Death of the Author, LA

Spoiler Alert: Animals are, indeed, hurt in this play. They’re the oxen gored by playwright Steven Drukman and they can be found at almost any university today — from the president to a major department chair to a lowly instructor and all the way down to two soon-to-graduate  ...

Show Boat, SF Opera

Y’all come on down to the levee folks. The “Show Boat” is in town and it’s a singin’, dancin’ romp. But is it an opera? Well, maybe more of an operetta, but who cares? In a spiffy production at San Francisco Opera (a co-production with Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington  ...

Silent Movie Festival, San Francisco

    It's disorienting: San Francisco's Silent Film Festival has moved from its iconic mid-July position to the last weekend in May!  What's going to enliven the doldrums of summer? On the other hand, what better way to start the season than with hearty doses of Charlie  ...

Chicago Architecture:

  Chicago is known for its iconic classic and contemporary architecture, as well as for its famous and eccentric architects, such as Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Perhaps because of that environment, many Chicagoans are architecture fans, experts or even obsessives. The Chicago Architecture  ...

M. Butterfly

Court Theatre is staging its new production of David Henry Hwang's 1988 hit play, M. Butterfly, in Hyde Park. The powerful and tragic story is always fascinating but Court's production on opening night did not flow as smoothly as most shows by artistic director Charles Newell. Everything about this play should work  ...

The Damned (1969)

    Watching Luchino Visconti’s 1969 film, "The Damned "("La Caduta Degli Dei," literally "The Fall Of The Gods"), not long after I watched James Dean’s last film, "Giant," was an interesting synchronicity, because both films center around the lives of the obscenely wealthy who are ethically corrupt. Both films are  ...

A Raisin in the Sun, Cal Shakes

It has been more than half a century since Lorraine Hansberry’s iconic “A Raisin in the Sun” first took the stage, for those who saw it changing the way white America viewed the upward struggle of their African American neighbors. Well, not exactly neighbors back in 1959 — that’s what  ...

A Little Something

Richard Haddaway’s 30 years in the newspaper business might have prepared him for some kind of hard-boiled post-career nonfiction writing—some kind of book hardened by the cynicism that is the stock in trade of daily journalism. Instead, his new novel, “A Little Something,” explores the heart. His ability to imagine  ...