Posted inMusic

Uncool and Proud

Thee Speaking Canaries Songs for the Terrestrially Challenged (Scat) “Our War on Cool Pt. 2” is the title of a song on the new Thee Speaking Canaries record as well as a phrase that succinctly sums up what their sophomore LP is all about. Songs for the Terrestrially Challenged, one of the most passionate records […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Joy Girls

Though known outside Japan mainly for his deliriously inventive gangster pictures, Seijun Suzuki also ventured, with no less passion and an equally bold style, into literary adaptation and melodrama. Joy Girls is from a trilogy he made at the end of his studio days (1956-’67) that puts prostitutes center stage, mixing the Freudian notions of […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Wingwalkers

Equity Library Theatre Chicago and the Wild Frontier, at Chicago Dramatists Workshop. The recent air and water show on Chicago’s lakefront may have put people in a fine mood for thrilling tales of magnificent men and women in their flying machines, but unfortunately once Wingwalkers’ roaring engines and Aaron Copland overture conclude, the play is […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Searching for the Center

Chance Dance Fest at Link’s Hall, through August 30 A dancer’s “center”–that mysterious point from which dancers move and to which they always return–has an almost mystical quality. Conceived of as a physical point somewhere in the middle of the body, it’s really a kind of body awareness, of where one’s weight and limbs are […]

Posted inNews & Politics

HotHouse Responds

To the editors: Unfortunately, I was unable to respond to the inaccuracies in Lewis Lazare’s [July 21] Culture Club piece regarding HotHouse earlier but I had my hands full moving and relocating HotHouse, an endeavor hampered by the miscasting of our business as tenant deadbeats. However for the record it is important to dispel the […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

On the bottom of most plastic containers I’ve noticed a triangle-shaped symbol indicating that the container is recyclable. In the middle of this symbol is a number ranging from one to six or higher. I know these numbers have something to do with the classification of plastic products, but what is the difference between a […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Chaos Theory

Chaos Theory, at Chaos Labs. In a desperate bid to make what would otherwise be just another stale evening of sketch comedy and improv seem fresh and new, the folks of Chaos Theory have borrowed a trick from Sheila and the Neo-Futurists. Audience members decide, during the course of the show, which sketch or improv […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Stop the Sprawl

Harold Henderson’s article on the “‘new urbanism” (“Come a Little Bit Closer,” July 7) contained a lot of interesting ideas–with one glaring omission. Citing planner Joel Stauber, Henderson wrote that neotraditional communities may not become popular until “more efficient economies, such as Japan and Europe, out-compete us because they don’t waste money building on the […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

Minimum standards for cars to be donated to the Big Brothers-Big Sisters of Metropolitan Chicago, according to a recent press release: “The owner must have a title, and there needs to be an engine in the auto.” Dispatch from the weed wars. “During the last eight years, the Department of Natural Resources Division of Natural […]

Posted inArts & Culture

How Much I Lied, ImprovOlympic

How Much I Lied, ImprovOlympic. Monologuist Matt Besser likes to waste people’s time by igniting trivial controversies in the letters columns of local papers. He wrote to the Tribune magazine suggesting people use black bean soup instead of pen or pencil to do its crossword puzzles. He once pretended in these pages to be a […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Steve Earle

It’s doubtful that anyone has had a more troubled relationship with Nashville than Steve Earle. After dropping out of high school and moving there from Texas in the early 70s, he fell in with legendary outsiders like Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark, perfecting his distinctive songwriting and developing a penchant for hard drugs. He […]