“Coronavirus and entertainment: The news and events in Chicago,” Chicago Tribune

The novel coronavirus has affected everything, including the world of entertainment. In addition to the sad tally of people we have lost, organizations, festivals, artists and film studios have come forward with everything from benefits to ways to reconsider what and how they do in a very different world. We track all of that here, as well as cancellations and postponements.

As the effects of the virus spread in Illinois, the Tribune is keeping a running list of Chicago-area closings and cancellations because of coronavirus and asking experts to answer your questions about COVID-19.

Friday, April 24

Spring Awakening canceled, will resume in 2021

The list of coronavirus-sparked cancellations continued as Spring Awakening, the summer EDM festival scheduled to take place in Union Park June 12-14, will be postponed to 2021, when the event will celebrate its 10th anniversary. 

Options for ticketholders includes just standing pat for the 2021 event, or a refund. Patrons will be notified by the fest’s ticketing agency. 

Also announced by the fest was a virtual Spring Awakening event in the fall. For ongoing information, visit springawakeningfestival.com.

Square Roots Festival moves from July to August

And the hits keep coming for the Chicago summer festival scene, as the Old Town School’s Square Roots Festival announced new dates on Friday.

The event moves from July 10-12 to August 28-30. In a press release, organizers said that, “This decision was made with careful consideration of health and safety concerns regarding current restrictions on large gatherings to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Square Roots Festival organizers will make any future decisions regarding the new weekend, August 28-30, with the health and safety of the community first and foremost as well as following recommendations from the CDC, City of Chicago, and the State of Illinois.”

The Lincoln Square mainstay’s 2019 edition featured 20 local eateries, 75 vendors and more than 300 musicians. Visit squareroots.org for more information.

Chicago Symphony Center cancels concerts through June 9

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association has canceled all CSOA-presented events at Symphony Center and other locations through June 9, the institution announced Friday.

These events have been dropped “in cooperation with ongoing community-wide efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” the CSOA said in a statement. Read more.

April 23

‘Windy City Live’ to return with new episodes Tuesday

New episodes of “Windy City Live,” WLS-Ch. 7′s daytime talk and entertainment show, are set to start airing Tuesday. Val Warner and Ryan Chiaverini will host remotely, kicking off the show with their signature “Host Chat” segment. Contributor Roe Conn will also join in. The second half of the hour-long show, which airs at 1 p.m. weekdays, will feature favorite moments from past seasons.

Actor/comedian Deon Cole is slated to be the first guest since the show stopped production March 13. Plans for the return of a live studio audience have not yet been determined.

A Fourth with no fireworks? Some suburban towns have already had to cancel for Independence Day

The Memorial Day Parade and Chicago Blues Fest have been scrapped. No ruling yet on Taste of Chicago but it’s hard to think about. Next in line for what’s shaping up to be a quiet Chicago summer? The question of what will happen with fireworks for the Fourth of July, both in the city and the displays put on in the suburbs.

In Chicago, a decision will come from Navy Pier, the city’s go-to spot for fireworks since the city last put on its own display in 2010Read more.

April 22

DePaul student Nate Odenkirk, son of TV star Bob Odenkirk, talks surviving coronavirus

DePaul University student Nate Odenkirk didn’t expect to spend his spring break sick as he’s ever been.

“I had a very mild case of coronavirus,” Odenkirk told the Tribune. “I didn’t have to be hospitalized, and it didn’t last as long as it’s lasted for some people. But it still sucked. It still really, really hurt. There were weeks where I couldn’t really get out of bed.” Read the full story.

April 20

A 420 White Mystery festival fete

Looking for something to do while at home doing nothing? Excited about 4/20 because of 420 and for the first time in Illinois you can fete Weed Day legally? Probably worth taking in a festival with Chicago’s noisiest gingers, White Mystery, and an action-packed lineup of performers.

A Facebook Live streaming performance festtival at 4:20 p.m. will feature the band, the sister/brother duo of Miss Alex White and Francis Scott Key, with special guest performers from remote locations. Earlier, lineup clues such as “SNL Alumnus,” “Welsh Troubadour” or “Chicago Hero” were offered. But now it’s all official. Here’s the roster of guests.

