Posted inNews & Politics

Missed It

Jack Helbig’s article on the new Richard Greenberg play, The Violet Hour [May 9], was the most interesting and in-depth look at the play I have read. But what made this article such a good read was the analysis and insight into the playwright. However, for all of his knowledge of Greenberg, Helbig got one […]

Posted inNews & Politics

City File

“The estate tax is the only tax in Illinois paid by the wealthy but not by low- and moderate-income working families,” according to an April 23 press release from the Chicago-based Center for Tax and Budget Accountability. “Only the wealthiest 2% of Illinois estates, those with an average value of more than $2 million, paid […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Brazilian Music Festival

Two for Brazil–the duo of Brazilian-born guitarist and singer Paulinho Garcia and homegrown reedist Greg Fishman–have released four inventive albums in less than three years. Accordingly they’ve drawn good crowds on tours in Europe and Asia–but they’ve still gotten relatively little recognition here at home. In that sense they’re representative of Chicago’s entire Brazilian music […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Manic

Brutally honest and beautifully acted, this debut feature by Jordan Melamed follows an explosively violent high school kid (Joseph Gordon-Levitt of Third Rock From the Sun) as he’s committed to a private mental hospital and enters group therapy with other teens whose problems are as intractable as his own. Melamed and screenwriters Blayne Weaver and […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Group Efforts: art music for the masses

For the last year flutist Claire Chase has been communicating by E-mail and cell phone with dozens of musicians across the country to hammer out the logistics for ICE Fest 2003, a six-concert series of new music that starts this Saturday. Presented by the International Contemporary Ensemble, a network of musicians and composers Chase cofounded, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Leon McNeal

Vocalist Leon McNeal has fronted bands on the south and west sides for the better part of 30 years, but he remains virtually unknown elsewhere in the city. On last year’s Love Is a Gamble (Rose), a rough-hewn production that consists mostly of 12-bar blues set to a standard shuffle or goosed with funk, McNeal […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Datebook

MAY 30 FRIDAY Two years ago, William A. Koehnline Gallery curator Nathan Harpaz invited Chicago artist Dennis Kowalski to do an installation. Kowalski initially thought he would come up with a local theme, but by the time he submitted his proposal, he’d changed his mind: he wanted to take on the philosophical and moral aspects […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Cirque du Sweat

Cirque du Sweat, Sweat Girls, at National Pastime Theater, through June 14. In her posthumously published memoir about anorexia, Appetites: Why Women Want, Caroline Knapp describes female physical self-hatred as something that “can hit like a slap…that rises up from a place so deep it feels like instinct.” In their latest poignant, witty effort, the […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Sailing From the Moon

Sailing From the Moon, Smoke & Mirrors Productions, at the Viaduct Theater. There’s not much new in Nick Jones’s new play about twentysomethings struggling to get laid–and find meaning in doing so. George reads philosophy, maintains his virginity, and fantasizes about female purity. Then he falls for tough girl Jamie, who wears a T-shirt announcing […]

Posted inNews & Politics

The Straight Dope

What exactly does it mean to say that someone is “passive-aggressive”? I hear this term used frequently, usually with reference to a coworker, child, parent, etc, who is being a pain in the ass. Surely there’s a more rigorous clinical definition than that. –Frank Caplice, Chicago You might get some argument there, Frank. It’s true […]