Top Picks for Theater in Chicago NOW – Chicago Plays PICTURE THIS POST Loves

Hamilton Chicago
HAMILTON now playing at Privatebank Theater. Photo: Joan Marcus

Picture this Post Guide to Best Plays in Chicago

Click the READ MORE buttons in the thumbnail descriptions below to find picture-rich descriptive reviews of PICTURE THIS POST'S  writers' TOP PICKS FOR CHICAGO PLAYS ON CHICAGO STAGES NOW.

The Chicago plays selected for this roundup includes both RECOMMENDED and HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Chicago theater options.  Our Chicago theater top picks select from dramas, comedies, musicals, and some off-the-beaten path live theater options such as puppet shows, magic shows, and more.

How do plays become our theater in Chicago top picks?

This is not a comprehensive guide to Chicago plays.  Rather, this is a short-list of Chicago theater events our writers pick.

You may notice that our writers tend to recommend plays more often than not.  This is not accidental.  Many PICTURE THIS POST theater writers are theater insiders-- playwrights, directors, actors, etc. with more of an inside track on theater in Chicago.  Picture this Post's writers always choose which plays they see and write about.  Just like you and me, they want to make the best use of their time and cherry pick the Chicago plays that they think they will like the most.

Chicago Theater Top Picks are listed here alphabetically.

Click the READ MORE button to find a descriptive and picture-rich review for the Chicago play you are interested in.

As much as Picture this Post loves and supports Chicago theater, we urge you to check out the many other talents you will find on Chicago stages and cultural venues now.  Click to read about Chicago dance, music, museums, and more.

  • Goodman Theatre presents AH WILDERNESS Review

    Goodman Theatre presents playwright Eugene O'Neill's classic AH WILDERNESS, reminding it's never too late for love. Thru July 23

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  • Broadway in Chicago presents ALADDIN, a musical spectacular

    Broadway in Chicago ALADDIN

    Broadway in Chicago brings a Broadway hit to the Cadillac Palace Theatre with Aladdin. Now through September 10th -- a musical spectacular!

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  • First Folio Theatre Presents AS YOU LIKE IT by William Shakespeare

    First Folio Theatre AS YOU LIKE IT

    First Folio Theatre presents William Shakespeare's famously whimsical comedy As You Like It at the Mayslake Peabody Estate thru August 20

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  • Broken Nose Theatre AT THE TABLE dissects political belief systems

    Broken Nose Theatre AT THE TABLE

    Broken Nose Theatre presents AT THE TABLE, friends' political beliefs collide at a reunion, reprised at the Den Theater thru 8/26/17

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  • The American Blues Theatre Presents BEAUTY'S DAUGHTER Review

    American Blues BEAUTYS DAUGHTER

    The American Blues Theatre Presents BEAUTY'S DAUGHTER, a one woman show rich in Dael Orlandersmith poetry, now until August 5th, 2017!

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  • Briar Street Theater updates its long run of BLUE MAN GROUP

    Briar Street Theater has hosted The Blue Man Group for twenty years. The group announced new changes to the show and are still colorful! Open run

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  • Marriott Theatre presents THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY review

    Marriott Theatre - THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY

    Marriott Theatre presents THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY review - Sweeping Romance now playing through August 13, 2017 in Lincolnshire

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  • CHICAGO MAGIC LOUNGE presents magic show at Uptown Underground

    FEATURE

    CHICAGO MAGIC LOUNGE at Uptown Underground revitalizes magic shows Chicago style with lots of HOW DID HE DO THAT?? awesome wonders. Open run

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  • Chicago Theater Works presents FLANAGANS WAKE Review

    Chicago Theater Works FLANAGAN'S WAKE

    Chicago Theater Works presents FLANAGANS WAKE review- Grab a Guinness and plan to laugh at this improv - party- theater mix. Open Run.

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  • Drury Lane Theatre presents THE GIN GAME Review

    Drury Lane Theatre presents THE GIN GAME, starring Paula Scarofano and John Reeger, directed by Ross Lehman thru August 13

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  • Grippo Stage Company Presents The God Of Isaac Review

    Grippo Stage Company THE GOD OF ISAAC

    Grippo Stage Company presents THE GOD OF ISAAC, a young man's ethno-spiritual odyssey, thru August 27, 2017, by James Sherman

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  • Redtwist Theatre GOING TO A PLACE WHERE YOU ARE ALREADY

    Redtwist Theatre GOING TO A PLACE

    The Redtwist Theatre Presents "GOING TO A PLACE WHERE YOU ARE ALREADY" showing now until July 23, 2017 at select days and times.

