Visceral Dance performs “Take” at The Space on Rockwell. (Credit: KT Miller Photography)

At once abstract, often acrobatic, and driven by alternately intensely challenging solo turns, strongly varied and emotionally heated interpersonal relationships, and ensemble riffs that are technically demanding and expertly finessed — “Take” is performed to stunning effect. 

Audra McDonald performs with the Lyric Opera Orchestra on Oct. 6, 2023. (Credit: Kyle Flubacker)

Audra McDonald's glorious soprano voice sounded as beautiful and emotionally expressive as ever, and her delightful commentaries between each of almost 20 mostly classic Broadway songs were at once witty and revealing.

Anish Jethmalani, from left, Joey Slotnick and Mitchell Fain star in “The Lehman Trilogy” by TimeLine Theatre at the Broadway Playhouse. (Credit: Liz Lauren)

In its Chicago premiere, “The Lehman Trilogy” is a fascinating chronicle of a monumental aspect of American history that is being ideally performed by three fabulously gifted Chicago actors. 

Music director emeritus for life Riccardo Muti led the CSO in a performance of Strauss’ “Aus Italien” on Sept. 28, 2023. (Todd Rosenberg)

Although Maestro Riccardo Muti will soon head to New York and embark on a seven-country, 14-concert tour of Europe with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, his concert at Orchestra Hall on Thursday evening was an ideal example of the thrilling bond between him and the CSO’s brilliant musicians.

Music director emeritus for life Riccardo Muti led the CSO's opening concert of the 2023/24 season on Sept. 21, 2023. (Todd Rosenberg)

Something truly magical (and magnificent) happens when Maestro Riccardo Muti arrives on the podium to conduct the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. The latest proof was on display in two different concerts this past Thursday and Saturday evening.

The cast of “Birthday Candles” at the Northlight Theatre. (Credit: Michael Brosilow)

Haidle’s work defies easy labeling, but perhaps the best description of his plays might be that they are magical realist portraits that capture the dynamics of the American family in unique ways.

The cast of the touring company of “Hamilton” will perform at the Nederlander Theatre in Chicago. (Credit: Joan Marcus)

The musical’s latest visit to Chicago, which will run through December at the Nederlander Theatre, is as grand-scale and exuberant as ever.

From left, Scott Aiello plays Eddie, Mike Cherry is Marco, Eileen Niccolai plays Beatrice, Harrison Weger is Rodolpho, who has his eye on Catherine, Isabelle Muthiah is Catherine in Shattered Globe Theatre’s “A View From the Bridge.” (Credit: Liz Lauren)

Shattered Globe Theatre’s vividly acted and deeply disturbing revival of the Arthur Miller classic “A View From the Bridge” could not have been revived at a more ideally timely moment.

KC Bevis (from left), Logan Howell (front), Diamond Burdine, Jack Halbert and Monternez Rezell perform with Chicago Dance Crash. (Credit: Ashley Deran)

The pieces were brilliantly danced by five men and two women. Founded in 2002, Dance Crash continues to develop intriguing works that are a unique and seamless fusion of hip hop and contemporary dance.

Britt Edwards performs in “A Taste of Soul.” (Darin M. Gladfelter)

Featuring nearly 40 hit songs, “A Taste of Soul” takes an exceptionally clever approach to celebrating the irrepressible exuberance and heartache of soul music, WTTW News theater critic Hedy Weiss writes.

Ryan Opera Center Ensemble performing at “Sunday in the Park With Lyric.” (Kyle Flubacker)

Lyric Opera’s free outdoor concert in Millennium Park served as an ideal introduction to the six operas to be performed during the 2023-24 season. The absence of scenery and costumes only put the focus entirely on the singers, but also made the characters come fully to life.

Alisa Weilerstein, left in gold gown, and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra are conducted by Joshua Weilerstein on Aug. 17, 2023, at the Ravinia Festival. (Emily Waler / Ravinia Festival)

For the second half of its Ravinia Festival concert this past Thursday the Chicago Symphony Orchestra delivered a bravura performance of Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich’s extraordinary “Symphony No. 5” and it couldn’t have been more timely in subtle way.

Roman Banks as “MJ” and the cast of the “MJ: The Musical.” (Matthew Murphy / MurphyMade)

Michael Jackson was an iconic singer, dancer, songwriter, producer, philanthropist and intensely complex (and controversial) figure who transformed pop culture in the second half of the 20th century.

Donovan Hoffer and the cast of “Rock of Ages.” (Liz Lauren)

“Rock of Ages” is a funky, feverish, hard-driving musical that is now storming across the stage of the Mercury Theater. A large, fearless and very talented cast, along with an exceptional band, capture the tumultuous beat of a decidedly “rocky” decade.

(left to right) Ensemble member Jeff Perry and Mark Ulrich in Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s revival of “No Man’s Land” by Harold Pinter, directed by Les Waters, playing now through Aug. 20, 2023. (Michael Brosilow)

Four lost souls are the variously screwed-up men living in “No Man’s Land,” Harold Pinter’s strange, angry, status-conscious and somewhat absurdist talkathon of a play. It first opened in London in 1975 and is now on stage at Steppenwolf Theatre in a production directed by Les Waters.

“Marie and Rosetta” at Northlight Theatre. (Michael Brosilow)

“Marie and Rosetta” tells the tale of singers Marie Knight and Sister Rosetta Tharpe. The play is a story of personal liberation as achieved through a hybrid of musical styles and the friendship of opposites.