From music to theater to family fun, there’s much to see and do in the next week across the Chicago area. So make those big plans now! Here are some suggestions to help you navigate the area’s vibrant entertainment landscape:
Legendary Cuban diva Omara Portuondo, an original member of the Buena Vista Social Club, is in the midst of what she says will be her last worldwide tour. In 1950 she began her career as a dancer at Havana’s famed Tropicana Club before turning to singing with the group Cuarteto d’Aida. But it was Ry Cooder’s “Buena Vista” album and the accompanying Wim Wenders film that brought Portuondo to a worldwide audience. At 8 p.m. May 1, Old Town School of Folk Music, 4544 N. Lincoln. Tickets: $60. Visit oldtownschool.org.
Medu Art Ensemble was formed in 1979 as a means of resistance to South Africa’s apartheid policies. The collective operated underground and developed an expansive poster-making operation to promote its agenda. More than 60 examples of this work along with photographs, magazines, rare books and records are featured in “The People Shall Govern! Medu Art Ensemble and the Anti-Apartheid Poster.” From April 27-Sept. 2, Art Institute of Chicago, 116 S. Michigan. Admission: $14-$22. Visit artic.edu.
The Los Angeles-based band Dengue Fever worked closely with playwright Lauren Yee on her play “Cambodian Rock Band,” which features the band’s music. Now in conjunction with the play’s acclaimed production running at Victory Gardens Theatre, Dengue Fever performs across the street at Lincoln Hall. Fronted by a former Cambodian pop star and backed by five musicians, this is Cambodian pop infused with soul, surf guitar and an alt-rock edge. Dos Santos opens. At 9 p.m. May 1, Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln. Tickets: $22, $25. Visit lh-st.com.
Women of color speak out
The three-day I Am…Fest, curated by Black Lives, Black Words co-founders Reginald Edmund and Simeilia Hodge-Dallaway, features film screenings, play readings, dance and playwriting workshops and the International 10-Minute Play Showcase with works by Dominique Morrisseau, Nambi E. Kelley, TS Hawkins, Lisa Langford, Winsome Pinnock, Yolanda Mercy and Loy A. Webb. The showcase concludes with the U.S. premiere of Mojisola Adebayo’s “The Interrogation of Sandra Bland,” in which 100 women of color perform the transcript from Bland’s arrest. From April 27-29, Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn. Events are free, but RSVP required; $10 (10-Minute Play Showcase). Visit goodmantheatere.org.
Comedy on the road
“The Daily Show” host Trevor Noah steps out from behind the desk for “Loud and Clear,” his stand-up comedy tour. Before moving to the U.S., Noah made a name for himself in South Africa via stand-up. His memoir, “Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood,” in which he tells stories of growing up as a mixed race child during apartheid, is a great read and explains his development as a comedian. At 8 p.m. April 27, United Center, 1901 W. Madison. Tickets: $45, $59.50. Visit ticketmaster.com.
The longtime friendship of violinist Rachel Barton Pine and harpsichordist Jory Vinikour grew around their love of Bach’s sonatas, which became their first recording project together. The duo performs selections from this project as well as a selection of solo sonatas at 7:30 p.m. April 26 at Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th. Tickets: $10-$38. Visit tickets.uchicago.edu.
More than 300 artists gather for the One of a Kind Spring Show April 26-28. It’s the perfect venue to meet artists and learn about their creative process while finding that special item. Be sure to check out the emerging artist section, which features up-and-coming artists new to the show. At The Mart, 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza, 7th floor. Tickets: $12 includes entry for all three days. Visit oneofakindshowchicago.com.
The Chicago Film Archives present Out of this Vault: How We Work, a selection of films exploring the struggles and hopes of women in their working lives. JoAnn Elam’s “Chocolate Cake” documents the process of making a cake (with an unexpected ending), Jim Klein, Julia Riechart and Miles Mogulescu’s “Union Maids” recounts the struggles of women as laborers and union organizers and Loretta Smith’s “Where Did You Get That Woman” follows 73-year-old Joan Williams, a bathroom attendant working on Rush Street, as she goes about her day. At 7 p.m. April 27, Chicago Filmmakers, 5720 N. Ridge. Tickets: $8. Visit chicagofilmarchives.org.
Mary Houlihan is a local freelance writer.