Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Mystique Helps to Illuminate Our Past

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By Joelle Weber

As the holidays approach, and our season takes another turn toward a large line-up of shows, we wanted to take a moment and share a story that featured something unique, yet familiar—the architectural wonder that is the Auditorium Theatre itself.

Back at the beginning of the year, a DePaul student film crew under the direction of Nick Vassil picked two locations in which to film their inspiring short, The Mystique, a touching story about a magician’s last day employed at a Vaudeville theatre succumbing to the changes of the 1932 Chicago Depression. The Auditorium Theatre is featured prominently in this short film, from the familiar lobby shots, to the grand spectacle of the arched proscenium stage.

“In searching for a location for The Mystique, we wanted to keep the story as authentic as possible,” says Vassil. “The preservation of the Auditorium was amazing, and capturing the ornate architecture of that time period, as well as utilizing such a large space, was an important story element in the film.”

The crew spent two days filming in the space, for a total of 16 hours of work time. Although this was a very limited amount of time to capture what was needed for the film, Vassil praised the talents of his creative cast and crew, the Auditorium’s dedicated staff, as well as the ease of working in the theatre saying, “The footage speaks for itself. The authenticity of the space allowed us to live in the moment, rather than just acting for the camera.”

The last film to feature the Auditorium’s lobby was Michael Mann’s Public Enemies. The Mystique features shots of the main lobby, box office, upper dress circle lobby, stage fly system and of course, the famous house interior.

A version of The Mystique made its film festival debut at the Premiere VI festival at the Music Box Theater on June 6, 2011. It took home Best Sound Design and Best Production Design for the cut submitted. The film is currently being tweaked for additional festival entries this year.

Find more info about the film HERE.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Celebrate the Holidays with the Auditorium!

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We are ringing in this holiday season with shows for every audience! Bring the family, bring a date, or just bring yourself to one of our live theatre, dance, and music events, all presented in Chicago's Historic Auditorium Theatre!

Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra
with Rockapella, 2011 Holiday Pops Tour

Wednesday, November 30, 2011
7:30 pm
Price: $127-$32

For the first time ever, "America's Orchestra" joins America's leading a cappella group for an unforgettable holiday show.

Dave Koz and Friends, Christmas Tour 2011
Presented by Live Nation

Dates: Friday, De
cember 2, 2011
8:00 pm
Price: $87-$47

The Joffrey Ballet, The Nutcracker

Friday, December 9- Tuesday, December 27, 2011


America’s #1 Nutcracker and a Chicago holiday tradition!
Photo by Herbert Migdoll. Dancers Victoria Jaiani, Fabrice Calmels.

The Disco Biscuits
Presented by Silver Wrapper

Dates: Friday, December 30, 2011 & Saturday, December 31, 2011

Doors at 7:30 pm both nights


Also hosted at the Auditorium Theatre:

Willow Creek Chicago: A Chicago Christmas

December 4, 2011
10:00am, 2:00pm and 5:00pm

Experience this compelling, modern retelling of the Christmas story through film, music and dance.
Childcare provided at 10 AM service for ages two and younger.

Friday, November 18, 2011

A Conversation about Physically Integrated Dance

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On Wed. Nov. 9th, professionals from the Chicago dance and disability community gathered at Access Living for "From Aspiration to Artist, a Conversation about Physically Integrated Dance in Chicago." At this event, a panel of integrated dance leaders spoke about disability in the performing arts, sharing their opinions and experiences and answering questions from the

