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FASHION Body Politic Theatre The challenge is a tough one. How does one make a play about shallowness and materialism, featuring shallow and materialistic characters, without making a shallow and materialistic play? Give up? Well, the answer seems to have also eluded playwright Doug Lucie and the Body Politic Theatre, which, in an effort to […]

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Art and Family

THE MYSTERIES AND WHAT’S SO FUNNY? at the Blackstone Theatre October 23-25 You talk fast, and you lard your talk with one-liners, bits of philosophy, and cheap shots, even–especially–at yourself. You talk no matter what, no matter how many others have entered the fray: you just talk louder, talk better, talk a wide, fast blue […]

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MACBETH European Repertory Company at Cafe Voltaire The way Shakespeare wrote Macbeth, we’re certain never to see a perfect production: the emotional load is too great, and the much-tested principals often slump under its weight. If Macbeth is strong, Lady Macbeth usually is not; more frequently Macduff and Malcolm aren’t big enough to counter the […]

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Fears of a Woman

TERRITORIAL IMPERATIVE: A DIALOGUE WITH FEAR at Gallery 2 If walls could speak, it’s sometimes asked, what would they say? In two of the installations in “Territorial Imperative: A Dialogue With Fear,” a group exhibition of women who are School of the Art Institute alumni or current graduate students, the walls do speak: urgently whispering, […]

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Paul-Andre Fortier

Picture this: a man flaps his arms progressively higher and harder, then begins bouncing on the balls of his feet, too. Tragically, he never leaves the ground–and if you don’t laugh, you might cry. Montreal native Paul-Andre Fortier goes through this and similar taking-off routines several times in his hour-long solo, La tentation de la […]

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Pride and Prejudice

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE Lifeline Theatre For the purpose of analysis, let me divide the Friday-night audience at Lifeline’s new version of Pride and Prejudice into two camps: the optimists and the cynics. The optimists were enamored of this staging of Jane Austen’s charming love story. The cynics were not. The optimists seemed to share Austen’s […]

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Forty-Deuce/In Apartment 3D

FORTY-DEUCE Feral Theatre at Live Bait Theater IN APARTMENT 3D Horizons Productions at Cafe Voltaire “He’s mad that trusts in the tameness of a wolf, a horse’s health, a boy’s love, or a whore’s oath,” writes Shakespeare in King Lear. Yet prostitution is as often as not a matter of trust–that a transaction will be […]

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A serious contemporary movie about a serial killer by flashy and talented genre director William Friedkin may sound like a contradiction in terms, and I certainly wouldn’t want to oversell a movie whose distinction largely consists of negative virtues: its refusal to manipulate the viewer, mythologize the subject, or deify the serial killer in the […]

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Hal Russell Memorial Concert

The big question is, whither the NRG Ensemble without its founder-leader Hal Russell? The endlessly creative drummer-vibist-trumpeter-saxophonist-singer-composer Russell, who died last month at age 66, was the band’s central source of energy, humor, and wild imagination. But his loyal sidemen were not just supporting players; they were proficient and vivid individuals themselves, so Saturday night’s […]

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The Sports Section

Almost halfway through the National Football League season, it’s safe to say the Bears aren’t very good but they aren’t very bad, either. They’re a little more mediocre than they have been over the last couple of seasons but at least they’re respectable. Their players are, anyway; their coach leaves something to be desired in […]