Kris is senior associate editor of Time Out Chicago, covering theater, comedy and LGBT issues. He can give you the best CTA route to every theater in the city, and you can probably find him at one of them tonight. Follow him on Twitter at @krisvire.
The hit musical Hamilton may have debuted on Broadway, but creator Lin-Manuel Miranda will launch “Hamilton: The Exhibition” in Chicago, gracing Northerly Island with an immersive, stand-alone show (housed in a customized temporary structure) that allows visitors to follow Alexander Hamilton’s path from immigrant to a framer of the Constitution. More than a simple display of props, costumes and artifacts, “Hamilton: The Exhibition” uses the popular musical as a jumping-off point for a multimedia exploration of key moments throughout Hamilton's life. Before it opens to the public on April 27, the exhibit’s creative director (and the musical’s set designer) David Korins spoke with us about five things that visitors can expect from this one-of-a-kind experience. RECOMMENDED: Everything you need to about seeing Hamilton in Chicago 1. Lin-Manuel Miranda in your earUpon entering the exhibit, guests are given headsets that are triggered by sensors placed throughout the space, allowing Miranda to serve as the narrator of Hamilton’s journey from orphan to founding father. Some items and areas inside the exhibit come equipped with even more audio information, which visitors can access by pushing a button on their lanyards. “People who want to read and engage in every single thing can spend more than two hours in the exhibit,” says Korins. 2. An extended journeyWhereas Hamilton abridged many parts of its protagonist’s life, the 20,000-square-foot showcase has more than enough room to
Over the last four days, your newsfeed has likely been inundated with updates from a galaxy far, far away by way of Star Wars Celebration, a massive convention that took over McCormick Place this weekend. Fans were treated to news of the ninth installment in the saga, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, and an accompanying trailer that depicts Rey backflipping over spaceships and teases the return of the evil Emperor Palpatine. Guests also got a sneak peek of the immersive Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge attraction opening at Disneyland and Walt Disney World later this year, as well as a sneak peek at The Mandalorian, a live-action Star Wars TV series that will premier on the Disney+ streaming platform in November. Whether you walked the convention floor in McCormick Place or just happened to be on a Green Line train this weekend, you probably also noticed hundreds of Star Wars fans dressed in Jedi robes, Stormtrooper uniforms, Mandalorian armor and smugglers' jackets. Frankly, the amount of great cosplay at Star Wars Celebration was overwhelming—nearly every time you turned a corner, you were confronted by someone dressed in a detailed Darth Vader costume or radio-controlled replica of R2-D2 beeping and whistling as it rolled by. After spending an afternoon in the thick of the convention, we brought back photos of our favorite costumes (and some amazing droids) that we encountered during Star Wars Celebration. Photograph: Jaclyn Rivas Photograph: Jaclyn Rivas Photograph
There's only one way to get into Janitor's Closet, a secret new speakeasy that's hidden inside boutique hotel FieldHouse Jones. Guests walk through the hotel lobby and take a staircase to the lower level before entering a door marked "Employees Only." Once inside, curiosity seekers are rewarded with intriguing cocktails and an ultra-intimate setting. The aptly named bar is housed inside an actual former janitor's closet, a relic of the building's past as Borden Dairy Depot. Janitor's Closet has just 15 seats, including stools at the bar and booths made to look like seats from an old school bus. The interior is decked out in antiques from flea markets and thrift shops, and the walls are lined with Pine-sol boxes, shaggy mops and vintage paint canisters. Jef Tate (Moneygun) oversees the bar program, with a menu of riffs on classic cocktails crafted with intriguing ingredients like okra-infused vermouth and black garlic kombucha. The Brown Line blends mezcal, tequila, pineapple, tamarind and lime, while the Cafe Con Leche Flip is a pick-me-up in a glass with rum, coffee, heavy cream, simple syrup and egg yolk. "When people come into Janitor’s Closet, I want them to get the vibe that they can be anywhere in the world," says Tate. "I want the space to evoke a sense of wanderlust, and be a place where locals and travelers can meet, share stories and feel the comfort of being surrounded by friends and family." The bar menu also includes wine and locally crafted beer from the lik