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Shame That Tune

Open run: the second Fri of each month, 6:30 PM

A monthly musical-comedy game show devised by Reader contributor and Outer Minds drummer Brian Costello and former Baby Teeth front man Abraham Levitan. Each episode features three local contestants telling embarrassing stories, being interviewed by Costello, and then standing helplessly by while Levitan turns their stories into warped covers of popular songs—and the audience gets to judge the whole thing. Costello is intentionally awkward, his straight-faced sarcasm shutting down anxious contestants hoping to yuk it up (which makes the whole thing even funnier), and the supremely talented Levitan uses the interview time to write his lyrics, which he sets to a piano rendition of a tune he's just been assigned by a spin of the great Wheel of Fortune-like "shame wheel." As if that weren't enough, Costello and Levitan also provide their own off-kilter commercials during the breaks between stories. The four-member cast also includes a bumbling intern (Jeanine O'Toole of Bare Mutants) and a stoic life coach (comedian and former Loose Dudes front man Nick Rouley), and they operate like a well-oiled circus sideshow, making quick work of diary-toting contestants who've been, say, devastated by a high school crush, who felt pretty OK stealing and wearing girls' panties, or who made out with Ke$ha. —Kevin Warwick $5

Hideout (map)
1354 W. Wabansia Ave.
West Town/Noble Square
phone 773-227-4433
Shame That Tune

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Chicago Dramatists Saturday Series

Open run: Sat 2 PM,
phone 312-633-0630

This near-weekly program features staged readings of works in progress. $5

Chicago Dramatists (map)
1105 W. Chicago Ave.
West Town/Noble Square
phone 312-633-0630

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The Best of Kill All Comedy

Last Friday of the month, 6:30 PM

Kill All Comedy's Joey Dundale made a good observation: the Wicker Park and Bucktown areas are "strangely devoid" of sketch comedy, and particularly the experimental kind that's his collective's specialty. With a new monthly show at the Hideout, Kill All hopes to fill the void—with fake blood, real dildos, etc. —Gwynedd Stuart, 2013 $5

Hideout (map)
1354 W. Wabansia Ave.
West Town/Noble Square
phone 773-227-4433

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Spark: Chapter One of the Prometheus Project

4/5-5/8: Fri 7:30 PM, Sat 4 PM

Before Tom Arvetis set out to write Spark, he hosted a series of storytelling workshops at Hispanic middle schools in Chicago, instructing students to invent a hero with the power to rectify a painful situation in their lives. Although Arvetis weaves elements from Greek myths into the resulting play, intended for kids nine and older, there's no obscuring the students' plight. A curious teen named Pandora has been separated from her mother by a totalitarian ruler so obsessed with border control that he indoctrinates the younger generation into believing anyone who attempts to gain unauthorized access is a terrorist and a monster. The implication is shattering, but under the direction of Rives Collins, the talented, enthusiastic cast at Adventure Stage Chicago convey hope and perseverance. —Jena Cutie $25, $15 for children

http://adventurestage.org
Vittum Theater (map)
1012 N. Noble St.
West Town/Noble Square
phone 773-342-4141

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Kind of Blue

Open run: Every month on the first Sun, 8 PM

A stand-up comedy showcase hosted by Derek Smith. $5

Hideout (map)
1354 W. Wabansia Ave.
West Town/Noble Square
phone 773-227-4433

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Late Late Breakfast

First Saturday of the month, 3 PM

With the Late Late Breakfast, Tyler Jackson and Danny Maupin have created an innovative game show/stand-up hybrid that takes place before most comedians even smack their snooze buttons—and maybe that's why there are free, freshly made pancakes being served at 3 PM. At this month's performance a roomful of nearly 30 comics attended the afternoon hangover—Bloody Marys were flowing—prepared to do their duty no matter what nonsense the hosts threw their way. Continue reading >>

Hideout (map)
1354 W. Wabansia Ave.
West Town/Noble Square
phone 773-227-4433
Late Late Breakfast

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