Members of our panel spoke passionately about the future of integrated dance; each is working to expand and strengthen the field and can be a great resource for dancers, choreographers and company leaders with and without disabilities - please use the links provided to learn more about these artists and the work they are doing. The panel for the evening included:
Larry Ippel and Stephanie Clemens of Momenta
  • "Choosing to be integrated is a commitment from the Artistic Director, not a one time thing." - Clemens
  • "We fought to get the changes made to make public transit accessible...sometime it just requires a little bit of a fight." - Ippel
  • "It's exciting to see you all here, but what are you going to do about these issues when you go home tonight?" - Ippel
Jessica Martin, Dancer and Choreographer from Momenta
  • "I like dance because there are no rules. The people I dance with are like my second family." - Martin
Alana Wallace of Dance Detour
  • "People think the quality of the company will be "cute" or "inspiring" - integrated dance is about more than that." - Wallace
Lucia Mauro, Dance Writer
  • "Integrated dance is a sort of therapy, but it is more than that. It is artistic expression and people need to know that." - Mauro
Elizabeth Millman of the Joffrey Ballet's Academy
  • "At the Academy we don't turn any people away from our classes. All are welcome." - Millman
Citlali Lopez-Ortiz, Integrated Dance Instructor
  • "I think bringing integration into any performance adds to how we perceive our own humanity." - Lopez-Ortiz
Carrie Sandahl, Associate Prof. in the Dept. Of Disability and Human Development at U of I
  • "We need to create the art that is cool enough for non-accessible spaces to NEED to make the change." - Sandahl

The Auditorium Theatre is dedicated to providing equal opportunities for performers with and without disabilities. Brett Batterson of the Auditorium Theatre stressed, "As long as physically integrated dance meets our criteria for programing, we will continue to bring these wonderful companies."

We are excited to be presenting AXIS Dance Company this weekend at the Auditorium Theatre. Tickets can be purchased HERE. Save $10 by using code SOCIAL.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A Message from Variety, the Children's Charity of Illinois

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My name is Mike Murillo, and I’m one of the event coordinators at Variety, the Children’s Charity of Illinois. Variety is really excited to be one of the sponsors for the AXIS Dance Company’s performance at the Auditorium Theatre on November 19th and 20th.

Variety’s mission is to provide funding and services for programs that strive to alleviate suffering and improve the quality of life for children who are mentally and physically challenged, abused, sick, homeless or underprivileged. Our “Kids on the Go” program is dedicated to helping children with disabilities participate in some of the same activities as their able-bodied friends, such as bike riding, sports and dance. I enjoy seeing young people with disabilities just as active as anyone else!

As a recent addition to the Variety team, I was not educated on physically integrated dance, but after attending the AXIS panel discussion last Wednesday, at Access Living, I was really moved and gained a huge an appreciation for the art form. What I learned was that physically integrated dance is about the beauty of the human form and appreciating the movement of each individual. The individuals performing are interested in being seen for how their art inspires people’s perceptions of the opportunities the human body can create, regardless of physical ability.

I am inspired by the philosophy and mindset that physically integrated dance hopes to shift the way that society looks at disability. Whereas traditionally a lot of society sees physically disabled individuals as more helpless and less capable than able-bodied people, physically integrated dance is an avenue to the possibility that we as humans are all capable of amazingly creative and technical ability. I really believe that physically integrated dance, and activities like it, can begin to shift the society’s perspective of what being disabled is, from a medical view to a more social view, including looking at physical handicaps through the lens of social barriers, attitudes towards disability, and possibilities to better integrate individuals into society, which is also a goal of Variety of Illinois.

Finally, I’m really excited to see the AXIS Dance Company perform. They are one of the premier integrated dance companies in the US and it is going to be an honor to see and support them at the Auditorium Theater. I really hope that you join me in seeing the performance!

If you would like to continue the dialog, please “like” Variety on Facebook at

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

$15 Student Rush Tickets AXIS Dance Company

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AXIS Dance Company
Saturday, November 19 at 7:30pm
Sunday, November 20 at 2:00pm

Featured on So You Think You Can Dance!
Discover that the human body and spirit know no bounds when you attend AXIS Dance Company. Based in Oakland, CA, this innovative and unique company uses dancers with and without disabilities. Click here for more info.

Get Student Rush Tickets
In person at the Auditorium box office (50 E. Congress Pkwy) One hour before show time Two tickets per valid college

ID NOTE: Student Rush tickets are last minute tickets sold at the discretion of the presenter. Policies may vary. Tickets and locations are subject to availability and cannot be reserved in advance.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Auditorium Theatre's Devil's Ball: A Night in Old Chicago

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The Auditorium Theatre Junior Board is excited to host their first major fundraising event, The Devil’s Ball: A Night in Old Chicago next Friday, November 11, 2011. This cocktail party will feature music, hors d'oeuvres and an auction in the historic and elegant lobby of the Auditorium Theatre. We expect 300 young professionals from throughout the Chicago area to attend this inaugural celebration.

