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.

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

Chicago Theater Top Picks are listed in order of run end dates.  Those ending soonest are on top.

What do Picture this Post rankings mean??

Any regular reader of the Picture This Post knows that a ranking system is antithetical to the matchmaker mission that is the main task for any Picture This Post review.  We always attempt to answer the question- Recommended for Whom? Our reviews are heavy on description and light on criticism in the traditional sense because we aim to empower you and all readers to make your own decisions as to whether a production is a good match for your interests and time.

That said, we now include a ranking in ALL Chicago reviews - which is a prerequisite for being included in Theater in Chicago roundups, where you will usually find Picture this Post reviews as the last excerpt.

Here are our current Picture this Post definitions: Highly Recommended vs. Recommended vs. Somewhat Recommended. 

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED means our reviewer is telling you – “Change your life. Change your busy schedule. Find time to see this!”

RECOMMENDED means our reviewer is telling you- “You will likely find this a good use of your time. This is worthwhile with many positive qualities.”

SOMEWHAT RECOMMENDED means our reviewer is saying that you may be someone who will really enjoy this. – “This will likely have strong appeal to X, Y, Z audiences despite flaws.”

CLICK TO READ THESE REVIEWS BELOW OF PICTURE THIS POST BEST PLAY PICKS!

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    Artistic Home Presents VANYA ON THE PLAINS Review—Jason Hedrick's Play About Rediscovering the Classics after the End of the World

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    AstonRep Theatre Company Presents EQUUS Review – Haunting -- Playwright Peter Shaffer’s thriller captures the dawn of the anti-psychiatry movement

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  • Lyric Opera Presents LUISA MILLER Review – Bel Canto Enlivened

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    Lyric Opera Presents LUISA MILLER Review – Bel Canto Enlivened by Shadows, a RECOMMENDED Verdi opera not typically performed

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    COUNTESS DRACULA - A Highly Recommended Gothic Horror immersive experience at Otherworld Theatre

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    Thru 11/02/19

    Impostors Theatre Company Presents TIPPY: STORIES FROM THE RIVER Review—Realist fables reviewed by actress Elena Barberia

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  • Drury Lane Theatre presents THE COLOR PURPLE Review

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    Thru 11/03/19

    Drury Lane Theatre presents THE COLOR PURPLE: THE MUSICAL, directed by Lilli-Anne Brown. Running at Drury Lane Theatre through November 3, 2019

    Read more..
  • Steep Theatre MOSQUITOES Review Macro and Micro Cosmos Connect

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    Thru 11/09/19

    Steep Theatre Presents Lucy Kirkwood's MOSQUITOES Review - Macro and Micro Cosmos Connect HIGHLY RECOMMENDED BEST PLAY PICK

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  • Wildclaw Theatre Presents HELL FOLLOWED WITH HER

    WildClaw Theatre HELL FOLLOWED WITH HER
    Thru 11/09/19

    HELL FOLLOWED WITH HER - A Highly Recommended Weird West play at The Den Theatre

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  • Lifeline Theatre Presents WHOSE BODY? Review - Dry Wit and Old Scars

    Lifeline Theatre WHOSE BODY
    Thru 11/10/19

    Lifeline Theatre Presents WHOSE BODY? Review - Dry Wit and Old Scars, A HIGHLY RECOMMENDED pick for Chicago Best Play

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  • Rough House Theater Company THE SILENCE IN HARROW HOUSE

    Rough House Theater Company THE SILENCE IN HARROW HOUSE
    Thru 11/10/19

    THE SILENCE IN HARROW HOUSE – an immersive puppet theater experience recommended especially for puppet fans and those seeking Halloween themed entertainment

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  • City Lit Presents THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES Review

    City Lit Theater THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES
    Thru 11/10/19

    City Lit Presents THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES Review – The Charm of Cleverness, A HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Chicago Best Play pick

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  • Silk Road Rising and the International Voices TWICE, THRICE, FRICE

    Silk Road Rising and International Voices Project TWICE, THRICE, FRICE
    Thru 11/10/19

    TWICE, THRICE, FRICE is the story of three powerful women in a world balancing Sharia-sanctioned polygamy with American laws and sensibilities

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  • Pride Films and Plays A MAN OF NO IMPORTANCE Review

    Pride Films and Plays A MAN OF NO IMPORTANCE
    Thru 11/10/19

    Pride Films and Plays Presents A MAN OF NO IMPORTANCE Review – Celtic Infused Coming-Out-Of-The-Closet Musical - RECOMMENDED

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  • Redtwist Theatre Presents KEELY & DU Review– My Body, Your Choice

    Redtwist KEELY AND DU
    Thru 11/10/19

    KEELY & DU: Redtwist Theatre Revives a 25-Year-Old Play with a Pro-Life Vs. Pro-Choice Theme—feeling as relevant today as when it was first staged a quarter of a century ago

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  • Gift Theatre Presents KENTUCKY Review – Comical Culture Collision

    Gift Theatre KENTUCKY
    Thru 11/16/19

    Gift Theatre Presents KENTUCKY Review – Comical Culture Collision, A HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Chicago Best Play pick reviewed by Amy Munice

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  • Strawdog Theatre Presents THE EFFECT — Review

    Strawdog Theatre THE EFFECT
    Thru 11/23/19

    Strawdog Theatre Presents THE EFFECT Review—Learning What Really Makes Us Tick, A Highly Recommended Chicago Best Play Pick

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  • Red Orchid Theatre Presents GREY HOUSE Review

    Red Orchid Theatre GREY HOUSE
    Thru 12/01/19

    Red Orchid Theatre Presents GREY HOUSE Review - Monsters, Memories, and Moonshine, A HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Chicago Best Play pick

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  • Windy City Playhouse EVERY BRILLIANT THING Review

    Windy City Playhouse EVERY BRILLIANT THING
    Thru 12/08/19

    Windy City Playhouse presents Every Brilliant Thing now through December 8, 2019. Read our review of this highly recommended play here.

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  • Porchlight Music Theatre presents SUNSET BOULEVARD Review

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    Thru 12/08/19

    Porchlight Music Theatre presents SUNSET BOULEVARD Review – lonely in La-La Land, a HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Chicago Best Play pick

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  • Cambria Hotel Hosts TEATRO ZINZANNI LOVE, CHAOS & DINNER

    Cambria Hotel TEATRO ZINZANNI
    Thru 03/29/20

    Cambria Hotel Hosts TEATRO ZINZANNI LOVE, CHAOS & DINNER Review - Sensory Polyphony, Highly Recommended best play pick, Thru March 29, 2020

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  • House Theatre THE MAGIC PARLOUR Review - Celebrating 1,000 Shows

    House Theatre THE MAGIC PARLOUR
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    House Theatre Presents The Magic Parlour, celebrating its 1,000th performance and is as amazing as ever. Read our review of this special performance here!

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  • Briar Street Theatre Presents THE BLUE MAN GROUP SHOW

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    Briar Street Theatre in Chicago presents The Blue Man Group Show, a celebration of human connection. Mixing art, music, comedy and state-of-the-art technology, this open run show encourages audiences to reconnect with their inner child.

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

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    HAMILTON production by Broadway in Chicago lives up to and exceeds its reputation. Top recommendation for Chicago musical.

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