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  • Hell in a Handbag Productions presents THE GOLDEN GIRLS

    Hell in a Handbag - THE GOLDEN GIRLS-THE LOST EPISODES

    Hell in a Handbag Productions presents The Golden Girls - The Lost Episodes Review running through August 26, 2017 at Mary's Attic.

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  • HAMILTON production by Broadway in Chicago lives up to its reputation

    Hamilton Chicago

    HAMILTON production by Broadway in Chicago lives up to and exceeds its reputation. Top recommendation for Chicago musical. Thru 1/7/18

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  • Midsommer Flight presents HAMLET, timely political tale

    Midsommer Flight presents HAMLET, a classic Shakespeare tale performed in the parks with uncanny resonance with today's headlines THRU August 27

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  • Steppenwolf Theatre presents Taylor Mac's HIR, a patriarchy parody

    Steppenwolf Theatre presents Taylor Mac's HIR, a patriarchy parody typical of performance artist/playwright's incomparable focus on gender thru 8/20

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  • Steppenwolf Theatre Company resents HIR Review

    Steppenwolf TAYLOR MAC

    Steppenwolf Theatre Company presents HIR a return to their tradition of absurd realism. Running July 29 through August 20.

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  • Dead Whale Productions presents HOG'S BELLY Review

    Dead Whale Productions presents HOG'S BELLY, a puppet-filled film noir spoof with many actors playing many rats, thru July 29

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  • Neo-Futurists Present THE INFINITE WRENCH Improv Review

    The Neo-Futurists bring THE INFINITE WRENCH a new take on their old late-night formula--a certain amount of plays in a certain amount of time. Open run

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  • Steep Theatre Presents Lela & Co Review- witty and emotionally charged

    Steep Theater LELA & CO

    Steep Theatre presents Lela & Co written by Cordelia Lynn and directed by Robin Witt. Sexual Slavery focus- -one woman show thru August 19, 2017.

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  • City Lit Theater presents LONDON ASSURANCE Review

    City Lit Theater LONDON ASSURANCE

    City Lit Theater presents Dion Boucicault's London Assurance on the second floor of the Edgewater Presbyterian Church through July 23

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  • Eclipse Theatre Company Presents Megastisis Review

    Eclipse Theatre MEGASTASIS

    Eclipse Theatre Company shows MEGASTASIS and reveals a gigantic theme on a small stage. Megastisis runs through August 20th.

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  • Lookingglass Theatre Presents MOBY DICK Review

    Lookkingglass Theatre's revival of its MOBY DICK adaptation makes visual and emotional sense of Melville's exhaustive novel. Thru 9/3

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  • Northshore Center for the Performing Arts presents MY SON THE WAITER

    Northshore Center for the Performing Arts Presents MY SON THE WAITER, A JEWISH TRAGEDY, a standup comic tell all of his journey through 8/13

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  • Timeline Theatre presents PARADISE BLUE Review, a jazz set story

    TimeLine Theatre PARDISE BLUE

    Timeline Theatre presents PARADISE BLUE thru July 23, a story about a jazz trumpeter's inner demons, filled with music from his horn in engaging story

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  • Gift Theatre Presents PILGRIMS Review– Taut Interstellar Drama

    Gift Theatre PILGRIMS

    Gift Theatre presents Pilgrims, an outstanding sci-fi drama written by playwright Claire Kiechel, from June 9th through July 30th.

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  • American Theater Company Youth Ensemble presents THE PROJECT/S

    American Theater Company Youth Ensemble reprises THE PROJECT/S, documenting both the grief of public housing and the community sense within, thru 7/23

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  • Griffin Theatre Company presents RAGTIME musical

    Griffin Theatre Company presents RAGTIME, a musical based on E.L.Doctorow's novel, capturing America's zeitgeist in early 1900's, thru July 22

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  • Artistic Home Presents THE SCHOOL FOR LIES Review

    Artistic Home - THE SCHOOL FOR LIES

    The Artistic Homes Presents THE SCHOOL FOR LIES review - Clever Comedy by David Ives now playing through August 13, 2017 in Chicago

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  • Broadway in Chicago SOMETHING ROTTEN Review -musical spoof

    The Tony-nominated musical spoof, SOMETHING ROTTEN, brings a trio from the original Broadway cast to the Oriental Theatre. Through 7/23.

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  • Circle Theatre Presents Triassic Parq The Musical

    Circle Theater TRIASSIC PARQ

    Circle Theatre presents Triassic Parq, the musical, an imaginative, voluptuous extravaganza. The show runs through August 13th.

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  • Second City WINNER OF OUR DISCONTENT review

    Second City takes on our post-election angst in their new revue, WINNER OF OUR DISCONTENT reviewer says "hilarity with bite". Thru 7/27/17

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