10 Hot Shows to See in Chicago


The League of Chicago Theatres rounds up this month's theatrical favs.

With more than 250 theater companies, Chicago is renowned around the world for its innovative and vibrant theater scene.  Add a performance (or two or three) to your Chicago itinerary — plus, experience many shows on a budget with HALF-PRICE THEATER TICKETS FROM HOT TIX! From Broadway musicals and world premieres to intimate dramas and sidesplitting comedies, you could fill every night of your visit with a front-row performance.

And if you’re thinking of planning your visit to Chicago in February, don’t miss CHICAGO THEATRE WEEK from February 8-18, when over 120 shows offer tickets for only $15 or $30!

Here, then, are 10 top plays and musicals — both traditional favorites and main stage headliners — with discount tickets during the month of January.

1. Red Velvet

Chicago Shakespeare Theater
800 E. Grand Ave. on Navy Pier
Now playing through January 21, 2018

Red Velvet - Chicago Shakespeare

This multi-award-winning play transports audiences to the turbulent backstage world of London’s Theatre Royal in the mid-1800s. Edmund Kean, the greatest Shakespearean actor of his age, collapses on stage while performing the lead in Othello. He is replaced by a young, black actor, Ira Aldridge — a first for the role on London’s West End. As a bill in Parliament promoting the abolition of slavery sends shock waves through the streets, how will London react to his performance? Gary Griffin stages this fascinating true story of a pivotal figure in theater history.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

2. Potted Potter

Broadway In Chicago at the Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place
175 E. Chestnut Ave. along the Magnificent Mile
Now playing through January 21, 2018

Potted Potter 2018

This family friendly show takes on the ultimate challenge of condensing all seven Harry Potter books (and a real-life game of Quidditch) into 70 hilarious minutes. This fantastically funny performance features all your favorite characters, a special appearance from a fire-breathing dragon, fabulous costumes, brilliant songs, ridiculous props, and a generous helping of Hogwarts magic. Recommended for ages 6 and up.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!


Steppenwolf Theatre Company
1650 N. Halsted Ave. in Lincoln Park
Now playing through January 28, 2018


Messed up stuff happens. After an unsavory wake-up call, Octavia decides to put off her troubles and have one last turn up with her friends. In poet Aziza Barnes’ ingenious portrait of a day in the life of four young black women discovering life’s uncomfortable truths in New York City, BLKS explores the joy and anguish of growing up and out. Riotously funny and distinctly rendered, Barnes’ playwriting debut marks the arrival of a truly original contemporary American voice. Mature audiences only.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

4. Beautiful – The Carole King Musical

Broadway In Chicago at the Cadillac Palace Theatre
151 W. Randolph St. in Chicago’s Theater District
Now playing through January 28, 2018

Beautiful - Carole King

Long before she was chart-topping music legend Carole King, she was Carol Klein, Brooklyn girl with passion and chutzpah. Beautiful tells the inspiring true story of King’s remarkable rise to stardom, from being part of a hit songwriting team with her husband Gerry Goffin, to her relationship with fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann, and ultimately to becoming one of the most successful solo acts in popular music history. Recommended for ages 11 and up.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

5. Insurrection: Holding History

Stage Left Theatre at the Athenaeum Theatre
2936 N. Southport Ave. in Lakeview
January 5 – February 11, 2018 *also participating in Chicago Theatre Week!

Ron, a young, gay African American graduate student, trying to complete his thesis on Nat Turner’s slave rebellion, is feeling lost in his life and alienated from his family. When his 189-year-old great, great grandfather TJ takes him back in time to meet Turner in the flesh, both men find answers they never expected. The play deals with themes of racial identity and sexuality, as Ron comes to face his ancestors’ history and his own personal identity. A raucous, wrenching story, part Roots, part The Wizard of Oz, part In Living Color, and all Robert O’Hara, Insurrection: Holding History will change how you see the past, and just maybe yourself as well.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

6. The Antelope Party (World Premiere)

Theater Wit
1229 W. Belmont Ave. in Lakeview
January 5 – February 24, 2018 *also participating in Chicago Theatre Week!

It's sometime in the 2010s. The Rust Belt Ponies Meet Up Group for Adult Fans of My Little Pony has gathered in Ben's Philadelphia apartment, but two of their company have not yet arrived. A new recruit seems unusually shy and curiously paranoid about a local neighborhood watch group. What happened to their pegasister friend, Maggie? Why is Brony Doug so paranoid? What does it all have to do with the 9/11 Truthers and an emerging group of "concerned citizens”? And that's just the first ten minutes.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

7. For The Loyal

Interrobang Theatre Project at the Athenaeum Theatre
2936 N. Southport Ave. in Lakeview
January 6 – February 4, 2018

For Toby and Mia, college football and family are one and the same; he has a new coaching job for a top team, and they are happily expecting their first child. But when Toby gets Mia enmeshed in an unseemly team secret, she is forced to decide where her loyalties truly lie. Inspired by the Penn State sexual abuse scandal, For The Loyal takes an unconventional and provocative look at how one woman traverses a no-win situation.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

8. All My Sons

Court Theatre
5535 S. Ellis Ave. in Hyde Park
January 11 – February 11, 2018 *also participating in Chicago Theatre Week!

All My Sons established playwright Arthur Miller as an American theater icon, and won the 1947 Drama Critics’ Award for Best New Play. Local businessman and manufacturer Joe Keller developed a bitter history with his business partner after dealing with profound tragedy during World War II. Despite the odds, love blossoms between Joe’s son Chris and his partner’s daughter Ann. Joe is destined to face old dilemmas and defend his decisions in this electrifying family drama.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

9. Rose

Greenhouse Theater Center
2257 N. Lincoln Ave. in Lincoln Park
January 12 – March 11, 2018 *also participating in Chicago Theatre Week!

Rose Greenhouse

An intimate portrait of Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy, Camelot’s “queen mother,” as she retraces the rise and fall of her great family. Based on never-before-heard interviews compiled by distinguished Kennedy biographer Laurence Leamer, returning to the stage after a sold-out Chicago and Off-Broadway run!
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

10. Montauciel Takes Flight (World Premiere)

Lifeline Theatre
6912 N. Glenwood Ave. in Rogers Park
January 13 – February 18, 2018 *also participating in Chicago Theatre Week!

Montauciel Takes Flight - Lifeline

Montauciel’s name may mean “climb-to-the-sky,” but for all her life the young ewe has been stuck on the ground. Then, one day, her adventurous spirit carries her to the town of Annonay, where she teams up with the legendary Montgolfier brothers. Bringing her ingenuity and love of science to bear, Montauciel helps the two scientists invent the hot air balloon, and she soon finds herself captaining the first “manned” test flight, with a duck and a rooster as trusty co-pilots. Recommended for kids 5 and up.
Check for half-price tickets at Hot Tix!

Note: Schedules are subject to change; visit the Hot Tix website for up-to-the-minute dates and half-price ticket availability. Visit to find other exciting productions on stage while you're here, and get insider guides to all things performing arts and the Chicago theatre scene to create your Chicago itinerary.

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