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Show: Titus Andronicus seem to be trying to crossbreed nervy, nihilistic hardcore and the epic moments from Springsteen's Born to Run. "You can feel in the band's desperate energy the free-floating angst that comes from living in a splintered nation," writes Miles Raymer.
8 PM, Bottom Lounge, 1375 W. Lake, 312-666-6775 or 866-468-3401, $12, $10 in advance, 17+.
Dinner: Macello Executive chef-partner Giovanni DeNigris (Trattoria Trullo) showcases the rustic cucina and robust wines of Puglia in his exposed-brick dining room, a former meatpacking warehouse, and pizzas are a good bet under the hands of chef Gino Losacco, who mans the central wood-burning brick oven.
1235 W. Lake St., 312-850-9870
Show: The Tokyo Nami Trio, featuring vocalist Nami Sagara Farahmand, saxophonist Toru Hironaka, and bassist Tatsu Aoki, performs live accompaniment to Aoki's 30-minute film Puzzle as part of Chicagoans, a program of short films with local ties screening as part of the Asian American Showcase.
8pm, Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N. State St., 312-846-2600
201 N. State St., 312-239-9500
Show: Little Women play ferociously abrasive music that recalls the tightly wound "brutal prog" former Chicagoan Weasel Walter used to make with the Flying Luttenbachers. Their first full-length, Throat, is "a seven-part suite that uses recurring clusters of tightly registered blasts to lend structure to the same kind of blitzing chaos that defines Peter Brötzmann's 1968 classic Machine Gun," writes Peter Margasak. Little Women also play Thursday, April 8, at the Velvet Lounge; Ken Vandermark opens that show with a solo set.
9:30 PM, Hideout, 1354 W. Wabansia, 773-227-4433 or 866-468-3401, $8.
Dinner: Jane's inhabits a cozy converted house in Bucktown. The reasonably priced Cal-American fare is innovative, eclectic, and especially friendly to vegetarians.
1653 W. Cortland St., 773-862-5263
Show: Sixteen Candles [Ed. note: not actually recommended by critic Dave Kehr, but you probably already have your own opinion about it. Anyway, I liked this line: "The members of the Lampoon generation had clearly tired of the anything-goes format, but as they tried to make the transition to character comedy, they refused to give up their old attitudes—they wanted to be Chekhov and Mel Brooks, and the results are grotesque."]
7pm, 9pm, Univ. of Chicago Doc Films, 1212 E. 59th St., 773-702-8575
Dinner: Cedars Mediterranean Kitchen This Lebanese restaurant offers the usual suspects: marinated chicken kebabs, falafel, and hummus to spread on unusually good pita. Portions are generous, which makes it a great stop for those on a student budget.
1206 E. 53rd St., 773-324-6227
Show: Les Liaisons Dangereuses For this lively, juicy Remy Bumppo production, director David Darlow seats the audience on three sides of the stage and reduces furniture to a minimum so that the ancien regime, for all its surface beauty (expressed in outstanding costumes by Emily Waecker), comes to resemble a bloody arena where innocents are routinely fed to lions as sport.
7:30pm, Greenhouse Theater, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave., Lincoln Park, 773-404-7336, $10-$50
Dinner: Gemini Bistro is all about comfort, from the warm chocolate-and-caramel color scheme to the deep, dark booths to the American bistro menu.
2075 N. Lincoln Ave., 773-525-2522
Show: A Wintertime Tale Eric Holm's idea of mashing up The Winter's Tale and Charles Mee's Wintertime isn't nearly as abstruse as it sounds. In essence, it just amounts to performing Shakespeare's romance within a framing story about actors holed up in a ski cabin with their rehearsal scripts and relationship troubles. But the results are mesmerizing. It closes tonight.
7:30pm, Strawdog Theatre's Hugen Hall, 3829 N Broadway, 773-528-9696, $15
Dinner: Horizon Cafe Fine-dining touches show up here and there—you can't get tilapia almondine just anywhere. Another highlight is Horizon's thick, rich tomato couscous soup, available only on Thursdays and worth planning around. In diner fashion, customers can get breakfast for dinner here—as well as dinner for breakfast.
3805 N. Broadway, 773-883-1565