For the first time in 50 years, the Lyric Opera of Chicago will stage Donizetti’s comic opera The Daughter of the Regiment (Nov. 4-25). Lisette Oropesa, Lawrence Brownlee, Ronnita Miller, and Alessandro Corbelli star in the production from the Metropolitan Opera, the Vienna State Opera, and the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. The performance (pictured above) is sung in French with English titles projected.
Steppenwolf Theatre Company presents the Chicago premiere of Selina Fillinger’s political farce POTUS: Or, Behind Every Great Dumbass Are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive (Oct. 26-Dec. 3) in its downstairs theater. Under the direction of Audrey Francis, the satire offers a comical look at the women in charge of the man in charge. To learn more, visit steppenwolf.org.
Lauren Berman directs What the Constitution Means to Me (through Nov. 12) at Paramount’s Copley Theatre in downtown Aurora. Heidi Schreck’s Tony-nominated play follows four generations of women, while Antioch’s Mosaic Players explore women’s roles in the 1950s via the comedy 5 Lesbians Eating a Quiche (through Nov. 5). For tickets and more information, visit paramountaurora.com and mosaicplayers.com respectively.
Mia McCullough’s dark comedy about a family haunted by mental illness, alcoholism, and Household Spirits (Oct. 6-Nov. 11) makes its world premiere at Theater Wit. Eileen Tull directs the cast which includes Nathan Hile, Ilyssa Fradin, Téa Baum, Doug MacKechnie, Jennifer Jelsema, Cindy Gold, and Joe Zarrow. Visit theaterwit.org for tickets.
Also at Theater Wit is Shattered Globe Theatre’s revival of Arthur Miller’s drama A View From the Bridge (through Oct. 21) which centers around an Italian-American family during the 1950s. “I am thrilled to celebrate this timely revival of one of the shows that first put Shattered Globe on the map. The themes of immigration and searching for refuge are topical and ever present in our community today,” explains SGT’s Producing Artistic Director Sandy Shinner. The production features Scott Aiello, Eileen Niccolai, and Isabelle Muthiah (pictured below). For details, visit sgtheatre.org.
Shakespeare’s rom-com Twelfth Night gets a makeover when director Tyrone Phillips moves the action to the Caribbean isles in Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s Twelfth Night (Oct. 25-Nov. 26) at the Courtyard Theater. “Twelfth Night is all about love, and when I think about love, I think about home and my parents,” says Phillips. “I’m a first-generation Jamaican American, and I want to bring the freedom I feel when I step off the plane in the Caribbean — the vibrancy, the music, the climate — into this production. And in that environment, we’ll create space for the questions this play brings up about how to love yourself, and the freedom to express who you truly are, which in turn gives you the power to love someone else and love your community.”
Mandala South Asian Performing Arts presents the world premiere of Diwali: Illumination (Oct. 12-13) at Chicago’s Harris Theater for Music and Dance. Directed by Mandala Founder and Executive Artistic Director Pranita Nayar, the work features choreography by Nejla Yatkin and an Indo-jazz score by Fareed Haque. “I have been creating dance and music events in the Chicago area since 1998,” notes Nayar. “The impetus behind producing an Indocentric jazz event to celebrate Diwali this year is the increased interest in new directions taken by Indian artists and ‘third culture’ consumers of Indian dance and music.”
Thanks to Prop Thtr and SurTaal Dance, audiences may enjoy the world premiere of Nyra’s Dream (Oct. 27-Nov.19) at Chicago Dramatists. Created and performed by Shalaka Kulkarni, the production incorporates media, contemporary and traditional Indian classical dance. To reserve seats, visit Shalakak.com/surtaaldance.
The Fine Arts Building marks its 125th anniversary (Oct. 13) with a celebration on all ten of its floors. Free and open to the public, Chicago Human Rhythm Project (Studio 300) will teach visitors the Shim Sham during its “Taste O’Tap” presentation; Chicago Opera Theater (Studio 404) offers live music in honor of its 50th anniversary; and Natya Dance Theatre (Curtiss Hall) will perform the Bharatanatyam which combines facial expressions with geometrical body movements. Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival (Studio 433), Jazz Institute of Chicago (lobby), and Liederstube (Studio 721) will also entertain guests.
In addition, the event includes a free concert by pianist Dr. Yulia Lipmanovich in the newly-renovated Studebaker Theater. When it first opened its doors in 1898, the venue presented a piano recital by Fannie Bloomfield Zeisler. As such, Lipmanovich will recreate some of Zeisler’s original setlist to commemorate the anniversary. To register for no-fee tickets, visit fineartsbuilding.com/events/125.