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Clef N tes

Chicagoland Journal for the Arts

DESIGNING PERSPECTIVES

Renowned designer Maria Pinto's collaboration with The Field Museum has produced an intriguing exhibit revealing its vast collection of artifacts in a whole new fashionable light. By Emily Disher

Winter 2013

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Holiday Little Chicago's Renaissance Hot List in Portage Park Wine Country


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Contents

Photo by dan rest

Winter 2013

32 CNCJA

FEATURES

12 Chicago Expo'd! Don Fujiwara gives us the low down on The Art Fair's Chicago Expo this fall, which saw a host of Chicago's elite art patrons descend upon Navy Pier for fine works from galleries around the world and the return of The Museum of Contemporary Art Gala, Vernissage.

14 Little Renaissance in Portage Park How 45th Ward Alderman John Arenas and community organization Arts Alive 45 have leveraged a keen interest in the arts to revitalize and rejuvenate Chicago's Portage Park.

18 Chicago's Wine Country Offering Chicago's only fully functional winery, New York import City Winery has created a unique immersive entertainment experience in the West Loop where eclectic performance and incredible wine set the tone for every visit. Above: Baritone Thomas Hampson (l) and tenor Quinn Kelsey (r) in Lyric Opera's fall production of Verdi's Simon Boccanegra.

25 In This Quarter Year Lyric Opera's fall production of Simon Boccanegra, Goodman Theatre's Sweet Bird of Youth with Dianne Lane and The Royal Winnepeg Ballet's "Moulon Rouge-The Ballet" are just a few of the performances we review In This Quarter Year. Winter 2013CNCJA•3


From the Publisher’s Desk

Photo by Joan Warren

Everyone knows that no two snowflakes are exactly the same—at least that's what they tell me. You would really have to have examined each and every snowflake that ever fell to say that with certainty. But taken on faith, we all understand that each and every flake that falls is individual and unique unto itself. Well, the same can be said of arts and culture. No two works of art, no two stage performances, no two cultural ideologies are truly the same. It's true that many artistic endeavors mimic or reference ideas realized elsewhere. But like those flakes of snow, each and every artistic idea is the unique crystallization of a distinct concept or perspective, and each and every performance is unto itself entirely one-of-a-kind. This notion is especially true for Chicago arts and culture. With a city so diverse, the arts and culture we see produced here is simply representative of the infinitesimal possibilities that reflect the diversity of Chicago's citizens. And with those unimaginably wide ranging possibilities comes the popular endeavor of standing out from the crowd, the desire to present an entirely unique and distinct voice. That is always happening in Chicago arts and culture. Well, the Winter 2013 Issue of Clef Notes is all about the remarkable individuality that permeates the city's cultural calendar. Spectacle in live theater, for instance, can be rather routine in Chicago and comes in many forms. Yet it rarely ever achieves the level of wonder that 5-time Tony Award winning stage play, War Horse, has. The use of puppetry in life-size representations of animals like horses is, of course, nothing new in Chicago theater. But the illusion that South From the stage play, War Horse: Joey as a foal. Catherine Gowl, Nick Africa's Handspring Puppet Company LaMedica, Laurabeth Breya. creates with almost skeletal figures whose operators' movements seamlessly transform them into lifelike equine creatures right before our eyes is simply uncanny. Taken in toto, the work represents the kind of singular experience that you can only witness on that stage at that given moment in time. In our preview, Dan Scurek takes a look at the road that led to the remarkable production that hits Cadillac Palace Theatre this December. And there's, of course, our cover feature on renowned fashion designer Maria Pinto and her new exhibit at The Field Museum. Fashion and the Field Museum Collection: Maria Pinto takes our idea of ancient artifacts like those in the venerable Field's collection and turns it on its ear by helping us to see them as Pinto does, as almost imperceptibly artful elements of design. From function to form, we begin to understand the remarkable level of creativity that their ancient designers employed in crafting these rare objects. And we see how those unique elements of design can be employed to create entirely contemporary fashions. I guarantee you'll not find a more unique and illuminating exhibition on fashion and design aesthetics around the globe. Finally, we take a look at an incomparable experience that's incredibly unique for Chicagoans. New York import City Winery, located just west of the Loop, offers Chicago's only fully functional winery. Even more, it provides an experience that harkens to founder Michael Dorf's two great loves, superior wine and great music, offering a 300 seat venue featuring an eclectic slate of performances by top artists from jazz to folk to rock (and even spoken word) from around the globe. Where else in the city can you sample a fine Merlot originating from barrels right here in Chicago in an intimate performance venue featuring artists like jazz sensation Esperanza Spalding all under one roof? In a lot of ways, these kinds of unique cultural experiences are just like those snowflakes. You can't say with a real certainty that they don't exist anywhere else unless you've had the opportunity to examine every other cultural experience. But take it on faith that any given opportunity for artistic and cultural illumination is unique and individual unto itself, and you then begin to understand the remarkable intrinsic value of those experiences. And with that perspective, you'll never take the kind of cultural opportunities we're blessed with here in Chicago for granted. Happy musings this winter! D. Webb

Publisher 2013 4•CNCJAWinter

Clef N tes

Chicagoland Journal for the Arts Winter 2013

Publisher D. Webb

Editorial Editor

Patrick M. Curran II

Editorial Support Christopher Hopper Rachel Cullen Meaghan Phillips

Staff Writers and Contributors Kathryn Bacasmot David Berner Fred Cummings Emily Disher Scott Elam Don Fujiwara Cathlyn Melvin Amanda Scherker Daniel Scurek Myron Silberstein Lisa Wansley

Art & Design Art Director

Carl Benjamin Smith

Contributing Photographers Colin Lyons Alan Klehr Jason M. Reese

Graphics & Design Specialists Chelsea Davis Angela Chang

Advertising Tel. 773.741.5502 Jason Montgomery Jason.Montgomery@ClefNotesJournal.com Adam McKinney Adam.Mckinney@ClefNotesJournal.com

Subscriptions Clef Notes is published quarterly (March, June, September and December) each year. An annual subscription to the magazine may be purchased by mailing a check or money order for $18 to Clef Notes Publishing, Inc., 5815 N. Sheridan Road, Suite 1107, Chicago, IL 60660. Bulk rates are also available. Credit card purchases may be secured online at ClefNotesJournal.com or by calling 773.741.5502. Copyright © 2012 Clef Notes Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Printed in the USA.


Contents Winter 2013

34 CNCJA

DEPARTMENTS

10 Luminary: Pianist Wu Han Fred Cummings talks with pianist Wu Han, co-artistic director of The Chamer Music Society of Lincoln Center, about the organization's second season in residence at Harris Theater and just what's in store for Chicago's dedicated chamber music fans.

34 Fashion and the Arts: Eye for Design For renowned fashion designer Maria Pinto, inspiration comes where you find it. And she's found inspiration for her latest creations in the artifacts of The Field Museum. A new exhibit at the field teaches us to see those treasures just a tiny bit the way she does.

44 Shall We Dance? Hamburg's Nijinsky In Hamburg Ballet's Chicago debut this winter, artistic director John Neumeier will reveal a unique homage to his greatest inspiration, Russian choreography icon Vaslav Nijinsky. On the Cover & Above: Renowned fashion designer Maria Pinto stands amid the stations of Fashion and The Field Museum Collection: Maria Pinto. The designer collaborated with museum curator Alaka Wali, the Museum's Curator in North American Anthropology, to develop an exhibit that helps us to view the museum's artifacts in an entirely novel way. Photos by Colin Lyons.

52 Preview: War Horse Dan Scurek takes a look at the 5-time Tony Award winning production that makes it's highly anticipated Chicago debut this December. Winter 2013CNCJA•5


scuttlebutt

Letters from our readers... Guide-Love Thank you, thank you, thank you for your new season guide (Autumn 2012)! It was everything I love about arts and culture all in one place. I'm a big fan. I wish you could put one in every issue.

Clef N tes

Chicagoland Journal for the Arts

Guide Stephen Petronio Company is just one of our picks for the best and the brightest in Chicagoland's amazing new cultural season!

A Tale of Two Cities

Janette Palmer Chicago - Downtown Really neat season preview in your (Autumn 2012) issue. It was insightful and offered great recommendations for the season. But I have to admit that I would have liked even more exhibit recommendations. There are tons of amazing museums in Chicago and they can be an incredible resource for learning. I think they should all really get their due. But that said, I enjoyed reading preview. I hope that is becomes a regular feature.

The

Andreas Mitisek takes the helm of Chicago Opera Theater with a new collaborative model that just may take COT to a whole new level.

Lens of authenticity An interview with Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble member K. Todd Freeman

Clef Notes' Autumn 2012 Issue featuring The Guide.

Sydney Levine Crete, Illinois

Dong The Mary-Arrchie Photo courtesy of Mary-Arrchie Theatre

There was a very interesting article you published in your recent (Autumn 2012) issue on Mary-Arrchie Theatre. And I had the pleasure of sitting in on their fall performance of Superior Donuts. The small, quirky space company provided an experience that can only be had in experimental theatre. I must say that (Daniel Scurek) hit it on the nail when he wrote that MarryArrchie was a testament to Chicago storefront theatre. I loved the brash, "who cares what people think" approach they take with performances. From Mary-Arrchie's production of Tracy Letts' Superior Donuts: pic- It's authentic and emblematic of tured from left are Rich Cotovsky and Preston Tate, Jr. Chicago experimental theater. You know that when you see a performance at Mary-Arrchie Theater, you're going to get uncensored, unapologetic and authentic theater. Thanks for recognizing one of Chicago's gems.

Readers may submit letters to Feedback, Clef Notes Publishing, Inc. 5815 N. Sheridan Road, Suite 1107, Chicago, IL 60660 or via E-mail to Feedback@ClefNotesJournal.com.

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No portion of this publication may be reproduced without the express written consent of the publisher. Clef Notes Publishing makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of the magazine’s content. However, we cannot be held responsible for any consequence arising from errors or omissions.

Anthony Renetta Chicago - Hyde Park


35 YEARS

December 6–9 March 14–17

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“magnificently beautiful... dance heaven.” —The Chicago Tribune

Get tickets 312-850-9744 hubbardstreetdance.com Hubbard Street Dancers Jacqueline Burnett and Jesse Bechard. Photo by Todd Rosenberg.

Performing at

205 E. Randolph Dr. 312-334-7777 HarrisTheaterChicago.org Winter 2013CNCJA•7


O

n Wednesday, September 19, 2012, The Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Chicago celebrated the opening of EXPO Chicago, the international exposition of contemporary/modern art and design with the return of its prestigious art benefit, Vernissage. Following an 8-year absence, Vernissage returned to the scene to kick-off EXPO Chicago by raising over $375,000 for MCA Programming. Over 3,000 art enthusiasts joined together at Navy Pier’s Festival Hall to celebrate. Vernissage was co-chaired by Jennifer Aubrey and Marilyn Fields. The soiree was made possible through the support of MCA Trustees, the MCA Women’s Board and sponsors that included Sidney Garber and Citibank.

The evening began with a Patron Reception, which included top contemporary art collectors and connoisseurs receiving an exclusive first look at more than 100 leading international and prestigious EXPO Chicago galleries. Guests then reveled in spirits from Hart Davis Hart wines, popcorn from Skinny Pop and chocolate truffles courtesy of Vosges Chocolate.

