No one mourns the Wicked, right? Well, you might if you aren't able to score tickets to this highly popular tuner based on the best-selling book, now playing through Dec. 21 at the Oriental Theatre. But don't worry! You can still be "pop-yoo-oo-lar" with these equally enjoyable productions.
Through December 1 at Allstate Arena and United Center
Is it spectacle you're after? What's more spectacular than the greatest show on earth? Ringling Bros. offers its 143rd edition of its iconic entertainment, featuring animals, acrobats, magic and comedy. This "Built To Amaze!" production features an animal magic transformation with an outcome so outrageous that it is guaranteed to leave audiences speechless.
Open Run at the Apollo Theater
This long-running Chicago hit features red-hot performances from an ensemble of musician-actors who keep the beat pumping as they crank out hits such as "Blue Suede Shoes," "Great Balls of Fire," "Walk the Line," "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On," "Hound Dog" and more. This is my go-to show when out-of-town friends ask for a fun, decently priced theatre option. And I'm still good friends with each of them, so that must speak for something.
Through December 15 at Theatre Wit
This charming, quirky and winning musical comedy celebrates misfits: specifically middle school spelling nerds. And, let's face it: nerds are very in. While the woes of puberty and self-discovery are sung and danced about in this award-winning musical comedy, Spelling Bee is also very much geared for adults. It's filled with emotionally resonant moments and gut-busting laughs (courtesy of some inspired audience interaction).
Through December 28 at Goodman Theatre
Treat your family to a Chicago theatrical tradition, now in its 36th "bah-humbug" year at the Goodman Theatre. This joyous production boasts a huge cast, stunning visuals and magical staging. What better way to teach your kids the value of selflessness, as well as remind each of us the true meaning of the season?