Family Saturdays at the Biograph Theater

| November 5, 2008 | 3 Comments

By Elizabeth Shapiro

November 4, 2008 – Our family recently visited the Biograph Theater in Lincoln Park (the one where Dillinger was shot in ’34 and Johnny Depp reenacted that fatal evening while filming earlier this year) for a showing of the Chicago International Film Festival’s series of kid shorts and were impressed; the recent renovations have turned this run down relic into an impressive and comfortable theater space. We were informed that the Biograph didn’t just show festival flicks, but now, as part of the Victory Gardens Theater space, hosted live theater.

We were once adoring patrons of the dramatic arts… back before having children meant lining up sitters, planning ahead and missing most of what was new and hot on the scene in our theater-rich city. Luckily, the folks at Victory Gardens have just the solution: Family Saturdays!

For one early evening performance of each mainstage show, you can drop off your children (ages 4 and up) with their capable theater education professionals in the theater rehearsal space. While you enjoy the performance, your child is learning theater games, creating crafts, and making new friends. Check in our your kids during intermission to share a Swirlz cupcake, and stick around after the show as your child proudly shares the project he worked hard on and introduces you to his new pals.

Victory Gardens won a Tony for their commitment to amazing regional theater, and their 2008-2009 line up includes a holiday run of the musical Snow Queen (with Old Town School of Folk music instructors accompanying live) and Blackbird, starring television’s CSI’s William Petersen. Subscriptions to the series start at $155 per parent (inclusive of show and child care!), which is a steal. Call the box office at 773-871-3000 for more details, or check out their website at

Photo courtesy of the Biograph Theater website.

This is an Original article.


Elizabeth Shapiro loves exploring her adoptive city with her two-year-old in tow when she isn’t organizing the Chicago Stay at Home Moms meetup group or cheering on her beloved Bears.

Category: News & Events, See & Plays

About the Author ()

Head Chicagonista, Co-host of the Chicagonista LIVE! show, Lead blogger for, and Co-Founder of Women Driving Excellence. MJ is also the annual host of SocialRevUp - Brands & Bloggers Summit (#bbsummit) attended by about 200 professional high-profile bloggers nationwide. Follow MJ on Twitter: @mjtam

Comments (3)

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  1. MJ Tam says:

    Wow! I can’t wait to do this with my 2 older kids. Thank you for writing this.

  2. Jay Kelly says:

    Hi Liz, thanks so much for blogging about our Family Saturday program at the Victory Gardens Biograph! Glad you had a good time at the Chicago Children’s International Film Festival last weekend. We had a blast hosting their screenings, and it was a breath of fresh air to see our mainstage packed with parents and young kids.

    Two quick notes – our box office phone number is 773-871-3000 and, if it’s okay to insert this commercial message about our next Family Saturday, for our upcoming holiday musical, The Snow Queen:

    Most of our plays really don’t have too much appeal for young kids, hence the growing popularity of our Family Saturday program for parents. However, The Snow Queen is a bit of an odd duck. It’s recommended for kids 8 and up. Many, I wouldn’t say most, kids younger than 8 just don’t have the patience for a 2 hour live theater production – despite the live band, puppets, dancers, etc. And, some littler kids find The Snow Queen puppet, who appears at the end of the show, a bit scary.

    Still, Family Saturday for The Snow Queen – Sat, 12/6 at 3 pm – is the ideal day to bring the entire family, and kids of any age. Older kids can join their parents for the show, while younger kids can play Snow Queen related games and crafts with our education staff in our rehearsal room, right upstairs! Everyone’s a winner…hope to see you there!


    Jay Kelly
    Victory Gardens Biograph Theater

  3. gina says:

    This sounds wonderful! Can’t wait to check it out!

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