Evanston celebrates New Year's Eve with several free family-friendly "First Night" performances, including Grammy-winning harmonica player Howard Levy. We get a preview of the event, and a performance from Levy and guitarist Bobby Broom. Watch a web extra video performance.

Clowns relate the true story of Chicago's 1903 Iroquois Theatre fire in a stunning and funny revival of a show called Burning Bluebeard at Theater Wit. We get a preview. Read an Artbeat blog about the play and watch Hedy Weiss' web extra video review.

The holidays would not be the same without it. We go behind the scenes to see how the Joffrey Ballet manages to keep its annual presentation of The Nutcracker fresh and new every year. Read an article.

The director and star of an adventurous documentary join us to recount the five-year trip that traversed six continents and 37 countries. Athlete Serge Roetheli and filmmaker John Davies discuss The 25,000 Mile Love Story, a film that details the impossible journey of one endurance athlete’s desire to help children throughout the world. Watch video footage from their journey and read an interview with a producer and editor of the film.

The clown princes of classical music, Igudesman and Joo, join us in advance of their performance with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Watch web extra performance clips from the duo.

We talk with Academy Award nominee Joan Allen about her latest performance in The Wheel at Steppenwolf Theatre Company, a play about what happens to hope and human nature in times of war. Read an interview and watch web extra videos.

Old Jews Telling Jokes is an onstage celebration of Jewish humor. We speak with Saturday Night Live alum Tim Kazurinsky and actress Dara Cameron about the hit comedy that makes its Chicago debut at The Royal George Theatre this week. Watch online skits and read an interview.

Curtis Mayfield performs for Dutch television in 1972.

Chicago music legend Curtis Mayfield is remembered onstage at Black Ensemble Theater. We talk with the two men who portray Mayfield in the play, including one who knew him. Read an interview with the theater's founder and watch a web extra video of Mayfield from WTTW's archives.

The international art world comes to Navy Pier for the annual Expo Chicago. We get an early look as the artists, curators and gallery owners prepare for the big weekend. Read an interview with an exhibit curator and view a slideshow.

The Theatre School at DePaul University's new facility at night

We get a backstage tour of the newest theater in town – the architecturally significant Theatre School of DePaul University. Read an interview and view a photo gallery.

A festival brings the love to Ludwig van Beethoven. Artists from a dozen countries converge on Chicago for 100 events that celebrate this giant of classical music in surprising ways. Read an interview with the festival's art director and view a slideshow.

We take a look at a hip-hop music program that helps kids strengthen their voice and discover the power of the written word. Read an interview.

After 40 years of offering live models for professional and amateur artists to draw or paint, The Drawing Workshop in Ravenswood is now in jeopardy of closing due to the retirement of its founder, George Sotos. We have the story. View a slideshow and read an interview.

The Fest for Beatles Fans returns to Chicago for its annual visit. Local author Robert Rodriguez, a Beatles authority and guest speaker at the Fest, has just written a book called Solo In The 70s about the post-Beatles careers of the Fab Four. He joins us. Read an excerpt from the book, Rodriguez's best solo album picks, and watch a web extra video from our archives.

Chicago Shakespeare’s production of The Comedy of Errors began a tour of 18 Chicago parks. We talk with Chicago Shakespeare’s Executive Director Criss Henderson and actress Lanise Antoine Shelley. Learn more about the program and view a map.

You might remember her as the devilish Vera on Downton Abbey. But Irish singer, songwriter, and actress Maria Doyle Kennedy also has a heavenly singing voice. She joins us for a conversation and performance.