Friday 6/4 – Thursday 6/10
By Cara Jepsen
4 FRIDAY Renaissance painters loved the ancient Roman story of Lucretia, in which the chaste heroine is raped and subsequently takes her own life to restore her husband’s honor. Tonight Northwestern University professor Lyle Massey will examine the legend’s popularity and ideas about wifely fidelity in a slide lecture called The Story of Lucretia Told in Art. It’s presented in conjunction with a performance of Benjamin Britten’s chamber opera The Rape of Lucretia. Massey’s lecture is at 6:30 at Northwestern’s Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, 1967 S. Campus Drive in Evanston. Tickets are $7, $5 for seniors, or $5 if you already have a ticket to the opera ($15, $13 for seniors), which is at 8 in the nearby Josephine Louis Theatre, 1979 S. Campus Drive. Call 847-467-4000 for details on the opera, 847-491-4001 for the lecture.
Poet Rainer Maria Rilke first tried his hand at playwriting. His 1898 The White Princess is the inaugural production of the Alchymia Theatre, founded by Scott Fielding (who directs) and Kim Snyder-Vine. It opens tonight at 8 at the Alchymia Theatre, 4249 N. Lincoln. Tickets are $10; call 773-755-6843.
Today marks the tenth anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests. East Meets West Music Arts will commemorate the uprising tonight with a concert; performers include violinist Meimei Wei, cellist Jennifer Duistmen, soprano Shudong Luo, and the East Meets West Music Arts String Ensemble, directed by Fengshi Yang. There will also be a short play and a slide presentation. The free concert starts at 8 at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd. in Skokie. Call 630-416-4245 for more.
New York photographer Renee Rolleri created the series “Submergings” by taking the negatives from black-and-white Polaroids of herself nude struggling under a sheet of latex and placing these images in custom-made steel light boxes. Rolleri will be at tonight’s free opening reception, which is from 5 to 8 at Artemisia Gallery, 700 N. Carpenter (312-226-7323).
5 SATURDAY Since the late 70s, photographer Camilo Jose Vergara has visited Chicago to document the constructive and destructive effects of time on buildings and neighborhoods. One structure on West Madison went from a barbecue joint to a fish market to a produce store and back to a barbecue joint. A new exhibition of Vergara’s work, Vergara’s Chicago, opens today at the Chicago Historical Society, Clark at North (312-642-4600). The museum is open from 9:30 to 4:30; admission is $5, $3 for students and seniors, $1 for kids 6 to 12.
“This is the true story of the movie-maker…who used raw hamburger, Karo syrup blood, and Bromo-Seltzer vomit to create films of questionable artistic and moral value,” writes Troma studios founder Lloyd Kaufman in his new book, All I Need to Know About Filmmaking I Learned From the Toxic Avenger, which he wrote with screenwriter James Gunn. Kaufman, who’s responsible for such classics as Surf Nazis Must Die, Chopper Chicks in Zombietown, and the cult favorite in the book’s title will sign copies of his memoir-cum-how-to tonight from 6 to 8 at The Stars Our Destination, 1021 W. Belmont (773-871-2722). It’s free.
As the title suggests, all of the performers in tonight’s Milly’s Virgin Show: Everybody Who’s Never Done It are new to the variety phenomenon hosted by Milly May Smithy, aka performance artist Brigid Murphy. They include the Patricia Barber Quartet, the Midnight Circus, Amy Seeley, Bryn Magnus, Sally Timms, Michael Patrick King, and 12-year-old magician Ashley Sproule. It’s at 8 at Park West, 322 W. Armitage (773-929-5959). Tickets are $30.
6 SUNDAY Tourists are attracted to the central Greek town of Distomo for its archaeological sites, but what’s less known is that on June 10, 1944, Distomo was invaded by Nazis, who killed a third of the population. Distomo Revisited, a photo exhibit created by descendants of the survivors, opens today at 1 with a two-hour presentation at the Hellenic Museum and Cultural Center, 168 N. Michigan, fourth floor (312-726-1234). It’s free.
Just a short walk from Blues Fest in Grant Park, an all-star band of Chicago blues artists will perform on the fourth and final day of HotHouse’s American Legends Blues Carnival. The lineup features Bonnie Lee, Detroit Junior, James Wheeler, Harmonica Hinds, Bob Stroger, Jon McDonald, and Willie “Big Eyes” Smith. It starts at 9:30 at HotHouse, 31 E. Balbo (312-362-9707). Tickets are $12 to $15.
7 MONDAY The Cuban Institute of Art and Film Industry, created in 1959, is the source of the films in the weeklong series Revolution and Beyond: A Survey of Cuban Cinema. Tonight’s offering, 1987’s A Successful Man, is a lush epic that follows the lives of two wealthy brothers on vastly different paths. It’ll be shown at 6:30 and 8:45 at Facets, 1517 W. Fullerton (773-281-4114). Tickets are $7. The festival runs through Thursday; for information on other offerings, see the movie listings in Section Two.
8 TUESDAY African-American actress Jean Garrison found herself being relegated to certain roles because of her size and the color of her skin. In Bodies, part of the Department of Cultural Affairs’ “New Artists in Chicago” series, she’ll adopt the personae of such caricatures as Aunt Jemima and the disco diva. Anna Wagner and Antonia Baehr will also perform. The event starts at 6:30 in the Claudia Cassidy Theater at the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington (312-744-6630). It’s free.
9 WEDNESDAY For the past several years New Yorker writer Lawrence Weschler has been following the exploits of J.S.G. Boggs, who created “Boggs’s Bills,” fake one-sided cash that he uses in barter exchanges. Serious collectors have bought the bills, while government officials have tried to put a stop to Boggs’s art. Weschler, Boggs, and Ira Glass will discuss Weschler’s new book, Boggs: A Comedy of Values, tonight at 6 in the auditorium of the School of the Art Institute, Columbus and Jackson. Admission is free. Call 312-443-3711.
Is that signed first edition of Valley of the Dolls worth anything? Find out for sure tonight when Newberry Library conservator Susan Russick and a panel of book dealers discuss preserving and enhancing the value of collectible books (hint: don’t read in the tub). Appraiser’s Night: Adventures in the Book Trade starts at 5:30 at the Newberry Library, 60 W. Walton (312-255-3510).
10 THURSDAY David Simpson’s film Halsted Street, USA follows the artery from its white, working-class origins downstate as Route 1 to Lakeview’s Boys Town. In between, his documentary makes stops in Englewood, Bridgeport, Cabrini-Green, and Lincoln Park. A free screening of the film will be held tonight at 6 at the Duncan YMCA Chernin’s Center for the Arts, 1001 W. Roosevelt, followed by a discussion with the filmmaker and members of the communities along the route. Another screening will take place June 18 at 6 at the New
City YMCA, 1515 N. Halsted. Call 312-368-1155 for reservations.
Penthouse turns 30 this year–does that mean it’s time for a face-lift? Tonight Pet of the Year Nikki St. Giles and a few fellow centerfold subjects will mark the rag’s anniversary with an appearance at Leg Room, 7 W. Division. They’ll hand out pictures and prizes and sign autographs from 9 to midnight. The cover is $3. Call 312-337-2583.