Photos by Jeremy Lawson

Out and About

Vernissage co-chair and MCA Trustee Jennifer Aubrey, MCA Pritzker Director Madeleine Grynsztejn, Vernissage co-chair Marilyn Fields

Loren Friend and Linda Meyer

Lyle Logan and Janet and Craig Duchossois

Liza Brooks and Vernissage co-chair Marilyn Fields

Mary Kay and Jeff Silverman

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n Wednesday, October 17, 2012, nearly 100 guests gathered at York Furrier located on York Road in Elmhurst to support the venerable West Suburban Symphony (WSS), one of Chicagoland's gifted community ensembles. Upon arrival, guests enjoyed a delectable wine and champagne reception with an array of placed and passed hors d’oeuvres, along with a decadent dessert buffet, all provided by Chef Marco Conti from the Elmhurst-based Café Amano. The fundraiser found guests wrapping in a lavish spread of stylish furs and fine outerwear from York Furrier's winter collection. Part of the proceeds from the evening's sales (and all of the proceeds from the evening's raffle) benefited WSS programming. Throughout the night, guests enjoyed performances by members of the Symphony, including harpist, Nancy Dugan, flutist Jan Frank, and violinists Char Bogda and Gerry Romack. A variety of prized baskets were raffled, including close-to-the-action tickets to the Chicago Bulls, tickets to several dance and classical performances in Chicago and a $1,000.00 shopping spree at York Furrier, provided by the evening's hosts and sponsors John and Kathy Rezny, co-owners of York Furrier. Clef Notes Journal was proud to serve as the evening's media sponsor.

‘Tis the Season for Fur & Fine Outerwear! Red Haute!

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Photos by Richard Lukes

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Event Sponsors and hosts, Kathy and John Rezny, owners of York Furrier

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Winter 2013CNCJA•9


Photo courtesy of the artist

Luminary

program ends with Franck’s highly passionate Piano Quintet, which caused a scandal at its premiere. When his wife heard the piece, she understood that it could have only been written by someone madly in love, but unfortunately, not with her. The Quintessential Quartets program features two important composers who shared an intimate musical friendship. The sunny, young, exuberant, and rarely programmed Mendelssohn Piano Quartet is juxtaposed with the mature, emotionally rich Schumann Piano Quartet. We open the program with Schumann’s beloved Märchenbilder, or Fairytale Pictures. The final program of the season is a rare opportunity for one to hear some of the most incredible chamber music written by the 20th Century's greatest British composers, Benjamin Britten. Britten would have been 100 years old in 2013, and what better way to celebrate than to put on a performance of his works? David (Finckel, co-artistic director) and I are thrilled to end this season with Britten’s brilliant cello sonata. F.C.: Opportunities for meaningful collaborations in chamber music can elude young emerging artists like those The Society will host with its upcoming Horizons series. With the flurry of solo and orchestral engagements that dominate their calendar, is there a pitfall for artists in this position, artistically speaking, in perhaps overlooking the more intensive engagement of chamber music repertoire so early on in their careers?

Pianist Wu Han

I

By FRED CUMMINGS In only the second season of its three-year residency in Millennium Park's Harris Theater, The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center has revealed some thrillingly original programming. From meaningful parings of important composers to a reading of pivotal works from a 20th Century compositional icon, the Society is giving Chicago audiences a wonderfully illuminating look at chamber music's incredibly diverse repertoire this season, and for Chicago's sophisticated chamber music fans, that's pretty difficult to do. I had an opportunity to sit down with Wu Han, co-artistic director of the series, to gain some insight into what she has in store for CMS's upcoming seasons, and she was gracious enough to pull back the veil on the Society's planning, at least enough to whet my whistle for what’s to come. F.C. : In its inaugural season at Harris Theater, the Society gave us a very eclectic mix of intriguing programming initiatives including a particularly rare Chicago performance of a wide ranging selection of four-hand keyboard works and an exploration of unique textures in its concert of trios for clarinet, cello and piano. What are the inspirations behind your second season's three unique programming initiatives? W.H.: In our second season at the Harris, we have created three distinct programs that continue to explore the many facets of the chamber music repertoire. The first program – Blockbusters – focuses on the passionate and personal. Strauss’ Violin Sonata makes grand statements with minimal means, and was written when Strauss was falling in love with his future wife, the soprano Pauline de Ahna; while Ned Rorem’s Aftermath tackles the difficult subject of 9/11 through the words of William Blake and other poets. The 10•CNCJAWinter 2013

W.H.: Chamber music is the best genre to develop full musicianship, because it requires complete understanding of the score, intense listening skills, demonstration of leadership, and the capability to shift roles quickly from leading to supporting. It requires total command of the instrument to be able to initiate and instantaneously respond to musical ideas. In my opinion, to be a complete musician, one cannot ignore this genre and this incredible body of repertoire. F.C.: Your work provides an opportunity to collaborate with some of the world's most artistically diverse artists of the highest ranks. Does the “conversational” nature of chamber music performance then allow you a more kaleidoscopic view of works you've known intimately for years? W.C.: To have the opportunity to work with other artists is an incredible privilege. It’s always inspiring to share ideas, to discover new and different approaches, and through rehearsal and performance with other musicians re-imagine a work you felt you already knew. Because of the intimate and conversational nature of this genre, one often finds moments onstage or in rehearsal when all of the musicians are suddenly completely in sync with each other – this is the true magic of chamber music at its highest level. F.C.: The Society has done an impressive job of illuminating the multi-dimensional nature of chamber music over the years. And in its brief residency at the Harris, it's demonstrated a great deal of depth in both programming and artist collaboration. Can you give us a hint at where the residency will take us in its third season in Chicago?

W.H.: I could, but that would spoil all the fun! You can get in on the fun when the Society continues it's residency this season on January 24, 2013 with Horizons at The Harris.


S E A S O N O F C U LT U R A L G I F T I N G Tickets to cultural events make the very best stocking stuffers, and every player on this hotlist would be a hit on any culture-lover's Christmas list this year!

Bold New Season

Movement & Music For the lover of movement and music, you can't go wrong with tickets to the American dance company The New York Times calls, “sleek, athletic masters of the universe.” Next spring Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's revered masterwork Revelations will adorn a program of the company's newest and boldest season premieres and classics alike. Performances take place at Auditorium Theatre March 8 – 17, 2013. Tickets range from $32 to $92.

It's not too late to give a season full of splendid opera! Under the guiding hand of new general director Andreas Mitisek and infused with an expanded calendar, Chicago Opera Theater will offer a trio of bold and illuminating works from Phillip Glass' haunting Fall of the House of Usher to Astor Piazzola Horacio Ferrer's provocative Maria de Beuenos Aires. COT has packed a season full of drama and wonder in its schedule from February through September 2013. Season packages range in price from $52 to $338.

Story & Spectacle

Tickets to 5-time Tony Award winning Broadway sensation War Horse will hit just the right mark for any lover of Chicago theater. The combination of Michael Morpurgo's powerful tale and the wonder of the Handspring Puppet Company's astoundingly lifelike creations will form one of the most memorable theater experiences this season. War Horse runs at Broadway In Chicago's Cadillac Palace Theater December 18, 2012 – January 5, 2013. Ticket prices range from $30 to $105.

Art with Personality For the quirky, artsy one you love, a handcrafted work of art can be a meaningful and heartwarming gift that will inspire great memories for years to come. Find the perfect artisan work at The One of a Kind Show at Merchandise Mart from December 6 through 9, 2012. The 12th annual art showcase unveils North America's best artists who work in painting, mixed media, photography and sculpture. Tickets and packages for the show range from $9-$45 online.

Clockwise from top right: Scrooge (Larry Yando) and Tiny Tim Cratchit (Matthew Abraham). Photo by Liz Lauren; Joffrey Ballet's Anastacia Holden and cast of Nutcracker. Photo by Harold Migdol; Tenor Rodrick Dixon with The Too Hot to Handel Orchestra. Photo courtesy of The Auditorium Theatre; Mercury Theatre cast of The Christmas Schooner. Photo courtesy of Mercury Theatre; Hancrafted contemporary lamps by artist Will Richards. Photo courtesy of the arts; Chicago Opera Theatre production of Death and the Powers. Photo courtesy of COT; Cast of War Horse. Photo by Joan Warren; AAADT Artistic Director Robert Battle and AAADT Dancers. Photo courtesy of AAADT.

Or Give a Holiday Tradition This Season Dickens at Goodman Goodman Theater brings Charles Dickens’ timeless tale of hope and redemption to vibrant life in an enchanting 35th anniversary production full of the magic and merriment that always make Christmas in Chicago special. A Christmas Carol runs in Goodman's Albert Theatre through December 29, 2012. Tickets range from $25 to $82.

Joyous Joffrey Quite possible Chicago's biggest holiday tradition, Robert Joffrey & Gerald Arpino's holiday classic, "Nutcracker," set to Tchaikovsky's famous score is a seasonal must for any lover of dance in Chicago. The Washington Post calls Joffrey's magical production, “a theatrical event of irresistible power.” See the dazzling costumes, amazing set design and enchanting dance at The Auditorium Theatre from December 7 through 27, 2012. Tickets range from $32 to $132. Handel 2.0

Returning for its eighth year in Chicago, Auditorium Theatre's Too Hot to Handel is set to heat up the holiday this winter. Soloists Alfreda Burke, Rodrick Dixon and Karen Marie Richardson are joined by the city-wide Too Hot choir to bring a gospel infused and stylistically nuanced jazz adaptation of the George Frederic Handel classic. Performances are January 19 and 20, 2013, celebrating the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Tickets range from $30 to $74.

New Kid on the Block Fastly becoming one of Chicago's newest holiday traditions, the popular stage play, The Christmas Schooner, will warm the hearts of the entire family. Mercury Theatre presents the story of the first Christmas tree ship and the family who risked their lives to fill Chicago with the spirit of Christmas. The critically acclaimed production features a powerfully moving story and an exquisite score of original music and traditional holiday favorites. The production runs through December 30, 2012. Tickets range from $29 to $59. Winter 2013CNCJA•11


Chicago

EXPO'D!

