Helmed by Victor Muenzer, a Grammy-winning conductor and trumpeter, the Park Ridge Civic Orchestra breathes new life into classical masterworks, operatic favorites, and Broadway hits. Instead of hiring Shakespeare’s ghost to run a kissing booth, the orchestra delivers two tributes to his most famous love story, Romeo & Juliet, in its "Valentine Romance" program. A cadre of soloists who have played with venerable Chicagoland and international orchestras make hearts swoon during Prokofiev’s emotionally intense Romeo & Juliet, op. 64 and a star-crossed suite from Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story. In addition to performing a solo, local violist Dan Golden will premiere his latest composition, Eine Kleine Klezmer Musik, a danceable love song to Jewish music from Eastern Europe.
Pickwick Theatre, home to one of the Chicago area’s largest theaters, showcases the latest Hollywood blockbusters inside a historic, registered-landmark building. Patrons flood their visual and aural receptors with the theater’s current list of films displayed on one of three screens, including an expansive main auditorium that seats 1,000 people or mannequins comically brought to life. Popcorn and soda keep bodily hungers sated throughout films' airtime and prevent stomach growls from interrupting key dialogue.
Under the newly minted leadership of 2010 Euroleague champion and Final Four fixture Pokey Chatman, the Chicago Sky’s seasoned hoopsters promise an exhilarating sixth season. Fans can brandish laminated welcome banners for fresh talent, such as point guard Courtney Vandersloot and Tennessee's Michelle Snow, while raining roses on returning basket baroness Sylvia Fowles, an All-Star center and mediocre grilled-cheese chef. Fans can engage in a slew of pregame activities, which include a 5:30 p.m. tailgating on June 10, a military festival on June 17, and a green-focused event on June 25, featuring WNBA legend Diana Taurasi.
Facilitating the fan-delighting collision of comic-book universes and intergalactic heroes, Wizard World organizes Comic Cons and pop-culture conventions across the continent. At each event, stars from the silver screen set down roots in booths across the convention floor, wielding markers for autographs and their photo-op-ready smiles. Past guests have run the gamut from William Shatner, Patrick Stewart, and the cast of AMC?s The Walking Dead. Away from the crowds, stars also participate in talks and Q&A panels as part of the event?s programming. Along with beloved actors, Wizard World?s conventions grant guests a chance to interact with writers and artists as well as partake in activities such as gaming tournaments and costume contests.
For Delores Balogun, the founder of iGlow Mentoring, it was the inspiration from mentors in her own girlhood that carved her path toward motivating girls and young women to empower themselves. Now, the humanitarian establishes regular mentoring events and programs that encourage female youngsters to believe in themselves and learn from each other, hopefully—as the iGlow acronym illustrates—Inspiring Girls to Lead Our World.
The DePaul Blue Demons tip off 2012 under the national spotlight, opening this season's conference play against Big East rival and top-ranked squad Syracuse Orange on New Year's Day. In his second year at the helm, Head Coach Oliver Purnell leads the up-and-coming Blue Demon battalion, which has sprinted to an impressive 9–3 start through 12 games. Reigning Big East Rookie of the Year and proficient scorer Cleveland Melvin anchors a potent DePaul offensive attack, dazzling hoops fans with rafter-rattling dunks, aggressive rebounds, and a penchant for drawing up elaborate plays on his pocket Etch A Sketch. Behind legendary coach Jim Boeheim, Syracuse charges onto the Allstate Arena court as one of the country's best teams, which has garnered iy an elite ranking in national polls and explains why a troupe of trumpeters escorts the players from the locker room before each game.