Posted inMusic

John Fahey

JOHN FAHEY In the 60s John Fahey was pegged as a folk revivalist who made make-out music for hippies; a decade later he was blamed for the insipid acoustic noodlings of the New Age. But after a lengthy absence imposed by health and personal problems, the guitarist has recently issued a series of discs that […]

Posted inFilm

Clockwatchers

Clockwatchers This impressive first feature by Jill Sprecher, coscripting with her sister Karen, shows that she has an eye and ear all her own. The focus of this subtle and intelligent comedy is the experience of four office temps–played by Toni Collette (Muriel’s Wedding), Parker Posey, Lisa Kudrow, and Alanna Ubach–who temporarily bond to stave […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Perpetual Patient

The Perpetual Patient A challenge faces anyone who updates Moliere’s The Imaginary Invalid–including prolific playwright Keith Reddin and director Michael Maggio, the creators of this new version, being introduced in a student production at DePaul University (where Maggio teaches). Compared to today’s doctors, 17th-century medical men were charlatans; as a result, Moliere’s antimedical diatribe carries […]

Posted inMusic

Fidelio

FIDELIO Beethoven’s one and only opera, Fidelio, may be more music than theater, but what a glorious stretch of music it is. The tale of a brave, resourceful woman who disguises herself as a man to rescue her husband from wrongful imprisonment merely serves as a springboard for the most idealistic of composers to express […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Senseless Acts of Beauty

Cradle: Three Stations, Six Platforms Men of the World May 15 By Justin Hayford It’s a few minutes before noon on the first humid spring day. At the Madison el station a handful of weary-looking souls are spread out across the northbound and southbound platforms, immobile, practically inert, making every effort to ignore one another. […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Field & Street

When I started birding along the Chicago lakefront in the early 70s sightings of other birders were a lot rarer than sightings of birds. Of course the parks were generally less heavily used in those days. I once narrowly escaped a mugging near North Pond, between Fullerton and Diversey, on a perfectly pleasant spring afternoon. […]

Posted inFilm

Films by Lewis Klahr

Films by Lewis Klahr I haven’t seen Whirligigs in the Late Afternoon (1996), the longest show on this program, but Lewis Klahr’s dreamlike work is so special that I’m sure it’s worth checking out. I’m especially partial to Altair (1994), a gossamer “color noir” culled from late-40s pages of Cosmopolitan and set to the strains […]

Posted inArts & Culture

On Exhibit: after the diaspora

In 1927, when Melville Jean Herskovits became Northwestern University’s first anthropologist, there wasn’t much scholarly interest in the African roots of black American culture. The few people thinking about it assumed those roots had been lost when Africans were ripped from their homelands and sold into slavery. As W.E.B. DuBois noted, the prevailing opinion early […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Cold Water

kapson.qxd Kim Phillips-Fein’s article (“The View From the Booth,” May 15) correctly states the dangers of silver nitrate film. It was quite flammable, caused numerous fires, and led to fairly stringent building code rules regarding the construction of projection booths. However, it was not the cause of the 1903 Iroquois Theatre disaster. The Iroquois, which […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Significants and Others

SIGNIFICANTS AND OTHERS, Cobalt Ensemble Theatre, at TinFish Theatre. With its debut production, Cobalt Ensemble Theatre is already lost in the crowd of unremarkable storefront troupes. Assembling “a collection of comedic vignettes about love relationships” (a concept about as broad as “six pop songs about sex”), director Katherine Condit-Ladd keeps everything light and forgettable. With […]