Photos by Jeremy Lawson

ness of the piccalilli. And out-of-towners were there aplenty at Expo Chicago, as over 100 galleries from all over the world came to exhibit their wares.Even the venue itself was a work of art; Chicago’s Studio Gang Architects transformed Festival Hall at Navy Pier into a slick study in off-white, lending the impression of a labyrinth of booths without actually being maze-like. (Above) The popular art gala, Vernissage, returned to Chicago's Navy Pier to mark the launch of EXPO Chicago this fall; (Inset) Mayor Rahm Emanuel greets other guests of EXPO Chicago at the return of Vernissage. One of the standout exhibits among a roiling sea of standouts was Argentine artist Erica Bohm’s Chapter By DON FUJIWARA IV/NASA, Astronaut hosted by local gallery The Mission. Bohm’s monoVernissage, French for “varnishing,” lends its name chrome photograph of a spacesuit ensconced in womblike blackness is part to the practice of previewing art ahead of the actual of her Galàctica series, which she shot while on a research trip to NASA exhibition and conjures images of the artist’s frantic facilities in Houston. The extensive use of negative space in Astronaut parlast-minute finishing touches. It is also what Chicago's ticularly resonates in America’s post-space program capitulation era. Museum of Contemporary Art christened its opening On an equally international note, New York's James Cohan Gallery celebration of the first ever Expo Chicago, the intershowed an extensive selection of works from Nigerian-born, English artnational exposition of contemporary and modern art. Organized by, and ist Yinka Shonibare, whose golden-gun-toting sculpture, Revolution Kid with all proceeds benefiting, the MCA, this Vernissage was anything but (fox girl) in fiberglass, leather, and taxidermy fox head, is somewhat atypiunpolished. Patrons and VIPs were greeted by crisp and smiling wait cal of his usual work, though it still incorporates elements for which he is staff extending trayfuls of wine. Cuisine ranged from the haute, like Chef best known. Fox girl wears a dress made from surplus cotton in traditional Jeremy Brutzkus’ French feta canapés with compressed watermelon, African prints, of which Shonibare apparently has more than his fair share. toasted black sesame and pimenton, to cartloads of the venerable Vienna His artistic M.O. has typically been to fashion Victorian-era clothing from Beef hotdog. You could distinguish the out-of-towners by their indiscrimthis material, which Elyse Goldberg, director at James Cohan, is careful inate slathering of ketchup on hotdogs and incredulity at the sheer greento point out is “not so much a criticism of European imperialism, but a

V

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!

commentary.” Interestingly enough, the placement of two adjacent booths, whether by design or pure chance, offered up some insight into the evolution of an artist. Chicago’s Russell Bowman Art Advisory exhibited paintings that Illinois artist Nicolas Africano created in the ‘70s. As exemplified in The Dance (1978), Africano’s works of that period depicted emotionally charged scenes isolated in an expanse of blank or, in Bowman’s own word, “deadpan” space. Right next door to Bowman’s booth, Nancy Hoffman Gallery of New York was showing Africano’s more recent work, sculptures in cast glass like Medium Figure (2009), which illustrates a breathtakingly radical departure from his '70s work. Other notable exhibitions include Dodgegallery’s showing of Ted Gahl’s traveling sketches; Charles Harlan’s Pallets (2012), shown by JTT of New York; Galleri Bo Bjerggaard’s arrangement of Poul Gernes’ Untitled modular colored squares (first exhibited in Copenhagen); and Brian Bress’ Whitewalker 1 (2012), a nineminute video loop of a foreboding figure in white ghillie suit, represented by Cherry and Martin, in Los Angeles. But there were more than just galleries there. Richard Holland and the crew of Chicago art podcast Bad at Sports were serving margaritas at their booth and playing host to Tom Burtonwood of Improbable Objects. Burtonwood, who teaches 3D printing at the School of the Art Institute, explained how he would use a hacked Xbox Kinect device to take 3D scans of Bad at Sports’ interviewees and then immortalize their busts in ABS plastic with a Makerbot 3D printer. The most compelling exhibition, however, came not from a gallery, but from the environmental advocacy NPO, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). The NRDC—together with Rhona Hoffman Gallery and Jane Crawford, the widow of Gordon Matta-Clark—recreated Matta-Clark’s 1970 Garbage Wall in over a ton of concrete, steel, and garbage taken from the Midwestern Waterway, which includes the Chicago River. Elizabeth Corr, senior development associate at the NRDC, expressed surprise and elation at how much attention the project received, even before Expo Chicago began. It's just the kind

of exposure the NRDC needed to get its point across. “Chicago has this love-hate relationship with the Chicago River,” Corr explained. “(With Garbage Wall) we wanted to make people stop and think and to drive home the issue of pollution in our rivers, and how we’ve already solved one environmental crisis, but there is still another huge problem to go.” The crisis she referred to was the civil engineering miracle that reversed the river’s flow back in 1900. The problem we face now is that, in some parts of the Chicago River— mainly around the Regional Water Authority’s two treatment plants— the waterway is nearly 70 percent effluent, meaning, though the plants have filtered out solid human waste, much of the bacteria still gets pumped into our river. Not a very attractive note to leave off on, I know, but sobering views like those presented in Garbage Wall and Shonibare’s works paint a, may I say, unvarnished picture of the world we live in, and that’s really one of the most critical functions of art as a whole. Clockwise from top: Galleries from across the globe exhibited works at this fall's EXPO Chicago on Navy Pier (photo courtesy of The Museum of Contemporary Art; Pallets by artist Charles Harlan (photo courtesy of JTT Gallery in New York); Works from The Mission Gallery on display at Navy Pier (photo courtesy of The Mission Gallery Chicago); MCA Trustee Helen Zell, MCA Pritzker Director Madeleine Grynsztejn, Tom Shapiro (Photo by Jeremy Lawson); Recreation of the original sculpture Garbage Wall created by the late Gordon Matta-Clark in 1970 (Photo by Dan Rest).

Winter 2013CNCJA•13


renaissance in Little

Po r t a g e P a r k

When Alderman John Arena sought to rejuvenate his ailing 45th Ward, he looked to the arts and it inspired something that is dramatically reshaping the community's whole identity.

I

By DON FUJIWARA

Photos Courtesy of Arts Alive45

t only dawned on me that we were experiencing a renaissance a few months back. I was walking home from the Montrose Blue Line stop. The shade from the old railroad overpass at Knox Avenue afforded a couple hundred feet of respite from the outdoor sauna Chicagoans know as August. Reemerging into the stifling light of day, I saw a woman with a ladder daubing paint onto the retaining wall of the overpass under which I had just walked. Her name is Cyd Smillie, president of the NPO Arts Alive 45, and what she was working on that day in August would become End of Watch, a mural commemorating the 536 Chicago police officers killed in the line of duty. Spattered with paint in varying shades of thin blue, Smillie squinted away the unrelenting sun and talked about how Arts Alive 45 has cultivated a network for local artists to showcase their work, while at the same time strengthening neighborhood businesses throughout the Northwest Corridor. End of Watch is just one of several murals that have sprung up in Portage Park and the greater 45th Ward, which also encompasses the neighborhoods of Gladstone Park, Mayfair, Edgebrook, Forest Glen, and Jefferson Portage Theatre's famous facade and marquee. Park. However, the murals themselves are only one facet of this renaissance. The old Portage Theater has experienced a strong resurgence of its own since having re14•CNCJAWinter 2013

turned from the brink of oblivion in 2006. And the National Veterans Art Museum has relocated to Portage Park’s Six Corners. Like the Renaissance of history (note the capital R), Portage Park’s little renaissance is a reemergence of not just art, but also culture, commerce, and politics. There is even a bit of church intrigue thrown in. Unlike the big Renaissance, the architect of Portage Park’s is clearly identifiable: John Arena, alderman of the 45th Ward. Before every renaissance, there seems to be a dark age, and characteristic of Portage Park’s particular dark age is the vacant storefront. The brown paper draped over storefront windows served as the mourning shrouds of dead businesses up and down Six Corners and is what some consider the lasting legacy of Arena’s predecessor, retired alderman, Patrick Levar. According to Arena, some of these spaces have been papered over for upwards of a decade. “If you stare at that brown paper long enough,” said the alderman, “it all starts looking gray to consumers and people who live in the neighborhood.” While new businesses are trickling into Six Corners—named for the confluence of Irving Park Road and Cicero and Milwaukee Avenues—empty stores remain, but then again, renaissances don’t just happen overnight. Storefront by storefront, the brown paper is coming down and being replaced by paintings.


who implement art as economic stimulus, Arena’s plans stem from his background in art. Both he and his wife Jill, who designed End of Watch, hold Fine Arts degrees from Northern Illinois University and have worked as commercial artists for years. “As an engine of economy,” Arena explained, “art has always been a massive producer. Look at all the money that goes into home decoration, and one thing becomes clear: design matters, aesthetics matter. People are willing to spend a little money to enliven their surroundings with something visual that will turn heads.” It is this willingness that is one of the cornerstones of this little renaissance. By engaging and forming partnerships with local business owners, Arena has been able to share the burden of funding these projects. In fact, according to the alderman, neighboring businesses have been the biggest proponents of the murals. The reason it works so well is because this kind of partnership is mutually beneficial. If the projects can generate more foot traffic in the area, that means more business for shops and restaurants. If businesses flourish, that will attract more businesses, and it is in the best interests of property owners to get involved if it means filling up vacancies that much quicker. Offer a unique cultural experience, and you will attract visitors from other communities, towns, even states, thereby creating what’s called temporary density, and that is what will attract Starbucks and Trader Joe’s. For Arena, the rationale is simply, “Support the businesses you’re trying to bring in, as well as the ones that are already here.” (Above) Alderman John Arena addresses attendees of the Portage Park End of Watch mural dedication; (Below left) Artist paints one of the many murals that line Portage Park's once-shuttered storefronts. (Below right) Silent Movie mural sponsored by Arts Alive 45 in Portage Park.

Photos Courtesy of Arts Alive45

Silent Movie Mural, across the street from the Portage Theater, sets a near noir-ish tone for moviegoers, while just up the street, the jaunty colors of Loteria at Sunnyside and Milwaukee both brightens up the avenue and serves as a lesson in Spanish. These murals and other projects, like artist installations and pop-up theater and concerts, are all part of initiatives undertaken by Arena and Arts Alive 45—which he founded—to effect change through the power of art. In this case, change involves restoring a sense of culture, pride, and economic health in Portage Park, a community not without its endemic charms. Paradoxically, some of those charms contributed to its economic doldrums. With a median household income of $65,000 a year, Portage Park is solidly working-class. It’s a quiet, some (Arena included) would say sleepy, community, 80% composed of single-family homes, which makes it an attractive proposition for homebuyers, particularly those with families. At the same time, though, its quietude and middle-class demographic is what turns away higher profile businesses like Starbucks or Trader Joe’s. Situated toward the hinder end of Chicago’s Northwest Corridor, the neighborhood affords prime access to the I90-94 junction, as well as the CTA Blue and Milwaukee District Metra lines, making it something of a center for transportation. However, traffic, like a double-edged sword, cuts both ways. Though there has been a Sears store at Six Corners for years, greener fields for shopping are right up the road in Niles to the north and Harwood Heights to the west. And Old Orchard is just a short ride up the Edens. Arena, who took office in May 2011, concedes he is not exactly reinventing the wheel with these initiatives. But unlike most politicians

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In what will be considered the masterstroke of this renaissance, Arena has brought in two new businesses that also qualify as unique cultural experiences. In June of this year, both the National Veterans Art Museum (NVAM)— Portage Park’s first museum of any kind—and the Filament Ensemble Theater signed leases to occupy the Portage Lofts building at 4041 N. Milwaukee Avenue. The NVAM moved from its South Loop location, where it had spent the last 16 years, to occupy the second and third floors of Portage Lofts. The museum stands to benefit from the relocation and the attendant increase in foot traffic from nearby shops and restaurants, but NVAM Executive Director Levi Moore told me the best part is the parking. Parking at its old site was so sparse, the museum had to encourage visitors to park over a mile away and take public transportation down. The NVAM reopened its doors to the public on November 11, and kicked off its latest art exhibit, Welcome Home, part of the “In War: Intergenerational Trauma” series. Welcome Home runs through May 2013. It’s not insignificant that the Filament, a heretofore itinerant theater troupe, decided to put down roots in Portage Park. The Filament and the neighborhood were first acquainted back in August 2011, when the ensemble staged its 36-hour, crowd-sourced pop-up show, Vacant City/ Glow. The enthusiasm of Vacant City’s reception fostered something of a rapport—one might go as far to say a unique friendship—between venue and community. And it’s no wonder, considering how Filament’s stated mission of staging “theatre in a folk tradition, emphasizing community, imagination, and sustainability” dovetails seamlessly with the neighborhood and with Arena’s renaissance vision. 16•CNCJAWinter 2013