Fred Armisen (SNL, Portlandia), White Mystery, Cadien Lake James (Twin Peaks), Chicago 40th Ward Alderman Andre Vasquez, Shannon Shaw (Shannon & the Clams, Jason Narducy (Bob Mould, Superchunk, Verboten), Jon Langford (Mekons, Waco Brothers), realbigsilky (Psalm One & Angel Davanport), Brian Hurd (Daddy Long Legs), Max Hersh (Dirty Fences, Brower), Spacebones, Emily Rose (Zigtebra), Bev Rage & the Drinks, Monarchy Over Monday, Neptunes Core

We knew of one performer early because apparently, some folks couldn’t keep a secret.

For the unfamiliar, White Mystery is a noisy blast of garage rock adrenaline. Anyhow, you can RSVP for the event here.

P.S. If you can’t get enough White Mystery, the band will be releasing, also at 4:20 p.m., “Sonic Sepulcher” on Bandcamp, a trove of more than 400 (well, 420, to be exact) tracks by the duo.

More livestreams from V.V. Lightbody, Ganser

If nothing on the White Mystery 420 bill catches your fancy, revel in the continued magnificence of the Chicago scene with a pair of essential livestreams today, from V.V. Lightbody and Ganser. And you will need two screens, or a very fraught coin toss, as both are at the same time.

V.V. Lightbody has an album due on on May 1, “Make A Shrine Or Burn It,” that already has a spot reserved for it on some year-end best of lists, just off the strength of the three tracks you can hear now on Bandcamp. “If It’s Not Me” is a lush journey through the sonorities of Vivian McConnell’s voice. The off-kilter “Horse On Fire” would be one of the best songs you’ve heard this year were it not for “Car Alarm.” It will be fascinating to see (and hear) how McConnell manages to convey the fire, fury and subtlety of her stunning new music. 5 p.m. at the Audiotree Live Instagram page.

Ganser has a new album, “Just Look At That Sky,” out in mid-July. And if the two tracks available for a sneak peek on Bandcamp are any indication, you devotees of the Chicago sound have something to embrace. The rest of you, craving angular rock with a jangly snarl and a massive drum sound should also click away. People familiar with the band will be quite thrilled with the new music, which hits like a ton of bricks. 5 p.m. at the Empty Bottle Instagram space.

Friday April 17

Major Frida Kahlo exhibition postponed

“Frida Kahlo 2020” is now going to take place in 2021. The new title? “Frida Kahlo: Timeless.”

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the College of DuPage’s Cleve Carney Art Museum is pushing back by almost exactly a year what it says will be the largest exhibition of the iconic Mexican painter’s work in the Chicago area since the 1970s.

Originally scheduled for June 1 to Aug. 31 of 2021, the show will run June 5 to Sept. 6, 2021. Full story.

‘Better Call Saul’ star says son, a DePaul student, had coronavirus

“Better Call Saul” star Bob Odenkirk, who grew up in Naperville, said his son contracted the coronavirus a few weeks ago. Nathan Odenkirk majors in political science at DePaul University.

“My only big concern was Nate had dealt with asthma for a good chunk of his life, so I worried that that would be an extra complication. In the end, it was pretty bad, and it was worse than the flu. And according to him, the pain in his throat was the worst thing of all. But I think also the fatigue, and it lasted longer than the flu. But you know I’d say he got out pretty easily, obviously, compared to a lot of people,” Odenkirk said Thursday on “The Late Late Show with James Corden.”

‘Chicago Med’ star hosts virtual bingo session for North Riverside seniors

“Chicago Med” star Nick Gehlfuss hosted a virtual bingo session Thursday for residents of Caledonia Senior Living & Memory Care in North Riverside. Gehlfuss called each of the nine bingo rounds via video conference. The game was made possible with the donation of iPads and a 65-inch TV. Anyone interested in donating to Caledonia or hosting a virtual event for its residents can email info@caledoniaseniorliving.org.

Tuesday April 14

Chance the Rapper helps Chicago through SocialWorks

Chance the Rapper’s non-profit organization, SocialWorks, has created a resource list, a web series titled “SWorkshops” and a space for high school students to create and network in response, #30DaysofOpenMike to help benefit Chicago’s communities.

This resource list includes support for students, parents, mental health, creatives and hospital workers. SocialWorks says “SWorkshops” is a web series that will fundraise for a graduation and prom celebration for students within the Chicagoland area. Viewers can find more information and stream on SocialWorks’ website. And #30DaysofOpenMike is a weekly challenge and way for high school students across the nation to stay creative while in quarantine. The non-profit says this six-week challenge with five different prompts will award $500 to participating students. The winner and new prompts for the week are announced every Sunday morning.

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