Monthly Archives: August 2021

Cheers to 10 years! PlaylistHQ celebrates a decade of live entertainment!

It was 10 years ago that PlaylistHQ was launched by bridging two passions: live entertainment and computer science. Upon its launch, the website allowed users to create playlists based on upcoming concerts. In the summer of 2014, PlaylistHQ expanded its services by developing the PlaylistHQ blog to offer users a centralized hub for live entertainment. As a result, fans now have an opportunity to review upcoming live entertainment, gather details about the show through the blog, and then generate a playlist of their choosing in anticipation of the performance.

The blog originally began with covering concerts; however, as a result of your feedback and continued support, the blog evolved by including dance, theatre, and comedy. Ten years later, PlaylistHQ has covered 885 live performances. More importantly, it has served as a venue which has affected each of us profoundly and allowed us to create an infinite number of memories to treasure for a lifetime as a result of our shared experiences during each performance. Here are ten of the most memorable performances over the last decade:

1.     The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Broadway in Chicago)

2.     David Blaine (Chicago Theatre)

3.     Celine Dion (United Center)

4.     Dance for Life (The Auditorium Theatre)

5.     Cirque du Soleil’s Kurious (Dodger Stadium)

6.      Phillip Phillips (Rimax Arena)

7.      Date Me – An OkCupid Experiment (Up Comedy Club)

8.      Porchlight Music Theatre’s In the Heights (Stage 773)

9.      French Kiss (The Can Can)

10.   Cirque du Soleil’s Volta (San Jose)

To commemorate this milestone, we wanted to take a moment to extend our gratitude to our loyal partners (Songkick, YouTube, Spotify), all the venues and its staff, the performers, and our dedicated fans for tuning in. It is because of all of you that we can do the work we love the most. Thank you for providing us with an opportunity to share our love for live entertainment and gather our communities through the exposure of music, dance, theatre, and comedy. We look forward to the next 10 years together!


Dijana and Quinn


Excellent! The Yellow Rose Theater Presents Rooftop Theatre (August 21, 2021)

It’s a beautiful summer night in Chicago and a great time to be on a rooftop to enjoy some theatre. The Yellow Rose has put together a series of short theatre pieces, aka, sketches, which they perform in front of a small audience.

The first piece, Absent Minds, begins a bit incognito. The host introduces a hypnotist who first asks for three volunteers. Before he even starts, they start acting like they are already hypnotized in a quite hilarious manner. Afterwards there are two more sketches by Sam Sage. Eye Doctor is about a very odd visit to the doctor’s office. The Button includes a button which causes people to switch bodies. Both of them are very funny concepts that have everyone fully engaged and laughing

ZZ Top Café by Joseph Zaki is about a date gone wrong. It starts off innocently enough and then spirals into a more complex outcome than expected.

Lastly is All The Bars We Loved by Anna Lee. It is presented as a funeral for all the bars that closed permanently due to the pandemic. It only seems serious for a moment before it becomes hilarious and ridiculous. It was an excellent way to end the night.

The entire cast displayed great acting chops. It included Anna Yee, Delysa R., Joe Bushell, Joseph Zaki, Katherine Wettermann, Kelly Levander, Sam Sage, Sean Frett, and Sophia Vitello. It was directed by Anna Yee, Joseph Zaki, and Sean Frett.

Look for updates on their website for information about future rooftop theatre events and an upcoming spring 2022 production.

See our review of their last production, Gigi’s Party, here.


An EDM Dancing Violinist! Lindsey Stirling at Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island (August 20, 2021)

After two cancellations, Lindsey Stirling is finally taking the stage. The original date was August 10th, 2020, which was cancelled due to the pandemic. The second date was August 10th, 2021, which was cancelled last minute due to incoming storms. Thus, it is with great excitement that the audience cheers as she begins the opening number, “Artemis”, the title track from her latest album. 



It is immediately clear that this is no ordinary violin recital. As she enters the stage, Lindsey captures the audience by synchronizing her dance routine to her bow movements. Shortly after, four dancers join her in the choreography which sets the tone for a spectacular performance throughout the night. 



