Five Things to Do This Weekend: August 2–4
It’s the first weekend of August, which means that Grant Park has been taken over by music-loving hordes of Lollapalooza fans. This weekend’s guide has a musical quality to it, too, from festival after parties that bring the Lolla liveliness to clubs around the city to the sweet strains of the Elgin Youth Symphony Orchestra. We’re also celebrating sounds of a different stripe: listen to the whoosh of flying disks at the American Ultimate Disc League Championships, marvel at the acoustics of Steppenwolf’s black box, or view artist Kerry Hirth’s visual representations of Woody Guthrie’s most famous song.
The After Parties of Lollapalooza
Celebrate Lollapalooza with after parties honoring Chicago’s biggest music weekend.
Where: Clubs around the city
Tip: Book while you can—much like the festival itself, these shows will likely sell out.
Here’s the bad news: most of Lollapalooza’s big-name after shows sold out weeks ago (sorry, Lana Del Rey fans). Fortunately, even if you don’t want to sell your car to StubHub, there are still plenty of options for post-festival partying. On Friday, the men of Hot Chip will spend the evening spinning floor-busting grooves and getting their nails done during an intimate DJ set at Beauty Bar ($5; limited tickets available at the door starting at 9 p.m.). Saturday night finds Jenny Lewis and Jimmy Tamborello of The Postal Service testing Debonair Social Club’s tear-proof floors during DJ sets from members of The Embassy, Kill Hannah, and Cat Power’s backing band (no cover with RSVP). Even though it’s a work night, Sunday still has something to offer: Canada’s Art Department caps off Chicago’s biggest music weekend with a set of underground sound at SpyBar.
Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s 2013 First Look Repertory of New Work
Discover the acclaimed playwrights of tomorrow with Steppenwolf Theatre's showcase of new works.
When: Friday–Sunday; see the full calendar
Where: The Garage
Tip: In addition to the three featured plays, the repertory schedule also features free (with required RSVP) readings of new plays on August 9 and 10.
Now in its eighth season, Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s First Look Repertory of New Work brings to life new, challenging works by the next generation of blockbuster playwrights. Three new plays highlight the showcase’s opening weekend: The Gospel of Franklin (Friday and Sunday at 8 p.m.; Saturday at 1 p.m.) tells the story of a man of faith tested by his own need for help; Buena Vista (Saturday and Sunday at 4:30 p.m.) unpacks a tense family drama against the backdrop of the isolated Colorado wilderness; and Annie Bosh Is Missing (Saturday at 8 p.m.; Sunday at 1 p.m.) finds one woman looking for a sense of purpose after rehab on the streets of post-Katrina Houston. Each play is staged in The Garage, Steppenwolf’s intimate black box located, appropriately, on the first floor of the theater’s parking garage.
American Ultimate Disc League Championships
Cheer on the hometown Windy City Wildfire as they compete for the AUDL’s highest honor.
When: Saturday at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.; Sunday at 1 p.m.
Where: Lane Tech College Prep High School
Cost: $12.50–$22.50; check out the full pricing breakdown for package options
Tip: Want to keep the Ultimate vibes going once the last whistle ends? Head to the Hyatt Regency Chicago—the league’s downtown home-away-from-home during the tournament—and grab a quick nightcap at Big Bar.
Fun is in the air around Lane Tech Stadium, and it’s suspiciously shaped like a Frisbee. It’s no wonder—on Friday, the professional athletes of the American Ultimate Disc League will descend on the high school’s stadium for their second-annual league championship. The Saturday schedule features matches to determine the league’s two division champions: the afternoon game features the undefeated Toronto Rush battling the New York Empire for control of the Eastern Division, while the evening match pits the hometown Windy City Wildfire against the dastardly Wisconsinites of the Madison Radicals in pursuit of Midwestern Division glory. The winners of each match will meet for the season’s final contest on Sunday, with the victors walking away as the champions of America’s highest level of disk-based competition.
Tchaikovsky Discovers America with the Elgin Youth Symphony Orchestra
Relive Tchaikovsky’s 1891 trip to the United States with a program from the Fox River Valley’s finest young musicians.
When: Saturday at 11 a.m.
Cost: Reserved seats are $15; lawn admission is $5
Tip: Snag an up-close look at some of the orchestra’s most iconic instruments at the post-show instrument petting zoo at the Martin Theatre Plaza.
On Saturday morning, the Pavilion at Ravinia will resound with the sounds of czarist Russia as the Elgin Youth Symphony Orchestra booms its way through Tchaikovsky Discovers America. Under the direction of guest conductor and Julliard School faculty member George Stelluto, the Fox River Valley’s finest high-school and college-aged musicians tackle excerpts of more than 25 of the composer’s best-loved works, including the 1812 Overture and snippets from The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, and Swan Lake. While they play, two actors heighten the program’s drama, weaving together scenes from Tchaikovsky's ballets with historical moments from his grand 1891 trip to New York for the opening of Carnegie Hall.
This Land Is Your Land
Painter Kerry Hirth recreates Woody Guthrie’s America through the use of abstract color.
Where: ARC Gallery
Tip: After visiting the show, pop next door and download some Woody Guthrie tunes of your own with the help of free WiFi from Bucktown Beanery.
The phenomenon of synesthesia is on display at Bucktown’s ARC Gallery, where artist and musician Kerry Hirth’s ability to translate musical harmony into color manifests itself in the paintings of This Land Is Your Land. Inspired by the song of the same name by the legendary folk singer Woody Guthrie, Hirth’s paintings honor the American scenes described in the lyrics through the use of abstract color. Hues representing majestic sunsets, Badlands geology, and the rolling hills of the Missouri Ozarks all hide in plain sight within the canvas boundaries.