But the flying buttress to that vision, that which props the whole thing up, is the Portage Theater. In Arena’s words, “The Portage Theater is the anchor of the community and an identifier that goes back generations.” On another level, it is the prime cultural attraction, the leveraging of which is so central to Arena’s plan. These days the theater shows themed film festivals, such as "The Living Dead Film Festival" and "Lebowski Fest Movie Party" and plays host to the Northwest Chicago Film Society and the Silent Film Society of Chicago. Over its storied past, the venerable Portage has had its share of brushes with extinction, and the most recent bullet it dodged was the Chicago Tabernacle Church’s attempt to purchase and re-purpose it as a house of worship. An attempt that was gently rebuffed by Arena. “It’s not that they weren’t welcome in the community,” Arena said. “They were—but as partners, and not in a way that would step over planning. Turning the theater into a church just didn’t fit with the use of the commercial corridor.” Had the church set up shop in the Portage, the resulting zoning nightmare would have precluded places of amusement, like the Filament, as


Photos Courtesy of Arts Alive 45

well as restaurants’ licenses to serve alcohol. Its presence would have pushed such places south of Irving Park, over a city block away, thereby grounding the renaissance before it even had a chance to take off. While it’s clear that it has taken off, questions arise as to how far will it go? How do you measure the success of a renaissance? Of course, with the benefit of hindsight, we can see how the capital-R Renaissance changed a world, but while in the midst of Portage Park’s little renaissance, it’s a little harder to tell. Economic indicators, at least, provide concrete figures we can go by. For instance, in 2011 new leased space at Six Corners was 12,000 square feet. In 2012, the new leases signed by the Filament for 4,500 square feet and the NVAM for 7,000 almost equal that amount; and the year isn’t even over. Maybe the true measure of a renaissance is registered not on bottom lines, but on emotional ones. It’s a thrilling prospect that the sleepy little community of Portage Park which isn’t even clearly seen on the

(Opposite page from left) Artist works to develop a new Portage Theater mural; New businesses like this boutique now populate once empty storefronts along Portage Park's streets; Alderman John Arena and family members of fallen officers celebrate the dedication of Portage Park's End of Watch mural; (Above from top) Artist paints one of the many murals that line Portage Park's onceshuttered storefronts. (Below right) Silent Movie mural sponsored by Arts Alive 45 in Portage Park.

city’s cultural map—is poised to become the next major art center of Chicago, like a Pilsen or a Hyde Park. “Or,” Arena is quick to caution, “like another Portage Park. This area already has a strong sense of selfidentity and a tradition of family and culture. We don’t need to become anywhere else.” The alderman related an anecdote of how one police official had remarked that Six Corners just “felt safer,” something Arena attributed to people caring enough to make the area look nice. Or maybe it could be something as simple as (to use Cyd Smillie’s words) “Good deeds generate a community response.” Winter 2013CNCJA•17


City Winery in Chicago's West Loop

C

hicago's WINE ountry

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Offering Chicago's only fully functional winery, New York import City Winery has created a unique, immersive entertainment experience in the Windy City where eclectic performance and incredible wine set the tone for every visit.

I

Photo by Colin Lyons

By LISA WANSLEY If you’ve been thinking to yourself, like me, “Gee, I'd love to find a cool, non-traditional concert venue in the city to wine, dine and be immersed in world class music all in one setting,” New York import City Winery, one of the newest venues in town—and the city's first fully functional winery—is way ahead of you. The creation of New York entrepreneur and impresario Michael Dorf, City Winery is the culmination of Dorf's own passions for wine and music. Operating on the assumption that he wasn't alone in his unique exploit, Dorf founded his highly successful flagship location in Manhattan in 2006 and has been uncorking a unique blend of good music, wine and food in a one-of-a-kind setting to patrons every night ever since. Whether it's the eye-catching, intriguing décor, the ambiance kindled by candlelit tables and wood-burning fireplace, or the eclectic mix of amazing artists that grace its stage every night, whatever it is, City Winery, located in Chicago’s thriving west loop district, has it. There’s an understated elegance that resonates in this place from wall to wall, from floor to ceiling, and it attracts visitors from many walks of life, all having at least one thing in common: a desire to relax and unwind in a cozy, intimate, yet vibrant setting and enjoy the best paring of music and wine the city has to offer. From the moment you enter, you're captivated by the innovation of this place. Instantly you’ll find yourself in the midst of what appears to be wine country itself, and you'll likely be intrigued by its expansiveness and, of course, the 300-seat performance space. Winter 2013CNCJA•19


Opened this past August, and situated inside a structure that formerly served as a refrigerated food distribution warehouse, City Winery resembles anything but. Transformed into an eclectic, inviting venue filled with warmth and ambiance, the space is bursting with charm that hits the senses from all directions. From the upper level private seating areas, complete with custom lamps—formed in the shape of wine bottles—that dangle playfully in front of Chicago's electric downtown skyline, one catches plenty of reminders that wine is the focal point of this establishment. Those big silver barrels that you see in the windows as you walk in and aligning several of the interior walls aren’t just for decoration. They actually house wine, and lots of it. From the reclaimed wood and the restored hundredyear-old windows, at City Winery, practically everything you see—every wine barrel, bottle, cork (also fashioned into fixtures) serves a purpose, and that's to ensure that each and every guest leaves with an unforgettable, one-of-a-kind Chicago nightlife experience. What attracted Dorf to this particular side of town was twofold: the rich history of the West 20•CNCJAWinter 20•CNCJAWinter2013 2013

One of City Winery's private seating space's located within a romantic barrel facility atop its Randolph Street location.


Photo by Colin Lyons

Randolph manufacturer’s district and the fact that the space inside the building was reminiscent of their already established New York City location. The appeal of the expansive outdoor space was another factor that drew Dorf to the building. As with his flagship location in the Big Apple, he saw City Winery as more than just a place to hang out and eat good food and drink great wine. City Winery is a manufacturer of some of the finest selections of locally produced wine you will find—over 400 selections. And with its vibrant West Loop location marking the city's first fully-functional winery, the establishment becomes grounded in historical significance of this important Chicago neighborhood. Another benefit to the district: the winery is sustainable, maintaining a pretty low carbon footprint, which, according to General Manager Greg Kitowicz, just sort of happened “naturally.” Wine on tap—every glass, bottle and keg is free of preservatives and sulfates. Because tons of fresh grapes are shipped to the warehouse on a daily basis, where they're fermented on-site and stored in a temperature-controlled environment, there’s no need for added ingredients. What your taste buds savor is the full flavor of the wine. Attention to detail when selecting the best wine and food for the evening has nearly as much of an impact

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on creating a fully engaging experience as does the musical lineup, which is as diverse as any you'll find in Chicago. On any given night, you'll be captivated by world-renowned artists from a variety of musical genres where no two nights are alike but the sounds will either keep you in your seat hoping for more, or on your feet dancing. The establishment boasts a line-up of talented artists from the folk, jazz, rock, or soul persuasion. In their

first season, City Winery's Chicago location has already seen such luminaries as Grammy winning jazz phenom Esperanza Spalding, pop-folk singer Mason Jennings, folk and country artist Rosanne Cash and gospel great Mavis Staples. Oh, but that's only the beginning. This season, you can hear blues sensation Tab Benoit, Haitian-American singer Wyclef Jean and progenitor of the first wave of alternative rock bands,10,000 Maniacs all at the Winery. The venue also puts forth a host of ancillary events from wine tastings and lectures to a unique paring of wine and film this December hosted by acclaimed director, actor and writer Ed Burns. Chicago is indeed a world class cultural city. So, lets face it, there are many high-end restaurants here that can certainly offer great food, wine and even some that present great (if genre-limited) performances. But, how many can boast a full-suite combination of full-service dining with a seating capacity as massive as the level of world-class talent it offers from an array of styles and genres, all complimented with top flight wines produced on-site? The answer is, while the competition in a city like Chicago might be fierce, City Winery simply offers precisely the perfect mix of wine, food and music weaved intricately into an experience that's just unmatched. And like New York, we get to enjoy it just a hop, skip and a jump away from our doorstep. That, you can't beat with a stick.

Clockwise from top right: City Winery's 300 seat venue offers wine and food parings (in that order) and up-close-and-personal access to top flight musicians from a wide variety of genres every night of the week (photo by Colin Lyons); Gospel legend Mavis Staples; Folk musican Mason Jennings; Jazz sensation Esperanza Spalding; Guitar wizard Tab Benoit (photos courtesy of City Winery); City Winery lobby (photo by Colin Lyons).

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Theater Review

Zimmerman's Metamorphoses Plays on Dexterity of Lookingglass Cast

Photo by Liz Lauren

By CATHLYN MELVIN

Clockwise from front center: Usman Ally, Lauren Orkus, Douglas Hara, and Louise Lamson in Lookingglass Theatre's production of Metamorphoses.

November 19, 2012 - It’s not often that a play is staged in water. Walking into the Lookingglass space on Chicago's Magnificent Mile, where Metamorphoses is being performed, one is greeted by a pool of black water, gently lapping at its stone-paved walls. At one side of the pool sits a lit ornate armchair, and behind that, a tall, grand doorway framing two equally tall, grand dark wooden doors. To the other side hangs a backdrop of the sky—blue with white floating clouds. It is through these prisms of sorts that Mary Zimmerman, playwright and director, tells a series of Greek myths. As each unfolds, we see the ensemble of ten actors shape themselves into multiple characters, climbing in and out of the water, and playing along the edge of the pool. While the cast as a whole navigated these shifts neatly—some of the play’s own metamorphoses—Anjali Bhimani offered a shiver-inducing performance as the tortured Myrrha, a beautiful young girl cursed by Aphrodite to love her own father. Similarly impressive is Louise Lamson's turn as Alcyon, who is wrapped in the desperation of complete loss, but wields a stirring rebirth thereafter. Toward the end of the play, one character aptly observes that in these stories, there are few happy endings. But Metamorphoses, for all its unhappy endings, is full of humor. Much like in the comedies of Chekov, the humor in Zimmerman’s storytelling derives from our observations of 26•CNCJAWinter 2013

these characters—many of them gods—behaving just as we do, and often, badly. We watch as a god (Lawrence E. Distasi) transforms himself into a farmhand, a soldier, even an old woman, in order to woo the beautiful wood nymph he loves (Lamson). He explains that he lives for those trivial moments, cherishing just the opportunity to do so little as wish her as a good afternoon. “The point,” we are told, “was just to be near her.” We laugh as Phaeton (Doug Hara) preaches to his therapist (Marylin Dodds Frank) about the neglect he experienced from his too-distant father (Raymond Fox), whose dialogue, sung as if he is leading a Latin hymn, contrasts wonderfully with Phaeton’s crisp modern language, itself a jarring change from the traditional tellings of these Greek myths. There is no doubt that this show is funny. But what makes its humor so important, is its wedding to the darker themes and lessons that abound. Through familiar stories of characters like Orpheus and Ceyx, and others less studied in high school English courses, Zimmerman asks us to think about what makes us human. Was man created to tell stories? Are stories of love inherently also stories of being stuck on time’s one-way path? Reason, order, loss, devastation, and determination are all explored as we watch these centuries-old tales unfold in a captivating performance by Lookingglass.


