Posted inArts & Culture

Skylight

SKYLIGHT, Steppenwolf Theatre Company. David Hare’s 1995 drama concerns Tom, a wealthy, widowed, middle-aged restaurateur, who attempts to rekindle an old love affair with the young, idealistic Kyra, who abandoned the relationship a few years earlier when Tom’s wife found out about it. But their passion dwindles as Tom and Kyra scratch away each other’s […]

Posted inNews & Politics

News of the Weird

Lead Stories Environmentalist blues: Investigators of the August fire that burned through 700 acres of the Angeles National Forest near Los Angeles said it was started by an environmentally conscious camper who was dutifully burning his used toilet paper. And in Oregon, clean-water activist Patrick Shipsey is awaiting trial for shooting 11 free-range cows that […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Steward of Christendom

THE STEWARD OF CHRISTENDOM, Organic Touchstone Company. A gorgeous play that sums up a lot of sorrows, Sebastian Barry’s exquisitely written drama pays homage to the playwright’s great-grandfather. Driven and divided, Thomas Dunne was superintendent of the Dublin Metropolitan Police before the founding of the Irish Free State; a Catholic, he nevertheless aided the British […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Taste of the Polish Film Festival

Although Chicago’s Polish Film Festival is traditionally held in late September, scheduling conflicts with Poland’s national film festival in Gdynia have pushed it back to early November this year. To fill the traditional slot the festival organizers are presenting Taste of the Polish Film Festival, a program of contemporary and classic Polish films–none of which […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Sutherland

THE SUTHERLAND, Victory Gardens Theater. Jazz musician Eugene Taylor learns upon returning to Chicago after 15 years in Europe that you can’t go home again. But the boy who ran away from home and came back a man determines to rescue a small part of what he left behind–the Sutherland Hotel and Ballroom, at which […]

Posted inMusic

Chris Potter

CHRIS POTTER I’ll make this simple: either you spend the weekend listening to the best mainstream saxist of his generation, or you don’t. Chris Potter has yet to turn 27, but the maturity of his improvising has been obvious since he joined the late Red Rodney’s band as a teenager. More important, though, Potter’s music–unlike […]

Posted inArts & Culture

A Chorus of Disapproval

The Iphigenia Cycle Court Theatre By Justin Hayford If you want to know how well a director understands classical Greek drama, keep an eye on the chorus. Don’t be suckered by the headliners’ big moments–the ill-fated father’s self-recriminating monologue, the duped wife’s angry rebuke, the chest-thumping general’s threats of insurrection, the doomed innocent’s plea for […]

Posted inMusic

Fengshi Yang

FENGSHI YANG Ever since she got her PhD in composition from the University of Chicago in ’92–the first woman from China to do so–Fengshi Yang has been lying low. Instead of embarking on a high-powered academic career, as some had expected her to, she settled in a western suburb with her husband, Cheyo Wang, a […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Rhinoceros Theater Festival

This annual showcase of experimental theater, performance, and music used to be presented at multiple locations, but now all activities take place at a single venue: the Lunar Cabaret in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood, home base of the Curious Theatre Branch, whose artistic director Beau O’Reilly is the event’s coordinator. Though this year’s Rhino doesn’t […]

Posted inMusic

Bailter Space

BAILTER SPACE Loudness is often the first refuge of a lazy band, but for New York transplants Bailter Space it’s an integral part of the act. In the early 80s, when all three members were in a band called the Gordons, drummer and sampler operator Brent McLachlan and singing guitarists Alister Parker and John Halvorsen […]

Posted inColumns & Opinion

Savage Love

Hey, Faggot: I’m 32, straight, and female. My boyfriend and I have been together six months and have been using condoms since we began having sex. We both got tested for everything, and we’re both “clean,” so I’m considering the possibility of going on the pill. I want to know how the side effects will […]

Posted inMusic

Louie Bellson

LOUIE BELLSON When Louie Bellson first came into his own–as the first white drummer ever to play in Duke Ellington’s orchestra, and the first drummer of any color to contribute compositions to the maestro’s repertoire–he almost hid the electrifying energy that has distinguished his playing ever since. He made it sound so easy, and he […]