24/7 City Secrets airs after Saturday Night Live at 12:30am on NBC5 Chicago

BON VIVANT: September 5-9, 2013

For our event-addicted, dolce vida-loving readers, “24/7” tracks down and uploads our favorite fêtes and the most delicious, gastronomic happenings going on this week.

Chicago Fringe Festival copyThursday, September 5
WHAT: Chicago Fringe Festival’s “Love. Guts. High School.”
WHERE: The Gift Theatre, 4802 N. Milwaukee Avenue
WHEN: 8:30 p.m.
$$$: $10 per person plus a one-time $5 festival button. Click HERE for tickets and show information.

“24/7” Tip: O-M-G. Who doesn’t have their own deeply personal, “falling-in-love-in-high-school-in-a-really-big-way” story? Sure most everyone’s coming-of-age confessions veer towards the “trivially tame” (unless we are noting William Shakespeare’s sensitive, romance-kiboshing “Romeo & Juliet”), there’s something truly sublime and de rigeur about playwright/actress *Jeanette Bonner’s (photo below left) autobiographical account of young love and lessons, finally!, learned.



What is your romantic status?
I’m single and live in New York City – a tough combo when you’re trying to meet nice single guys! It’s like everyone has the attention span of a mouse.

Why should people attend Love. Guts. High School.? What is the show’s unique message?
This show is a universal story of young love and acceptance. It’s set during a period in our lives when most of us are trying to discover who we are and how, very often, our true identities get mixed up in the perception of how other people see us. It asks: Can you truly love someone when you don’t know yourself yet? Ultimately, it’s about learning to like yourself more than the object of your affection.

If you could give your younger self (or a teen going through the same turmoils you did in high school) some sage wisdom about love, what would it be?
I’m certainly not an expert but if I could reach back to my younger self I would say: “Forgive yourself.” I would not say “don’t fall in love” because we learn by making mistakes. It’s important that kids understand it’s okay not to be perfect or feel they have to mold themselves into someone they think others will admire.

Besides your one-woman show, what other projects are you working on?
When I’m not performing, I am growing my production company, Kelly’s Pool Hall Productions. It’s a New York-based production company that collaborates on other projects and productions. I also give walking tours with a company called “Real New York Tours”. It’s so much fun introducing tourists from around the world to the joys of New York.

What’s your favorite thing about Chicago?
My brother lives and works in Chicago so I try to visit as often as I can. I love the city’s vibrant theatre scene and I always try to catch a show by the Improvised Shakespeare Company. I love giving tours (being a NYC tour guide, I should!) but Chicago tours are some of the finest in the country. I enjoy learning about Chicago’s exciting and storied history, architecture and diverse neighborhoods by boat, trolley, and now!, Segway.

Nora DunnFriday, September 6
WHAT: Nora Dunn’s Mythical Proportions
WHERE: Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Avenue
WHEN: 8:00 – 9:10pm (show runs through September 22, 2013)
$$$: $28. Tax-deductible contributions also accepted. For more information or to purchase tickets, click HERE.

“24/7” TIP: What do you get when you combine Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood reruns, a drunken pig, and a Hollywood cocktail party addict? A late-night comedy sketch or, in this case, Nora Dunn’s newest, never not-funny, one-woman show. In seventy-five minutes, the former SNL legend invites us into her world for a personal tour – from growing up Irish on Chicago’s West Side to climbing the Hollywood ladder – and even introduces us to a fresh crop of Dunn-inspired characters. Buckle up, it’s going to be a wild ride.

Carbon FootprintSaturday, September 7
WHAT: Cultivate Festival
WHERE: 2045 N. Lincoln Park West
WHEN: 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
$$$: Free; click HERE for more details.

“24/7” Tip: We cannot fib: figuring out a solution to minimizing Earth’s carbon footprint has been giving us quite a bit of grief lately (maybe not as much as asking our editor for a raise but it’s up there). Lucky for us, Chipotle’s popular food fest – which features educational demos about sustainability; interactive, culinary demos by leading chefs like Paul Kahan, Tony Mantuano and others; beer and wine tastings; and live entertainment – offers a simple solution that’s non-addictive and easy to swallow.
Violet BeauregardeWHAT: Green Tie Ball XXII
WHERE: Finkl & Sons, 2011 N. Southport Avenue
When: 8:30 p.m.
$$$: Tickets start at $100; includes cocktails, signature bites from the city’s top dining destinations and live entertainment. To purchase, click HERE.

“24/7” Tip: Can’t think of a better way to help fund Chicago’s expressway beautification process than by dressing up as one of the iconic characters from Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory? Neither could we. The gum-smacking enfant terrible, Violet Beauregarde, in all her bloated, lavender-hued glory is our top pick. Nevertheless, if there’s a less ostentatious way of making it to the front of the drink line without being rolled by a pair of Oompa Loompas, we hope you’ll let us know.

PageantMonday, September 9
WHAT: Pageant: The Musical
WHERE Laugh Factory Chicago, 3175 N. Broadway
WHEN: 7:30 p.m.
$$$: $40 General Admission or $100 VIP Admission; includes cocktails and seating. Monies benefit The Abzyme Research Foundation. For more information or to purchase tickets, click HERE.

“24/7” TIP: When a press release cries: “one time only!”, visions of Jesus on the Mount or shopping arm-in-arm with a Victoria’s Secret supermodel pop to mind. So when we heard the catastrophically-talented Chicago cast of “The Book of Mormon” was giving its theatrical, tranny take on a Miss America-meets-To Wong Foo talent competition, we immediately cleared our calendars. Money shot: The audience picks their favorite star to be crowned “Miss Glamouresse 2014” at the finale of the show.

Have an upcoming event you don’t want “24/7” to miss? Contact Kerry Shorr at: silvershorr@hotmail.com

Kerry Shorr, 24/7 Contributing Writer
Co-Founder, Luxe File Chicago

Photo credit:
Nora Dunn courtesy of Tina Smothers

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