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Chicago Is Talking About . . .
Joffrey Ballet's 'Across The Pond' 
THE second annual I Heart Halal™, the premier halal lifestyle festival in America, will include the headlining performance by Grammy Award-winning rapper Lupe Fiasco. The festival at Navy Pier from April 12-14 will also feature some of the country’s top Muslim stand-up comedians––Paul Elia, Zainab Johnson, Aron Kader, Ismael Loutfi, Danish Maqbool and host Azhar Usman. Additionally, the three-day festival will include the only high-end Modest Fashion show in North America, headline celebrity entertainment, a Grand Bazaar of merchants, panel discussions, a Kids' Zone, and multiple nationally recognized expert-led cooking, beauty, and health and wellness demonstrations.
Christopher Cross At City Winery
I Heart Halal™ Annual Festival 
GRAMMY Award-winning Christopher Cross brought his “Take Me As I Am 2019 Tour” to City Winery for two nights of his brand of music that helped define the sound of the ‘80s. In an entertaining presentation that included accompanying videos, the San Antonio, Texas, native with the distinctive voice performed a mixture of songs from his collection of 14 albums and took the crowd down memory lane with tunes such as “Alright,” “Never Be the Same,” “I Really Don’t Know,” “Rev. Blowhard,” “Walking in Avalon” and the Academy Award-winning “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do).” After his signature song, “Sailing,” Cross, who shared a number of personal and professional tidbits during the performance, jokingly revealed that he doesn’t sail “unless someone else pays for it.” Other moments included the song “Roberta,” a tribute to his mentor Joni Mitchell from his Take Me As I Am album. By the time Cross finished his set with the popular and upbeat “Ride Like The Wind,” the audience hadn’t had enough and prompted an encore from the avowed pacifist who ended the night with John Lennon’s “Imagine.”
THREE of the United Kingdom’s most accomplished choreographers––Andrew McNicolLiam Scarlett and Andrea Walker––will showcase their talents when the Joffrey Ballet presents its spring program, Across the Pond. The presentation at the Auditorium Theatre April 24 through May 5 will feature two world premieres, Walker’s HOME, a story of strength, resilience and the nature of belonging; and Yonder Blue, a new production by McNicol, who was inspired by Siri Hustvedt’s book A Plea for Eros. The program also includes the Chicago premiere of Vespertine by Scarlett, the Royal Ballet Artist in Residence. “Many of the world’s most exciting young dance makers are creating and showing their work in Britain,” says Ashley Wheater, the Mary B. Galvin Artistic Director of the Joffrey. “We’re thrilled that three of the U.K.’s top choreographers are traveling to Chicago to end our season with such a groundbreaking program of incredible range and style.” 
Tommie-Waheed Evans         Marissa Osato                  Xiang Xu                 Edgar Zendejas