MCA Exhibit Examines Old Wounds By AMANDA SCHERKER

Photo by Nathan Keay MCA CHicago

October 15, 2012 - It's difficult to erase a history stained with violence or to eradicate the taint of human cruelty. The latest installment in the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) series "MCA DNA" features a compelling exhibition comprised of the work of multi-media artist William Kentridge. MCA DNA William Kentridge bravely explores a nation’s collective trauma, memory, and healing. The exhibit, organized by MCA curator Lynne Warren, shows us the artist's creative depiction of his native South Africa. Kentridge’s search for identity in a post-apartheid age is as haunting as it is insightful. Although Kentridge has found his voice in painting, film, theater, and opera, this exhibit wisely focuses on his bold charcoal animations, Felix in Exile and History William Kentridge, Drawing for the film History of the Main of the Main Complaint, both of Complaint, 1995-96. Collection Museum of Contemporary Art which are part of his “Drawings Chicago, gift of Susan and Lewis Manilow. ) 1995-96 William Kentridge. for Projection” series. The exhibit also includes several still sketches from his compelling film work. The sketches’ visible smears and overlapping lines offer a window into the artist’s creative process; you can literally see the imprints of the his hand as they imbued the sketches with life. MCA DNA William Kentridge shows a looping reel of the artist's two films, so that the sketches hanging on the exhibit's walls seamlessly flow into a dreamy, surreal vision of South Africa. The smudges and imprints help conjure the blurry haze of memory. As South Africa’s apartheid history recedes across the horizon, shadowy scars remain. Kentridge’s near-exclusive reliance on black charcoal makes the occasional pastel marking all the more dramatic. Physical wounds are signified by child-like red circles and x-marks, which seem somehow more violent in their vagueness. The two films’ main characters are said to convey Kentridge’s alter egos, so it’s no surprise that both battle guilt and anguish over their shared history of racial violence. Felix in Exile’s title character, Felix Teitlebaum, a Caucasian man, sits naked and fragile in a bare, solitary room. Throughout the film, he drowns in a sea of tap water and loose papers, upon which his country’s history has been recorded. Soho Eckstein, the main character of History of the Main Complaint, awakens surrounded by doctors, who appear as clones of himself. Their stethoscopes reach deep into his heart, revealing agony and guilt. In Kentridge’s beautiful nightmare ethos, the human body fuses seamlessly with the mechanical world. Typewriters become extensions of arms, and ultrasounds intermittently reveal skeletons and old-fashioned telephones. The dehumanization under apartheid, it seems, erases the line separating humanity and the mechanical world as if it too were charcoal. Kentridge’s true brilliance lies in his ability to find poignancy in simplicity. This is perhaps most visible in his collage Portrage, which is the exhibit’s single piece of artwork not related to his animations. Kentridge depicts a jagged-edge scene of crude human figures, many of which have mechanical parts attached to their bodies. While the shapes are vague and merely suggestive, the figures come to life in a grotesque parade. Kentridge describes the viewer’s role as “involuntary and active,” as his expressive figures evoke creatures that are simultaneously man and machine. In Kentridge’s world, the simplest charcoal lines become evocative explorations of the past and future consciousness of South Africa, torn black paper becomes a haunting march of half-human creatures enlightening perspectives through a starkly metaphoric lens. Ultimately, Kentridge's work has much to say. In my estimation, his audience will hardly be able to resist listening and that is what makes his output so compelling. 

Dance Review

Cerrudo Honor's Chagall's Virtuosity with His Own

By EMILY DISHER

October 18, 2012—In an exceptional collaboration between Hubbard Street Dance and Hubbard Street Dance II, resident choreographer Alejandro Cerrudo unveiled the mystery he’d been creating behind cloaked rehearsal room windows for months. Cerrudo’s “One Thousand Pieces,” inspired by Mark Chagall’s American Windows (on permanent display at the Art Institute of Chicago), made its world debut at Harris Theater on October 18, 2012. The celebrated choreographer’s latest achievement constructs gorgeous movement around glassy motifs, made all the more fascinating by a shadow-cloaked stage, muted costumes, and brilliant lighting. Music by Philip Glass, whose name playfully puns on the theme of the evening, sustains an atmosphere of intrigue throughout Cerrudo’s abstract invention. Window panes alternately stand like cubicles or hang from the wings, bringing a slice of the literal into the piece. Dancers glide across the stage, whisked about by the momentum of fellow performers as if they are sliding on ice. At times, performers move as though watching their own reflections, with a counterpart mirroring each wave of the arm, or lengthening of the leg. Act II showcases Cerrudo’s aesthetic genius, amplified by Michael Korsch’s deft lighting. The pinnacle of the evening, this segment features three Hubbard Street Dancers Garrett Anderson, left, and wide streams of mist, fallAna Lopez in "One Thousand Pieces" by Resident ing from a suspended black Choreographer Alejandro Cerrudo. curtain, down to the protected stage floor. The scattered beads of water catch the light like thousands of pieces of glass, shattered across the stage. Feet and arms splash and whisk the water, light refracting from each glistening droplet. Cerrudo’s elegant duets augment the production’s central movement. Cerrudo plays with perspective in Act III. At times, the full company overpowers the stage, performing isolated movements in a massive line, for example. At other moments, the vastness of the stage threatens to swallow the dancers. Expressive pantomime returns in this segment, as does Cerrudo’s conspicuous use of the moving jaw. The single misstep of Cerrudo’s evening-length achievement might be a seemingly misplaced interlude, during which Jonathan Fredrickson suspends from the ceiling to tell a trite tale. Even the aerial narration fails to live up to the high caliber of entertainment the compliment of the evening presents. In fact, it seems to break with the rest of the production, which enthralls without narrative. Interlude aside, what a pleasure it was to view Chagall’s impact on Cerrudo. The choreographer absolutely mystifies viewers with his sumptuous imagery and slick choreography.  Photo by Todd Rosenberg

Exhibit Review

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Classical Concert Review

Les Violons Curates Stunning Harris Debut

Photos courtesy of Les Violons du Roy Chamber Orchestra

By KATHRYN BACASMOT

(Above) Members of renowned Canadian chamber orchestra Les Violons du Roy; (Inset) Flutist Emmanuel Pahud.

October 24, 2012 - The word “Baroque” is generally understood to mean “misshapen pearl.” It also illustrates how the music should, ideally, be performed: an elegant quality of sound highlighted by brilliant sheen and lowlighted with melancholic shadow, hard yet round and smooth. A tall order, but when it is filled to perfection, one almost gasps at the seamless melding of technical prowess and emotional conveyance. Les Violons du Roy (led by Bernard Labadie) delivered, as did guest artist, flutist Emmanuel Pahud. Not only was their interpretation of the music breathtaking in its precision and depth, but also the program, entitled, “The Flute King,” was a thoughtfully curated selection of six pieces by five composers, all linked by virtue of their involvement with the court of Frederick II the Great, of Prussia. A talented amateur musician and flutist in his own right, the king indulged his love for music by building an opera house, hosting instrumental concerts, and surrounding himself with outstanding performers and composers. Amongst those employed by the Frederick II were Franz Benda, Johann Joachim Quantz (the royal flute instructor), and Carl Philipp Emmanuel Bach. Some of their intriguing works made up the content of “The Flute King,” along with a piece by Frederick II himself, and Johann Sebastian Bach. In addition, they were brilliantly placed, directly juxtaposed to reveal student/teacher and father/son influences. Les Violons du Roy took the stage first, offering a silken yet felicitous in28•CNCJAWinter 2013

terpretation of Benda’s Sinfonia no. 1 in C major, L I:1. Simply delightful to watch, the ensemble engages fully with the music, and with one another—enjoying themselves so much that it wasn’t unusual to see members of the group spontaneously smiling. Pahud then joined the orchestra for the Flute Concerto No. 3 in C major by Frederick II, and Quantz’s Concerto for Flute, Strings, and Basso continuo in G major, QV5: 174. Aside from his obvious talent, Pahud was also striking for his stage presence. In some ways, he reminded me of a virtuoso vocalist—he possesses that knack for being able to interpret something beyond the music by sheer force of body language and facial expression: bouncing on his toes, conveying momentum, turning toward the orchestra during rests in his passages, leaning into the sound, swaying, indulging. In the Quantz, his articulation was particularly striking, like fine beading shimmering in the light, each note separated, and placed perfectly in relation to its predecessor and progeny. After a lengthy intermission, the orchestra re-configured to give a solemn and profoundly moving performance of the Ricercare a 6, from J.S. Bach’s The Musical Offering, BWV 1079, a work written for Frederick II after the elder Bach visited his son at the Potsdam court. Concluding the evening were two works by C.P.E. Bach, the Symphony in B minor Wq 182/5, H. 661, and his Flute Concerto in A major, Wq 168, H. 438.


Dance Review

Royal Winnipeg Ballet's "Moulin Rouge" Bursts with Vibrance and Fun By EMILY DISHER

Royal Winnipeg Ballet production of "Moulin Rouge-The Ballet."

French and/or turn-of-the-century composers, such as Maurice Ravel, Claude Debussy, and Franz Lehár. Jacques Offenbach’s “Can-Can” and “Can-Can from Moulin Rouge,” appropriately accompany energetic cancan scenes. Later, Astor Piazzolla’s “Libertango” and “Adios Nonino” create the spicy backdrop for the tango choreography. Perhaps most affecting of all, Debussy’s famous Claire de Lune lends to the enchantment of the central pas de deux between Matthew and Nathalie. Sets designed by Andrew Beck, augmented by clever light implementation, transport viewers into turn-of-the-century Paris. For instance, the lighted outline of the Eiffel Tower creates a beguiling scene against a blue night-time background during the Claire de Lune pas de deux. Props also add to the fun. Frequenters of the Art Institute of Chicago, and art lovers will recognize Toulouse’s painting At the Moulin Rouge, incorporated into various stages of “completion” during the ballet. Sets and props are generally spot on; however, during scenes in which a cityscape screen shortens the stage area (to allow for set changes behind), movements of dancers performing in front appear to become similarly dwarfed. The painting duel between Matthew and Toulouse is one such scene, where constricted space reduces the potential dynamism of the exchange between the two male dancers. Overall, of course, there’s much to love with this dazzling piece. The storyline and shrewd characterizations of “Moulin Rouge—The Ballet” sustain enchantment from the moment the curtain rises.

Photo courtesy of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet

November 2, 2012 - In the Chicago premiere of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet's wildly popular work “Moulin Rouge—The Ballet” (2009), vibrant costumes, vivid sets, and colorful characters create a feast for the senses. Even those less inclined to appreciate ballet would enjoy Jorden Morris’ accessible and entertaining tragicomedy. The Royal Winnipeg Ballet boasts a company of talented actors and actresses in this highly theatrical story ballet given its Chicago premiere at Auditorium Theatre. In the November 2 performance, Yosuke Mino performed the loveable artist Toulouse, while Eric Nipp portrayed a thoroughly despicable Zidler, the evening’s villain. The impressive spinner JoAnn Sundermeier lent an appropriate air of naïve sanguinity to the role of Nathalie, the sunny heroine who transforms into the tragic figure of Act II. Her counterpart, the mild-mannered Matthew, was believably danced by Dmitri Dovgoselets. Sophia Lee performed the spectacularly haughty and sharp La Goulue. These eccentric characters animate a captivating storyline that Morris peppers with imaginative, dramatic scenes. One such scene occurs when the Moulin Rouge dancers succeed in creating a rehearsal environment rife with almost palpable jealousy when Zidler brings Nathalie into the troupe during Act I. In another scene, green absinthe fairies depict drunken hallucinations, seducing Toulouse (and later Matthew). Morris’s tango scene is also striking, further diversifying the enormous personality of this ballet. Morris’s music choices provide an enchanting current upon which the story builds. The production’s 29 pieces of music include works from

Winter 2013CNCJA•29


Theater Review

Artistic and Technical Bravdo Raise Sweet Bird to Another Level

Photo by Liz Lauren

By DANIEL A. SCUREK

Academy Award nominee Diane Lane and Broadway's Finn Wittrock in Goodman Theatre's fall production of Sweet Bird of Youth by Tenessee Williams.

