Posted inArts & Culture

Tom Verlaine

Marquee Moon, Television’s 1977 debut, has a well-deserved reputation as one of the all-time great rock ‘n’ roll albums: it’s a perfect mix of killer hooks, poetically gritty lyrics, and incendiary, gorgeous guitar interplay. That made it a tough act to follow, and though most of Tom Verlaine’s solo releases contain songs that match Television’s […]

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Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

The performers in this internationally known company are so far from casual in their technique it’s ridiculous. But once a year they fly by the seat of their pants, in “Inside/Out,” a program choreographed and performed by HSDC members. Walking into one rehearsal studio, I discovered lanky Larry Trice folded up in a cardboard box […]

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Bruce Springsteen

Earlier this month National Review reporter John J. Miller compiled a list of the top 50 conservative rock songs of all time. (In case your Google doesn’t work, the top slot went to “Won’t Get Fooled Again,” and “Taxman” and “Sweet Home Alabama” both made the top five.) Miller made a few confounding choices–he ranks […]

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Sketches of Frank Gehry

Longtime Hollywood director Sydney Pollack took a break from the corporate movie machine to shoot this intimate 2005 profile of his friend Frank Gehry, whose looping, otherworldly architecture has both enthralled and alienated people in Europe and the U.S. The on-screen title is Sketches of Frank Gehry by Sydney Pollack, and the movie is fascinating […]

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Legendary Pink Dots

This year marks the Legendary Pink Dots’ silver anniversary, but Edward Ka-Spel and his merry band won’t be celebrating it with a breakthrough album or retrospective tour. The idiosyncratic path they’ve followed over the years might’ve swung them perilously close to having a goth-club hit on rare occasions, but the group has never traversed very […]

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The Last Five Years

Jason Robert Brown’s song cycle, which details the rise and fall of a relationship, was last performed here less than three months ago by La Costa Theatre Company. Josh Solomon’s One Theatre Company staging features a full orchestration (as in Northlight’s 2001 debut), and Andrew Weir and Diane Mair deliver ardent performances, his songs recounting […]

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Absent Friends

This staging by Will Act for Food lacks the sense of ease needed to make Alan Ayckbourn’s farce brightly entertaining. The situation–an afternoon tea party where unhappily married couples gather to comfort a friend after his fiancee’s death–is meant to be awkward, but the actors themselves appear uncomfortable: quick wit and physical antics elude most […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Wine Education

Randolph Wine Cellar 1415 W. Randolph 312-942-1212 or tlcwine.com You know you’re in for a good time when the wine pourer compares the French red you’re about to sip to a “country bumpkin with a pitchfork.” What servers lack in pretension, they make up for in knowledge, wit, and generosity as they offer up about […]

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Match

Stephen Belber’s comedy drama features one fabulous character: 62-year-old Tobi, a bisexual dancer-choreographer with lots of ripsnortin’ throwaway lines. The two others are a married couple who arrive at his apartment, doggedly pursuing the agenda that ostensibly gives this rambling, overlong work a through line. In Lauren Golanty’s staging for Appetite Theatre, Michael D. Graham […]

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Crumbs From the Table of Joy

Set in 1950 Brooklyn, Lynn Nottage’s vibrant comedy sets a coming-of-age story against a web of racial, sexual, and political conflicts. It tells of two African-American teenagers whose recently widowed father is torn between born-again Christian morals and attraction to his sister-in-law, a hard-drinking Harlemite who preaches communism and feminism as the salvation of blacks. […]

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Gaudy Night

Adapter Frances Limoncelli and director Dorothy Milne do a remarkable job carving a two-act play out of Dorothy L. Sayer’s 500-plus-page novel. Set at a fictional women’s college at Oxford University and featuring detective work by Lord Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane, the book is packed with fascinating eccentrics and witty dialogue. The stage version […]