The whole song and dance

The little auditorium at the University of Chicago Charter School’s Woodlawn School is packed, full of rowdy secondary school students still wide-eyed at this time of night. The walls are a bright blue, with a faux-rococo aesthetic marking the architecture. Behind me sits a chatty group of freshman girls. They are at this show–a school performing arts exhibition–for physics extra credit.

Community Comments

The first half hour of “Letters to Obama,” a performance at the Experimental Station, consisted of everyone setting up. In a space focused on community, this really means everyone, myself included. One performer set out hummus dip for eating “between…

Truck Show

“Once upon a time,” Tim the Mindbender drawled, “a magician lied to me.” It was 5pm on the first truly cold Saturday of the year. The small crowd, faces partially obscured by cups of cider, looked up from their tarot cards. With a grin, the magician situated himself in front of the open trunk of a white rent-a-truck capped with an old-time-circus-style sign decorated with doves.

A Night Out or a Call to Action

About forty-five minutes into act one of “Jitney” at Court Theatre, the man sitting next to me fell asleep. He was a big guy, and, when his breathing relaxed and his eyes closed, our knees pressed together. He snored. Not…

Annual jazz

It began with a rumble, and then a screech, and then a bang. A thumping baseline saddled up beside vocals preaching the gospel of love, while drums echoed against gothic stonework. At Union Church on 56th and Woodlawn, the Hyde…

Best of the South Side 2012

Chicago is a city that boasts, and this is our contribution. Our half of the city–the South Side–is many things, and in our annual Best Of issue, we haven’t tried to solve the riddle of what makes this place tick…

Be Prepared

Mickle Maher’s adaptation of “An Actor Prepares,” premiered last weekend at the Logan Center for the Arts. In the play eight, actors, four of whom are UofC students, dare to portray the author of the classic guide to acting.

South Side Crescendo

When one considers Chicago African-American music, the first things that come to mind are probably twelve-bar blues and stirring gospel. But Cornelius V. Johnson, the calm and sagacious Artistic Director and tenor of the South Shore Opera Company (SSOC), which…