For some, it just isn't a complete summer without hearing the words of the Bard spoken into the warm nighttime air — or just a few outdoor lines of Roald Dahl down by the bugs. Fear not, grass-sitting theater-goers, the outdoor season is still in full bloom.
'The Comedy of Errors'
As trumpeted by Mayor Rahm Emanuel , a big part of the city's "Night Out in the Parks" initiative is a partnership with Chicago Shakes. "The Comedy of Errors" is this summer's Shakespeare in the Parks selection; it's playing through Aug. 25 in a series of free outdoor performances. The 75-minute "Comedy," presented on a truck with an unfolding stage, is scheduled as follows (more information at chicagoshakes.com):
•Loyola Park, 1230 W. Greenleaf Ave.; 6:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday
•Hamilton Park, 513 W. 72nd St.; 4 p.m Sunday
•South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. South Shore Drive; 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday
•Humboldt Park, 1440 N. Humboldt Drive; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 8-9
•Riis Park, 6100 W. Fullerton; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 10
•Douglas Park, 1401 S. Sacramento Drive; 4 p.m. Aug. 11
•Piotrowski Park, 4247 W. 31st St.; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 14
•Gage Park, 2411 W. 55th St.; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 15
•Welles Park, 2333 W. Sunnyside Ave.; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 16-17
•Washington Park, 5531 S. Martin Luther King Drive; 4 p.m. Aug. 18
•Marquette Park, 6743 S. Kedzie; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 20
•Ridge Park, 9625 S. Longwood Drive; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 21-22
•Frank J Wilson Park, 4630 N. Milwaukee Ave.; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 23-24
•Garfield Park Conservatory, 300 N. Central Park Ave.; 3 p.m. Aug. 25
Here's Shakespeare under the suburban stars, done beach-party style in downtown Oak Park through Aug. 24 (more information at oakparkfestival.com). "In Oak Park Festival Theatre's surf's-up take on 'Twelfth Night,'" writes Kerry Reid in her three-star Tribune review, "the coast of Illyria has morphed into the set of a Frankie-and-Annette film, and the food of love is seasoned with sand and salt air."
Theatre-Hikes presents "The Three Musketeers" (Ken Ludwig's version of Alexandre Dumas' classic) in an outdoor ambulatory production. It's 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the North Pullman State Historic Site, 11111 S. Forestville Ave. Next up is "James and the Giant Peach," with James and his many-legged friends in an outdoor staging of the Roald Dahl favorite, adapted by David Wood. At the Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Saturday through Aug. 25. Contact theatre-hikes.org for both.
Theater on the Lake
Theater on the Lake concludes its 61st season at Fullerton Avenue and Lake Shore Drive. Jackalope Theatre's "Long Way Go Down" is through Sunday; Chicago Physical Theater's "The Chi-Town Clown Revue" is Aug. 7-11; call 312-742-7994.
The Redmoon Theater's outdoor spectacles are legendary; this summer's lets audience members participate in performance workshops led by the South Side drum troupe The Bucket Boys, Young Chicago Authors and others. Events (redmoon.org) conclude with performances with the Sonic Boom, a mobile speaker system equipped with DJ stations and drums.
•Meyering Park, 7140 S. Martin Luther King Drive; 5 p.m. Friday
•Midway Plaisance Park, 1130 Midway Plaisance; 8:30 p.m. Aug. 8
•Dvorak Park, 1119 W. Cullerton St.; 1 p.m. Aug. 10
•Amundsen Park, 6200 W. Bloomingdale Ave.; 5 p.m. Aug. 17
•Fuller Park, 331 W. 45th St.; 5 p.m. Aug. 24
•Sherwood Park, 5701 S. Shields St.; 5 p.m. Aug. 30
•Humboldt Park, 1440 N. Humboldt Drive; 4:30 p.m. Sept. 7
'Crime Scene Chicago: Let Hope Rise'
The outdoors can be serious too, with a touring sequel to Collaboraction's documentary play "Crime Scene: A Chicago Anthology." The 85-minute play is best for ages 14 and up; free with reservations at 312-226-9633.
•Hamilton Park, 513 W. 72nd St.; 8 p.m. Aug. 16-17
•Austin Town Hall Park, 5610 W. Lake St.; 8 p.m. Aug. 23-24Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun