From a must-see art exhibition to a sultry French wine bar, here’s what has Chicago buzzing as we look ahead to spring.
Red light district: The sultry environs of Soif Wine Lounge
SIP A new French speakeasy-inspired wine bar is ready to transport guests into the dimly lit, hole-in-the-wall havens of Paris. Tucked below chic Italian eatery Testaccio, Soif Wine Lounge presents an intimate ambiance where local restaurateur and nationally recognized wine expert Aldo Zaninotto presents an ever-evolving beverage list of up to 60 limited-production gems from France’s renowned winemakers. With quintessential French bites to share, including an elegant caviar service, alongside eclectic tunes from local DJs, Soif encapsulates a lively Parisian atmosphere in the heart of Logan Square. 2456 N. California Ave., soifchicago.com
With awe-inspiring visuals and clever staging, Manual Cinema takes shadow puppetry to a new level.
SEE Emmy Award-winning Manual Cinema reimagines Edith Nesbit’s novel The Magic City into a cinematic shadow puppet show for one night this month at the Harris Theater. This modern retelling utilizes live music, overhead projectors and more to depict the whimsical children’s tale of young Philomena’s adventure into the make-believe world of her own miniature city. Manual Cinema’s adaptation is a sensory-friendly performance and will provide sign language interpretations for spoken content so every attendee can feel part of the magic. March 19, 205 E. Randolph St., harristheaterchicago.org
Ayanah Moor, “Cherry Starburst Original Fruit Chewz” (2020, acrylic, ink wash, graphite, vintage magazine pages and crayon on wood panel), 48 inches by 60 inches
VISIT Debuting her first exhibition at the Cleve Carney Museum of Art, dynamic Chicago artist Ayanah Moor showcases her latest collection of paintings in I Wish I Could Be You More Often. Moor is known for her contemporary exploration into notions of Blackness and gender identity; her body of work will be contrasted by a collaged backdrop of various wall graphics to reflect Moor’s emphasis on overlapping histories and representation. Says curator Justin White, “Ayanah is one of the most talented painters in the city at this moment, with a defiant focus on highlighting beauty and love in all of their complexity. It’s an honor to present her immense skill, particularly because this is her first solo exhibition of paintings in Chicago.” Through April 10, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn, theccma.org
The Broadway run of Moulin Rouge! The Musical scored Danny Burstein a long-awaited Tony for his revved-up portrayal of Harold Zidler.
EXPERIENCE After winning an impressive 10 Tony Awards in 2021, Moulin Rouge! The Musical arrives in Chicago to unveil a spectacular world of glitz, grandeur and glory. Based on the iconic film by Baz Luhrmann in which a young English poet falls madly in love with a cabaret actress, this musical mash-up celebrates the enchanting bohemians and aristocrats who revel in electrifying songs all night long. March 19-May 14, James M. Nederlander Theatre, 24 W. Randolph St., broadwayinchicago.com
Photography by: COURTESY OF SOIF WINE LOUNGE; BY CHUCK OSGOOD; COURTESY OF CLEVE CARNEY MUSEUM OF ART; BY MATTHEW MURPHY