Friday 10/3 – Thursday 10/9


By Cara Jepsen

3 FRIDAY Imagine having to experience the 90s a second time and not being able to change a thing–it would be like watching back-to-back Seinfeld reruns over and over again. It would be even worse if you were working on a novel you could never finish. In Kurt Vonnegut Jr.’s new novel Timequake, science-fiction writer Kilgore Trout has to start his novel over from scratch when a global timequake hits in 2001 and turns the clock back ten years. That mirrors Vonnegut’s decision several years ago to snatch back the original version of this novel from his publisher, chop it up, and add some new bits. You can find out what he has to say about our times tonight when WBEZ’s Mara Tapp interviews him in front of a live audience. It’s at 7 at Mandel Hall at the University of Chicago, 1131 E. 57th. Afterward Vonnegut will sign copies of Timequake (and only Timequake–so leave your stack of first-edition oldies athome). It’s free; call 773-684-1300.

4 SATURDAY With the Lyric Opera poised to perform a full-length work and Steven Spielberg about to release a film on the topic, this year’s most fictionalized historical event stands to be the 1839 slave revolt aboard the Spanish ship Amistad. Today’s free Symposium on the Amistad Slave Ship Rebellion of 1839 explores both the uprising and the Africans’ subsequent legal battle for freedom; it includes a showing of the video The Amistad Revolt: All We Want Is Make Us Free and a discussion led by maritime expert Quentin Snediker, who oversaw the building of the Amistad replica used in the Spielberg film. It starts at 2:30 in the lower-level multipurpose room of the Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State. Call 312-747-4600 for more information.

5 SUNDAY The success of the 1994 album Chant proved that religious chanting has a larger audience than just the faithful–provided it’s accompanied by a funky beat. For those who prefer their chants unsullied by the devil’s music, however, harmonizers from six of the world’s major religions–Buddhism, Sikhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Islam, and Judaism–will convene at the eighth annual Festival of Chants. The event includes Gregorian chants, Qur’anic and Sanskrit chanting, Pali chanting by Thai monks, Jewish chants from the High Holidays, and Zen Buddhist chants. It’s from 2 to 4 at Saint Vincent DePaul Church, 1010 W. Webster. It’s free; call 773-327-1695 for more.

Last week’s Reader cover story told about the 1995 murder of Brendan Hedges, an aspiring musician who loved the Beatles. His friend Terri Hemmert and the Old Town School of Folk Music have organized tonight’s Beatles Celebration to establish the Brendan Hedges Scholarship Fund, which will be used to provide free music lessons at the school for students who can’t afford them. Those scheduled to play their renditions of the Fab Four’s tunes include Cousin, the Beatle Brothers, Two of Us, and OTS instructors Jimmy Tomasello and Jim Hirsch. In addition, they’ll raffle off recordings and videos of the band. It starts at 7 at the Old Town School of Folk Music, 909 W. Armitage. Admission is $12; call 773-525-7793.

6 MONDAY Some of us know him from the naughty cartoons that decorated Wacky Packages, Garbage Candy, and Garbage Pail Kids. Others have seen his illustrations in the New York Times, Playboy, and the New Yorker. His coolest fans, though, have a stack of old Raw magazines and knew about Maus before the rest of us. A new generation now has a chance to know the work of illustrator Art Spiegelman through his new children’s book, Open Me…I’m a Dog. Spiegelman was inspired to write it when he rediscovered an idea he’d written in a 20-year-old notebook for a “secret dictionary” in which, among other things, “book” meant “dog.” Having kids also helped. He’ll sign copies from noon to 1:30 at the Museum Shop of the Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S. Michigan. It’s free to show up; the book is $14.95. Call 312-443-3553 for more information.

7 TUESDAY Promoter of poly-gamy as a spiritual practice? Anti-Semite? Occultist? Prophet? Womanizer? It doesn’t sound like the Carl Jung who changed the way the Western world thinks about the mind, the soul, and psychology. But Jung biographer Richard Noll says it’s so. “Despite his multiple professional personas of physician, psychotherapist, and social critic, [Jung] consciously devoted his life to promoting the growth of a religious community centered on his personality and his teachings.” His new book, Aryan Christ: The Secret Life of Carl Jung, documents the first 60 years of Jung’s life, which he says Jung’s relatives and followers tried to suppress. Noll will discuss his findings tonight at 7 at 57th Street Books, 1301 E. 57th. It’s free. Call 773-684-1300.

8 WEDNESDAY With high-profile vacancies at the New York Knicks and NBC Sports, there’s never been a better time to become a sports broadcaster. All one needs to do is speak in affected tones, learn the art of hyperbole, and adopt a signature catchphrase or word such as “Yes!” or “Hey hey!” I suppose you also have to pay your dues and avoid scandal–and it would help if you had funny hair or another distinctive physical characteristic. Or is there more to it than that? Today the Illinois Center for Broadcasting will hold a free Career Day where you can find out how the squares do it and, if you’re game, cut a demo tape to overnight to Uncle Marv’s former employers. It’s from 9 to 8 at the Illinois Center for Broadcasting, 200 W. 22nd in Lombard. Call 630-916-1700.

9 THURSDAY Persistence paid off for Chicago writer Steven Schwartz, who had to submit his screenplay based on Richard Dooling’s novel Critical Care four times before Sidney Lumet’s agents passed it on to him. When Lumet, the director of Twelve Angry Men, Network, and The Verdict, finally read it, he pounced on the script. The resulting film stars James Spader, Albert Brooks, Kyra Sedgwick, Helen Mirren, and Anne Bancroft in an examination of medical ethics and technology in the intensive-care unit of an urban hospital. Its world premiere kicks off this year’s Chicago International Film Festival, which runs through the 19th. The premiere is at 8 at McClurg Court, 330 E. Ohio. Tickets for the screening are $15. Shelling out $75 will also get you into the preshow reception, where Schwartz will be present. It’s from 5:30 to 7 at the Viacom store, 600 N. Michigan. Call 312-332-3556 for more on both events.