Hard Times @ Lookingglass Theatre, Chicago (Water Tower Place)

  • January 07, 2018
  • Chicago
  • 0


  • NOTE: Member ($98) with guest ($113) will cost a total of $211. TO ADD YOUR GUEST: click on the "ADD GUEST" button at the bottom of the registration form and enter the guest information, as indicated. Thank you.

Note: This trip is a joint venture with the Chicago Museums field trip.

Estimated Trip Durations:
East Towne Sears: 8:10 AM - 8:00 PM
Capitol Lakes: 7:55 AM - 8:15 PM
Oakwood West: 7:30 AM - 8:35 PM

Guest Registration Fee: $113.

Registration and Ticket Order Deadline: Dec 10, which is the last day for Registration Fee Cancellation Refund.

Registration Fee inc Van Galder Charter Service w/ Wi-Fi and theater ticket. Lunch is on your own.
Registration is closed

Join us Sunday, January 7 for Hard Times, the first theater trip, of 2018.  It will be staged in the intimate Lookingglass Theater located within the Water Tower Water Works.

Lookingglass launches its 30th Season with the return of the award-winning, circus-infused Hard Times.

A Dickensian carnival of characters inhabits the streets of smoke-choked Coketown: grim Mr. Gradgrind’s school churns out joyless students; poor Stephen Blackpool toils in the nearby mines; and mill-owner Mr. Bounderby, full of bluster and bombast, presides over it all. Only when a traveling circus alights nearby, and young orphan Sissy Jupe enters their world, does a ray of hope shine through.

Artistic Director Heidi Stillman adapts and directs this timeless love-letter to the power of beauty, hope, and imagination.

Heidi Stillman—in her finest, most nuanced work as both adapter and director—has crafted a show of tremendous grace and heart, darkness and light. She has brought to life a Victorian-era epic that bursts with wit and whimsy, and all the outrage, hope, severity, and sentimentality of the novel.

– Chicago Sun-Times

As brilliantly conceived as any Dickens stage adaptation I have ever seen. It’s a tribute not only to the glory of Dickens, but to the joy of theater.

– Chicago Tribune

Learn more about the Hard Times production on its webpage including: artist/cast bios and video clips:
Hard Times Returns to Lookingglass, (2:29) and 
Hard Times (2017) First Rehearsal (2:46)

Run Time: Two Hours and 45 minutes including one intermission (2:00 PM - 4:45 PM) 

Lookingglass Theatre:

11:30 AM - 2:00 PM
Free Time for Lunch and Adventure
within easy  walking distance of 
Lookingglass Theatre
(N. Michigan Ave & E. Pearson St)

A few suggestions

Driehaus Museum (Chicago's Downton Abbey)

Free Noon Tour, Great Gift Shop, MCA Cafe

Water Tower Place Shopping and Dining

Lookingglass Theatre Restaurant Partners


Bear in mind that our boarding bus route is like Madison Metro or any other municipal bus service. Please arrive early at your boarding stop so you don’t miss the bus. When everyone is aboard and seated, we leave. Arrive early and we will all arrive in Chicago on time to begin our adventure.

– Don’t be late. We can wait just 5 minutes at any one location.

– Pack water bottles and snacks for sustenance on the trip.

Leave Madison

7:30 AM         Bus  arrives at Oakwood University Woods to begin boarding.

7:55 AM     Arrive at Capitol Lakes

8:10 AM     Arrive at East Towne Sears

8:20 AM     Depart for Chicago (Or, sooner if everyone is aboard)

In Chicago

11:00 AM  Fig and Olive Restaurant

11:05 AM Arrive Lookingglass Theatre, Contemporary Art Museum (MCA) Chicago, Driehaus Museum and Water Tower Place.

11:20 AM Arrive Art Institute of Chicago

11:30 AM Arrive Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium and Alder Planetarium

11:45 AM Arrive Museum of Science and Industry  

2:00 PM   Hard Times performance begins

3:30 PM Pick up Museum of Science and Industry

3:45 PM Pick up Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium and Alder Plantetarium

4:00 PM  Pick up Art Institute of Chicago

4:30 PM Arrive Lookingglass Theatre, Contemporary Art Museum (MCA) Chicago, Driehaus Museum and Water Tower Place.

4:45 PM   Hard Times performance ends

4:45 PM - 5:05 PM    Boarding preparation period 

5:05 PM     Depart for Madison (Or, sooner if everyone is aboard)

Arrive Madison (Est)

8:00 PM East Towne Sears

8:15 PM Capitol Lakes

8:35 PM Oakwood University Woods

Non-Member Policy Members must register their guests. Each PLATO member is entitled to bring one non-member guest per bus trip. (Members may bring more than one guest near the registration Deadline Date if seats are available. Check with trip organizer.) Non-member guests pay an additional $15.00 registration fee. PLATO Membership is $60.00/year.

                                                                                                                                    Accessibility Accessibility Policy. On the Van Galder Bus, you must be able to climb steps to board and exit the bus. If you need assistance, we recommend that you bring a friend to give you a hand. 

The Lookingglass Theatre is handicap accessible. Each aisle has row handrail support for more easily ascending and descending the seating area.

Hard Times Mail-in Registration Forms (including instructions):

PLATO Members Form

For further information, contact Hard Times theater trip organizer, Bob Blitzke, bblitzke@gmail.com and 608-271-7741







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PLATO Office Operations, ATTN: Edie or Louise
c/o UW-Madison Continuing Studies
21 N. Park St, 7th Floor, Madison, WI 53715

Email: info@platomadison.org
Phone: 608-262-5823
Fax: 608-265-4555

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