We may be stuck at home but that shouldn’t stop you from experiencing Chicago theaters. Be sure to check out the virtual events they have to offer from the comfort of your own living room. With a wide variety of virtual shows, classes, camps, magic and more, here is a list of Chicago theaters hosting virtual events to keep you entertained and engaged while having fun from home!
The comedy doesn’t stop at the world famous Second City! From their living room to ours, they will be hosting live streamed online classes teaching you basics of writing and performing stand up. You can also catch online shows performed by some of The Second City’s best performers and there’s even an online comedy camp for the little ones to keep them engaged and interactive, and ways to improve your business by virtually connecting one another through laughter. Stay up to date with more information on upcoming performances each week posted on their Facebook page.
Dennis Watkins the Magician
Let’s Make It Magical…wherever you are! Dennis Watkins delivers interactive, world-class magic and mind-reading to your team meeting, online event or virtual family gathering via Zoom, YouTube Live, Facebook Live, or other video conference and livestream platforms. Bring the magic to you wherever you are with interactive shows, workshops, happy hours & more. If you’re looking for a new hobby Dennis can also work one on one or with a small group to teach you to become a great magician.
Chicago Shakespeare Theater
While Navy Pier may be closed right now, that shouldn’t keep you from staying virtually connected with the theater’s new digital platform, “Shakes@Home”. The platform is updated each week bringing you engaging, original content and culture from their artists, educators and staff. Explore this unique and enjoyable online portal featuring video playlists from some of Chicago’s Shakespeare top moments, audio recordings of pre-show talks, activities for the little ones, and an ongoing Living Room Sonnet Series.
We all need a good laugh to break up our days and nights from blending into one another. Thankfully Comedy Sportz has come up with new ways to offer this to their loyal fans. Comedy Sportz, home to family-friendly improv comedy, is hosting virtual kid shows, workshops and their famous ComedySportz shows. Known for the past 30 years, ComedySportz is now available virtually on Friday & Saturday nights at 7:30pm & 9:30pm CST. Their professional comedians are offering to host virtual training, team building, brainstorming, and customer service role playing to make your webinar fun and unique.
Not sure how to spend your time at home? Why not start a new hobby by bringing the Annoyance Theatre right to your own home with their online theatre courses teaching the basics of improv, voice overs, storytelling, creating props, and more. Creating some of Chicago’s finest comedy for over 30 years now, The Annoyance Theatre is home to performing improv to create new and original plays, musicals, sketch-comedy and more with their spirited and imaginative environment.
Broadway in Chicago
Created in July of 2000, over the past 18 years, Broadway in Chicago has grown to become one of the largest commercial touring homes in America. Continuing to update changes in show schedules due to the coronavirus shutdown, Broadway in Chicago has launched “Around Broadway in 80 Days” acknowledging Illinois High School Musical Theatre awards with video submissions from Illinois teens. Twenty-four outstanding high school actors and actresses will be recognized during this virtual experience.
Chicago’s oldest and largest non-for-profit theater is offering plays to be live streamed for you to enjoy in the comfort of your own home. Jocelyn Bioh’s play, “Schools Girls; or The African Mean Girls Play” directed by Lili-Anne Brown has been extended due to high demand and now available to stream through May 31st. In addition, Robert Bolaño’s “2666” play that was originally produced February 6- March 20, 2016 is now available online for free with unlimited streaming.
Steppenwolf Theatre Company has become one of the country’s premier ensemble theaters with goals of redefining the landscape of acting and performance. Now providing many ways to virtually connect with their production cast, they have launched an interview-style podcast, “Half Hour” explaining to the audience what it’s like behind the scenes before a show. Sitting down while making one-on-one connections virtually between the ensemble members in the Steppenwolf family, hearing their personal stories of how they prepare themselves and what motivates them to create theatre.
They are also hosting free virtual programs throughout the month of May catered to teens, educators, early career professionals and beyond, going through playwriting skills and Q&As with Steppenwolf Theatre’s ensemble.
No matter what type of theater fan you are, there is a virtual show for you!
Written by: Monica Liwag