Posted inArts & Culture

Life Forms

CHRIS SASSER at Feigen Incorporated I’m not much of a gambler, but I’m willing to bet Chris Sasser’s oil paintings are the weirdest canvases now in Chicago. Sasser combines realist, expressionist, and abstract styles to produce biomorphic shapes that often resemble fleshy deep-sea creatures. His technical approach is interesting, but the real success of these […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Divorce Planning

It was a beautiful day, and everyone’s fancy had turned to thoughts of love–or more specifically, to love’s toxic by-products: acrimony, bitterness, division of property, and child support. “Divorce: A Survival Seminar” had attracted five Chicagoans with little in common beyond an impending change in their tax status. Financial planner Cicily Carson Maton runs the […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Such a Knight

FALSTAFF Oak Park Festival Theatre “Banish plump Jack, and banish all the world.” Summon plump Jack, and summon all the world. In the Henry IV plays Shakespeare did both: he imagined the foul-mouthed, huge-hearted, double-talking “mountain of mummy” Sir John Falstaff as a boozing, bragging liege companion to Prince Hal (the future Henry V). Then, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Six Ages of Woman

THE SIX AGES OF WOMAN at the Theatre Shoppe In his current show Do the White Thing, Aaron Freeman declares “Everything that happens in your life ends up in the act.” But an entire evening of autobiographical material is a risky proposition. First-person narrative is by its nature mundane–everybody has a life story. This is […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Maestro Subgum & the Whole

Even if, like me, you normally have a limited tolerance for rock ‘n’ roll songs delivered with self-conscious artsy theatricality, the sheer force of the collective musical personality of Maestro Subgum and the Whole may win you over anyway. Since 1985 or so, when I really couldn’t stand this group, they’ve undergone a fascinating transformation, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Radio Days

To the editors: Congratulations on publishing Bryan Miller’s “Will This Man Ruin WFMT?” First-rate. And the job had to be done. It was like assigning Red Smith or Paul Gallico to write the obituary on today’s New York Yankees: WFMT–from World’s Champions to cellar bums. Since the early 1950s WFMT has been a Chicago treasure. […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

SHATTERING MYTHS In the matter of glass-shattering vocalism, Cecil seems to have been led astray by Gunter Grass’s fictional tin drummer, Oskar [May 11]. In fact, there is no authentic record of glass being broken by the unamplified human voice. Dorothy Caruso categorically denied rumors that her late husband had accomplished the feat; a fortiori […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Cardinal, Sparrow, Birdbrain

To the editors: Two items I found to be incorrect in the June 22nd edition–one a matter of fact, and one a matter of opinion. First, on page 8, section 1, in a photoessay entitled “Polska Msza,” Chicago’s own Bishop Alfred Abramowicz was incorrectly identified as Polish Cardinal Henryk Gulbinowicz. Whoops. Second, in the Critic’s […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

Rules of the game. “Contestants must spit their pit within 60 seconds of the time they are called to the line by the tournament judge. Three spits are allowed. The longest of three is recorded as the official score. If a pit is swallowed or lost, that spit is forfeited.” That’s rule six of the […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Right Place, Wrong Name

To the editors: In your July 6th edition, the front page story entitled Children of the Holocaust was sensitively written by Robert McClory. Mr. McClory referred to our Foundation as the Holocaust Educational Resource Center and Museum. We are all that. However, our official name is the Holocaust Memorial Foundation of Illinois. If your readers […]