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: […]

Posted inMusic

John Patton

JOHN PATTON Although “Big” John Patton never attained the 60s popularity of fellow Hammond B-3 maestros Jimmy Smith, Jimmy McGriff, Jack McDuff, or Richard “Groove” Holmes, he certainly rates as one of the most significant organists of the last three decades. Without approaching the daring invention of Larry Young, Patton incorporated some of his linear, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Fridge Strings: Nocturne w/ Fruit & Grandmother

FRIDGE STRINGS: NOCTURNE W/ FRUIT & GRANDMOTHER, Flying Girl, at Strawdog Theatre. For Amanda Clower–the creator, with Jenny Magnus, of this intriguing one-woman show–Saint Augustine’s “dark night of the soul” takes the form of late-night refrigerator raids. Seizing on the moment of truth when appetite yields to rumination, Clower’s surrogate Mimi recalls her garrulous mother […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Caught in the Net

Captured at Differences Between Male and Female Circumcision by Sami Aldeeb You cannot be against female circumcision and in favor of male circumcision at the same time unless you are willing to convince us that your culture is better than others’ cultures your religion is better than others’ religions your holy book is better […]

Posted inMusic


Pizzicato Five Metro September 13 By Frank Youngwerth Advance publicity for Pizzicato Five’s summer tour promised that the animated Japanese popsters would be backed by a live band, the largest group they’d performed with outside of their home country. Up to now they’ve toured in a scaled-down version due to financial constraints. Though the “Great […]

Posted inNews & Politics

City File

Local school councils are ethnically representative of the city, but not educationally representative, according to a survey of 1,900 LSC members at 325 schools by the Consortium on Chicago School Research. LSC members are 64 percent “minority,” as are 62 percent of city residents (and 89 percent of Chicago Public Schools students). Some 60 percent […]