Traffic Jam | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Traffic Jam 

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Steppenwolf's "Traffic" series, usually made up of one-night stands on Mondays, is celebrating its tenth anniversary in high style. For almost three weeks straight, artists like Elaine Stritch, the Roches, Buddy Guy, and Kiki & Herb will get a chance to try out new work, reintroduce audiences to previous shows, and chew the fat about the creative process. David Cale, one of the finest solo performers of the last two decades, kicks off the party on December 1, with A Likely Story, a collection of tales about people caught in the throes of love (or lack thereof), obsession, and quietly humorous despair. Kurt Elling and soprano Kate McGarry observe the sesquicentennial of Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass by performing Fred Hersch's jazz version (previously seen at Carnegie Hall) on December 2 and 3. Steppenwolf cautions that "acts and performers are subject to change," but if past experience is any guide, whatever the company whips up will be a tasty sampler of performers, musicians, writers, and raconteurs. Through 12/18; see www.chicagoreader.com for complete schedule. Cale: Thu 12/1, 7:30 PM, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, downstairs theater, 1650 N. Halsted, 312-335-1650, $35.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Erica DuFour.

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