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Stories by Marc Vitali

Local Piano Prodigy Takes His Artistry Around the World

Joshua Mhoon

Young keyboard sensation Joshua Mhoon joins us in performance and conversation about his studies in Chicago and abroad.

Erwin Helfer, Blues Professor, Pounding Pianos at Age 80

A Chicago master of blues and boogie-woogie piano joins us in conversation and performance.

Hedy Weiss Reviews: ‘The Hunter and the Bear,’ ‘The Other Cinderella,’ More

Dwight Neal (left) and Shari Addison perform in “The Other Cinderella.” (Credit: Michael Courier)

With an abundance of theatrical magic on Chicago-area stages this season, Chicago Sun-Times theater critic Hedy Weiss gives her take on five plays.

Art Institute Takes Fresh Look at Pioneering Artist, Teacher

Bold paintings from the 1920s, plus photographs and industrial design: A new show looks at an international artist who made a big impression in Chicago.

Grammy Nominee Robbie Fulks Through the Years on WTTW

(Photo by Andy Goodwin)

Singer-songwriter Robbie Fulks joins us in discussion and performance of two songs that could win Grammy Awards in February.

Joffrey Ballet’s Reimagined ‘Nutcracker’ Inspired by Chicago History

(Cheryl Mann / Joffrey Ballet)

Backstage at the Joffrey Ballet before the recent launch of the all-new “Nutcracker” set in Chicago.

‘Tattoo’ Exhibit Aims to Create a Lasting Impression

Japanese irezumi by Horiyoshi (© Martin Hladik / Courtesy of The Field Museum)

Tattoos are making a big impression at the Field Museum. We visit the exhibition about the history and culture of the tattoo.

‘Hamilton’ Creator Lin-Manuel Miranda: Chicago is Best Theater Town

The creator of “Hamilton” talks about Chicago, “Sesame Street” and his theatrical blockbuster.

Actor Geraldine Chaplin Reflects on Lengthy Film Career

We revisit an interview with actress Geraldine Chaplin, who tells us about making the classic film “Doctor Zhivago,” her experiences in Chicago and her famous father, Charlie Chaplin.

Wild Things of Author, Artist Maurice Sendak Unleashed at MSI

(J.B. Spector / Museum of Science and Industry)

The author of “Where the Wild Things Are” upended expectations by depicting menace, anxiety and “wild” behavior in picture books devoured by young people. We visit an exhibition highlighting his long career.

Doctor Uses Magic to Heal, Teach and Entertain

Meet a medical doctor who moonlights as a magician. Northwestern University’s Dr. Ricardo Rosenkranz joins us to explore the mysteries of medicine and magic.

Joffrey Ballet’s Reimagined ‘Nutcracker’ Inspired by Chicago History

(Cheryl Mann / Joffrey Ballet)

We go backstage at the Joffrey Ballet as the company prepares to launch an all-new “Nutcracker” set in Chicago.

Stitches in Time: Historic Quilts at DuSable Museum

A modest but eye-opening new exhibition features practical works of art from the collection of a scholar on American quilts.

‘AIDS in America’ Exhibition Responds to Cultural Climate of 1980s

LADZ (John Arsenault and Adrian Gilliland), Eden #31, 2012. (Photo courtesy of the artists)

An ambitious new art exhibition looks at the cultural impact of, and creative response to, AIDS in America.

Rare Holiday Crèche on Display at Art Institute of Chicago

A spectacular Nativity set blends heavenly drama with earthly delights. “Chicago Tonight” visited the museum and found an elaborate piece of art originally seen in churches in 18th century Naples.

‘Downton Abbey’ Actor Robert Bathurst Portrays Prince Charles as King

Actor Robert Bathurst (“Downton Abbey”) portrays King Charles in “King Charles III.” (Liz Lauren / Chicago Shakespeare Theater)

He played a pivotal role in “Downton Abbey.” Now he takes the throne as King Charles. English actor Robert Bathurst is here to talk about royalty, “Downton” and the stage.

In Chicago, ‘Hamilton’ Actor Addresses Political Firestorm

Was Duel in New York Just a Distraction?

Miguel Cervantes and Ari Asfar in the Chicago production of “Hamilton: An American Musical.” (Joan Marcus / Broadway in Chicago)

The culture wars are heating up again, one duel at a time.

Hedy Weiss Reviews: ‘End of the Rainbow,’ ‘King Charles III,’ More

Angela Ingersoll as “Judy Garland" (Photo by Kelsey Jorissen)

Judy Garland was one of the most distinctive American entertainers of the 20th Century. A new play looks at the extreme highs and lows of a legendary life in showbiz that ended at age 47. Hedy Weiss reviews that show, plus four other productions in and around Chicago.

New Biography Sheds Light on Private Life of Al Capone

Al Capone in 1930. (Courtesy “Al Capone: His Life, Legacy, and Legend”)

The continuing fascination with gangster Al Capone. We speak to the author of a new book that looks at the private life of the notorious criminal.

Documentary Explores Life of Legendary Writer Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou in a scene from the documentary “Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise.”

The moving and powerful life of Maya Angelou: A new film explores the many facets of the acclaimed poet and writer.

Chicago Shop Plays Key Role in Keeping World’s Ensembles in Tune

Chicago Tonight visits a little shop in Chicago for a look at how to rejuvenate pitched percussion instruments – and to get a history lesson in concert tuning.

Glenn DuBose, PBS Producer, Champion of the Arts, Dies

Glenn DuBose’s last day at WTTW in 1994. (Courtesy of Marc Vitali)

Glenn DuBose, the ultimate behind-the-scenes producer of arts programming on PBS, died this week in Miami. He shaped countless fine national and local programs.

‘Tattoo’ Exhibit Aims to Create a Lasting Impression

Japanese irezumi by Horiyoshi (© Martin Hladik / Courtesy of The Field Museum)

The Field Museum has a new look at tattooing – an age-old tradition that is as popular now as it was millennia ago.

Theatrical ‘Magic’ in the Air at 2 Distinctive Chicago Shows

Francis Guinan performs in the Goodman Theatre’s “The Magic Play.” (Liz Lauren / Goodman Theatre)

Illusions of grandeur take center stage at two Chicago shows and may make you question reality. See what tricks two local theaters have up their sleeves.

Peter Kim on Leaving ‘Dream Job’ at Second City

Peter Kim performs in The Second City e.t.c.’s 40th revue, “A Red Line Runs Through It.” (Todd Rosenberg / The Second City)

Comedian Peter Kim talks about the state of stand-up comedy, and why he recently left a hit show at The Second City.