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Take a return trip down TV's memory lane at Noble Fool
By Barbara Vitello | Daily Herald Staff

Noble Fool brings back "TV & Me," comedian Mike Toomey's examination of how his childhood television viewing habits shaped his adult life.


Courtesy Noble Fool

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Published: 1/20/2010 12:02 AM

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TV's memory lane

Noble Fool brings back "TV & Me," comedian Mike Toomey's examination of how his childhood television viewing habits shaped his adult life. The multimedia nostalgia trip features classic sound bytes and Toomey's impressions of TV stars from the 1960s and '70s.

8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22, and Saturday, Jan. 23, at Pheasant Run Resort, 4051 E. Main St., St. Charles. (630) 584-6342 or

'Monologues' returns

Metropolis Performing Arts Centre reprises its 2004 production of "The Vagina Monologues" featuring members of the original cast. Lise "Kat" Evans, Robin Hughes and Tanya Jarvis star in Eve Ensler's examination of female sexuality, running as part of Metropolis' Second Stage series.

Opens Wednesday, Jan. 27, at 111 W. Campbell St., Arlington Heights. (847) 577-2121 or

'Instant Musical' extended

Schaumburg's Laugh Out Loud Theater has extended "Instant Musical," an all-improvised musical created from audience suggestions. Jonathan Wagner, a faculty member at Second City's training center, directs.

8 p.m. Thursdays through April 1 at The Streets of Woodfield, 601 N. Martingale Road, Schaumburg. (847) 240-0386 or

• Court, Remy Bumppo and TimeLine theater companies have combined forces to showcase three plays by South African writer Athol Fugard. TimeLine Theatre Company revives "Master Harold ... and the Boys," Fugard's powerful examination of South Africa during the 1950s era of apartheid through the relationship between a white teenager and two African employees he has known all his life. Their conversations on a rainy day reveal the racial conflict that underscores what once passed for friendship. Jonathan Wilson directs Daniel Bryant, Nate Burger and Alfred Wilson in the production which opens Saturday, Jan. 23, at 615 W. Wellington Ave., Chicago. A three-play pass is available for $75. See (773) 281-8463, or for more information.

• Victory Gardens Biograph Theater presents the Chicago area premiere of Tanya Barfield's "Blue Door," in which four generations of ancestors haunt Louis, an African-American math professor reluctant to embrace his identity. VGT resident director Andrea J. Dymond directs Bruce A. Young, a founding member of the Chicago Shakespeare Theater, who stars as Louis. Previews begin Friday, Jan. 22, at 2433 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago. The production opens Monday, Feb. 1. (773) 871-3000 or

• Oracle Theatre stages "The Castle," Howard Barker's Monty Pythonesque satire about social progress and resistance to it in which a knight returns from the Crusades to find women have taken over his estate. Caustic comedy and carnage ensue. The production opens Saturday, Jan. 23, at the Oracle Theatre at 3809 N. Broadway, Chicago. (773) 244-2980 or

• A Victorian housewife undergoes an awakening that upends her marriage even as it unfetters her soul in Henrik Ibsen's "A Doll's House." EverGreen Theatre Ensemble artistic director Craig Berger directs Nicholas Rudall's translation of the once-controversial drama by the Norwegian playwright considered the father of modern drama. The production runs Saturday, Jan. 23, and Sunday, Jan. 24, at the Meiley-Swallow Theatre at North Central College, 31 S. Ellsworth St., Naperville. It also runs Jan. 29 through Feb. 13 at the Naperville Womens' Club. 14. S. Washington St., Naperville. (630) 544-9504 or

• Village Players Theater continues its season with "Savage in Limbo," a dramedy by John Patrick Shanley ("Doubt") about Denise, a 32-year-old virgin looking to remedy that situation, and her promiscuous high school friend Linda. When Linda's boyfriend dumps her, Denise decides to go after him, turning what had been a comedic situation into a confrontation. The production, part of the company's "Women on the Cutting Edge" series, opens Saturday, Jan. 23, at 1010 Madison St., Oak Park. (708) 764-1010 or

• Goodman Theatre artistic associate Brian Dennehy, star of "Krapp's Last Tape," and the play's director Jennifer Tarver talk about Samuel Beckett's one-act play with former theater critic Richard Christiansen at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 23, at 170 N. Dearborn St., Chicago. Goodman's double bill of Eugene O'Neill's "Hughie" and Beckett's "Krapp's Last Tape" runs through Feb. 21. (312) 443-3800 or

