After a brief late-summer lull, Chicago theater is gearing up for an exciting fall. Besides a full roster of comedies, tragedies, melodramas, and musicals – quite a few of them premieres – there seem to be a lot of plays devoted to important historical events. Happily, quite a few of the city’s best actors are taking on roles that suit them perfectly.
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Short runs of visiting one-person shows are not included in the listings below, but they range from David Payne’s “An Evening with C.S. Lewis” to John Leguizamo’s “Latin History for Morons,” both part of Broadway in Chicago’s line-up. A number of theater festivals also are on the bill, among them “Destinos, The 3rd Chicago International Latino Theater Festival” Sept. 19-Oct. 27.
Here, chronologically, are 16 September and October productions not to miss. Call ahead for locations, times, tickets, and any changes.
“The Band’s Visit,” Cadillac Palace Theatre (800-775-2000) through Sept. 15
The New York Times called this winner of 10 Tony Awards, directed by Chicago native David Cromer, “one of the most ravishing musicals you will ever be seduced by.” Based on the screenplay by Eran Kolirin, with a book by Itamar Moses and music and lyrics by David Yazbek, it tells the laughter-and-longing-filled story of an Egyptian band stranded in a remote Israeli village in the middle of the desert. The touring version doesn’t have Broadway stars Tony Shalhoub and Katrina Lenk, but Sasson Gabay and Chilina Kennedy should be worthy stand-ins.