Posted inArts & Culture

Being at Home With Claude

Journeymen, at Cafe Voltaire. Burrowing beneath the tabloid trappings, Quebec dramatist Rene Daniel Debois probes the tortured psyche of a male hustler who’s just killed the one john he loved. What results is a taut psychological mystery that, sadly, rhapsodizes over a hoary theme–you always hurt the one you love, a cliche that O.J. may […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Kind of a Drag

Busride to Heaven Mark Dendy at Link’s Hall, November 3-5 Cross-dressing once packed a powerful countercultural message. Back before athletes dressed in drag to sell basketball shoes and actors like Patrick Swayze felt it was hip to play a drag queen (as long as everyone knows that he’s straight in real life), cross-dressing was a […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Dancing Across State Lines

Zephyr Dance Ensemble artistic director Michelle Kranicke has created two new dances that sneak up on you. At first her duet A Minor Concern seems merely a catalog of quirky movement, made even more disjointed by its accompaniment: a singsong children’s ditty. But the movement starts to create a logic of its own, the logic […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Counsel of the Moon

Teatro Mundi, at the Organic Theater Company Greenhouse, South Hall. The soothsayers present at Deirdre’s birth foretold that a bloody war would someday be waged for her sake, and so the unfortunate woman attempts to circumvent her gloomy destiny by refusing King Conchobor’s offer of marriage and eloping to Scotland with her lover, Noisiu. No […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Michael K. Meyers

If you’ve been befuddled by Michael K. Meyers’s cryptic ensemble pieces over the years yet charmed by his naive, evocative texts, you’re in luck. This weekend Meyers performs his newest piece, In the Sky Above Prague, with uncharacteristic straightforwardness, standing alone onstage and reciting three simple stories. In each he muses on the romantic parallels […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

What’s the straight dope on Jimmy Carter’s once being attacked by a killer rabbit? I hear there are actually photos of Carter swinging for his life at this rabbit, but his people refused to release them because “some facts about the president must remain forever wrapped in obscurity.” What the hell is going on? –Donald […]

Posted inArts & Culture


It’s occasionally tempting to dismiss England’s Tindersticks as a bunch of dour stuffed shirts. But if you allow the sextet’s second album–called Tindersticks, like their debut–to sink in, their originality and sweeping vision become clear. The dark, quavery vocals of front man Stuart Staples evoke the emotional torpor of Nick Cave and Leonard Cohen without […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The City File

Was the turkey bigger than Tiny Tim this year? “The holiday turkey business is somewhat resistant to recession,” according to a letter promoting Northbrook-based Loewy Foods as an economic barometer. “When economic times are softer, a significant number of companies still buy holiday gifts for associates, however they give smaller-sized turkeys. When the economy is […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Rafael Toral

Portugal is the source of one of the world’s virtuoso guitar traditions–fado, the cousin of flamenco–but Lisbon-based guitarist Rafael Toral doesn’t deal with complex picking patterns and lush romantic exhibitionism. Instead this 28-year-old stringer draws inspiration from the traditions of noise guitar and resonance-oriented composition, playing sheets of electric guitar that drone, hum, and shimmer […]

Posted inMusic

90s Grit, 70s Groove

D’Angelo Park West, October 22 D’Angelo strolled onto the Park West stage, sat behind a piano, and lowered his cornrowed head. His hair, baggy black shirt, and “Yo Chicago, wahssup!” said pure 90s B-boy, a scion of hip-hop and its beat-loving culture. But when he fingered the piano keys and swaggered into the Ohio Players’ […]