Posted inMusic

Ill Humor

Neil Hamburger America’s Funnyman (Drag City) By Jay Ruttenberg There’s not very much comedy left in stand-up comedy. Everyone with any insight or charm has his own sitcom by now, and with all those cable television channels to fill, any dimwit with a cheap sport coat and a spiral notebook (for his “societal observations”) can […]

Posted inFilm

Breaking the Waves

A breakthrough feature by Lars von Trier–the postmodernist Danish director of The Element of Crime, Zentropa, and The Kingdom–this all-stops-out melodrama set on the remote north coast of Scotland in the early 70s produces some waves of its own. The plot concerns a naive young woman (a galvanizing performance by Emily Watson) who falls in […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Stephen Petronio Company

The quicksilver moves of Stephen Petronio’s choreography inevitably call to mind transformation–magical changes too quick for the eye. But in the 1995 Lareigne, made for the tenth anniversary of his New York-based company, Petronio occasionally slows those mercurial motions almost to a standstill. In the first section, a solo set to the rock song “No […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Petty Crime

October 26, 1:05 AM, 5100 block of South Harper. Robbery. Seventeen-year-old was grabbed from behind by man who put a gun to his head and demanded money. Victim said he had no money. Man said, “Take off your stuff.” Victim removed coat, pants, shirt, and shoes. Man took clothing and fled. November 5, 4:30 PM, […]

Posted inMusic

Ad Hoc String Quartet

Ad Hoc String Quartet The Ad Hoc String Quartet has been around for only six years, but it’s already earned admiration as an energetic supporter of local composers. At this recital–the latest in an irregular series, hence the foursome’s name–the Ad Hoc takes up the causes of Robert Kritz and Kimo Williams, whose String Quintet […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Physicists

The Physicists, A Red Orchid Theatre. Like his contemporary Max Frisch, Friedrich Durrenmatt possessed the love of geometry and profound fear for mankind possible only in one well acquainted with scientific laws. Though Tom Stoppard has explored mathematics more inventively in Travesties and Arcadia, a chilling apocalyptic undercurrent flows through this absurdist tragedy, set in […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Inferiority Complex

Mrs. Klein at the Royal George Theatre Center By Adam Langer The curtain call tells the story. After the lights fade on the final scene of Nicholas Wright’s sometimes engaging but often drearily mechanical drama, Amy Wright steps forward meekly. Wright–who plays Paula, a young, troubled psychoanalyst desperate for the attention of famed Viennese analyst […]

Posted inArts & Culture

On Stage: pet project

Dozens of dogs, cats, and other animals watched and listened while their owners sat onstage with them and told stories about how they met. It was the open-mike portion of last year’s Holiday Bar-K, an annual cabaret-style event at Randolph Street Gallery that includes videos, performances, and a consultation with a pet psychologist. Remarkably, “there […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Reader to Reader

Not one to get sucked into cardinal-mania downtown, I couldn’t help but admire the homegrown shrine that sprouted on the steps of Cardinal Bernardin’s North State Parkway mansion. Passing it in a car during a gray afternoon, I was cheered by the bright colors of the store-bought frosted glass candles and the single metallic balloon […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Protect the Children

It is unfortunate that the author of your November 8 article “Sins of the Mother” is blinded by the same assumptions that prevent our child welfare system from keeping children safe. She describes the travails of Denise, a mother of two young DCFS wards. Denise has a history of failing to feed her children, leaving […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Bobby Baker

British painter turned sculptor, performance artist, and mother of two, Bobby Baker uses the raw materials of domesticity–shopping carts, plastic bags, powdered sugar–as weapons in her witty, subversive performances. Poking holes in our notions of gender and value, she asks what divides housework from “real” work, domestic life from artistic life. In How to Shop, […]

Posted inColumns & Opinion

Savage Love

Hey, Faggot: I’m a single straight woman in my late 20s, and I’d like to be in a relationship. Oh, yeah: I’m also a virgin. From my teenage years through early adulthood, abstaining from sex wasn’t a big deal for me. I wasn’t ready for it, and I wanted to wait until I was in […]