The Junior Board continues to focus on unique ways to fulfill its mission of increasing awareness of the Theatre’s educational efforts and programming and raising funds for the restoration and preservation of the national historical landmark Auditorium building.

In keeping with the theme of the year of Preserving Our Past and Building Our Future, the Junior Board is excited to make their mark in history with this unique event in such a historic space.

Tickets are currently on sale for $75 each. The ticket price includes cocktails, hors d’oeurves, entertaining tours for those who are interested in exploring more of the theatre, a DJ, photobooth and silent auction! Hope to see you there! Tickets can be reserved by calling 312.922.2110, ext. 368 or by clicking here. If purchasing online, use code: BALL.

*Online tickets will require an additional $1.25 Ticketmaster Fast Fee for each ticket.

Friday, November 4, 2011

AXIS Dance - Change the Way You Think

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Hello, Chicago! Are you ready to change the way you think about dance and the possibilities of the human body forever?

I'm Sebastian Grubb and have been a dancer with AXIS Dance Company for 2.5 years. We are really excited about coming to Chicago and performing at the beautiful Auditorium Theatre on November 19th and 20th.

AXIS Dance Company has become world-renowned for its work in the field of contemporary dance. The company includes both dancers with and without physical disabilities and this divergent starting point has become a potent tool for making revolutionary dances. Aside from being known for its cutting-edge and original works, the company has also become known for its bold athleticism.

AXIS regularly commissions choreographers from around the world to make work on our dancers. This means our dance performance in Chicago will include a strong artistic diversity of works made by: Alex Ketley, David Dorfman, and the UK-based Marc Brew.

Brew's piece, "Full of Words," was created this past September/October during a grueling and inspiring 5-week rehearsal intensive (see our AXIS blog). It features three duets performed in three domestic environments created on stage: a dining room, a bathroom, a living room.
"Words" is designed to give the audience a glimpse into distinct lives and conversations, running parallel to each other and full of dynamism and powerful, innovative partnering.

"Full of Words" requires different set pieces and each theater we tour to has to collect those pieces for us. One of the challenges is to work with these new sets every time we come to a new theater, which adds an extra dimension to the touring component. When we get to see our Chicago bathtub, table and armchair, we'll know what we have to do to adapt the choreography to fit the new pieces.

We are looking forward to bringing Vessel, Light Shelter, and Full of Words to Chicago and can't wait to hear what you think of them!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Preserving Our Past…Building Our Future [photos]

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A big "thank you" to all of you that attended the Auditorium Theatre 2011 Gala: Preserving Our Past…Building Our Future. Your generosity is greatly appreciated!

Every year, we look toward our Gala with anticipation and excitement. This year, however, we were especially thrilled to honor Harry Weese the famed Chicago architect that volunteered his services to restoring the Auditorium Theatre back to its former elegance in the 1960s.

We also saluted Sumner Sollitt, who worked alongside Mr. Weese to oversee the entire project as well as his beloved wife Brenda, who dedicated endless time and support to the Theatre for over 30 years. Their contributions have been instrumental to the Auditorium’s success, and their efforts will forever be ingrained in the future of our treasured landmark.

$15 Student Rush Offer - Bad Boys

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Rasta Thomas' BAD BOYS of DANCE
Saturday, November 5 at 7:30 pm
Sunday, November 6 at 2:00 pm

Featured on So You Think You Can Dance!
Boogie with the BAD BOYS to songs by The Black Eyed Peas, Michael Jackson, Journey, Coldplay, U2 and more! You won't want to miss the best dance moves to the coolest songs performed by a group of the cutest guys.

Get Student Rush Tickets
In person at the Auditorium box office (50 E. Congress Pkwy)
One hour before show time
Two tickets per valid college ID

NOTE: Student Rush tickets are last minute tickets sold at the discretion of the presenter. Policies may vary. Tickets and locations are subject to availability and cannot be reserved in advance.

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