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Fillet of Solo Festival

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Live Bait Theater's eighth annual showcase of one-person performances features old and new work by a slew of fringe artists. The fest runs through August 30 at Live Bait Theater, 3914 N. Clark; performances take place in the theater's Bucket space. Tickets are $10 per show; a festival pass to all shows costs $30. Call 773-871-1212 for reservations (tickets are also available online at www.ticketweb.com); check www.livebaittheater.org for more information.

THURSDAY, AUGUST 28

Fillet of Solo Sampler

Edward Thomas-Herrera hosts a program of short solo pieces. Also on the bill: Dina Connolly, James T. Alfred, Mary Fons, Robin Cline, and Ilana Manaster. 7:30 PM.

FRIDAY, AUGUST 29

Materia Prima

Stephanie Shaw's autobiographical performance is the final installment of a trilogy about her experiences as a mother. Edward Thomas-Herrera directs. "Shaw isn't content to settle for the Oprah-fied version of the motherhood battle. . . . Instead she pushes her saga into a minefield of myth and psychosis. . . . Emotional complexity spills naturally out of Shaw's ingeniously crafted material, as does a great deal of humor. [But] Shaw hasn't quite created a satisfying end product. . . . Laying out her fascinating material over the course of about 45 minutes, she then shuffles it about for the final 15, stymied before the enormity of her own purpose," says Reader critic Justin Hayford. 7:30 PM.

Fillet of Solo Sampler

See listing for Thursday, August 28. Tonight's bill features Ilana Manaster, Cavan Hallman, Susan McLaughlin-Karp, Robin Cline, and David Kodeski and Edward Thomas-Herrera. 9 PM.

SATURDAY, AUGUST 30

Materia Prima

See listing for 7:30 PM Friday, August 29. 7:30 PM.

Any Way You Want It

Kristin Garrison is accompanied by the Tom Ridge Trio in this program of short scenes. "Performing in front of a small rock band, Garrison packs a surprising number of ideas into a performance less than 90 minutes long: fear of intimacy, fear of death, loss of faith, identity crises, even a hilarious send-up of postmodern criticism. . . . Whenever Garrison is discussing something weighty . . . she leavens her observations with comedy. This gift for humor keeps the audience alert and attentive even when the subject is dark," says Reader critic Jack Helbig. 9:30 PM.

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