Later on, she tells a story about how she has long idolized Amy Lee, the lead singer of Evanescence. After numerous failed attempts, she finally is able to collaborate with her hero. The joy is clearly visible on her face as she launches in, “Love Goes On And On” with a video of Amy Lee singing in the background. The integration of this prerecorded video and the live instrumentation is flawless! 


Throughout the show, Lindsey entertains the audience both during and in between songs. At one point, she shares a story about coming to Chicago many years ago and going to Lou Malnati’s for pizza. Upon learning that they don’t just sell individual slices and that she would need to wait 45 minutes, she decides to go outside and find someone to have pizza with her. After a few failed attempts, one guy finally accepts. They have good conversation and enjoy the pizza. She still has his number in her phone listed as “Chicago Tom”. Someone in the audience yells out, “That’s me! I’m Chicago Tom!” Is it really him? We’ll never know as he wasn’t loud enough for her to confirm. 


A major highlight of the performance occurs when Lindsey is attached to a harness and lifted up in the air as she continues to play the violin. Shortly after, she continues to keep her audience at the edge of their seats as she does the same thing upside down! While her talent is a violinist is truly captivating, her ability to engage her audience with story-telling and synchronized dance movements that make her a triple threat. It is evident that this show has been well-crafted to create a full entertainment experience. 


Quinn Delaney 

See it Again! Blue Man Group at Briar Street Theatre (Open Run)

Chances are, if you live in Chicago, you have seen the Blue Man Group.  They have been at the Briar Street Theater since 1997.  What you may not know is that the show continues to evolve.  Some of the best parts remain the same.  The Cap’n Crunch, marshmallows, three notepads flipping faster than you can read simultaneously, and paint on the drums scenes are worth seeing a second time. There are also new scenes. One of them involves the blue men riding a virtual roller coaster. One of the men passes out and wails around like a rag doll in a truly hilarious fashion! 



Chicago’s production has also added parts of the Blue Man Group’s “Megastar World Tour”, a rock concert parody.  The audience is instructed to go through the seven rock concert movements, such as one hand rocking, raising the roof, and throwing your hands in the air like you just don’t care.  By this point in the show, it’s clear the actors play off the energy of the crowd, so everyone is happy to play along.  



To keep the show Covid safe, everyone is required to wear a mask. Also, volunteers are equipped with a face shield while they are on stage. 

  To close out the show, the blue men shoot confetti cannons into the audience! It’s a full-on rave! 



Overall, if you have already seen the Blue Man Group, it’s definitely worth attending again. And for all attending the show for the first time, prepare for a night of laughter, entertainment, and an overall fantastic night!   

Cost of a ticket: $67 and up
PlaylistHQ Economic Rating: Worth It –
Rating Scale: Exceptional Value > Worth It > Half Price > Go for Free > Don’t Bother

Get tickets now for Blue Man Group!  


Mystifying! Dennis Watkins’ The Magic Parlour at The Palmer House (Open Run)

Dennis Watkins is very charismatic as he explains each magic experiment. One of the these involves 4 paper bags in which one contains a nail pointing upwards. He then proceeds to smash the bags one by one based on which one an audience member chooses. The person choosing the bags was definitely more nervous than he was.

Throughout the show, the audience is mystified. Lots of oohs and ahs are heard after each trick is revealed. For example, one involves six random people choosing a number between 1 and 75. He has each of them type their number into a calculator and then hit plus or times. The result, 2,7178,106, is found to have been written on a sheet of paper in a box that was placed on an audience member’s table at the very beginning of the show. And then, even more amazingly, it matched the serial number on a dollar bill used in a previous trick. This was outstanding and had everyone shocked.

Watkins is also very funny during the show as he interacts with the crowd. This is especially evident during the mentalist section. In this part, he attempts to read the mind of three people who have randomly chosen a number on a dice. Afterwards, he successfully figures out the name that someone wrote down just by asking them to picture the name written in the air. It is truly an impressive feat.

This show has been running for 10 years for a reason. It’s an expertly crafted show which all fans of magic should see!

Cost of a ticket: $79

PlaylistHQ Economic Rating: Worth It –

Rating Scale: Exceptional Value > Worth It > Half Price > Go for Free > Don’t Bother

Get tickets now for The Magic Parlour.

Quinn Delaney