September 12, 2012 - In the world of experimental theater, we typically think of unconventional directors like Peter Brook or Peter Sellers, writers like Beckett or Ionesco or Genet. This is an illusion, of course. One might just as easily experiment within more subtle parameters through an unorthodox casting choice or an unexpected character entrance location. But such definitions are limiting. In fact, it’s probably safe to say that most experimental theater occurs when directors make bold choices within a traditional framework. Take, for example, Goodman Theatre's revival of Tennessee Williams’ Sweet Bird of Youth. Although not originally well-received in Williams' world premiere of the work, Sweet Bird of Youth has grown to be considered one of the writer’s important works in recent years. It is a basic, traditional tale of a middle-aged movie star by the name of Alexandra Del Lago who hooks up with an aging pretty boy by the name of Chance. She’s running away from the disastrous premiere of what would be her comeback film, having realized how brutally honest a close-up can be on the big screen. Chance has ideas of his own and wants to make a big splash in his hometown while driving Miss Del Lago’s Cadillac and reclaiming his sweetheart whom he got pregnant before leaving; now he just has to contend with her daddy, Boss, before Boss kills Chance. So, the script itself is packed with plenty of conflict. As in most Williams’ plays, it's the deep psychological conflicts that run the characters’ respective shows—an attention to the inner workings of the folks who populate his stages—that became the landmark Williams’ playwriting innovation in the mid-20th century. But Chicago-native and modern day experimental guru, 30•CNCJAWinter 2013

play director David Cromer ups the ante by using the Goodman’s tech for all its worth. But not superfluously. For example, even if Diane Lane actually is in the correct physical age range for the character of Miss Del Lago, she nonetheless looks far younger than we would expect in a character ravaged by the worst of Hollywood. But Lane plays the part very convincingly and even daringly; Cromer projects a live, larger-than-life version of Ms. Lane onto the bed’s long, flowing canopy, showing all the signs of age that might normally be missed in the distance of stage to audience. But the real brilliance of this play, and this production, lies in something simple and yet complex: the character of Chase. Broadway actor Finn Wittrock plays the aging (though still young) Chase, a tragic take on the terror of lost youth that Tennessee Williams normally reserves for his heroines. Wittrock’s portrayal maintains the absurd cockiness that a big fish in a little pond might feel when returning home as the local anti-hero. There’s always a subtle—often nearly indiscernible—fear running through all of Chase’s cocky bravado. Many of the supporting roles are also superbly acted. Penny Slusher as Aunt Nonnie and John Judd as Boss stand out. Colm O’Reilly also does a strong turn as George Scudder, the man who does his best to convince Chance early on to abandon any hope of his dream life back home. But despite all of David Cromer’s innovations, despite the temptation to let technical muscle run the show and despite the threat of star power like Diane Lane diverting our attention, David Cromer gets it right by allowing the power of the script to rise to the surface and permitting the considerable talent on hand to help make that happen.


Classical Concert Review

Orion's Trademark Symbiosis on Display for 25th Anniversary Concert By KATHRYN BACASMOT beautiful, the approach yielded a rather rugged reading that may have inhibited the more sinuous jazz elements of the piece. Concluding the first half of the evening was Columbia College faculty member, Sebastian Huydts' Quintet for Clarinet, Piano, Violin, Viola, and Cello, Op. 39. Huydts, who splits his time between Barcelona and Chicago, was commissioned by the ensemble in 2002, and wrote the piece in Spain, inspired by the idle blissfulness of a professor’s July. Here is where The Orion Ensemble conveyed their astonishing ability to play in perfect balance with one another. For example, Huydts’ Quintet opens in a kind of harmonic stasis—one note moving at a time— unfurling in slow motion. Without the ability to really listen to one another the way Orion can, the cocoon of sound can easily rupture, and the effect can be completely lost upon the audience. The seamless nature of the ensemble's aural congruity was interrupted only by a singular lapse in the conclusion of this piece, yet it remained fascinating to witness. The Orion Ensemble presented a thoroughly beautiful interpretation of Robert Schumann's Quartet in E-flat, Op.47, though a break in concentration between movements may have caused the musicians to lose some of their trademark symbiosis, by program's end, the ensemble had regained their footing and ended the concert in the same splendid fashion that they presented their 20 years of extraordinary music-making. Photo by Cornelia Babbit

October 10, 2012 - For the opening concert of their 20th anniversary season, members of The Orion Ensemble, Kathryne Pirtle (clarinet); Florentina Ramniceanu (violin); Judy Stone (cello); and Diana Schmück (piano), joined with guest artist Stephen Boe (viola) to present a diversely brilliant concert of Bartók, Huydts, and Schumann at Ganz Hall at Roosevelt

Members of the acclaimed Chicago chamber music group, The Orion Ensemble.

University in downtown Chicago. Béla Bartók’s Contrasts for Clarinet, Violin, and Piano (1938) was commissioned by America’s “King of Swing,” Benny Goodman, and Hungarian violinist Joseph Szigeti. As such, the work solicits a unique mixture of classical sophistication, unceremonious folksiness, and laid-back cool. Pirtle, Ramniceanu, and Schmück delivered a beautifully balanced reading, showcasing their obvious individual acumen and control over the demanding technique of the work. Impressive walls of sound washed over the Ganz Hall audience, saturated with fantastic dynamic contrasts and brilliant, if aggressive, tempi, though unmitigated by subtle phrasing. Though

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Opera Review

Restraint and Artistic Focus Fuel Lyric's Boccanegra Success By FRED CUMMINGS

October 27, 2012 - The time honored expression “Less is more” is one singing is also quite essential to effectively communicating a composer's that patrons of opera rarely get to appreciate. And with Verdi, a composer message, and Lyric's gifted cast offered a pretty extraordinary contribution known for robust displays of power and grand compositional structures, as a whole to the endeavor. Baritone Thomas Hampson's turn in the titufew would associate this bit of wisdom. lar role was a tour-de-force in artistic dexterity. His passionate approach to But in fact, in Verdi's 19th century masterwork, Simon Boccanegra, Simon's love loss early on was never so demonstrative that it limited the we have no better example of how visceral power must be carefully honed malleability needed in the role by the finale. His supple baritone voice was with balance and restraint if it is to be at all effective in its true purpose. equally at home with the longing of a love sick sailor as it was with the fury Few conductors understand this notion as keenly as Lyric Opera music of an Italian magistrate hell bent on revenge, or the tenderness of an aged director Sir. Andrew Davis. Davis has long been known for the masterful father discovering a long-lost child. balance he brings to the difficult task of operatic conducting. He is well Italian bass Ferruccio Furlanetto created an imposing nemesis in the versed in creating a powerful orchestral tapestry of support for vocal per- role of Fiesco. He brought much more than dazzling, low base singing to formance through careful voicing and intricate shading. And in Wednesday the role, but also furtive phrasing that portrayed an opponent whose rage evening's performance, Davis and Lyric's remarkable cast conducted a vir- stemmed from wells of pain just as deep as Furlanetto's seemingly bottomtual masterclass in wielding musical strength with a purpose, employing less diaphragm. laser-like focus through balance, restraint, subtlety and nuance to commuHawaiian-born baritone Quinn Kelsey sang as Paolo, devious cohort nicate Simon Boccanegra's poignant them. in the eventual Boccanegra government. Rich with lush, lyrical phrasing By the time Verdi had revisited this originally unsuccessful work, and a mesmerizing vibratto, Kelsey's Paolo poses a slight distraction as he'd been around the block quite a bit with the efficacious push and pull the character is actually meant to stir conceit and not romance. But there is of Italian operatic war horsing. And audiences, Baritone Thomas Hampson in the titular role of Lyric Opera's fall production of Simon Boccanegra. agog over the immediacy of Verdi successes like Il travatore and Rigoletto, had come to expect nothing less than powerful expression through the sheer muscularity of both orchestral and vocal forces he'd so openly displayed in those works. Verdi and composer Arrigo Boito, with whom he collaborated on the revision, chose to take a more measured approach with the opera's second iteration, opting to finely craft emotive effects through motivic cohesion and lyrical clarity rather than lavishly dense orchestration and explosive dynamics. The result is a work that is most effectively communicated by artists who, themselves, understand Verdi's artistic approach—that vocal and orchestral prowess is only a means to an end and not the end itself. Of course, masterful

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Photo by Dan Rest

much romance in this man's voice, much more than the role requires. Yet, it hardly matters once you hear him sing. To hear Kelsey is to simply want to hear more. As Amelia Grimaldi, Bulgarian soprano Krassimira Stoyanova presented a showcase in the subtle focus of power and nuance that characterized Lyric's production. Amelia represents the aching loss that has Boccanegra and Fiesco at such bitter odds for the better part of the opera. As the long lost daughter to Boccanegra and Fiesco's own daughter, Maria, Amelia is the one link that has torn (and eventually mends) the ravaged hearts of the story's most imposing figures. Having been abducted as a child before the untimely death of her mother, Amelia's disappearance has left hearts anguished, enraged and frayed. Stoyanova solicits a pure, ethereal tone that has a surprising amount of heft behind it, and she employed it wisely, opting not to power her way through Verdi's soaring passages, but rather focusing her vocal powers with the most delicate shading and nuance and meeting out her tonal strength at only the highest arch of the composer's crescendi to accentuate the height of pain and emotion in Amelia's tender arias. As Adorno, American tenor Frank Lopardo is a fine counter to Stoyanova's Amelia. Hopelessly in love with her, his own passions teeter between his emotions for her and a lust for revenge on Boccanegra who is soon enough revealed as Amelia's father. Lopardo's brilliant Italian bel canto is complimented with a subtle, poignant depth that gives Adorno dimension that without which could leave the character in the realm of operatic caricature. The culmination of these efforts left an emotionally well traveled Civic Opera House audience drained by a finale that found Fiesco's and Boccanegra's bitter hearts reconciled by the revelation of Amelia's true parentage, but not without leaving Boccanegra himself at the point of death—the lingering collateral damage of an intense blood bond that ultimately ravaged the hearts of everyone in its wake. Adding importantly to Lyric's production was Michael Yeargan's lovely but minimalist set design that yielded an uncluttered, airy pallet on which to depict a poignant and heartfelt tale. In the final tally, Lyric's taught approach proved a vivid and comprehensible lens through which to effectively impart a poignant, moving message of love, loss and redemption. And so the old adage rings true, “Less is more.” And in this case, so very much more indeed.

Opens December 14

To purchase tickets, call (888) 700-9069 or visit www.mpm.edu.

800 W. Wells St., Milwaukee, WI Winter 2013CNCJA•33


FASHION & THE ARTS

DESIGNING PERSPECTIVES Renowned fashion designer Maria Pinto teams with The Field to create a fascinating new exhibit that reveals the wonderfully imaginative designs hiding in plain sight in the vast collections of the Museum's relics—and what those designs can inspire.

