Friday 6/13 – Thursday 6/19
By Cara Jepsen
13 FRIDAY Some say it’s one of the most important black films of the past 30 years. Others call it ordinary. Everyone agrees it’s extremely violent. Whatever your take, The Mack, a movie about an Oakland pimp, was one of the most popular blaxploitation films of the early 70s, and it’s still worth checking out for the over-the-top fashions and a young and healthy Richard Pryor. It winds up the Music Box’s midnight blaxploitation series, which, programmers claim, could have continued indefinitely if attendance had been better. Maybe next year. It’s at midnight tonight and tomorrow at the Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport. Admission is $7.75; call 773-871-6604.
14 SATURDAY If the organizers of the Supernatural Symposium truly believe in the occult, why do they need such prosaic forms of communication as press releases? I guess the only way to resolve this mystery is to attend their free event from 11 to 1 today at the Conrad Sulzer Regional Library. Paranormal field investigator Howard Heim will present a slide lecture showing evidence of the existence of ghosts, followed by vampire expert Martin V. Riccardo, who will explore the history of bloodsuckers, and Karen Heim, who will discuss exorcism and spirit healing. The library is at 4455 N. Lincoln. Call 312-744-7616 for more information.
15 SUNDAY The 5,000 bicycle enthusiasts who ride in the annual Boulevard Lakefront Tour probably have no idea that it takes more than 300 volunteers to make the 35-mile trek a success. The noncompetitive ride starts and ends at the University of Chicago and snakes its way through Daniel Burnham’s “emerald necklace” of boulevards. There will be rest stops at Garfield Park and the Prairie Avenue House Museums, with snacks, bathrooms, and bike repair stations along the way. It’s sponsored by the Chicagoland Bike Federation, a nonprofit bicycling advocacy group that raises a third of its operating budget from the ride. Check-in is from 6:30 to 8:30; the ride starts between 7:30 and 9 and ends at 4. Meet on the Midway Plaisance after registering at the U. of C.’s Social Service Administration building, Ellis and 60th. It’s $25 ($20 if you register in advance); an end-of-the-ride box lunch costs an additional $5. Call 312-427-3325 for more details.
Choreographer Molly Shanahan has been compared to the early Twyla Tharp. Her abstract, quick, and often violent movements are never timid. Tonight Shanahan will be joined by fellow Mad Shak dance company members Jenny Stang, Jane Ledford Adkins, and Dardi McGinley Gallivan for two of her earlier pieces, In the Absence of A and Out on a Limb. She’ll also unveil two new solo works, Pure and Snake; all of the pieces are set to music by Kevin O’Donnell and David Dieckmann. Solo Dances by Molly Shanahan will be presented at 8 tonight–the final performance in a three-night run–at Link’s Hall, 3435 N. Sheffield. Tickets are $10, $8 in advance. Call 773-743-8014 for reservations.
16 MONDAY Blues legend Honeyboy Edwards came to Chicago in 1953, just in time to take part in the city’s postwar blues boom. But the Shaw, Mississippi, native was already an established Delta bluesman who had learned to play at the feet of Big Joe Williams in the 20s. He’d also worked with Robert Johnson, Big Walter Horton, Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter Jacobs, Sunnyland Slim, and Muddy Waters. At 81 he’s one of today’s few remaining original practitioners of Delta blues. Tonight he’ll be joined by veteran jazz saxophonist and clarinetist Franz Jackson, who has also collaborated with a who’s who of musicians in his 60-year career, including Cab Calloway, Fats Waller, Jimmie Noone, and James P. Johnson. The two will play music and discuss their work as part of Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s Traffic series. It starts at 7:30 at the Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted. Tickets are $15. For more information, call 312-335-1650.
17 TUESDAY “Working too hard wastes energy,” says Ohashi, creator of Ohashiatsu. “Being lazy focuses it.” His form of shiatsu relies on gentle rather than forceful pressure and uses leverage and rhythm to ease pain, tension, and fatigue. It also helps practitioners to tune out the world. “Concentrated relaxation,” he calls it. It seems to work; or at least Henry Kissinger, Ralph Lauren, and Liza Minnelli–a few of Ohashi’s clients–think so. Today he leads a workshop for the rest of us that will outline the first principle of his method: Just Be There, Don’t Press. It’s tonight from 7:30 to 9:30 at the Ohashiatsu Chicago Studio, 825 Chicago in Evanston. It’s $10. Call 847-864-1130.
18 WEDNESDAY Most people have a vague idea of what they’d like to be doing, but get sidetracked before making any real changes in their lives. Many end up in well-paying jobs they hate, surrounded by piles of fancy possessions that make them even more miserable. Today Deb Cottle, vice president and general manager of IPA, a video postproduction facility, will explain How to Stay Motivated for More Than a Day. Her prescription is simple: set a goal, research it, overcome negative thinking, be persistent, and live in the present. All it takes is a little guts. Cottle leads a workshop detailing her method from 7 to 9 at the Science of the Mind Center in suite 913-E at Water Tower Place, 845 N. Michigan. It’s $20; call 312-337-3637 for reservations.
19 THURSDAY “We live in a society that builds new stadiums for the Chicago Bulls and White Sox before tearing down the old ones, but doesn’t build new housing for people before destroying their homes,” says John Donahue, executive director of the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless. He points to the redevelopment of Cabrini-Green, where 1,324 units will be demolished and replaced with 650 to 700 new ones–only half of which will be reserved for families earning less than $27,000. Where the displaced residents will go remains to be seen. Then there’s the public housing bill winding its way through Congress that could reserve as much as 65 percent of public housing stock for middle-class residents–all in the name of reform. The Coalition to Protect Public Housing, the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs and a long list of other groups have called for a People’s March today to protest the legislation. It starts at 10 at three assembly points–State and Cermak, Madison and Campbell, and Chicago and Hudson. The three groups will converge downtown and make their way to a rally in Grant Park at 12:30. It’s free. Call 312-280-2298.