Four Reasons to Support the Chicago Humanities Festival Next Week: Molly Shannon, Tim Meadows, Queer Eye's JVN & WBEZ's Greta Johnsen

Four Reasons to Support the Chicago Humanities Festival Next Week: Molly Shannon, Tim Meadows, Queer Eye's JVN & WBEZ's Greta Johnsen

With all the upcoming talent coming through Chicago booked through the Chicago Humanities Festival (CHF), it is no surprise they won 2022’s Best Lecture Series in town, selected by audience via Chicago Reader poll.

Just next week, on Wednesday, April 13, CHF will kick off an inspirational spring season with two separate events at the Harris Theatre for Music and Dance. First, get your nervous armpits ready, and dig out your Catholic school girl uniform. From 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. CT, comedian/actress Molly Shannon will kick off a multi-city book tour for her new memoir, Hello Molly! Fellow comedian, actor, SNL alum and friend, Tim Meadows, will interview Shannon. Get your tickets here. Her book comes out the day prior, April 12, so for many in attendance, this event will be the first time learning its contents.

Molly Shannon and Tim Meadows.
Get tickets here

The sheer fact that these two legends will be on the same stage together, in Chicago of all places, makes this *the* Midwest comedy reunion of all 90s SNL fans’ dreams. But, for the first time, this intimate Q&A will share a more serious side of Shannon’s past, taking a deeper look into childhood tragedy and the challenging upbringing that led to her hilarious entertainment career. With her famous sketch characters including Mary Katherine Gallagher, Delicious Dish radio host Terry Rialto (Schweddy balls), licensed Joyologist Helen Madden (‘I love it, I love it, I love it!’), Sally O’Malley (she’s 50!!!), and more recently, with starring roles in The Other Two, The White Lotus, Wet Hot American Summer and Divorce, Shannon’s timeless comedy offerings are also sure to be celebrated at this one-of-a-kind event.

Do you have questions for Molly Shannon? The best part of the CHF programs is the conversation with the audience! You can ask a question in advance here, and it just might be featured at the live event.

JVN with Greta Johnsen (inset).
Get tickets here

Next, from 8:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. CT, Queer Eye’s Jonathan Van Ness (JVN) will be interviewed by WBEZ’s Nerdette podcaster Greta Johnsen about their new essay collection, Love That Story: Observations from a Gorgeously Queer Life.

Perfectly paired like The Ladies’ Man and a nice glass of some Courvoisier, JVN’s new book mirrors some topics expected to come up in Shannon’s panel as well, from getting comfortable with the uncomfortable, broadening your horizons, and balancing the light with the dark.

After seeing JVN work their magic as hairstylist, with the special gift of truly seeing their charges for who they are, working with them and giving them love as a nurturing, deep-down-soul-hugger as a Queer Eye star, there is nothing their spirit can’t sparkle up. JVN is extremely human glitter, but you probably won’t be upset if some of their vibe is left behind. Come hear everyone’s favorite amateur figure skater, gymnast, stand up comedian and professional cutie JVN share just how we, too, can embrace our messy, gorgeous, flawed and fabulous stories.

Get your tickets here. Ask JVN a question here, and it just might be featured at the event!

CHF Spring Season Event Calendar

In addition to the above featured events, the CHF program recently announced a powerhouse of upcoming headliners for their spring season (through May 22). Guests include legendary filmmaker John Waters, former U.S. Ambassador to the Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, and among famous entertainers, lawyer Anita Hill, made famous by testifying that Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas had sexually harassed her when he was her superior, as chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

See the expanded calendar of Chicago Humanities Festival events here. Become a CHF member here.

“Think of us as your cultural playlist, capturing the current zeitgeist and helping you navigate our cultural moment.”

-Chicago Humanities Festival programs website

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