Posted inArts & Culture

The Wilde Coward

THE WILDE COWARD Absolutely Scandalous Productions Any company calling itself “absolutely scandalous” has set itself a pretty lofty goal, as has any playwright who invokes the names of Oscar Wilde and Noel Coward. Unfortunately, The Wilde Coward is more scurrilous than scandalous and absolute only in its excess. Wilde and Coward were very much part […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Not the News

To the editors: For such a good newspaper, I found the Reader’s December 22nd front page story on the events of 1989 sadly cynical in light of the year’s happenings. For those of us who disregard the wealth of sleazy talk show hosts, the television commercials, and the “Batman” merchandising craze, 1989 was a year […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Story of Women

A bit mislabeled–the French title is Une affaire de femmes, which translates better as “Women’s Business”–Claude Chabrol’s accomplished and generally uncharacteristic period film (set in World War II occupied France), loosely adapted from a nonfiction book by lawyer Francis Szpiner, gives a plausible and wholly unsentimental account of a housewife and mother (Isabelle Huppert at […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

I’ve heard off and on for years that talcum powder is asbestos. Recently I was reading Coroner by Doctor Thomas Noguchi, and in the section on Janis Joplin where he talks about cutting agents used in heroin, he comes right out and says talcum powder is asbestos. If this is true, Bhopal, India, just took […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Com Ed Burden

To the editors: I still can’t believe serious people are taking seriously questions about how Chicago’s new mayor, Richie Daley, is going to resolve his Commonwealth Edison dilemma. The answer is clear: He will resolve it in whichever way best serves his constituency. But who is his constituency, you wonder? The people who own Chicago, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

Dept. of seeing ourselves as others see us. From the Urban Land Institute’s new book Carrots & Sticks: New Zoning Downtown: “When asked which cities are most conducive to building great buildings, architect Eugene Kohn responded, ‘Chicago and Philadelphia.’ …In cities like Chicago…design excellence is already part of the city’s collective unconscious…. Chicago cabbies are […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Tharp Comes to Shove

AMERICAN BALLET THEATRE at the Civic Center for Performing Arts February 6-17 Twyla Tharp’s eclectic interests have always meant she’s occupied an ambiguous artistic niche. Now she occupies an ambiguous political niche as well. Last year she disbanded her own troupe and took about half of her dancers with her to American Ballet Theatre, where […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Our Vicious Critics

To the editors: Pardon my French, but I thought Anthony Adler’s review of Ghosts (the Reader, January 26, 1990) was full of shit. It appears that Mr. Adler is one of those types that get their jollies through savaging the works of others, and as drama critic he is in an estimable position to do […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Ensemble Project Ars Nova

The music of the avant-garde fumeurs will form the core of the local debut of Ensemble Project Ars Nova, a group of American early-music singers and intrumentalists whose founders met at the Schola Cantorum in Switzerland in the early 80s. Their program, “Myth, Magic, and Machaut: A Surrealistic Excursion to 14th-Century France With the Aid […]