Since its 1990 inception, Redmoon's been known for breathtaking, large-scale spectacle performances—both outdoors in parks all over the city and indoors when the weather's cold. In March, Redmoon moved from West Town to its new headquarters in a massive Pilsen warehouse, and to celebrate both Halloween and the start of "indoor" season, they're throwing the third edition of "Boneshaker," their one-night-only performance-themed party. But even though festivities include nods to Halloween and Day of the Dead, don't expect zombies, witches or jack-o'-lanterns.
"We love the ritual and celebration of Halloween," producing artistic director Frank Maugeri said. "And we wanted to devise an event that was not based on the modern, consumer interpretation of Halloween—carve a pumpkin, trick or treat, watch a gory movie—and instead create a community-based experience that was thrilling and surprising and really, really fun and unexpected."
To that end, "Boneshaker" incorporates trademark large-scale spectacles featuring fire performances, giant candelabras that double as barbecue grills, a 16-foot-tall mobile DJ platform, punk rock marching band Mucca Pazza and more. But since it's a party, you can also expect a roller rink, a indoor swing park, a power racer car track and a "Breakin' the Law" motorcycle carousel, plus two-minute live feed movies you can star in, a punch cocktail specialist, airbrush tattoo artists, food and drinks delivered via modified Segways, wine bikes and other apparatus and free bus transportation to and from a dedicated Loop location (77 W. Wacker Drive).
"It's more funhouse than haunted house," Maugeri said. "There's no blood and gore. What we're doing is creating two things: wild illusion—big, giant, beautiful pictures and experiences—and unusual, interactive opportunities for people who enjoy playing together. It is the best party in the city."
So what exactly does such a party incorporate? Considering the huge size of Redmoon's new Pilsen home, the oversized scale of the various interactive contraptions and the sheer number of activities the evening offers, we asked Redmoon to help us break "Boneshaker" down by the numbers.
Go: 9 p.m.-2 a.m. Friday at Redmoon, 2120 S. Jefferson St.
Tickets: $75. 312-850-8440; redmoon.org
57,000 square feet: The size of Redmoon's new Pilsen home, which includes a 35,000-square-foot performance space plus a workshop
65: The number of performers disguised as skeletons
3 miles: The distance between Redmoon's headquarters and the downtown party shuttle pickup/drop-off point at 77 W. Wacker Drive
21 years: The minimum age to attend
45 feet: The height of the ceilings in Redmoon's performance space
12: The number of pipes in the fire organ, which is played outdoors in collaboration with a drummer and a DJ
100 yards: The distance that you peer through a high-powered telescope to view a tiny puppet show while a performer sings in your ear
1: The number of pony kegs of beer attached to each Segway to transform them into Kegway mobile drink delivery systems
800: The number of hot dogs to be cooked outdoors on 25-foot-tall fire candelabra grills
20 x 20 feet: The dimensions of the screen on which an interactive, old-timey, live feed movie—which you can star in—is projected
13,000 watts: The amount of acoustic power churned out by the 16-foot-high Sonic Boom mobile DJ station so you can get dangerous on the dance floor
5: The number of power racers—large Barbie cars tricked out with motors, which professional drivers spin around a race track at 20-30 mph—plus one car modified for guests to drive at 10 mph
1: The number of roving bears (actually a dude in a costume) at whom you can catapult marshmallows with slingshots