• Chicago Shakespeare Theater's Short Shakespeare family series continues with a 75-minute version of "The Comedy of Errors." A riotous comedy about mistaken identities, it centers on nobleman Antipholus and his servant Dromio who arrive in Ephesus searching for their long-lost twin brothers and find themselves mistaken for the same. The production opens Saturday, Jan. 23, at Navy Pier, 800 E. Grand Ave., Chicago. (312) 595-5600 or

• Family discounts are available for the Sunday, Jan. 24, performances of "Million Dollar Quartet," a rousing jukebox musical that re-imagines an impromptu 1956 recording session at Sun Studios involving Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley. One child younger than 17 will be admitted free with each paid adult to the 6:30 p.m. performance at the Apollo Theater, 2540 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago. (773) 935-6100 or

• Adventure Stage Chicago hosts a free, staged reading of "The Whipping Boy," Beau Johnson's adaptation of Sid Fleischman's novel about the unlikely friendship between a proud orphan and a spoiled brat of a prince. The reading is at 2 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 24, at Vittum Theater, 1012 N. Noble St., Chicago. (773) 342-4141 or

• Bailiwick Chicago hosts open mic nights from 8:30 to 11 p.m. Sundays Jan. 24 and 31, at Joey's Brickhouse, 1258 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago. $5 donation. (773) 969-6201 or

• Remy Bumppo Theatre's contribution to the Athol Fugard mini-festival is "The Island," Fugard's 1975 Tony Award nominated drama about cellmates who labor during the day and rehearse Sophocles' "Antigone" at night. Remy Bumppo's James Bohnen directs LaShawn Banks (Writers' "The Turn of the Screw" and "Othello") and Kamal Angelo Bolden (Victory Gardens' "The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity"). Previews begin Wednesday, Jan. 27, at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago. The production opens Sunday, Jan. 31. A three-play pass is available for $75. See (773) 404-7446, or for more information.

• "Distracted," Lisa Loomer's domestic comedy about suburban parents dealing with their son's Attention Deficit Disorder begins previews Thursday, Jan. 28, at American Theater Company, 1909 W. Byron St., Chicago. ATC artistic director PJ Paparelli directs the Chicago area premiere. The show opens Monday, Feb. 1. (773) 409-4125 or

• Bricklayers Theatre Company hosts its Bricks and Mortar Fest, devoted to plays in mask beginning Thursday, Jan. 28, at the Theatre Building Chicago, 1225 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago. Productions run in repertory and include "Twelfth Night: Galaxy 4.2" adapted from Shakespeare's comedy; "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde;" and a staged reading of Tony Kushner's translation of Bertolt Brecht's "Mother Courage and Her Children." (773) 327-5252.

• Puppeteer Blair Thomas brings a new adaptation of Herman Melville's "Moby Dick" to Millennium Park as part of In the Works, a new theater lab series. A type of chamber puppet theater, the production incorporates Thomas' puppets and Michael Smith's music. It runs Thursday, Jan. 28, through Jan. 30, at 201 E. Randolph St., Chicago. (312) 742-8497 or

• This week marked the Chicago area premiere of "Mary's Wedding," Stephen Massicotte's drama about a young British woman newly arrived in Canada who exists in a fantasy world after the boy she falls in love with perishes during World War I. The Rivendell Theatre Ensemble production continues through Feb. 20 at the Raven Theatre complex. 6157 N. Clark St., Chicago. (773) 334-7728 or

• "The Laura on Laura Comeback Tour," a combination comedy show and concert centered around grade school teachers who give up their careers to pursue their fallback plan of becoming rock stars, opened recently at Strawdog Theater, 2839 N. Broadway, Chicago. The production runs late nights through Jan. 20. See for more information.

• Silent Theatre has relaunched its Wild Party Variety Hour incorporating everything from vaudeville, burlesque and mime, to solo performances and stage combat. The show runs at 10:30 p.m. the third Saturday of the month at Prop Thtr, 3504 N. Elston Ave., Chicago. (312) 533-8023 or

• Kids who enter Emerald City Theatre's fairy tale contest have a chance to have their original story posted online and win tickets to one of the company's future productions. The contest is open to students in first through fourth grades who must take a well-known fairy tale and tell it from an untraditional point of view. Stories must have a title, a minimum of 500 words and a maximum of 1,000 words. Entries must be postmarked by Friday, Feb. 27. Entries from first and second grade students will be judged collectively and entries from third and fourth grade students will be judged collectively. The winning entry will be posted on Emerald City's Web site and sent to 7,000 people via an e-blast. Contest details and entry forms are available at Emerald City's current production, "The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs," runs through March 25, at the Apollo Theatre, 2540 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago.

• The Mammals Theatre Company has extended "Breed With Me." The production runs Fridays and Saturdays through Feb. 13, at Zoo Studio, 4001 N. Ravenswood, Chicago. (866) 593-4614.