Absolutely Fireproof: The Iroquois Theater Fire of 1903

  Nearly 114 years ago, Chicago experienced the worst theater fire in U.S. history. The burning of the Iroquois Theater claimed the lives of over 600 patrons, a tragic number that even exceeds the estimated 250 lives lost in the Chicago Fire of 1871. Beautiful, lavishly designed and deemed “absolutely fireproof”, the ill-fated Iroquois Theater…
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Remembering Martha Lavey, Former Steppenwolf Artistic Director

Martha Lavey, the artistic director of Steppenwolf Theatre Company from 1995 to 2015, and a member of the theater's acting ensemble since 1993, died Tuesday. Lavey left her mark on Chicago's theater community and on Chicago Public Library. A champion not only of Steppenwolf, but of theaters across the city, she spoke about the importance of the…
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It’s Here! 5 Articles About Hamilton: An American Musical

The revolutionary, successful and highly acclaimed Hamilton: An American Musical by Lin-Manuel Miranda starts in Chicago this week, and sadly, I don’t have tickets. I’ve heard about the show for well over a year and have listened to the soundtrack so many times. (It's even available instantly via hoopla.) Since then, I've been in awe of its brilliance, so…
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The Jungle Comes to CPL

Upton Sinclair published The Jungle 110 years ago. This famous expose of working conditions in Chicago's stockyards and packing houses led President Theodore Roosevelt and Congress to enact the Meat Inspection and Pure Food and Drug Acts of 1906. The Jungle is available in other formats. Sinclair's story is as much about working conditions as…
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Celebrate Shakespeare 400 Chicago Day

April 23, 2016 has been proclaimed by Mayor Emanuel as Shakespeare 400 Chicago Day. This day celebrates both the birth and death anniversaries of the playwright, and encourages all Chicagoans to enjoy his lasting influence. Happily, Mother Nature seems to be celebrating too. With warmer weather and daffodils in bloom, has Chicago's typical winter of discontent finally made way for…
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