Hold onto your ruby slippers, because you’re about to find yourself in Oz … again. The hit musical “Wicked” is back in Chicago at the Oriental Theatre this week through Jan. 21. If you haven’t seen it, I’m going to assume you’ve been under a house or stuck in a Kansas cellar. And if you have seen it, it’s a musical worth seeing again, if for no other reason than to hear that make-or-break note in “Defying Gravity” — when done right, it defies all expectations. Oriental Theatre, 24 W. Randolph; tickets (starting at $119) HERE.
Calm down, Rudolph, today is all about Blitzen — or, more accurately, Blitzed. TBOX is one of the nations’ largest pub crawls, with more than 12,000 yearly partiers (they’re going for a Guinness World Record this year) encouraged to dress in their wackiest holiday ensembles. This year’s theme is Christmas Vacation, so pair that Hawaiian shirt with a Santa hat and get ready to do things that will put you firmly on the naughty list. The crawl includes 38 bars across Wrigleyville, including The Cubby Bear, John Barleycorn, Old Crow and Moe’s Cantina. A portion of proceeds benefit Lakeview Pantry, so call it philanthropic partying. The yuletide fiesta kicks off at Murphy’s Bleachers at 10 a.m., though there’s a pre-party at Cubby Bear at 9 a.m. for early risers. Murphy’s Bleachers, 3655 N. Sheffield; tickets (starting at $20.99) HERE.
Rule of thumb: S***t happens. And boy does it in “BLKS,” the new play at Steppenwolf Theatre that runs through Jan. 28. Written by poet Aziza Barnes, the comedic play depicts a wild day and night in NYC with four best girl friends, three queer, one straight … ish. In a phrase, they get turnt — and it’s delightful. Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted; tickets (starting at $38) HERE.
The KISS FM Jingle Ball isn’t until Dec. 13, but the official pre-party is this Sunday night at Roscoe’s in Boystown. Host Ruffio will be blasting hits from Jingle Ball artists like Demi Lovato, Chainsmokers, Camila Cabello and Halsey all day, and at 11 p.m. there’ll be a Kesha power hour, where fans can win a meet-and-greet tickets with the party-girl popstar. The Sunday Funday also includes ticket giveaways every 30 minutes. Free admission. Roscoe’s, 3356 N. Halsted; more info HERE.
Hold on to your payos, my fellow Jews, things are about to get wild. (FYI, for gentiles, payos are the curly sideburns sported by Orthodox Jews.) Orthodox beat boxer/reggae artist/and alt rocker Matisyahu is coming to Concord Music Hall this Saturday to play his genre-bending tunes like “One Day” and “King Without a Crown.” Hanukah menorahs might not be burning till Tuesday, but this concert is gonna get lit. Concord Music Hall, 2047 N. Milwaukee; tickets ($30) HERE.
Zak Stemer is a former Splash editor and lifestyle expert who currently works for Henson Consulting.