Posted inArts & Culture

Maynard Ferguson

The first time I became aware of technical brilliance as an artistic force was in high school, when some of the band’s trumpet players started raving about “MAY-nard.” (The first name was sufficient, although his initials were an acceptable subsititute as well as a desirable double entendre–M.F., get it?) The object of this gape-mouthed adulation […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Route One/USA

I’ve only seen about half of Robert Kramer’s 253-minute epic, but I can certainly recommend it very highly on that basis. This is a fictional documentary in which a character named Doc (Paul McIsaac), who figured in two earlier Kramer films, travels with cinematographer-director Kramer from Fort Kent, Maine, to Key West, Florida, looking for […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Scandinavian Brass Quartet

North Park College marks the start of its centennial–and the tenth birthday of its chamber music series–with a brass concert that pays tribute to its Scandinavian roots. The tribute is singularly apt since brass, more than any other family of musical instruments, has been a force in Scandinavian music since the days of the Vikings, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Art of Indonesia

Hotshot hairdresser Dixon Tabla holds a brown nude female figurine made of Indonesian hibiscus wood and turns it in every direction. He is demonstrating that because the arms and legs are spread wide apart–and just at the right angles–the sculpture can be put down on a table in any position and still stand securely. “What […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Uncensored Stories

THE UNCENSORED STORIES Blue Rider Theatre An application I once filled out asked me to write an intellectual autobiography. I laughed at the request, but quickly discovered that I actually did have an intellectual autobiography. We all develop a way of looking at the world, and this takes place imperceptibly; just as the body grows, […]

Posted inFilm

We Love It When They Lie

JACOB’S LADDER *** (A must-see) Directed by Adrian Lyne Written by Bruce Joel Rubin With Tim Robbins, Elizabeth Pena, Danny Aiello, Matt Craven, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Jason Alexander, and Patricia Kalember. “Around twenty-four hundred years ago Chuang Tzu dreamed that he was a butterfly and when he awakened he did not know if he was […]

Posted inMusic

King the merciless

The blues of guitarist Albert King shines with a keening, metallic glint. He builds solos like a welder, carefully measuring each phrase for its shading and intensity, then laying another atop or alongside it, often with unexpected drops and variations in tone and timbre, all the while working toward the inevitable climax. He dangles the […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

Is there such a thing as cow tipping? I have two friends, both sons of farmers. One says it can be done and is great sport. The other says no way. Do cows sleep standing up? Can they be tipped? I suppose this will take some late-night research. –Robert Schreur, Baltimore Not on your life, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra

The Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra, which was founded in 1882 as the court orchestra of the Romanovs and turned into an official state-sponsored ensemble after the Russian Revolution, is the Soviet Union’s oldest symphony orchestra. Its fabled past included memorable collaborations with luminaries such as Glazunov, Rachmaninoff, and Bruno Walter; and during the half-century tenure (beginning […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

Heavy reading. From the Animals’ Agenda (November 1990): “The Glendale, Calif., library boasts the nation’s largest collection of cat-related art, music, and literature, a total of over 1,200 pounds.” “Those who still harbor the Marquette Park stereotype probably haven’t been around in years, if ever,” according to James Capraro of the Greater Southwest Development Corporation, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Nurses’ Worth

To the editors: Thank you for your recent piece on nursing at Cook County Hospital, Neighborhood News, October 26th. It points to a crucial and often overlooked issue that is fundamental to health care restructuring, that is the recognition and empowerment of health care providers who are the backbone of our health care system. Nurses […]

Posted inNews & Politics

More on Garbage

To the editors: In his September 28 Reader cover story, Harold Henderson argues that Illinois environmentalists made a mistake by wasting their chance to “cut a deal” on statewide garbage and recycling legislation. Unfortunately, Mr. Henderson scurried past more than a few key facts to make a desired editorial point. To begin, there was really […]