Posted inArts & Culture

Frankenstein’s Legs

Henri Bergson argues that an essential component of comedy is ignorance of self: the less self-aware a character is, the funnier he is. And in this very funny one-man show by Michael Moore (not that Michael Moore), most of the laughs come from the way his stage persona–a languid, self-loving, vaguely racist, acid-tongued queen–remains oblivious […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Benefits for hurricane survivors

Numerous live music and theater performances are being held in the Chicago area to raise money for survivors of the recent gulf coast catastrophe. Here are this week’s benefit shows; see the roundup at for events taking place next week and beyond. SATURDAY 8 Dual Frequency with Maja Rios & Eugene Vinyard, Uwa Hunwick […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Have Some Respect

Re: Tori Marlan’s “How I Learned to Hate the War,” [September 30]. You cite safety concerns to change the names of Jake (main character in the tale) and his wife; you also didn’t provide their last names or ethnic backgrounds. Strange that the same safety concerns were not addressed for Nhu Tran, a Vietnamese from […]

Posted inArts & Culture


This exuberant musical satire of civil-rights-era racism, a hit on Broadway in 1970, rates revival. Black preacher Purlie Victorious hopes to get back his church by swindling Ol’ Cap’n Stonewall Jackson Cotchipee, owner of the plantation where Purlie’s parishioners labor in sharecropper servitude. The plot takes a dangerous turn when the lecherous Cotchipee shows an […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Luna Negra Dance Theater

Cuban-born choreographer Eduardo Vilaro again deconstructs the Latino experience in his new Quinceanera, devoted to the Latin-American ritual of debutante parties for 15-year-olds. You might reasonably expect a party atmosphere, but this full-company work opens with warlike booming noises that evolve into difficult string music; meanwhile the movements of five women suggest sorrowful submission or […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Jason Kao Hwang Trio

Chinese-American violinist Jason Kao Hwang has carved out an enviable niche for himself in the new-music scene: a veteran of groups and recordings led by luminaries like Henry Threadgill, Butch Morris, Joe McPhee, and Myra Melford, he’s come to symbolize musical marriages of East and West. In this trio with Bay Area saxist Francis Wong […]