Things to do in Chicago today

The day's best things to do in Chicago—including free and cheap activities, concerts, screenings, shows, parties and more. It's your social emergency savior.

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Looking for something to do this evening? Have a friend coming into town who wants to see the sights? You're in luck, because Chicago is a city filled with attractions and things to do (including some that cost absolutely nothing). Seize the moment with our list of today's best concerts, shows, activities and more.

"Scream With Me: A Solo Exhibition by Brian Ewing"

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Ohio-based illustrator Brian Ewing presents a selection of work centered around the horror genre in Scream With Me, his latest solo exhibition at Galerie F. The show includes prints inspired by Psycho and The Shining as well as terrifying stickers and an exclusive vinyl toy release from Metacrypt. The exhibit opens on November 7, with a reception

  1. Galerie F 2381 N Milwaukee Ave, at Fullerton Ave
  2. Fri Nov 28 - Tue Dec 2
More info

Good Vybes Fest

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

This annual garage-punk-psych spectacular spotlights Logan Square's Eye Vybe Records, one of those imprints that still issues cassettes. There's a lot of bleed between this inaugural fest and the Hozac Blackout fest. Friday night sees fuzz act Purling Hiss headlining over Beset by Creatures of the Deep, Moss Folk and the Hanging Gardens. The second

  1. Empty Bottle 1035 N Western Ave, at Cortez St
  2. Fri Nov 28 - Sat Nov 29
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"Jermaine Rogers: Crimes Against Trees"

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Texas artist and designer Jermaine Rogers is best known for his colorful, irreverent concert posters, which frequently feature demented depictions of cartoon animals. Rogers is also well-known figure in the designer toy community, creating limited edition vinyl figurines that are sought after by collectors. Fans can get a closer look at some of his more

  1. Rotofugi 2780 N Lincoln Ave, at Diversey Ave
  2. Fri Nov 28 - Sun Nov 30
More info

Lucinda Williams

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Lucinda Williams has a long, beautiful musical history in country music, and that history's about to grow even longer with the release of her double album, Down Where the Spirit Meets the Bone. Williams released a 10-minute cover of JJ Cale’s “Magnolia” from Bone, which will hopefully be one of many tracks she delves into for this headlining show.

  1. Vic Theatre 3145 N Sheffield Ave, at Belmont Ave
  2. Fri Nov 28
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Titanic

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Griffin Theatre Company at Theater Wit. Music and lyrics by Maury Yeston. Book by Peter Stone. Directed by Scott Weinstein. With ensemble cast. Running time: 2hrs 15mins; one intermission. Theater review by Kris Vire Maury Yeston and Peter Stone's musical about the tragic fate of the behemoth ocean liner sailed some choppy waters on the way to its 1997

  1. Theater Wit 1229 W Belmont Ave, between Racine and Lakewood Aves
  2. Sat Oct 18 - Sun Dec 7
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"Earthly Delights"

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

As modern art continues to embrace minimalism, the MCA presents an exhibition of work from its permanent collection that explores the inherent pleasure and aesthetic beauty of art. Collecting paintings, sculptures, and installations by eight artists, "Earthly Delights" includes pieces that use decoration and design to confront social issues like gender and

  1. Museum of Contemporary Art 220 E Chicago Ave, at Mies van der Rohe Way
  2. Fri Nov 28 - Sun Nov 30
More info

You, Me, Them, Everybody Live 5 Year Anniversary Show

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Live talk show You, Me, Them, Everybody returns to the Hungry Brain for one final night, before the beloved Roscoe Village bar closes in December. Coincidentally, the show will also be celebrating its fifth anniversary. Host and creator Brandon Wetherbee will be joined by a variety of musicians, performers and writers, including Al Scorch, Deadbeat

  1. Hungry Brain 2319 W Belmont Ave, between Oakley and Western Aves
  2. Fri Nov 28
More info

Vic Mensa

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Former Kids These Days frontman Mensa has slowly built buzz on the back of his solo mixtape INANETAPE. His lyrical, introspective rhymes put him in the pool of potential "next Chance the Rappers," ready to break out of Chicago into the mainstream. Here he plays an all-ages show for the Black Friday crowd.

  1. Metro Chicago 3730 N Clark St, between Waveland and Racine Aves
  2. Fri Nov 28
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"Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey"

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Born in Nairobi, Kenya and living in New York since the early '90s, international artist Wangechi Mutu is best known for her large-scale collages, which depict female figures in abstract locales. A Fantastic Journey comprises the first survey of her work to be displayed in the United States, assembling more than 50 pieces as well as an environmental

  1. Mary & Leigh Block Museum of Art Northwestern University, 40 Arts Circle Dr
  2. Fri Nov 28 - Sun Dec 7
More info

Bro Safari: Craze + CRNKN + Ape Drums

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

The name of the party, Bro Safari, underlines the frat party vibe here. Trust us, it sounds better than it reads on paper, and should tickle any Diplo fanatic. DJ Craze, a Miami bass master who shifts gears between trap, house and dancehall, headlines. The man known as CRNKN also plays in the trap-house end of the pool, with a slicker, more soulful bent.

  1. Concord Music Hall 2047 N Milwaukee Ave, campbell ave and bingham st
  2. Fri Nov 28
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Women at War

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Rivendell Theatre Ensemble. By Megan Carney. Directed by Tara Mallen. With ensemble cast. Running time: 1hr 15mins; no intermission. Theater review by Kevin Thomas The female soldier is one of the most significant developments of the 21st century that we often overlook; to have women employed, in large numbers, as riflemen, pilots, mechanics, and

  1. Rivendell Theatre 5779 N Ridge Ave, between Edgewater and Ardmore Aves
  2. Wed Nov 5 - Sat Dec 6
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"Experiments in Environment: The Halprin Workshops, 1966-1971"

  • Critics choice
  • Free

In the late 1960s, American landscape architect Lawrence Halprin and avant-garde dance pioneer Anna Halprin brought together a group of dancers, architects, environmental designers and artists for a collaborative workshop. The Graham Foundation's latest exhibition explores the results of this unconventional creative melting pot, displaying plans,

  1. Graham Foundation 4 W Burton Pl, at State St
  2. Fri Nov 28 - Sat Dec 13
More info

Mercado Navideno

  • Critics choice

From ornaments to nativity scenes, as well as T-shirts and jewelry, the National Museum of Mexican Art's Mercado Navideño (Christmas Market, of course) has something for everyone. Members recieve 30 percent off of purchases during the market.

  1. National Museum of Mexican Art 1852 W 19th St, between Wolcott Ave and Wood St
  2. Fri Nov 28 - Sun Nov 30
More info

Lydia Loveless

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

As you might guess from the name, Lydia Loveless presents a modern take on ol' Loretta Lynn–style country. Her latest for Bloodshot, Somewhere Else, is more of a straightahead rock record, though such a bland description does little justice to the weilded knife of the 23-year-old's voice, which comes off as Stevie Nicks fronting the Replacements on these

  1. Lincoln Hall 2424 N Lincoln Ave, between Fullerton Ave and Montana St
  2. Fri Nov 28
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Syl Johnson

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

A peerless soul auteur with a remarkable, underappreciated body of work, Syl Johnson is in the midst of a well-deserved resurgence. The Mississippi-born, Chicago-based singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer was already a seasoned veteran when he burst onto the R&B charts in 1967 with the gritty dance-floor hits “Come On Sock It to Me” and

  1. SPACE 3433–37 W Peterson Ave, at Bernard St
  2. Fri Nov 28
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