Posted inNews & Politics

All the Trimmings

Dear Reader editor: Your Neighborhood News article (July 15) regarding a Chicago resident’s frustration in dealing with Chicago’s Bureau of Forestry is similar to my own experience. Last fall the 800 block of West Wrightwood was repaved. Previous to the repaving, the trees along the block were trimmed in order to accommodate the machinery. In […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Reading Up on Feng Shui

Dear editor, I read with great interest Bonnie McGrath’s piece on feng shui (Our Town, 5/27/94). References to this fascinating, ancient philosophy have been showing up over the last several years in respected publications and periodicals, and several small volumes are in print. Feng shui masters, also referred to as geomancers, spend years studying and […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Midori

Celebrated prodigies face a tough challenge easing into adulthood. For every Itzhak Perlman there’s been a Eugene Fodor, unable to live up to early promise. In 1982 11-year-old Japanese violinist Midori was invited to perform with the New York Philharmonic, and she became the first Asian prodigy certified by the West’s musical establishment, praised for […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Porcelain

Porcelain, Eclipse Theatre Company. Everything in Chay Yew’s Porcelain works to isolate murder suspect John Lee, a gay Asian teen from London’s East End who endures all the invisibility of minority men in a xenophobic land. Accordingly, the crime scene is a Bethnal Green lavatory where gays, bisexuals, and closet cases engage in risky “cottaging”–sharing […]

Posted inMusic

Been There, Done That

BLUR PARKLIFE (SBK) Under the heading of Things That Annoy Me, overdone British accents would have to be right up there near the top of the list. On Blur’s latest album, Parklife, Damon Albarn’s accent is just about as grating as that of Q101’s shrill and omnipresent Samantha James. I don’t have anything against British […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Vince Lane’s True Character

To the Editor, Chicagoans are indebted to the Reader and Ben Joravsky for a masterful job of exposing CHA chairman Vincent Lane as the malicious and incompetent despot he has always been (Neighborhood News, 7/22/94). Clearly, Lane’s singular focus regarding former CHA maintenance supervisor David Coleman is on ruining the lives of Coleman and his […]

Posted inArts & Culture

A Hatful of Rain

A Hatful of Rain, Stage Actor’s Ensemble of Chicago, at Dancetech. Michael V. Gazzo’s 1955 tale of a shell-shocked Korean war vet’s descent into heroin addiction as he struggles to reintegrate with his troubled family is antiquated in any case, but director Stephan Turner’s decision to update A Hatful of Rain to the present day […]

Posted inArts & Culture

All Chicks Go to Florida

All Chicks Go to Florida, Minimum Wage Theatre Company, at Cafe Voltaire. If art imitates life, maybe people with boring lives shouldn’t write plays. Jack Prather’s All Chicks Go to Florida is yet another aimless bit of Gen-X anomie that follows the antics of three dopey guys and the women who dis them. Clumsy, childlike […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Orb

The whole confusing melange that is English dance music–including styles like acid house, techno, ambient, hardcore, underground, and many more–has blossomed so dramatically in the past few years that its original source, Chicago house music, is long gone from the sound. But none of the niche diggers and supposed innovators I’ve heard comes close to […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Reader to Reader

Two of us had been waiting with increasing impatience for an elevator on the 15th floor of an older downtown building. When it finally arrived, a bicycle messenger burst out. We stepped into the empty elevator and were taken up rather than down, as someone had punched the button for the 18th (and top) floor. […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Coming Out Under Fire

One of the most interesting and effective aspects of this prizewinning new documentary by Arthur Dong about gay men and lesbians in the military during World War II is the fact that it’s in black and white. Among other things, this puts contemporary interviews and archival footage on an equal footing, so they seem continuous […]