Posted inArts & Culture

Cats

Cats, Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire. Over two decades the felines in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s menagerie have easily enjoyed a million lives. Most recently they’ve been incarnated in Marc Robin’s industrial-strength staging, the regional premiere of a new post-Broadway version. Just as Briar Street Theatre gave up its innards for Blue Man Group, the Marriott space […]

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Young People

While indie types like Will Oldham and the Handsome Family self-consciously tap into the raw beauty of American mountain music, the hillbilly sounds on the superb eponymous debut album by the LA trio Young People (released last year on 5 Rue Christine) seem genuinely unstudied, if not totally accidental. Though the catch in her throat […]

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Dead Cat Bounce

A jazz sax quartet wedded to a pianoless rhythm section is hardly a new idea–the World Saxophone Quartet, for one, has fooled around with additional personnel over the years. But with Dead Cat Bounce twentysomething Boston saxophonist Matt Steckler livens up the mix: incorporating a sensibility weaned on rock and at least on speaking terms […]

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Me and Francis

Me and Francis, Rogue Theater Company, at the Playground Theater. It’s hard to be a saint, but it’s even harder to love one. That’s the simple message playwright-director Nate White puts forth in his earnest but awkward contemporary version of the story of Saint Francis of Assisi. Unlike Franco Zeffirelli in the 1973 film Brother […]

Posted inNews & Politics

City File

Bigger than you think. “In 2000, the EITC [earned income tax credit] provided roughly the same level of federal assistance to low-income families nationwide as the TANF [Temporary Assistance for Needy Families] and food stamp programs combined,” reports Alan Berube of the Brookings Institution (“Rewarding Work Through the Tax Code: The Power and Potential of […]

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Dick Danger, DJ Crimesolver

Dick Danger, DJ Crimesolver, Factory Theater, at the Athenaeum Theatre. Those who can finish the phrase “Clapton is…” or name the Beatles’ original drummer will pass DJ Dick Danger’s rock kindergarten–and enjoy this crime-solving caper from George Brant. David Bryson exudes self-confidence as Dick Danger, the “Sherlock of Rock.” When he’s not on the air, […]

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Neon Hunk

Neon Hunk, a young couple from Milwaukee, are probably the best-looking act in noise music right now, but you’d never know it from their stage show–they squeeze their cute faces into latex dummy heads that are split open to puke out fluorescent zebra-print bandannas. Donning knee and elbow pads and covering her hands and feet […]

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Datebook

FEBRUARY 14 FRIDAY “Sex is sex,” says Martha Roth, professor of Assyriology at the University of Chicago. “It doesn’t change much over the millennia. What changes is how society accommodates it.” In today’s free lecture, Marriage, Divorce, and the Prostitute, she’ll examine the social role of prostitution in ancient Mesopotamia. “It was not viewed with […]

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Kevin Drumm

Last year’s Sheer Hellish Miasma (Mego) didn’t sound much like anything sound manipulator Kevin Drumm had done before. His early recordings on tabletop guitar had been sparse and spacious in a three-dimensional way, and this was dense and gut-rumbling, a suffocating wash of twitchy low-end brutality. Yet it was marked by the same sort of […]

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Emmanuel Pahud and Helene Grimaud

In 1992, at age 22, the Swiss-born Emmanuel Pahud was appointed principal flutist of the Berlin Philharmonic, a coveted post that rarely goes to such a youngster. He was already well-known in France–he’d trained at the Paris Conservatory in the nimble, light-toned style suitable for the music of the impressionists as well as Les Six. […]

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The Straight Dope

I read in the New Yorker that George W. Bush’s grandfather and great-grandfather worked for Brown Brothers Harriman, and had clients who funded the building of the Nazi regime. I searched the Net and found hundreds of sites giving volumes of details and listing sources like the New York Times and the Library of Congress. […]

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Georgia Tom: Thomas A. Dorsey, the Father of Gospel Music

Georgia Tom: Thomas A. Dorsey, the Father of Gospel Music, Bailiwick Repertory. Writer-director McKinley Johnson’s new musical biography combines powerful church-choir singing, Christmas-pageant acting, and a lesson in African-American history but offers little that isn’t available elsewhere in bigger and better doses. Just roll on down to the south side on any given Sunday to […]

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Phrenzy

Phrenzy, pH Productions, at Wing & Groove Theatre. This competitive improv show from new performance ensemble pH whittles down contestants in the reality-TV style that’s conquered the world. For the first five rounds, elimination is governed by the host, whose arbitrary rules are concealed from the cast but not the audience; after that things get […]

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Calendar

Friday 2/14 – Thursday 2/20 FEBRUARY 14 FRIDAY “Sex is sex,” says Martha Roth, professor of Assyriology at the University of Chicago. “It doesn’t change much over the millennia. What changes is how society accommodates it.” In today’s free lecture, Marriage, Divorce, and the Prostitute, she’ll examine the social role of prostitution in ancient Mesopotamia. […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Hauptmann

Hauptmann, TimeLine Theatre Company. Everything that made the “trial of the century” entertaining 68 years ago–the horror of the kidnapping and murder of the Lindbergh baby and the scapegoating of bumbling illegal immigrant Richard Hauptmann–makes John Logan’s taut 1986 re-creation so much Court TV catnip. Nick Bowling’s pile-driving revival captures the media frenzy, kangaroo court, […]