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Posted inArts & Culture

Rituals

RITUALS Fanfire Productions at Preston Bradley Community Center Rituals, an original theater piece directed by Pamela Meyer, attempts to dramatize the directionless, melancholy, and fundamentally empty existence of the contemporary urban dweller, a plight it intends to remedy by reappropriating ancient rituals. Unfortunately, this production accomplishes the opposite, showing how rituals become meaningless when yanked […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Hoxsey: How Healing Becomes a Crime

A fascinating documentary by Ken Ausubel that starts off as provocative muckraking and winds up as an informative and thoughtful essay. The muckraking concerns former coal miner Harry Hoxsey and his virtually lifelong battle with the American Medical Association about his apparently effective folk remedies for cancer. The AMA and the U.S. government essentially outlawed […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Hotel Terminus

Running close to five hours with an intermission, Marcel Ophuls’s fascinating portrait of the Nazi “Butcher of Lyons,” who later went onto work for the U.S. Counterintelligence Corps and pursue a career as a drug and information trafficker in Bolivia, is a worthy successor to Ophuls’s earlier The Sorrow and the Pity. While the format […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Hubbard Street Dance Company

HUBBARD STREET DANCE COMPANY at the Auditorium Theatre October 27-29 Chicagoans going to the Hubbard Street Dance Company hoping to see tits and ass in the great Broadway tradition will be shocked. Long Chicago’s most virtuosic, popular, and glamorous company, Hubbard Street now has a new, wide-ranging repertoire that challenges the dancers’ established strengths and […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Year My Voice Broke

An Australian memory piece written and directed by John Duigan, set in New South Wales in 1962. Danny (Noah Taylor), a teenager, has an obsessive crush on Freya (Loene Carmen), an older childhood friend, and when she starts to become romantically involved with Trevor (Ben Mendlesohn), his loyalty is put to the test. Although most […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Jephtha

Handel’s penultimate work, Jephtha, is a Greek tragedy disguised as an oratorio. The story, loosely adapted from the biblical Book of Judges and greatly embellished, concerns an Israelite commander who makes a vow to God in exchange for victory. When it comes time to live up to his part of the bargain, he’s faced with […]

Posted inArts & Culture

A Weekend Near Madison

A WEEKEND NEAR MADISON New Lincoln Theater A Weekend Near Madison testifies to the virtues of old-fashioned naturalism. It is not a good play. The plot is simplistic, the dialogue is alternately sappy and didactic, and the characters are one-dimensional. To top things off, the production at the New Lincoln Theater uses actors who have […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Labor Relations

LABOR RELATIONS Center Theater It seems that even in death George Pullman feared the men he exploited when he was alive. Like the tomb of a modern pharaoh, his ugly, pompous vault in Graceland Cemetery is encased in several layers of concrete meant to prevent irate workers from exploding the corpse of the sleeping-car mogul. […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Bluebeard

BLUEBEARD Zebra Crossing Theatre There is something ironic–and sad too–about putting on a play about sex at all costs when its author has died from AIDS. If the script were a gem or the production an innovation, perhaps it might make some sense. But Zebra Crossing’s Bluebeard, by the late Charles Ludlam, is at best […]

Posted inNews & Politics

CUB Is Nonpartisan

To the, editors: I was chagrined to read in Florence Levinsohn’s otherwise edifying article on the Bloom campaign [October 28], that remarks I made to her were quoted in such a way as to make it appear I was speaking on behalf of the Citizens Utility Board. I’d like to make it clear that CUB […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Calendar Photo Caption

Is this woman admiring the foliage or putting a hex on it? The photo, Santa Fe Summer #1 (1976) by Anne Noggle, is part of the Museum of Contemporary Photography’s current exhibition Flash of Light: Photographs From the Permanent Collection, which runs through December 10. The collection focuses on American photography since 1959; for this […]

Posted inNews & Politics

How the Honky Got Its Name

To the editors: Cecil Adams’ source for the origin of “honky” (from bohunk and hunky) only gave him half the story [October 21]. Another probable etymon for “honky,” cited by David Dalby in his “African Element in American English” (to be found in my edited collection Rappin’ and Stylin’ Out: Communication in Urban Black America) […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

Why do people in Britain and some of their former colonies drive on the left side of the road? Is it just a case of clinging stubbornly to an outdated tradition, such as the confusing English system of measures? –Billy Bob, Memphis, Tennessee Try to be tolerant, Bilbo. Seven hundred years ago everybody used the […]