The Mix: The WNDR Museum, Art on theMart and more cool things to do in Chicago April 1-7
There’s much to check out online and in person in Chicago in the week ahead.
The WNDR Museum, an immersive art and technology experience, has reopened with new exhibits featuring new and ongoing one-of-a-kind installations created by local and international artists, collectives and studios. New displays include the Flux Room, a multi-sensory, 360-degree immersive experience curated by Chicago-based artist Santiago X, and “I Heard There Was a Secret Chord,” a piece created by the Montreal-based design studio Daily tous les jours, which invites participation in a virtual humming choir powered by people around the world listening to Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” at any given moment. Among the ongoing exhibits is Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s fabulous immersive work “Let’s Survive Forever.” Plus Keith Haring’s “Untitled (FDR NY) #23 and #24” is now on display outside the museum. Take it all in at the WNDR Museum, 1130 W. Monroe. Timed tickets, $30, must be bought in advance. Visit wndrmuseum.com.
Across the universe
Art on theMART collaborates with the Adler Planetarium to transform the facade of the Merchandise Mart into a blend of art and science. The new projection on the art deco building, titled “Astrographics,” consists of four movements — Earth, Other Worlds, Stars and Beyond — which take the viewer from Earth to planets and stars and out into the deeper reaches of the galaxy. The projections were created using real data showing the scale of the universe along with imagery from the world’s telescopes and works on paper from the Adler. Accompanying the display will be music from the Sun Ra Arkestra archives at the Experimental Sound Studio. The 30-minute “Astrographics” runs nightly at 8:30 and 9 p.m. from April 1-July 4. For more information, visit artonthemart.com.
For Oscar ballots
Have an edge in your Oscar pool by screening the 2021 Oscar-Nominated Short Films presented by ShortsTV. Among the documentaries are “A Love Song for Latasha,” a portrait of a young girl whose shooting death sparked the 1992 L.A. riots, and “Do Not Split,” the story of the 2019 Hong Kong protests. The live action films include “Feeling Through,” about the connection between a teen and a deaf-blind man, and “White Eye,” which follows a man as he attempts to retrieve his stolen bicycle. Nominated in the animation category is Disney-Pixar’s “Burrow,” about a young rabbit’s desire to build the burrow of his dreams. The films are available beginning April 2 at various Chicago and suburban theaters and their virtual platforms. The 93rd Academy Awards take place on April 25. For more information, visit tickets.oscar-shorts.com.
Young circus artists
CircEsteem, the Uptown organization with a mission to unite youth and foster self-esteem and mutual respect through the circus arts, presents Social Circus Day Celebration, an online event featuring social circuses from around the world. Along with live segments, the lineup features taped performances by CircEsteem’s Youth Acts Performance Troupe, Circus Harmony (St. Louis), ENC de Puerto Rico, Fern Street Circus (San Diego), Red Nose Foundation (Indonesia), Trenton Circus Squad (New Jersey) and Zip Zap Circus (South Africa). Streams at 5 p.m. April 3. Tickets: Free or pay-what-you-can. Visit circesteem.org.
Color your world
Chicago Children’s Theatre and the Negaunee Music Institute at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra have collaborated on “Maybe Something Beautiful,” a new virtual short film for children and families. Inspired by the award-winning book by F. Isabel Campoy and Theresa Howell, illustrated by Rafael López, the film brings together five CSO musicians performing classical works by Latino composers, bilingual English-Spanish narration and colorful puppetry to tell a true story about how art can transform a neighborhood into a world of hope and beauty. The free film debuts at 10 a.m. April 1 in an event cohosted by the CCT and the CSO and available afterwards on demand. Visit chicagochildrenstheatre.org or cso.org/tv.
The Conspirators present the return of “Jesus Christ Superstar Do-It-Yourself Messiah Complex,” its annual Easter variety and sing-along extravaganza. The vaudeville-style show features performances of the songs from the 1970 recording of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s classic musical. Performances can range from a simple song over a karaoke track to a modern dance piece or burlesque. Scheduled to perform are Saint Sparklebear, the Cryptid Kid, David Cerda & Friends, Mari DeOleo, Sid Feldman, the Vaudettes, Danielle Levsky, Nathaniel Fishburn, Carey Farrell & the Clamor & Lace Noise Brigade, Sarah Bullion, Gail Gallagher, Jeff Churchwell, Caroline Shaul, Cocktail Jordan & Pearly White, Brian Nemtusak and Rose Freeman, all emceed by Wm. Bullion. Streams free at 7 p.m. April 4. Visit conspirewithus.org.
In Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s filmed staging of Tim Crouch’s “I, Cinna (the poet),” the apolitical poet Cinna from “Julius Caesar” searches for the subject of his new poem in this exploration of words and actions, protests and power. Streams April 5-May 2. Tickets: $25. Visit chicago.shakes.com. … Remy Bumppo Theatre presents “Artist Descending a Staircase,” an early radio play by Tom Stoppard in which two elderly artists examine their emotional and artistic histories. Streams free April 5-18. Visit remybumppo.org. … Ghostlight Ensemble’s launches its new reading series “For Your (Re)Consideration” with Margaret Cavendish’s “The Convent of Pleasure,” a play about a group of unmarried women who create their own perfect, self-functioning society. Livestreams at 2 p.m. April 4 and on demand to April 30. Tickets: $5 or pay-what-you-can. Visit ghostlightensemble.com/for-your-consideration.
Mary Houlihan is a local freelance writer.