Chicago theater reviews

Read the latest reviews of plays, musicals and other stage shows from Time Out's theater critics

Airline Highway

Critics' pick

Partying with the down and out in New Orleans

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Steppenwolf Theatre Company Until Sunday February 8 2015

Newsies

Critics' pick

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

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Oriental Theatre Until Sunday January 4 2015

H.M.S. Pinafore

Critics' pick

The Hypocrites expand their Gilbert & Sullivan Rep

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The Den Theatre Until Saturday February 7 2015

Pericles

Ben Carlson gets his third title role at Chicago Shakes

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Chicago Shakespeare Theater Until Sunday January 18 2015

Panic on Cloud 9

Critics' pick

The Second City Mainstage. Directed by Ryan Bernier. Music directed by Jacob Shuda. With Chelsea Devantez, John Hartman, Paul Jurewicz, Daniel Strauss, Christine Tawfik, Emily Walker. Running time: 2hrs; one intermission. Comedy review by Kris Vire At the top of the Second City's 103rd mainstage revue, we're introduced to a Greyhound bus full of passengers and given peeks into their inner lives and where they're headed. And then, we're told via voice-over, the entire bus and its riders vanish from the face of the Earth, never to be heard from again. It's the kind of opening-sketch setup that invites us to be in on the secret, perhaps returning to these characters and their fates later in the show. But nope, they really are gone, as mysteriously as a Malaysian Airlines flight. That lack of payoff recurs in the fizzle of a closing scene, a short, wordless number involving an exterminator and a school dance whose meaning my date and I are still trying to parse days later. But in the middle is a collection of sketches without much of a cohesive arc but with a number of very solid laughs. There's not a weak link in the cast, three mainstage newbies and three returning from the previous revue, Depraved New World. But wiry human Muppet John Hartman continues as MVP, turning in admirably, slightly dangerous work as a deaf middle-school bully and enlivening a Secret Service sketch with his spring-loaded physicality. In a solo sketch in which he calls people he's recently been inti

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The Second City Mainstage Tuesday December 23 2014 - Sunday August 30 2015

Shining City

Critics' pick

Wrestling with ghosts in Conor McPherson's world

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The Den Theatre Until Sunday January 4 2015

The Nutcracker

Critics' pick

The House's holiday treat retains its magic

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Chopin Theatre Until Tuesday December 30 2014

Camelot

Critics' pick

Drury Lane mounts a lush, bracing new revival

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Drury Lane Oakbrook Terrace Until Sunday January 4 2015

The King and I

Critics' pick

Marriott's production is a Siamese dream

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Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire Until Sunday January 4 2015

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