Posted inArts & Culture

Speaking Brecht’s Language

INTERNATIONAL THEATRE FESTIVAL Threepenny Opera Theater an der Ruhr at the Blackstone Theatre The Croatian Faust Theater an der Ruhr at the Blackstone Theatre One of the unfortunate side effects of living in an age of artfully packaged events, carefully marketed experiences, and spoon-fed, textbook-driven education is that people get defensive and huffy when performances […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Adam and the Experts

ADAM AND THE EXPERTS Bailiwick Repertory Desperation creates “cures” that medicine cannot, and so the lack of a cure for AIDS has triggered a frenzy of panacea peddling. The panic makes a kind of cruel sense; you don’t ask a dying 20-year-old to be patient while research labs take their time testing treatments that may […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Another Reader Scoop

To the editors: Whoever thought I’d see the very same criticism of one of Chicago’s cultural stalwarts in both the Reader and the Chicago Tribune–not the same sentiment, but the same statement, word for word. No, your writers are not doing double duty, but your correspondents are. The letter from G.R. Paterson detailing the perfidy […]

Posted inMusic

Master of Mahler

CHICAGO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA at Orchestra Hall May 31 and June 7 A colleague told me he had put on what he considered to be an excellent record of the Mahler First Symphony recorded by the Chicago Symphony in anticipation of performances of the work under Klaus Tennstedt. After hearing what Tennstedt did with the work, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Way We Run

To the editors: Cecil Adams’s answer re clockwise, counterclockwise races [February 9] was a tad off, at least on human races (not the human race, HA!). In 24-hour, 48-hour, 72-hour, 6-day races (human) on tracks, every so many hours, 4-6, the direction is reversed to spare the runners’ knees. Puts a lot of torque on […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Suzanne Vega

Suzanne Vega’s new album, Days of Open Hand, her strongest yet, is her own distinctive take on something pop songwriters of greater and lesser (mostly lesser) gifts than hers have been playing with ever since Bob Dylan turned away from linear story telling in 1964. While Dylan and his heirs (from John Lennon and Lou […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Anniversary Waltz

“Are you a vegetarian? Do you wear a vest? Do you know anybody who does? Do you have cats? Do you have a poster of Virginia Woolf over your bed? Will you marry me?” That’s Peggy Shaw’s proposal to Lois Weaver in Anniversary Waltz, the current piece by Split Britches, a New York-based performance art […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Two Sides of Bettelheim

To the editors: I too, have been viewing with great interest over the past month and a half the letters pertaining to Dr. Bettelheim and his conduct at the Orthogenic School [April 6 and 20; May 4, 11, and 25; and June 8]. I myself, was an innmate at the School for nearly sixteen years, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Wishful Thinking/Cowboys #2

WISHFUL THINKING and COWBOYS #2 Mary-Arrchie Theatre Company The Mary-Arrchie Theatre Company has racked up a surprisingly consistent record for productions far more finely crafted than one would expect from a small, low-budget fringe theater group–most notably, its recent staging of Pinter’s The Birthday Party, which could stand alongside many mainstream Equity productions of the […]