We're kicking off Giving Tuesday early this year! Your donation today will be matched up to $10K, doubling your impact! If you donate $50 today, the Reader will receive $100.

The Reader is now a community-funded nonprofit newsroom. Can we count on your support to help keep us publishing?

Posted inArts & Culture

The Santa Anas and All Judy’s Men Leave

Chicago TheatreWorks, at the Organic Theater Company Greenhouse, South Hall. Some playwrights seem to have difficulty remembering that they’re writing for the live stage, not for the television studio. John L. Wood’s two new full-length plays, both being produced by Chicago TheatreWorks, are full of the manufactured improbabilities and facile plot devices that network producers […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Water Engine

Playhouse, at Covenant Methodist Church. David Mamet’s 1977 “radio play” is fueled by a pungent central irony. This anti-capitalist tale is told via a 1934 broadcast from the Hall of Science during Chicago’s Century of Progress world’s fair, which celebrated technological advance as the path to freedom “as we rush on.” The sardonic radio script, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

From Now to Eternity

Bozenna Biskupska: Time Beyond Time at the Polish Museum of America, through September 25 They sit with their backs to each other on square wooden logs, two angular sculpted figures. Faces and arms are barely distinguishable, and the surface of each is roughly textured, full of abrasions and ridges and holes. Rotting corpses perhaps, except […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Watch Your Back, Bill

Hey Wyman and his fool editors– You limp-dick candy-ass little yuppie scum faggot–I ain’t no Deadhead but I do respect the dead–Jerry Garcia doesn’t deserve the trashing you gave him [Hitsville, August 25], you pond-scum buttfuck lily-livered limp-wristed piece of shit sad excuse for a human being. So here’s what we’ve decided your punishment is–I […]

Posted inNews & Politics

News of the Weird

Lead Story In June in Van Nuys, California, Raphael Dale Rodriguez, 24, was charged with beating his girlfriend (maximum fine: $1,000) and strangling her pet rabbit (maximum fine: $20,000). In December an Oklahoma police officer faced charges of beating his girlfriend so badly he ruptured her eardrum (maximum jail time in Oklahoma: 90 days), and […]

Posted inFilm

A Beauty and a Beast

Arabian Knight Rating *** A must see Directed by Richard Williams Written by Williams and Margaret French With the voices of Vincent Price, Matthew Broderick, Jennifer Beals, Eric Bogosian, Toni Collette, and Jonathan Winters To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar No stars (Worthless) Directed by Beeban Kidron Written by Douglas Carter Beane With […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Jerry Garcia, Ripped

Dear Reader, How nice for you that you have a psychic on your music staff. Mr. Wyman’s lurid speculation on the life of Jerry Garcia [Hitsville, August 25] seems based on such phenomena. Garcia’s life/death was a private affair, and as such might not fall into the scope of Bill’s “music scene” coverage. But that’s […]

Posted inMusic

Like Nothing You’ve Heard

Henry Threadgill Very Very Circus Plus Chicago Jazz Festival, September 2 Eleven years ago Ornette Coleman and his band Prime Time headlined one night of the Chicago Jazz Festival and attacked a largely unprepared audience with infectious polyrhythms and five dense lines of simultaneous melody. The weak-hearted fled. Three years later the all-improvised big band […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Babe

Now that I’ve finally caught up with this live-action sleeper about a piglet that behaves like a sheepdog, I find it every bit as impressive as its reputation suggests, though I do find it creepy to be so entertained by a movie in which I can’t tell from one moment to the next whether I’m […]