Posted inNews & Politics

Crafting a Legacy

The White House was a crafty place during the Clinton years, thanks in part to George H. W. Bush. It was his presidential proclamation that made 1993 the Year of American Craft, inspiring Bill and Hillary to inaugurate a White House craft collection. They asked Michael Monroe, then curator of the Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery, to […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Filet of Solo Festival

Live Bait Theater’s eighth annual showcase of one-person performances features old and new work by a slew of fringe artists. The fest runs through August 30 at Live Bait Theater, 3914 N. Clark; performances take place in the theater’s Bucket space. Tickets are $10 per show; a festival pass to all shows costs $30. Call […]

Posted inNews & Politics

TRG Music Listings

Rock, Pop, Etc. Concerts ALEBRIJE, ZAMANDOQUE TARAHUM, MISERIA URBANA, SFMANTO, MONOSPIT, NANUCO, PSYCHOWARD, QUITTERS, DESOLATE SKY & others; 18 & over. Sat 8/9, 1 PM, Congress Theater, 2135 N. Milwaukee. 312-923-2000 or 312-559-1212. TORI AMOS See Critic’s Choice. Mon 8/11, 7:30 PM, Skyline Stage, Navy Pier, 600 E. Grand. 312-595-7437 or 312-559-1212. TORI AMOS, BEN […]

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Sharon Solwitz

The premise of Sharon Solwitz’s first novel, Bloody Mary (after the children’s game), is familiar: a middle-aged wife and mother wonders if this is all there is while her pubescent daughter confronts issues of self-identity. It would be a disservice to dismiss this effort as chick lit or mommy lit–it’s a little less blithe and […]

Posted inNews & Politics

News of the Weird

Lead Stories Last month USA Today published a feature about the Lord’s Gym, a fitness center in Greenacres, Florida, that caters to devout Christians (sales pitch: “Your body is a temple for Christ”). One mother interviewed for the story said she patronized the gym because her teenage daughter could work out there without being ogled […]

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Le Freyschutz

There’s a certain irony to the existence of a French adaptation of Carl Maria von Weber’s Der Freischutz (“The Free Shooter”): this quintessentially Germanic opera was seen in its time (the 1820s) as symbolic of cultural liberation from Italian and French influences, and it’s a direct ancestor of Wagner’s monumental mythography. A landmark of Romanticism, […]

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Stages 2003

Theatre Building Chicago hosts a weekend-long showcase of new musicals, offered here in varying stages of readiness. The lineup includes concert-style performances (with the actors at music stands), staged readings (with the actors moving about while using scripts and scores), and fully memorized and staged studio presentations. The festival gives audiences, artists, and entrepreneurs a […]

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Steely Dan

Bands break up for a reason. By the last album in Steely Dan’s initial run, 1980’s Gaucho, Donald Fagen and Walter Becker had buffed their jazz-pilfered chordings and fusionesque tonalities to a sheen as cynical as their increasingly claustrophobic lyrics. But when they reunited in 2000 for Two Against Nature (Warner Bros.), their jaded posturing […]

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The Summer Show

Most of the works in Gallery 312’s annual show of local “emerging and underrepresented artists” are worth seeing–and several merit a special trip. In Shannon Stratton’s Spectacular Time a messy network of thread is attached to a partly dissolved plastic surface; she calls it an image of “transience and abandonment,” and it also has the […]