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 […]

Posted inFilm

Unmade Beds

Unmade Beds This fascinating and highly original nonfiction feature by Nicholas Barker, shot in New York City, portrays two men and two women who search for mates via classified ads. Not simply a documentary in any conventional sense, it’s a highly stylized affair that works from a script generated by interviews with all four individuals, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Sports Section

Last Sunday I walked to the Cubs’ last home game of the year, taking my usual route: down Lincoln, across Grace, a slight jog down Janssen to Waveland, and then across to the ballpark, trying to keep Wrigley Field itself out of view until the last possible moment. Above, the clouds had that low, gray, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Theater/Mini Review

THE CLOWN, Rhinoceros Theater Festival, at the Lunar Cabaret, and CUT IT OUT!, Caravan/Caravan, Rhinoceros Theater Festival, at the Lunar Cabaret. It was just chance that two of the entries in this year’s Rhino Fest (which closes this weekend) are adaptations of works by Heinrich Bšll, but they play off each other nicely. Neither is […]

Posted inMusic

Spot Check

BLONDE REDHEAD 9/27, FIRESIDE BOWL On its third full-length, Fake Can Be Just As Good (Touch and Go), this international band (singer-guitarist Kazu Makino is Japanese; twin brothers Amedeo and Simone Pace are Italian) puts forth the chunkiest and most accessible version of its no-wave-lite sonic melange yet. No-wave-influenced bands should always have at least […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Ballet Folklorico de Mexico

Ballet Folklorico de Mexico Sometimes the long-term effects of a performance are incalculable. Several non-Hispanic acquaintances have told me how much Ballet Folklorico de Mexico impressed them as children growing up in Chicago decades ago; some of them later learned Spanish and/or studied Hispanic culture. Seeing the company is far from a mere filmstrip experience: […]