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Todd Glass

11/20-11/22: Thu 8 PM, Fri-Sat 8 and 10:30 PM

Glass is a thinking man's comic with a boisterous stage presence and a well-informed opinion on virtually any topic. On his podcast The Todd Glass Show, he and fellow comedians dissect everything from their starts in stand-up to Glass's love of candles, but tonight he'll probably just tell some great jokes. $20

Up Comedy Club (map)
230 W. North Ave.
Old Town
phone 312-337-3992
Todd Glass

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Patti Vasquez

11/21-11/23: Fri 8:30 and 10:30 PM, Sat 7, 9, and 11:15 PM, Sun 8:30 PM

$25 plus two-drink minimum

Zanies (map)
1548 N. Wells St.
Old Town
phone 312-337-4027

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Strandline

10/30-12/7: Thu-Sat 8 PM, Sun 3 PM

What would we do without our Irish playwrights? Conor McPherson alone has filled out the season for more than one local theater this year. And the year before that. And probably next year too. You can see his The Night Alive—about which all the critics and my wife are raving—for just a little while longer at Steppenwolf Theatre. AstonRep, meanwhile, has brought back one by Martin McDonagh, who filled the McPherson function with considerably greater nastiness about a decade back. They're presenting The Lieutenant of Inishmore, McDonagh's bloody 2001 farce on the subjects of love, cats, and patriotic psychopathy. We keep returning to Irish playwrights for lots of reasons—but mainly, I think, for their superior ability to remain on friendly terms with paradox. They know how to deploy that famous Irish ache: the awful comic ambivalence that comes of living, as Yeats wrote, where motley is worn. Continue reading >> $30-$50

A Red Orchid Theatre (map)
1531 N. Wells St.
Old Town
phone 312-943-8722
Strandline

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Apes of Wrath

Open run: Tue-Thu 8 PM, Fri-Sat 8 and 11 PM, Sun 7 PM

The six spritely, mercurial, wholly engaging performers behind Second City E.T.C.'s Apes of Wrath work overtime to make their show appear to be about something. But just what remains a mystery. And an unnecessary one at that. Press materials describe the two-hour sketch comedy review in vaguely dystopic terms. "In the world of high stakes, we become a more heightened version of ourselves," the PR asserts, "which can sometimes resemble more simian behavior than human." Despite the syntactical tangle, the point seems clear: this will be a series of skits about our baser selves, in which "the dark and light sides of our human devolution" will be showcased. Except for the most part, they're not. Unitard-clad performance artists improvise poetry about the World Cup and cigarettes for inmates at Louisiana State Prison. The Andromeda and Milky Way galaxies, on a collision course, seduce each other by singing about their impending billion-night stand. The attention-span-challenged BuzzFeed staff try to concoct daily lists with social significance, like "The 15 Vegetables That Don't Make Me Greenhouse Gassy." Continue reading >> $23

Buy Tickets
Second City E.T.C. (map)
Piper's Alley, 1608 N. Wells St.
Old Town
phone 312-337-3992
Apes of Wrath

Depraved New World

Open run: Tue-Thu 8 PM, Fri-Sat 8 and 11 PM, Sun 7 PM

I'm the king of regret. You name it, I've got a voice inside my head telling me I should be sorry or embarrassed or guilty about it. Have I ever done anything right? Don't bother answering. I know. The big news is that I may not be the only one in the world who feels that way. Second City's latest main-stage revue spends a lot of time on the subject of self-subversion, and I don't think it can be aimed at me alone. (Can it? Oh God, what if it is?) An entertaining if not blockbusting show, Depraved New World opens with a song for the psychic saboteur in all of us: "Why can't I turn off these voices of loneliness, fear, despair, and dread?" ask the six cast members. "The world is so filled with noises. The loudest are in my head." They follow that up with a bit set at a corporate staff meeting where people compulsively second-guess themselves ("Nobody likes your brownies," the office brownie queen hears herself thinking—though, as it happens, she's right), even to the point of second-guessing the second guess. Continue reading >> $23

Buy Tickets
Second City (map)
1616 N. Wells St.
Old Town
phone 312-337-3992
Depraved New World

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Second City E.T.C.

Open run: Thu 8 PM, Fri-Sat 8 and 11 PM, Sun 7 PM, also Tue 8/2-8/30 and Wed 7/6-8/31, 8 PM,
phone 312-337-3992

Second City E.T.C.'s latest revue, A Clown Car Named Desire, is directed by Ryan Bernier $22-$27

http://secondcity.com
Buy Tickets
Second City E.T.C. (map)
Piper's Alley, 1608 N. Wells St.
Old Town
phone 312-337-3992

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