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Chicago Fringe and Buskers Festival

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This three-week showcase of clowning, cabaret, stage magic, dance, and other odd bits of entertainment features performers from around the U.S.--New York to California and Minnesota to Hawaii, not to mention plenty from Chicago--as well as artists hailing from Russia, Brazil, and Canada. Produced, as it was last year, by John T. Mills and James Ellis, the Fringe Fest runs June 6 through 23, with shows six days a week--as few as 3 on weeknights or as many as 21 on weekends. Most performances take place at the Organic Theater, 3319 N. Clark. (The listings below specify which of the Organic's three spaces each show is in: the South Hall or Lab Theater, both located in the second-floor Organic Greenhouse, or the main stage, whose entrance is on Buckingham just east of Clark.) Selected performances also take place at the Annoyance Theatre, 3747 N. Clark. The phone number for ticket orders is the Organic box office: 327-5588. Tickets range from $4 to $12 (including children's, seniors', and student discounts) depending on the show; prices for each show are listed below. (A "Fringe Passport" good for 25 performances costs $50.)

The Reader carries festival listings on a week-by-week basis; here's the schedule for opening day.

THURSDAY, JUNE 6

Blink

This trio of jugglers hails from Brunswick, Maine. Annoyance Theatre, 7 PM. $6-$10.

Radio Is Dead

San Francisco's Pipedream Productions performs a spoof of 1940s radio drama, presented as a live broadcast. Organic Lab Theater, 7 PM. $10-$11.

Curst Flesh: The Testimony of Therese Raquin

Brooklyn-based actor Maureen Brennan's one-woman show employs dance, mime, and monologue to dramatize Emile Zola's 1868 tale of a woman who rebels against sexual convention. Organic South Hall, 8:30 PM. $7.

I Killed My Sorrow, or Solo for a Mad Piano

The Cranks Theatre Company from Moscow calls itself "a group that believes in the healing power of clowning," and promises music, dance, juggling, and pantomime. Annoyance Theatre, 8:30 PM. $12.

The Testimony of Therese Raquin

Brooklyn-based actor Maureen Brennan's one-woman show employs dance, mime, and monologue to dramatize Emile Zola's 1868 tale of a woman who rebels against sexual convention. Organic South Hall, 8:30 PM. $7.

The Egghead, Rot in the Cosmic Egg

"Metaphysical vaudevillian" Lloyd Brant, who hails from Minneapolis, describes his one-man show as "Beckett dropping acid with the Marx Brothers on a trip through Purgatory." Organic Lab, 9 PM. $12.

Charlie's Good Time Gospel Hour

Gigantic Productions, a local troupe, performs a look at the life and mind of Charles Manson. Organic South Hall, 10 PM. $8.

Berlin to Babylon: The Songs of Kurt Weill and Friedrich Hollaender California-based cabaret singer Cameron Silver evokes the Weimar era with the aid of pianist Steven Applegate. Organic Lab, 10:30 PM. $8-$10.

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