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.

“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.

Rob Lindley and Hamid Dehghani in "Andy Warhol in Iran." (Michael Brosilow)

During the course of just 75 intensely compelling minutes that unfold entirely in a posh hotel room in Tehran in 1976, the play poses profound questions about both art and revolution and the forces that shaped two very different men.

Tiffany Renee Johnson and Luigi Sottile in Lindsay Joelle’s “The Garbologists” at Northlight Theatre. (Credit: Michael Brosilow)

“The Garbologists” is an engaging, sharply written, and cleverly titled two-character play by Lindsay Joelle now receiving its first professional production by Northlight Theatre. The production follows two garbage collectors who have a competitive tension and developing connection. 

Casey Hoekstra as Jack, left, and Sarah Price as Louise in the Northlight Theatre production of “Dear Jack, Dear Louise.” (Credit: Michael Brosilow)

Among the many charms of “Dear Jack, Dear Louise,” Ken Ludwig’s beguiling play about his parents’ courtship during World War II, is the way it suggests the power of handwritten letters. 

At the “Intimate Apparel’s” center is Esther (Mildred Marie Langford), a gifted seamstress, who fashions elaborate corsets for a wide range of women. (Credit: Liz Lauren)

Throughout this play, Lynn Nottage explores the notion of intimacy in a multitude of ways, suggesting how different social classes, different ethnicities, and different sexes can connect, confide in, and also betray each other. Overall, “Intimate Apparel” is as meticulously crafted as its main character’s creations.

Cordelia Dewdney as Kit in “Mr. Dickens’ Hat.” (Photo by Michael Brosilow)

Every performer in this demanding show is multitalented and able to deftly shift from one character and mood to another in record time. 

Bethany Thomas performs in “Songs for Nobodies.” (Photo credit: Michael Brosilow)

With her bravura one-woman performance in “Songs for Nobodies,” Bethany Thomas has clearly found the kind of star turn that can change a career, and a life, while unquestionably generating immense happiness, awe and bravos among her audiences.

William DeMeritt in “The Catastrophist.” (Photo courtesy of Marin Theatre Company and Round House Theatre)

Lauren Gunderson’s new 75-minute play about her husband, acclaimed virologist Nathan Daniel Wolfe, is a riveting one-man meditation about life and death and the nature of viruses. It’s now being streamed by Northlight Theatre.

Left: Cassidy Slaughter-Mason and Sean Parris in “How a Boy Falls.” Right: Kate Fry and Allen Gilmore in “The Mousetrap.” (Photos by Michael Brosilow)

Agatha Christie’s play, “The Mousetrap,” is now receiving a wonderfully entertaining revival at Court Theatre, while Northlight Theatre is presenting the world premiere of Steven Dietz’s “How a Boy Falls,” a compelling whodunit with very dark overtones.

Netta Walker (left) and Luigi Sottile in “The Wickhams: Christmas at Pemberley.” (Photo by Liz Lauren)

Northlight Theatre’s production of “The Wickhams: Christmas at Pemberley” has a playfully feminist spirit that Jane Austen surely would have appreciated, but it also remains true to its Regency era mentality. 

Leah Karpel, left, and Shanesia Davis in Sharyn Rothstein’s “Landladies” at Northlight Theatre. (Photo credit: Michael Brosilow)

This edgy new play by Sharyn Rothstein, making its world premiere at Northlight Theatre, deals with the most primal human needs – for shelter, security, a sense of self-worth and love.

Ariel Richardson, left, and Sydney Charles in Christina Ham’s play “Nina Simone: Four Women” at Northlight Theatre. (Photo credit: Michael Brosilow)

Christina Ham’s play, “Nina Simone: Four Women,” is the anatomy of a song. And by extension, it is the anatomy of the angry, emotionally wounded singer, songwriter, pianist and civil rights activist who wrote it.

The cast of “The Steadfast Tin Soldier” at Lookingglass Theatre. (Photo by Liz Lauren)

From monsters and novelists to a depressed construction foreman in Belarus, the Chicago theater scene is as varied as ever. Hedy Weiss joins us with reviews and recommendations.

Kayla Carter in “Mansfield Park.” (Photo credit: Michael Brosilow)

Watching Northlight Theatre’s luminous world premiere stage version of Jane Austen’s third published novel, it was impossible not to wonder what the writer might make of her enduring cult status among 21st century audiences.

Tim Kazurinsky and George Wendt

Comic actors George Wendt and Tim Kazurinsky appear together in Bruce Graham's new play Funnyman, opening this week at Northlight Theatre in Skokie. The duo joins Chicago Tonight to talk about the world premiere play, recall their days at Second City, and fact-check a couple of Internet rumors about their long careers.