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Stories by Marc Vitali

When “Tennessee” Came to Chicago

Tennessee Williams visited the city at a critical moment in his career

The great playwright came unprepared for two things: rewrites and the city itself. “I can’t find the tranquility in Chicago to write.”

“Burning Bluebeard”

Clowns relate the true story of Chicago's 1903 Iroquois Theatre fire in a stunning and funny revival of a show called Burning Bluebeard at Theater Wit.

60 Years of Sculpture with Richard Hunt

| Travis Cornejo

We visit the Chicago Cultural Center and the MCA to discover the steel sculptures of Chicago's internationally acclaimed sculptor Richard Hunt.

From “Citizen Kane” to “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”

Beyond His Outer Space Paintings, Influential Artist Chesley Bonestell also Made Earthbound Art for Hollywood Movies

Before CGI visual effects dominated Hollywood movies, filmmakers often used a painting of a landscape or location to create a non-existent environment.

Kaleidoscope of Color

“Seeing Trees in a Different Light”

An illuminating spectacle brightens wintry nights at the Morton Arboretum.

Hedy Weiss: Theater Reviews

| Travis Cornejo

Theater critic Hedy Weiss joins Chicago Tonight to review a roundup of shows to see before the holidays.

‘The City Lost and Found’

A new show at The Art Institute looks at the transformation of American cities in the 1960s and '70s.

American Experiences

Dignified Portraits of Men and Women Who Served and the Thoughts They Carried.

Shaking Up Notions of Shakespeare

| Travis Cornejo

Chicago Public School students embrace William Shakespeare in an award-winning program at Chicago Shakespeare Theater.

“And the Winner is…”

Spoiler Alert – "Chicago Tonight" Got a Hot Tip about a Group that is Shaking Up Shakespeare

The news about young people in Chicago trends toward the negative, so we’re pleased to share a success story that is positively delightful.

Photographer Steve Schapiro

As a longtime photographer for LIFE magazine, Steve Schapiro traveled with Martin Luther King Jr. and photographed everything from "presidents to poodles." We meet him for a talk about his latest show at the Ed Paschke Art Center.

French Impressions

Vivid Graphics from a Century Ago

New exhibition shines light on the artful illustrations that flowered in France during a dangerous era.

He Was the Voice of Bambi – And So Much More

“Boris Karloff taught me how to play checkers.”

"Bambi" (1942) Walt Disney Productions

We speak with a one-time actor who worked with Boris Karloff and Walt Disney—and served three tours of duty in Vietnam.

The Sacred Power of Vodou

| Taurean Small

A new exhibition at The Field Museum looks beyond the Hollywood myths about vodou and gets to the heart of a spiritual and social force that remains an important part of daily life in Haiti.

Wallace Kirkland

We revisit the story of photographer Wallace Kirkland, who started his career as a social worker at the Hull House settlement in Chicago. He took a winding path in an artistic career that led him from Jamaica to India and around the world – all the while photographing Chicago people and places. 

‘Fantastic’ Voyage

Globe-Trotting Artist Creates Otherworldly Creatures

From Kenya to Brooklyn – and now Evanston – a red-hot young artist makes mythic collages from the material world.

A Way with Words

New Art Show Sets Sail with a Boatload of Wordplay

A free exhibition explores the artful use of language by contemporary Illinois painters and sculptors.

Art and History Merge in Artist’s Incredible Life Story

The artist Charlotte Salomon raced against the clock to finish a pictorial autobiography as World War II closed in around her.

Mesmerizing Music of the Night

Join a Listening Party as the City of Chicago Pulls an All-Nighter

Chicago’s majestic Cultural Center has no small plans for the weekend. The Cultural Center will stay open overnight this Friday, Sept. 12, as part of the 2014 World Music Festival.

South Side Serenade

'Pulse of the Night' Beats in New Photo Exhibition

Intimate black-and-white photographs document the South Side nightlife of the 1970s in a just-opened show at the Museum of Contemporary Photography.

More than War Stories

Chicago Artist Paints Pacific Overtures

A onetime sailor and tattoo artist blends adult experiences with childhood memories to create mystical memorials to World War II. 

Raider of the Lost Art

Curator of Suburban Museum Has Sixth Sense for Finding Forgotten Artwork

A little-known Chicago artist is finally getting the attention he deserves – in Des Plaines.

Farina City

Local Actor Makes His Mark, Steps Out of Father’s Long Shadow

Joe Farina doesn’t strongly resemble his dad -- the late actor Dennis Farina -- but he shares a similar everyman quality. 

Saturday in the Park

Be Part of an Art Party

Don’t read the newspaper death counts this weekend. Go to a free block party on the South Side on Saturday, July 26, to celebrate good news and people doing things right.

Taking a Swing at the New Steppenwolf Show

Can a Raunchy Sex Satire Be Both “Funny and Never Dull” AND “Smug and Vacuous?”

 “The Qualms” is the foul-mouthed new play from Pulitzer Prize-winner Bruce Norris (“Clybourne Park”).