I

By EMILY DISHER Photos By COLIN LYONS t's obvious to anyone that esteemed designer Maria Pinto has a keen eye for fashion. Counting the likes of First Lady Michelle Obama among her astronomically high-profile clients, Pinto has made a name for herself in the industry through a remarkable ability to emphasize distinct creative elements juxtaposed through construction and workmanship that meld in a balance that defines her signature. Her discerning eye for individual aesthetic in design has been leveraged for an insightful new exhibit at the

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Field Museum this winter. Fashion and The Field Museum Collection: Maria Pinto treats visitors to an intriguing assortment of the museum’s artifacts, many of which have never before been displayed to the public. Twenty-four articles of clothing and accessories representing a wealth of cultures and time periods stand in circular fashion around the gallery. Intermixed with ancient armor, shorts, coats, and headdresses, stand eight modern pieces of clothing created by Maria Pinto. Fueled by a passion for the wearable, and reverence for the cultures behind the museum’s artifacts, Field Museum curator Alaka Wali, and guest curator Pinto, have created an exhibition that invites visitors to experience fashion—in all its function, artistry, and symbolism—anew. When speaking of the exhibition, Pinto recalls the experience with great enthusiasm, recounting first working with Wali on a precursor to the exhibition (a presentation for the Field Museum Women’s Board) in which she juxtaposed selected artifacts from The Field with her own designs. Afterward, Wali suggested expanding the idea into a larger exhibition at the museum’s Webber Gallery. “What I love about Alaka Wali,” explains Pinto, “is that she so loves the Field collection, and wants it to be seen in as many new ways as posFashion and The Field Museum Collection: Maria Pinto juxtaposes artifacts from sible. (After all,) only one the Museum's collection with fashion creations that either bear inspiration from those percent of the collection is on artifacts or share elements of design. exhibition at any time. One


Renowned fashion designer Maria Pinto in front of the entrance to her new exhibit at The Field Museum, Fasion and The Field Museum Collection: Maria Pinto.

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FASHION & THE ARTS

Maria Pinto worked with museum curator Alaka Wali to select objects from The Field's collection that exhibited uniqe design elements and craftsmanship, illustrating the unique form over the function of these items, which typically commands museum goer's attention.

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percent!” In total, the Field Museum houses a collection of over 24 million specimens and artifacts, which continues to grow each year. Thus, when approaching the project, Pinto faced a daunting task as she worked from August 2011 through March 2012 to select a small sample of this collection for the fashion exhibition, a process she calls “mind-boggling.” “We would go down to the collections for two to three hours at a time,” the designer describes, “and you would get to a point of saturation, where you couldn’t look at another thing, because there was just so much


to take in, and it was so thought-provoking.” As she explored the collection, pieces made of “odd, interesting materials” appealed to Pinto. For example, she notes, “The first piece that I was attracted to, which really launched everything, was the seal intestine raincoat.” Pinto was also enamored by aesthetic details, such as intricate beading, and thread fashioned from leather. From the Inuit seal intestine raincoat that first caught her eye, to a vibrant Mongolian silk tunic, to a pair of beaded leather hot pants, Pinto and Wali whittled down a set of 100 favorite artifacts to the 24 now displayed in the museum’s Webber Gallery. Most of Pinto’s favorites stayed, while others were too fragile or sacred for exhibition.

Alongside these select artifacts, the museum tasked Pinto to include seven of her own pieces and to create a new design, inspired by the exhibition pieces. Selecting her own pieces proved uncannily simple for the designer. “You know, it was odd,” she reflects. “It was a very seamless process. (I thought,) 'oh, this goes with that, or that’s going to make a really great pairing.' The first things that I showed (Wali and the exhibition staff), they all agreed worked. For example, there’s the crocodile armor from Africa, with my python top. It was just a natural synergy.” Whether materials, function, aesthetics or a more abstract theme, Pinto found unexpected parallels between the old and new. For example, the exhibition features the Inuit raincoat, made from bands of seal Winter 2013CNCJA•37


FASHION & THE ARTS

Taking inspiration from the items that she and curator Alaka Wali selected, Pinto then developed designs that articulated various design aesthetics found in the artifacts from The Field's collection, illustrating the depth and scope of the design of these ancient items' creators.

intestines stitched together, alongside the Tema dress from Pinto’s Spring 2010 collection, which is composed of taffeta bands, suspended on a shell of chiffon. “The materials and the functions are different, but the banding aesthetic unites the two pieces,” she notes. The idea of clothing as armor—a notion with which the designer has repeatedly toyed—becomes readily apparent in the juxtaposition of Pinto’s green wool power suit against ancient Japanese metal gauntlets. She expounds, “I started creating these little stories, related to issues of what we wear: what we wear as a form of armor, empowerment through what we wear…. (The exhibit evolved from) vignettes that touch on these kinds of ideas.” Accompanying her careful pairings of old and new, Pinto demonstrates her commitment to minimalist display, free from excess “clutter.” As a result, no placards directly accompany the artifacts. The understated design of the exhibit encourages each viewer to encounter and consider each piece without immediate contextual information. An interactive kiosk at the gallery’s entrance and two simple infographics in the gallery provide facts for context-curious viewers. When recalling the gallery set-up, Pinto expresses astonishment at the respect and care provided by the The Field: “They have such respect for the objects and the people behind them. There’s a reverence for protecting and honoring both the artifacts and the cultures behind them.” The curators extended the same attention to those pieces Pinto loaned to the museum for the exhibition. “When I look at my pieces now, I look 38•CNCJAWinter 2013

at them very differently,” she confesses. “I have eight pieces on display, and part of the way The Field works, is anything they take in, will be treated the way they treat something from their collection. So, from the moment they opened the case with my pieces, it was like this magical experience. They had rubber gloves on, they treated the pieces with such care and reverence…. You know, in the fashion world, things move pretty fast, and our society is so disposable. They really made me look at my pieces in a new way.” Pinto views the creators of the artifacts in the exhibition in much the same vein. The artists, she explains, “cared as much about aesthetics as we do…. As a designer, you like to think you’ve invented something. No! Everything has been done before, and done in places where they have very little resources. Every artifact in that exhibit is made by hand. I have looked to other cultures for inspiration in the past, but now I am even more intrigued, and I think these cultures are where I will go as a source of inspiration in my next project.” Fashion and The Field Museum Collection: Maria Pinto will run at the Museum's Webber Gallery through June 16, 2013.


Shop the handmade creations of more than 600 artists

Dec 6–9

Wheel-thrown sculpted vase by Susan and Eric Anderson

The Merchandise Mart Thu Fri Sat Sun

Dec 6 Dec 7 Dec 8 Dec 9

11am – 8pm 11am – 8pm 10 am – 7pm 10am – 5pm

Adults $12 | Seniors $9 | Children 12 & under Free Details & tickets: oneofakindshowchicago.com Winter 2013CNCJA•39


Cultural Happenings... Celebration of Culture

This holiday season, The National Hellenic Museum will host “It’s a Greek Christmas,” a family event that explores Greek Christmas traditions and will include: Kala Christouyenna (a Christmas exhibit), a regional Christopsomo (Christmas Bread display), dancing lessons, arts and crafts, story time, and holiday cookies from Pan Hellenic Pastry Shop. The event will be held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, December 15, 2012 at the Museum located at 333 S. Halsted Street, Chicago. Families will experience Greek holiday traditions first hand during these special programs and will enjoy performances and dance lessions by Dionysos Dance Troupe along with a special appearance by St. Nicholas.

All The World's a Stage

Chicago Shakespeare Theater (CST) announced last week four new World’s Stage presentations in 2013. CST's World's Stage Series gathers bold theatrical events from across the globe, each in its own voice, provoking discussion on issues of international significance. On the heels of celebrating the Year of Creative Scotland with two critically acclaimed National Theatre of Scotland productions this fall, Chicago Shakespeare Theater aims to demonstrate its commitment to engage audiences in global issues, bringing to Chicago conversations of social and political importance through the work of internationally acclaimed theater artists. Since the inception of the World’s Stage Series in 2000, Chicago Shakespeare has imported international productions ranging from pedestrian-based live art events to grand aerial and water spectacles to iconic theaters such as Shakespeare’s Globe (London), the Maly Drama Theatre (St. Petersburg) and La Comédie-Française (Paris). This past spring, CST was among the 37 international companies that came together for an unprecedented 37-play “Globe to Globe” festival for the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

Making Music Magic

Next spring, more than 120 of the world’s most notable antiques dealers will exhibit their unique treasures at the 16th annual Merchandise Mart International Antiques Fair, April 26-29, 2013. Featuring dealers from across North America and Europe, the fair will offer both serious collectors and those new to antiques a vast array of exceptional finds in categories including Americana, jewelry, furniture, clocks, paintings, folk art and books. Considered the Midwest’s most prestigious antiques event, the Merchandise Mart International Antiques Fair attracts thousands of seasoned collectors and new antiques-lovers each year. Notable dealers confirmed to participate in this year's fair include Americana and folk art specialists American Garage (Los Angeles, CA), renowned English and Continental furniture gallery Jayne Thomspon Antiques (Harrodsburg, KY), and Russian art specialists Made In Russia (Palm Beach, FL).Tickets to the fair are $15 and may be purchased online at www. merchandisemartantiques.com.

Treasures at the Mart

CHANGING GUARD

Greg Cameron, president of the Board of renowned contemporary art museum The Renaissance Society at The University of Chicago, announced last week the appointment of Solveig Øvstebø (Săl-vēg ōvst-‘ēbō) as the organization’s first new executive director in nearly 40 years. Øvstebø is currently the director of Bergen Kunsthall, a premier avant garde contemporary art space in her native Norway. She is expected to start at The Renaissance Society in June 2013 and until that time, current longtime executive director Susanne Ghez will remain at the helm—a position she has held since 1974. As executive director, Øvstebø will serve as the chief curator and oversee museum operations and a staff of eight. She will be responsible for the museum’s overall management, including its exhibitions and programs, its physical, financial and human resources, and its future growth and development. An art historian and curator, Øvstebø has served as the director of Bergen Kunsthall since 2003, developing it into one of the main European contemporary art institutions. She's curated and co-curated numerous high profile exhibitions and has also taught art theory and art history at the art academies of Helsinki, Finland, and Bergen.

The Kohl Children’s Museum of Greater Chicago in Glenview, IL has launched a new, interactive music-making exhibit at the museum sponsored by Ravinia Festival. The sponsorship furthers the festival's mission of exposing young people to music. The hands-on Music Makers exhibit is one of 17 permanent vignettes for children ages birth to eight, aligned with the Illinois State Learning Standards, at the Museum. The exhibit features such interactive activities as moving musical notes on a staff to create a melody, feeling and seeing vibrations on string and percussion instruments and layering melody, harmony and rhythm to create a symphony. Ravinia Festival Chairman Robert Krebs sees strength in the combination of forces of the two Chicagoland cultural institutes in the effort to enrich young lives through the power of music. “No one not-for-profit institution can wholly change a child’s life, but when vital players like Ravinia and Kohl Children’s Museum team up, we’re more than just making cultural inroads Clockwise from top left: Christmas ornament from a traditional Greek Christmas tree (photo by Getty Images); Bust in Ivory, one of the many rare finds that will be on display for these children of all backgrounds,” said at the 16th annual Merchandise Mart International Antiques Fair next spring (photo Krebs, “we’re making music together.” courtesy of the Merchandise Mart; Solveig Øvstebø, newly named executive director of 40•CNCJAWinter 2013

The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago (photo courtesy of The Renaissance Society); Kohl Children's Museum in Glenview, IL (photo courtesy of Kohl Children's Museum); Oleg Sidorchyk in Belarus Free Theatre's production of Minsk 2011 A Reply to Kathy Acker (Photo by Nicholai Khalezin);


Winter 2013

Cultural Almanac Winter 2013CNCJA•41


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Musi c& Dance

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Holiday: Welcome Yule!

