosh’s staging of Alain Boubill and Claude-Michel Schonberg’s “Les Miserables,” set in 19th century France, is a story of broken dreams, passion, sacrifice and redemption. From Feb. 15-March 5 at Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph. Tickets: $35-$106. Visit



Chicago Tap Theatre turns 20.

William Frederking

  • “Chicago Tap Theatre at 20: Tempo, Rhythm and Time” celebrates the company’s anniversary with a program featuring classics from its repertoire (“Somebody to Love,” “Protect Trans Kids”) as well as two world premieres by Heather Cornell and Tre Dumas. At 7 p.m. Feb. 18 and 2 p.m. Feb. 19 at The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee. Tickets: $25+. Visit
  • Visceral Dance presents a program including Mark Godden’s “Minor Threat,” Nick Pupillo’s “Avow,” “Ash in the Rainbow,” “Awake” and a world premiere by Danielle Agami. From Feb. 17-26 at Visceral Dance Center, 3121 N. Rockwell. Tickets: $25-$60. Visit
  • Hiplet Ballerinas perform an amazing and fiery blend of dance styles that begin with classical pointe and add in African, Latin, hip-hop and urban dance styles. At 4 p.m. Feb. 19 at Lund Auditorium, Dominican University, 7900 Division, River Forest. Tickets: $28+. Visit



Margo Price

Alysse Gafkjen

  • Margo Price hits the road for her first nationwide tour in nearly five years. The indie-country artist’s latest release, “Strays,” is hailed by NPR as “a potent, genre-spanning opus.” It includes a great duet with Sharon Van Etten. Lola Kirke opens at 7 p.m. Feb. 21 at Vic Theatre, 3145 N. Sheffield. Tickets: $28.50-$36. Visit

Reveron Piano Trio

Natali Herrera-Pacheco

  • Music Institute of Chicago presents Reveron Piano Trio (violinist Simon Gollo, cellist Horacio Contreras and pianist Ana Maria Otamendi) performing the world premiere of Ricardo Lorenz’s “Tres Placeres (Three Treats),” Miguel Del Aguila’s “Barroqueada” and Heitor Villa-Lobos’ Piano Trio No. 1. At 7:30 p.m. Feb. 17 at Nichols Concert Hall, 1490 Chicago, Evanston. Tickets: $25-$50. Visit
  • Powerhouse vocalist and Chicago native LaShera Moore Ellis, backed by the Soundtracks of a Generation Band, takes a journey through the legacy of the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin. At 8 p.m. Feb. 17 at Raue Center for the Arts, 26 N. Williams, Crystal Lake. Tickets: $30. Visit


  • “Salvador Dali: The Image Disappears” focuses on the 1930s, when Dali emerged as the creator of his own personal brand of Surrealism. The exhibit — 25 paintings, drawings and objects — considers the artist’s work in light of two defining impulses: a desire for visibility and the urge to disappear. From Feb. 18-May 15 at Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S. Michigan. Admission: $14-$35. Visit



“Le Pupille,” nominated for the live-action short subject Oscar.


  • Ready to fill out your Oscar ballot but need more info? Then check out the 2023 Oscar-Nominated Live-Action and Animated Short Films and Documentary Shorts. These categories offer little film gems often forgotten after the big night out at the Academy Awards. Screenings begin Feb. 17 at Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport ($11), and Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N. State ($13), as well as other area theaters. Visit
  • Black Italian Film Showcase showcases new features, documentaries and short films that highlight Black life in Italy. Feature films screened are Antonio Dikele Distefano’s “Autumn Beat,” Fred Kudjo Kuwornu’s “Blaxpoitalian: 100 Years of Blackness in Italian Cinema” and Dagmawi Yimer’s “Va Pensiero, Walking Stories.” From Feb. 18-19 at Facets, 1517 W. Fullerton. Tickets: $7, $10 for two films. Visit

Family Fun


Shea Lee in “Extra Yarn.”

Suzanne Plunkett

  • “Extra Yarn” is Jessica Wright Buha and John Szymanski’s musical adaptation of Mac Barnet and Jon Klassen’s children’s book about the discovery of family, friendship and fighting for what’s right. Anthony Kayer directs. From Feb. 18-March 19 at Lifeline Theatre, 6912 N. Glenwood. Tickets: $20. Visit
  • Marriott Theatre for Young Audiences presents “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,” a one-hour presentation that explores life’s great questions from a child’s viewpoint. Linda Fortunato directs and choreographs. From Feb. 17-April 1 at Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Dr., Lincolnshire. Tickets: $15.75. Visit
  • The Chicago Park District celebrates Black History Month with events taking place through Feb. 26 including film screenings, cultural exhibits, a fashion show, a game night and much more. For a list of parks and events, visit

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