Get the Tickets

October 2019 View more

By Christie Willhite

Lovers of jazz or Latin pop would drive hours to enjoy a concert by Branford Marsalis or Herb Alpert, but if they head into Chicago in October, they’ll miss both shows.

Theater patrons, too, would miss seeing The Color Purple if they drove to the Loop.

These big names and big shows are, however, playing locally on DuPage stages this month—which is just the beginning of the vibrant west suburban arts season, says Arts DuPage director Debbie Venezia. The alliance, organized under the philanthropic DuPage Foundation, aims to help people discover arts opportunities close to home.

“We discovered there are many, many arts organizations and no one really knew about them,” she says. “You don’t have to drive very far for a really amazing experience.”

Throughout October—the second annual Arts DuPage Month—the alliance and its hundreds of member artists, organizations, and venues are collaborating to shine a spotlight on the DuPage scene by offering discounts and other perks to fans who book tickets and make plans through

As people look for savings on tickets, they’re likely to find other Arts DuPage Month perks that capture their imagination—such as taking a photo with the cast of Wheaton Drama’s production of The Addams Family, creating glow art from a wheelchair, or talking to a playwright after seeing a performance.

“It’s really an opportunity to get close to the people who are creating in our community,” Venezia says. “I encourage everyone just to try one thing you haven’t done before.”

The Arts DuPage website offers a searchable calendar of concerts, performing and visual arts, lectures, museum events, and more, allowing visitors to plan an outing that fits their taste and schedule.

“There are people who don’t think they like the arts, but … listening to a concert in the park, or eating at a restaurant where a jazz band is playing,” Venezia says. “You may not realize it, but you’re participating in art.”

Arts DuPage also fosters partnerships among artists and venues. When Cleve Carney Gallery hosts Frida Kahlo 2020 next June, the works on loan from the Olmedo Museum in Mexico City will be supplemented with items from the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago.

Ultimately, Arts DuPage aims to strengthen the local arts community, she says, making the area a destination for arts-minded tourists and attracting creative people to live and work here.

Autumn Arts

Discounts and other incentives to explore the local arts scene are offered throughout the year. For details and deals, visit

The Color Purple

The show
Thursdays to Sundays through November 3 at Drury Lane Theatre (100 Drury Ln., Oakbrook Terrace)

The deal
$20 off all tickets in October, regularly $55 to $70

The Kingdom Choir: Stand By Me Tour

The show
3 p.m. on Sunday, October 6, at MacAninch Arts Center at the College of DuPage (425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn)

The deal
Half-price off a pair of tickets, regularly $65–$70 each

Branford Marsalis

The show
7:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 12, at MacAninch Arts Center at the College of DuPage (425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn)

The deal
Half-price tickets, regularly $59–$75

Herb Alpert and Lani Hall

The show
8 p.m. on Saturday, October 19, at North Central College’s Wentz Concert Hall (171 E. Chicago Ave., Naperville)

The deal
10 percent discount on tickets, regularly $50–$60

Photo Courtesy Arts Dupage