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WITH Chicago becoming more and more attractive as a location for major Hollywood film studios to produce new movie and TV projects, aspiring young actors, actresses, writers, producers and others interested in a Hollywood career will get the opportunity to interact with Hollywood’s elite during the first annual “A-List Speaker Series,” which kicks off in Chicago on September 10 in the Thorne Auditorium of Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law, 375 E. Chicago Avenue. The event will allow prospective movie and TV contributors to get insight into the entertainment industry from the keynote speaker, Emmy Award-winning producer and veteran TV studio executive Michael Swanson. The Chicago native will be joined by an accomplished group of panelists, including such major personalities as Chicago screenwriter Kenny Young; writer, producer, director and Chicagoan Natasha Parker; Pepe Vargas, founder and executive director of the International Latino Cultural Center's "Chicago Latino Film Festival”; and New York costume designer Michael Alan Stein. Important topics to be discussed during the inaugural gathering include diversification, brand-building, education vs. real-life experiences, understanding contracts and working with an agent. The organizers’ intent is not only to connect Hollywood hopefuls with Hollywood insiders but also to inspire and motivate young adults, hoping that the annual speaker series will serve as the foundation for them to build successful careers. For more information, go to www.alistspeakerseries.com or contact OMEN Communications at 312.922.1959 and 312.361.4796 (text/mobile).
Chicago Is Talking About . . .
1st Annual "A-List Speaker Series"
The Beach Boys & The Temptations
The Return Of Kinky Boots
THE six-time Tony Award-winning Broadway sensation Kinky Boots, which showcased its pre-Broadway world premiere in Chicago in 2012, has returned to the city for a short stint, running through September 4 at the Oriental Theatre. With direction and choreography by two-time Tony Award-winner Jerry Mitchell and a book by four-time Tony Award-winner Harvey Fierstein, Kinky Boots has proven to be a favorite among a wide spectrum of theatergoers, who relate to Charlie Price’s struggle to live up to his father’s expectations and successfully continue the family’s shoe factory in Northampton. He gets a monumental boost when Lola, a fabulous entertainer, comes up with an intriguing idea. J. Harrison Ghee (Lola) and Adam Kaplan (Charlie) create a partnership that reveals just who they really are as men. With award-winning songs from pop music icon Cyndi Lauper, the touching and inspiring production, which is based on a heartwarming and humorous true story, moves with nonstop energy straight through the high-heeled hit’s spectacular finale.
IT'S great to relive the good old days in concert with one iconic, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame group who created part of the soundtrack of your life, but when you get two of those groups on the same show, it’s magnificent. That’s what happened at River Edge Park in Aurora when The Beach Boys and The Temptations (below) brought different brands of music to an excited, sold-out crowd who immersed themselves in a night of the Motown Sound and the vocal harmonies that reflected an era in Southern California characterized by surfing, speedy cars and young love. The Temptations, led by original founder Otis Williams, launched a captivating show that highlighted some of music’s most memorable hits, including “Get Ready,” “I Wish It Would Rain,” “Papa Was A Rolling Stone,” “Just My Imagination,” “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg,” “Ball of Confusion” and the universal favorite “My Girl.” The Beach Boys, formed in 1961 and still regarded as the epitome of the California Sound, is fronted by original member Mike Love. The group took the crowd to an earlier, carefree time with a collection of songs such as “Wouldn’t It Be Nice,” “Surfin’ U.S.A.,” “Fun, Fun, Fun,” “Help Me Rhonda,” “Surfer Girl,” “Good Vibrations,” “California Girls,” “Don’t Worry Baby,” “I Get Around,” “Little Deuce Coupe,” “Sloop John ‘B’,” “Kokomo,” “In My Room” and “God Only Knows.” What a night to travel down memory lane with two of the best.
TV's Chicago Fire is among the popular TV and movie projects filmed in Chicago.