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Chicago Theatre Week brimming with discounted tickets

'A Soldier's Play' Raven Theater.  | Dean LaPrairie Photo

"A Soldier's Play" at the Raven Theater. | Dean LaPrairie Photo

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Updated: February 12, 2013 9:59AM

Experienced theatergoers know all the little tricks for catching live theater at less-than-sticker prices. They can subscribe, head to Hot Tix, get a group rate, use their student or senior citizen IDs.

Now, with the establishment of the first Chicago Theatre Week, running Feb. 12-17, theatergoers also can take advantage of discounted tickets and added incentives for more than 100 shows currently running at theaters throughout the city. The hope is that both locals and tourists will venture out to see a live show.

It’s a project of the League of Chicago Theatres, in partnership with Choose Chicago. Each participating theater will offer $15 or $30 tickets throughout the week. All tickets will be available at a centralized website,

Talk-backs with artists, and “added-value activities” such as drink specials, will be among the extra incentives. See a show at the MCA Stage, and you’ll get one free museum admission. Catch “Million Dollar Quartet,” and you’ll get a free CD sampler. Attend “Girls Night! The Musical,” and you’ll come away with a free feather boa. See the wonderful “American Wee-Pie” at Rivendell, and you’ll get free cupcakes. Many theaters also will be offering coupons to attend a future show.

Here are 10 intriguing Theater Week discounts:

The Joffrey Ballet (Feb. 13-24 in “American Legends” at the Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Congress): The program includes Jerome Robbins’ jazzy, youthful “Interplay”; Gerald Arpino’s gogeously sensual duet, “Sea Shadow”; Twyla Tharp’s highly charged classic, “Nine Sinatra Songs” and “Son of Chamber Symphony” (a new work by Stanton Welch, the Australian-bred artistic director of the Houston Ballet, to John Adams’ music).

“A Soldier’s Play” (Feb. 12-March 30 at Raven Theatre, 6157 N. Clark): Charles Fuller’s scorching Pulitzer Prize-winning drama about a black Army captain sent to a segregated W.W. II-era Louisiana Army base to investigate a murder.

“When the Rain Stops Falling” (through Feb. 24 at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln): Andrew Bovell’s strange, heartbreaking story that captures the way acts of the past prove devastating to ensuing generations.

“Cadre” (Feb. 15-23 at the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre Upstairs, 800 E. Grand on Navy Pier): The captivating South-African writer-actor Omphile Molusi presents his deeply personal one-man show inspired by true events in the life of an activist during and after the apartheid era.

“The City & The City” (Feb. 15-April 7 at Lifeline Theatre, 6912 N. Glenwood): A world premiere adaptation of China Mieville’s novel in which one Inspector Tyador Borlu of the Extreme Crime Squad is assigned to a seemingly open-and-shut case: an American student found dead in the gutters of the city of Beszel. But powerful political and corporate factions in two cities are at play.

“Bud, Not Buddy” (through Feb. 24 in a Chicago Children’s Theater at the Ruth Page Theater Center, 1016 N. Dearborn): This ideal family show follows the journey of a young African-American orphan as he searches for his father in Depression-era Michigan and finds community among a group of jazz musicians.

“Sweet Charity” (through March 31 at Writers’ Theatre, 325 Tudor Ct., Glencoe): The classic musical about the dance-hall girl with an upbeat spirit and rotten luck with men gets exhilarating new life, thanks to its enchanting star, Tiffany Topol, and Jessica Redish’s zesty choreography.

“Leaves, Trees, Forest” by MPAACT (through March 3, at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln): Paul Notice’s play focuses on a young, black post-grad student seeking a life in politics.

“Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill” (through March 10 in a Porchlight Music Theater production at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont): Alexis J. Rogers gives a bravura performance as jazz great Billie Holiday in this one-woman show that deserves a long commercial run.

“Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo” (through March 17 at Lookingglass Theatre, 821 N. Michigan): Rajiv Joseph’s blistering play is set during the war in Iraq, as everyone from God, to U.S. Marines to Iraqis to zoo animals gets burned.

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