Posted inArts & Culture

The Widow’s Blind Date

THE WIDOW’S BLIND DATE Transient Theatre Israel Horovitz’s The Widow’s Blind Date is one of the most intelligent plays ever written on the subject of rape, both in its proposal that rape victims are not necessarily doomed to spend the rest of their lives as psychological cripples and in its assertion that living well is […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Bush’s babel: Uptown clinic averts translation trouble–for now

For now the refugee health screening program in Uptown, hailed by local refugee-assistance organizations as one of the country’s best, remains in operation. But its survival isn’t certain. Each year the program, which operates out of the city’s Uptown Health Clinic at 815 W. Wilson, provides free medical care and interpreters for some 3,000 refugees, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Magic Slim & the Teardrops

If guitarist Magic Slim doesn’t watch out, he’s going to find himself challenging people like Buddy Guy and Junior Wells for the modern-day blues-popularity longevity record. Slim’s style is as raw and incendiary as it was when he exploded onto the Chicago scene in the early 60s–piercing tone, machine-gun staccato flurries, and gut-wrenching ferocity, all […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Ox

This is the first feature by the great Swedish cinematographer Sven Nykvist, cowritten with Lasse Summanen, and it’s a worthy and assured debut. Based on an actual event during a severe drought in Sweden in the 1860s, the story calls to mind Victor Hugo’s Les miserables, which was published in the same decade: a desperate […]

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Playwrights for the ’90s

PLAYWRIGHTS FOR THE ’90S Chicago Dramatists Workshop Janus, the Roman god who gave this month its name, gazes in two directions; so it’s appropriate that Chicago Dramatists Workshop inaugurates a new year with Playwrights for the ’90s, its fifth annual round-up of one-acts by Chicago writers. Derivative and dynamic, retro and neo, these four works […]

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Marshall Vente Jazz Festival

Last year the indefatigable pianist, composer, and bandleader Marshall Vente took on a Sunday night slot at WDCB (the College of DuPage radio station), and he’s now added concert promotion to the mix. Instead of staring idly at his vacant January calendar, he has pulled together three days of music featuring several of the bands […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Eric Alexander & Chris Potter

Whenever the phrase “tenor battle” (or the more imaginative “Battle of the Saxes”) pops up, modern musicians rush to point out that such events are misnamed–that contrary to the old days, when cutting contests actually did find instrumentalists pitted against each other in a fight for dominance, today’s players have moved beyond such considerations and […]

Posted inNews & Politics

News of the Weird

Lead Story In December, as France was on the verge of formally repealing its 88-year-old system of local funeral-service monopolies, Michel Leclerc was speeding up the process by opening his latest funeral-service “supermarket” in Creteil. “Here, people can take a cart and do their shopping,” Leclerc said of his store, which offers many models of […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Woods

THE WOODS Tight and Shiny Productions Sheffield’s School Street Cafe I have a lot of trouble taking David Mamet seriously. Sure, I recognize his gifts as a writer: I appreciate his ear for dialogue, I enjoy his sense of humor. Still, as a heterosexual male, I find Mamet’s idea of heterosexual manhood painfully outmoded. I […]