Theater

The best theater in Chicago, including play and musical critical reviews

Theater

The best Chicago theater of 2014

The year on Chicago stages has been a fairly strong one, filled as per usual with ambitious new works, creative stagings and new artists and companies entering the fray ready to make their marks. Offstage, the Chicago theater community has been tested by a rocky road, with the folding of stalwart companies like Theatre Seven of Chicago, Pavement Group and, most shockingly, Next Theatre Company. RECOMMENDED: Complete list of the best of 2014 On the human side, things were even more devastating, including among the losses of too many others the double-whammy of actors Molly Glynn and Bernie Yvon, killed in tragic accidents withing 48 hours of each other; soon after, we said goodbye to performing-arts paterfamilias Sheldon Patinkin, whose 50+ years of nurturing Chicago artists still seem too short. So it seems exceptionally appropriate that so much of this year's best work came from Chicago theater's tight-knit ensembles. There are star turns here and there on the list (Mary Beth Fisher, Kate Fry, Danni Smith), but they lived among and thrived upon large casts giving their all to the collective whole. And speaking of giving their all, the year's top play couldn't have been made without the loyalty and commitment of an ever-growing company of collaborators to the big ideas of its founder. Read on for the best new productions Chicago's thriving theater scene offered up in 2014.

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Theater

15 theater shows to see this winter

These 15 plays and musicals are the winter theater shows to see

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Christmas plays and holiday theater in Chicago

Revisit your favorite carols and other perennials, or start a new seasonal tradition

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Musical theater in Chicago

Find new and classic musicals and revues onstage in Chicago

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Children's theater and family-friendly plays in Chicago

Stage shows for tots, tweens and families

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Latest theater reviews

Airline Highway

Partying with the down and out in New Orleans

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Theater

Newsies

Disney's stage urchins are thrillingly athletic and thoroughly charming on tour

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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H.M.S. Pinafore

The Hypocrites expand their Gilbert & Sullivan Rep

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Twist Your Dickens, or Scrooge You!

The Second City gives the Goodman a good Scroogeing

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Time Out loves

The King and I

Marriott's production is a Siamese dream

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Camelot

Drury Lane mounts a lush, bracing new revival

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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The Mousetrap

The classic mystery gets a fine new staging

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Hot Georgia Sunday

Sharply acted tales of Southern discomfort

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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The Nutcracker

The House's holiday treat retains its magic

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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The Humans

Stephen Karam's terrific new play turns on family ties and fears

Time Out says
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Theater features

Theater

Jessie Mueller and company spend A Night at the Tonys

The Chicago Humanities Festival concert traversed six-plus decades of musical theater

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Theater

Dee Snider on his Rock & Roll Christmas Tale

The Twisted Sister frontman and reality TV regular tells us why he's putting his name on a holiday musical

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Theater

Josh Young and Erin Mackey on Amazing Grace

The rising Broadway stars, who lead the cast of the ambitious new musical, tell us how sweet the sound will be

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Theater

Jeff Awards 2014: Equity Wing winners

Goodman, Writers and American Blues Theater lead the pack

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Theater

Michael Cera, Kieran Culkin and Tavi Gevinson: Interview

The cast of This Is Our Youth on Kenneth Lonergan’s play, the heinousness of auditioning and the universal truths of growing up

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What's playing at…

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Steppenwolf Theatre Company

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Goodman Theatre

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Victory Gardens Biograph Theater

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The Den Theatre

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Greenhouse Theater Center

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Theater Wit

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Chicago Shakespeare Theater

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Things to Do

Stage 773

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Chopin Theatre

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Athenaeum Theatre

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2014–15 season announcements

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Drury Lane Oakbrook Terrace

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Eclipse Theatre Company

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Adventure Stage Chicago

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Chicago Dramatists

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Trap Door Theatre

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Bailiwick Chicago

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More 2014–15 theater season announcements