Hey Nonny’s first concert opened the business on Wednesday, October 17, 2018 with Chicago jazz vocalist Typhanie Monique performing a show inspired by Aretha Franklin. The Typhanie Monique show sold out. The new music and dining venue will be open every day except Monday.
Hey Nonny, billed as Chicagoland’s newest music venue, recently announced the leadership team guiding the venue to its mid-October grand opening. Hey Nonny is located at 10 South Vail Avenue in Arlington Heights, where the entrance is directly underneath the Metropolis Ballroom patio balcony, and just south of the Big Shot Piano Lounge on the west side of Vail Avenue at Campbell Street. Hey Nonny has a mission to present the best Chicago and touring musicians playing jazz, rock, blues, country, reggae, classical, and folk in ticketed concerts six nights a week, plus a farm-to-table Gastropub.
Working out the details of the farm-to-table menu at Hey Nonny is the job of the “Tattooed Chef,” Jay Ruff. After a food service tour in the Army, and then at several Chicago establishments, Ruff most recently served for four years as Executive Chef at the NBC Tower in Chicago, including all special event operations. Following his time at NBC, Ruff started Tattooed Chef Consulting. “Because Hey Nonny is an entertainment venue, the food has to be interesting and engaging,” said Ruff. “I have found that incredibly fun to work on.” Ruff’s Hey Nonny dinner menu will feature a variety of shareable dishes, including unique spreads in jars (one features duck confit (cooked in the duck’s fat), one pork belly with kimchi apples, and one smoked trout). Ruff’s entrees will include a wild boar chop, steak frites, and seared sea scallops.
Food and beverage operations at Hey Nonny are under the command of General Manager Jaime Braun. A native of the Northwest Suburbs, Braun recently moved back to the area after five years in Seattle, Washington. Most recently, she served as the Area Director and Operations Director at Seattle’s TapHouse NW. “Jaime brings so much to the Hey Nonny table,” said Dungan. “She’s got a ton of experience opening new restaurants, she’s a trained chef herself, and she’s just a wonderfully engaging person. Our customers are going to love her.” Braun too knows the Northwest Suburban hospitality market, having managed operations at Palatine’s Durty Nellie’s earlier in her career. “I love Hey Nonny’s farm-to-table food mission,” Braun said, “and I can’t wait to bring our dishes with fresh Midwest ingredients to our diners.”
Leading Hey Nonny’s core music venue operations is Venue Manager Allison Orr, whoo arrives at Hey Nonny after five years at Jam Theatricals where she was involved in booking both theatrical and musical events. Prior to that, Orr worked as a Production Coordinator at the Ravinia Festival. “Allison is amazing,” said Brooks. “She grew up in Arlington Heights, but she has promoted entertainment all over the country. She has a wealth of experience and contacts, and she’s incredibly disciplined.” As part of her Venue Manager duties, Orr has supervised the development of the Hey Nonny website, which includes a sophisticated ticket sales function. Orr has an undergraduate degree in Performing Arts Management and an MBA in Human Resources Management.
Rounding out the Hey Nonny team are talent buyers Donnie Biggins and John Worth. “Hey Nonny is built to bring great live music to the Northwest suburbs,” said Brooks. “John and Donnie have already been brilliant in booking a wide variety of great shows into Hey Nonny.” Biggins is a graduate of Indiana University, and a lifetime musician, still gigging in his own Shams Band. Previously, Biggins worked as a talent buyer for Subterranean and Beat Kitchen and is also currently a talent buyer for FitzGerald’s Nightclub and for the Tonic Room. Worth is a graduate of Saint Louis University, and previously was the talent buyer for the Uncommon Ground in Chicago. “Hey Nonny is already popular with musicians and agents,” said Biggins, “because it is going to be such an intimate, high-quality room. The performances should be amazing.”
“We’ve got a brilliant team,” enthused Co-founder Chris Dungan. “They’re incredibly talented and just the right amount of weird,” Dungan noted. Dungan and his business partner Chip Brooks are themselves an odd couple — Dungan a former pharmaceutical executive and Brooks an ex-law firm partner. The two are turning their shared love of live music into an intimate venue presenting great music close to home for Northwest suburban music fans.
Hey Nonny will be open Tuesdays through Thursdays 4 p.m. – 11 p.m., Fridays 3 p.m. – 1 a.m., Saturdays 10 a.m.– 1 a.m., and Sundays 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. For more information or to purchase concert tickets, please visit www.HeyNonny.com or call 224-202-0750. Follow @HeyNonnyAH on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for behind the scenes content and updates.
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