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International Theatre Festival: The Dragons’ Trilogy

INTERNATIONAL THEATRE FESTIVAL The Dragons’ Trilogy Theatre Repere at the UIC Theatre In this year’s International Theatre Festival, the third so far, certain weaknesses have begun to emerge. It has become apparent, for instance, that festival directors Jane and Bernie Sahlins share a pronounced weakness for epics. The Sahlinses helped bring an eight-and-a-half-hour Nicholas Nickleby […]

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Robert Junior Lockwood

The fabled Robert Johnson took Robert Junior Lockwood under his wing as his stepson in the late 20s or early 30s; since Johnson’s death in 1938, the personal and musical spirits of the two men have been inextricably intertwined. Lockwood, however, is no Delta clone; through the years he’s developed a reputation as one of […]

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The City File

Pay a robot to say nice things about you. The new “Hug Line” offers “an ‘upbeat’ message that tells you that you are a very special person” to any touch-tone phone user who can dial its 900 number. Chicago neighborhoods with the greatest need for additional preschool places, according to a recent Voices for Illinois […]

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Motorcycle Escort

An afternoon in Pilsen: The blast of gunning motors rumbles downstreet and catches me from behind. Riding my bicycle home from work, I don’t look back. The motorcycles have followed me, turning from Ashland west onto Blue Island, and now they seem to be gaining on me in bursts, lurching forward and backing down, the […]

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Real Men

IF MEN COULD TALK, THE STORIES THEY COULD TELL Randolph Street Gallery In celebration of Gay and Lesbian Pride Month, Randolph Street Gallery is presenting a month long series entitled “In Through the Out Door,” nine evenings of performance, film, and video addressing “the fantasies and realities as well as the desires and discontents” of […]

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The Return of Quentin Crisp

It’s ironic that the Halsted Theatre Centre chose monologuist Quentin Crisp to perform during Gay and Lesbian Pride Week. That event celebrates group solidarity; Crisp is the quintessential loner. His autobiography The Naked Civil Servant elevated him to cult status with its account of his decision to live openly as a homosexual in England between […]

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Something’s rotten in Ford Heights: drugs, murder, and charges of corruption in America’s poorest suburb

Ford Heights is a rough town. In 1989 the far south-side community of less than 6,000 won the title of poorest suburb in the country–for the second year in a row. The poverty level is nearly 40 percent; unemployment is more than 40 percent. Neighboring areas, such as Chicago Heights and Sauk Village are reviving, […]

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Kiss Me Kate

This is one of the classiest and most experimental 3-D efforts from Hollywood–as well as one of the best MGM musicals of the 1950s that didn’t come from the Arthur Freed unit–so it’s good to see it revived in its original form, complete with a stereo sound track. Adapted by Dorothy Kingsley from the successful […]

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Kilometers

Here’s a Chicago trio that’s eaten up and digested all manner of African, Caribbean, and Middle Eastern sounds, and whose spare-but-lyrical synthesis flows out naturally, without arch hipness or any sense of dilettantish flitting around. Led by the unassuming Nick Horcher, the unassuming Kilometers turn the music of hot countries into something all their own, […]

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The Sports Section

If I were a sculptor, I’d use as my subject Michael Jordan, as he appeared during a break in game one of the Eastern Conference final. The Detroit Pistons were beating on Jordan every time he drove into the lane; they were shoving and pushing and even, on more than one occasion, tripping him, trying […]