Orquesta Akokán, a big band with members split between New York and Cuba, are a musical catchall for culture, history, and genre. These players have worked with Chucho Valdés, Irakere, Los Van Van, and other historically hefty groups, and in Akokán they traffic in vivid music that draws on a brassy combination of mambo, jazz, […]
“Nice work, but you’re not ready,” Bob McCamant declared, after flipping through the portfolio of 16-by-20-inch black-and-white prints I had spent many darkroom hours creating. We sat in his office at Reader headquarters on Illinois Street, in 1986, the year I graduated from Columbia College. McCamant was one of the group of four who’d founded […]
Chicago trio Gosh Diggity have drawn a bead on the chemistry that gave a hard-to-pin-down magnetism to the solo lo-fi electronics projects—among them Say Hi and Casiotone for the Painfully Alone—that occupied a special place in 2000s indie pop. Gosh Diggity’s early EPs, 2019’s banana brains and 2020’s Bedtime for Bonzos, radiate skinned-knee shambolic glee […]
The history of the Reader reflects the larger history of newspaper publishing in the United States. This timeline traces the paper’s changing fortunes over the course of a half-century.
Oakland’s Kowloon Walled City formed in 2007 as an intense postmetal outfit who tipped their hat to fellow Oaklanders Neurosis, who’d helped pioneer the fusion of hardcore and sludge. During the 14 years since, the band have slowly pulled back on the aggression and fury, settling into creeping, deliberately paced noise rock. Kowloon Walled City’s […]
If Cheers and Into the Woods got together for an unprotected hookup, the end result might be a bit like Michael Dalberg’s Grimm, now in a world premiere with Theatre Above the Law under Josephine Czarnecki’s direction. The conceit is that the characters from the Brothers Grimm fairy tales (Little Red, Rumpelstiltskin, Hansel and Gretel, […]
“Y oung Hyde Park male seeks other young males to get it on with.” A phone number followed, along with the young man’s availability: days, as well as Friday and Saturday. The Chicago Reader’s first explicitly gay content came not in a blistering exposé, music feature, or show review, but in the classifieds, the backpages […]
A young person’s dive into the history of the once lucrative section and its humble future.
After a long pandemic hiatus, it is once again demon puppet time at the Chopin Theatre, where Rough House Theater Company’s cabaret of ghouls returns for House of the Exquisite Corpse, a revamped, social-distanced take on its 2019 immersive play-slash-haunted-mansion Halloween special, The Silence in Harrow House. Co-artistic director Mike Oleon’s showcase spaces six puppet […]
Hello, I’m Brandon Breaux, an artist and designer based in Chicago.
Playwright Joseph Zettelmaier is a maker of monsters, a horror artist who retells classic tales with an emphasis on what makes these constructs human. First Folio Theatre, which has produced five of Zettelmaier’s plays in the past (including horror tales The Man-Beast, The Gravedigger, and Dr. Seward’s Dracula, along with two non-horror pieces, Salvage and […]
Directly impacted individuals changing laws and creating opportunities
If your partner met you today—instead of whoever you were on the first date—would they still fall in love? Peter Quilter’s queer 2016 dramedy makes literal an anxiety that looms over long-term couples, then dangles a sinister but merciful proposition: if you had a chance to walk away with a clean emotional slate, would you […]
Redtwist Theatre presents Stephen Karam’s celebrated family holiday drama to open its new season. It’s Thanksgiving 2015 on New York City’s Lower East Side and the Blake family has gathered at younger daughter Brigid’s rundown apartment to celebrate. As with virtually every family ever, each member nurses grudges, guards secrets, and leaves much of what […]