Art. Music. Poetry. Theatre. Nearly every city has its own unique outlets and opportunities within the vast world of creativity and expression, but I personally believe Chicago does it better than most.
Poetry anchored the Casa Romero community multiple times throughout this month of love. Many of us went to support Levi as they hosted an open-mic night at an eclectic, inviting venue. Levi concluded the event with half an hour of reading their own work in a captivating and personal way that left us all beaming during our commute home.
For our spirituality night, the house attended a reading and conversation with featured author Ross Gay and Chicago-writer Eve Ewing. Gay’s new collection, The Book of Delights, explores the wonder and joy in life’s everyday moments. Far from simple, the feeling of delight was charismatically discussed in a thought-provoking, uplifting way that provides hope as each day becomes brighter than the one before it.
In addition to these two events, all of us in the house have found other events to attend that align with our many interests. Free museums, jazz gigs, orchestral concerts, and theatre productions have been destinations throughout this sweet month.
Within a two-day span, my girlfriend and I were able to go to two breathtaking plays as a part of Chicago Theatre Week. Performed at The Royal George Theatre, The Woman in Black, a London-classic, was chilling and gripping in the best of ways. The next day at Timeline Theatre Company, Cardboard Piano explored conflicts of religion and sexuality in Uganda throughout the early 2000s to now. Both left us with much to discuss and a deep sense of gratitude for our current opportunities.
2019 is the year of Chicago Theatre, and most of us at Casa Romero will be attending more shows going forward by looking for other discounted opportunities and saving up for special occasions.
This year of LVC is a time for so many things: contemplating and discussing pressing social issues, evaluating our spiritual journeys, taking action in more than just comfortable ways, and serving our placements with diligence and care. It has been important for me to cherish the moments that make being in Chicago special to me, especially given the challenges and joys of living simply throughout the year.
Whether it is through theatre, poetry, rallying, jamming, or any other form of expression, we Chicago LVCers have kept ourselves from becoming too stir-crazy this winter. With spring (HOPEFULLY) right around the corner, I can hardly wait for what experiences lie ahead during these next five months.