Chicago Symphony Orchestra w/Harry Bicket, conductor

Family: CSO presents It's Time to Play

CSO: Shostakovich 10

CSO AllAccess Chamber: Shostakovich

Holiday: Chanticleer

MusicNow: Labyrinth

The Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela, Dudamel w/Gustavo Dudamel, conductor

Dvorák, Berlioz, Shostakovich w/Mark Elder, conductor

Symphony Center Presents w/Chicago Symphony Orchestra (Tel. 312.294.3000, cso.org)

Holiday Brass & Choral

Music of the Baroque (Tel. 312.551.1414,baroque.org)

Taiko Legacy: Tsukasa Taiko

Museum of Contemporary Art (Tel. 312.280.2660, mcachicago.org)

Nutcracker

Joffrey Ballet (Tel. 312.386.8905, joffrey.org)

Performance at the Art Institute of Chicago

Winter Series

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago (Tel. 312.850.9744, hubbardstreetdance.org)

Chicago Jazz Orchestra – Tribute to Frank Zappa

Do-It-Yourself Messiah by The International Music Foundation

Apollo Chorus of Chicago

Chicago Children's Choir

Trey McIntyre Project Family Series (dance)

Harris Theater for Music and Dance (Tel. 312.334.7777, harristheaterchicago.org)

I am M.A.N.

Links Hall (Tel. 773.281.0824, linkshall.org)

LUNA NIÑOS – Family Performance for Kids of All Ages

Luna Negra Dance Theatre (Tel. 312.337.6882, lunanegra.org)

Navidad en MéxicoNavidad en México

Chicago a Capella (Tel. 773. 281.7820, chicagoacapella.org)

Maxwell Street Klezmer Band*

Rhett Miller (of the Old 97's) Solo Acoustic*

Michael McDermott with Special Guest Callaghan*

Amel Larrieux. Special guest DJ Ron Trent †

Chicago Klezmer Ensemble*

Donna the Buffalo, Special guest The Hat Stretchers*

Anne Harris, Special guest Deep Blue Field*

Mike Doughty - solo acoustic*

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The Blind Boys of Alabama Christmas Show: Go Tell it on the Mountain, w/Ernie Hendrickson**

The Fugs, Special Guest Al Rose*

City Winery (Tel. 312.733.9463, citywinery.com/chicago) [Folk/neo-folk=*, Jazz=**, Blended/Pop, rock or soul fusion=†]

Russian Heartbreak: Prokofiev, Glazunov, Shostakovich & Borodin

Chicago Chamber Musicians (Tel. 312.819.5800, chicagochambermusic.org)

Home For The Holidays With The Bourné Family

Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University (Tel. 312.922.2110, auditoriumtheatre.org)

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The CNCJA Cultural Almanac listings are representative of schedules from participating institutions available at time of publication.


Winter 2013CNCJA•43

Theaters

The Letters

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Writers Theatre in Glencoe (Tel. 847.242.6000, writerstheatre.org)

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It's A Wonderful Life

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Failure: A Love Story

Victory Gardens Theater (Tel. 773.871.3000, victorygardens.org)

We Three Lizas

Steppenwolf Theatre Company (Tel. 312.335.1650, steppenwolf.org)

Purple Heart

RedTwist Theatre (Tel. 773.728.7529, redtwist.org)

Hellcab

Profiles Theatre (Tel. 773.549.1815, profilestheatre.org)

The Odd Couple

Northlight Theatre in Skokie (Tel. 847.673.6300, northlight.org)

The Christmas Schooner

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Mercury Theatre (773.325.1700, mercurytheatrechicago.com)

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Lookingglass Theatre (Tel. 773.477.9257, lookingglasstheatre.org)

Santa....Deux?

The Chimes: A Goblin Story

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American Storm

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Greenhouse Theater Center (Tel. 773.404.7336, greenhousetheater.org)

A Christmas Carol

Goodman Theatre (Tel. 312.443.3800, goodmantheatre.org)

Jeeves Takes a Bow

First Folio Theatre in Oakbrook (630.986.8067, firstfolio.org)

The Dead

Court Theatre (Tel. 773.702.7005, courttheatre.org)

The Nativity

Congo Square Theatre (Tel. 773.296.1108, congosquaretheatre.org)

The Baker's Wife

Circle Theatre in Forest Park (Tel. 708.771.0700, circle-theatre.org)

Dickens' Women

The School for Lies

Chicago Shakespeare Theatre (Tel. 312.595.5600, chicagoshakes.com)

War Horse

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I Love Lucy Live Onstage

Broadway In Chicago (Tel. 312.977.1700, broadwayinchicago.org)

The Other Cinderella

Black Ensemble Theatre (Tel. 773.769.4451, blackensembletheatre.org)

DECEMBER 2012

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SHALL WE DANCE?

Hamburg's Chicagoans will have an opportunity to witness an intimate homage to the life of iconic Russian dancer and choreographer Vaslav Nijinsky when Hamburg Ballet presents "Nijinsky" here this winter and brings artistic director John Neumeier's work full circle.

John Neumeier, artistic director and choreographer for Hamburg Ballet.

Hamburg Ballet in John Neumeier's "Nijinsky."

A By EMILY DISHER

As Hamburg Ballet artistic director, John Neumeier, celebrates his jubilee season with the company, the Hamburg Ballet will perform Neumeier’s 2000 work “Nijinsky” at Harris Theater this February 1-2. “Nijinksy,” inspired by the life and spirit of the iconic Russian-born dancer, is a clear choice for the jubilee tour. The second in a series of three biographical works about Nijinksy, this ballet provides a glimpse both into the life and spirit of the dance legend, as well as the profound in-

44•CNCJAWinter 2013

fluence Nijinksy has maintained, though posthumously, over Neumeier’s own artistic expression. While growing up in Milwaukee, Neumeier’s fascination with Nijinksy began in a local library. Neumeier recalls feeling a desire to dance, even before he really knew what it meant. During a time when Milwaukee had no major dance company, and few options for dance students, Neumeier sought out books on the subject at the library. Among five books available was Anatole Bourman’s The Tragedy of Nijinsky. Although this particular account of Nijinksy’s life has been deemed unreliable by well-known ballet critic Richard Buckle, Neumeier articulates, “Bourman’s subjective, sympathetic description of the person and


Nijinsky

PhotoS by Edward Gooch/Getty Images

PhotoS courtesy of Hamburg Ballet

himself to find a balance between biography and a more abstract interpretation of the artist. He explains, “Before creating ‘Nijinsky,’ I asked myself: what should I focus on in making a ballet about a historical figure? Whose version of his life do I believe? What testimonies can I trust? It was a very challenging task for me…. Nothing is more difficult than making a ballet about an actual person. I had to know enthusiastic portrayal of the young artist fired my fanvery much tasy and established Vaslav Nijinsky as a living being about him and “As a choreographer, I in my consciousness.” Thus began Neumeier’s interthen again— est in the figure who would fascinate him for life and deeply respect and admire at the moultimately become one of his greatest muses. ment of creatNijinsky's courage. I ofWho was this man who so captivated Neumeier? ing—to forget Born in 1890 in Kiev, Ukraine, to Polish parents everything in ten imagine him entering who (also dancers) were performing in Kiev. A order to work the studio to rehearse his young Nijinksy began studying dance purely from at the Imperial Ballet of St. Petersburg, instinct.” first work. He must have where he would launch his professional Neumeier possessed incredible incareer in 1907. In 1909, he became the goes on to premier dancer with Ballet Russes, unexplain his ner power and conviction, der the direction of Sergei Diaghilev, intention to attempting to inspire these who made Nijinksy his protégé. Under create a “biDiaghilev’s wing, Nijinksy’s career blos- dancers—who at that time ography of somed. During his tenure at Ballet Russes, N i j i n k s y ’s had neither knowledge nor Nijinksy partnered with other legendsoul,” rather ary dance luminaries, including Anna than a docuexperience of ‘modern' Pavlova, Tamara Karsavina, and Isadora mentary baldance—to follow him.” Duncan. let. The choThe acclaimed dancer made his choJohn Neumeier, reography of reographic debut in 1913, with a series of “Nijinksy” Artistic Director of v i s u a l i z e s successful ballets, including “The Rite of Spring,” which met with well-documentartist’s Hamburg Ballet the ed disapproval and controversy over the “thoughts, choreographer’s break from conventional memories and ballet, as well as the depiction of rather sexually explicit subhallucinations.” The producject matter. Yet and still, Nijinsky’s “The Right of Spring,” set tion illustrates Nijinsky relivto the music of Igor Stravinsky, showcased a style of choreoging both fond and nightmarraphy that helped set the stage for modern dance. ish memories, and concludes Neumeier illustrates Nijinksy’s powerful impact on modin Nijinsky’s final dance— ern dance: “Nijinsky's ballets broke new and original paths his vision of World War II. towards modern choreography. The truly amazing fact for me Neumeier considers the is that Nijinsky developed a choreographic vision, completely performance of this work independent from the classical brilliance of his own virtuosity. in the United States par“As a choreographer, I deeply respect and admire ticularly significant because Nijinsky's courage. I often imagine him entering the studio it is where he first learned to rehearse his first work. He must have possessed incredible of Nijinksy. “To bring inner power and conviction, attempting to inspire these danc‘Nijinsky’ to the United ers—who at that time had neither knowledge nor experience of ‘modern' States, where my passion for dance—to follow him.” Nijinksy began, is very special,” he notes. “I've never grown out of my For many individuals, the allure of this choreographic genius who ‘Nijinsky phase,’ nor has the constantly accumulated knowledge about paved the way for modern dance (and was also a master of the classical the dancer ever disappointed my original, naive infatuation. Everything discipline) is magnified by the riveting details of his personal life. The I've since learned has made the man more complete and more complex, Russian-born Pole was briefly held as prisoner of war in Hungary durwhile at the same time his artistic motivation remains my constant profesing the First World War. A disastrous marriage to dancer Romola Pulszky sional and moral example.” contributed to (if not caused) the decline of his career. The artist also spent many years battling schizophrenia, before his death of kidney disease in (Top) Vaslav Nijinsky as Vayou in Nikolai Legat's 1909 revival of Marius Petipa's "The Talisman."; (Bottom) Nijinsky in "The Rite of Spring." 1950. When creating a ballet (or three) about Nijinksy, Neumeier challenged

Winter 2013CNCJA•45


46โ€ขCNCJAWinter 2013

ArtMuseums

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focus: Hito Steyerl

Steve McQueen

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Joseph Beuys: Sand Drawings

Theo Leffmann: Weaving a Life into Art

Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec: Bivouac

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Awash in Color: French and Japanese Prints

Gigi Scaria: City Unclaimed

Divine and Princely Realms: Indian Art from the Permanent Collection

Goshka Macuga: Of what is, that it is; of what is not, that it is not, 2

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Smart Museum of Art - University of Chicago (Tel. 773.702.0200, smartmuseum.uchicago.edu)

Danh Vo: Uterus

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Renaissance Society at The University of Chicago (Tel. 773.702.8670, renaissancesociety.org)

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Hanal Pixรกn: Food for the Soul

National Museum of Mexican Art (Tel. 312.738.1503, nationalmuseumofmexicanart.org)

Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec: Bivouac

MCA DNA: William Kentridge

MCA DNA: John Cage

MCA Chicago Plaza Project: Martin Creed

Color Blind: The MCA Collection in Black and White

BMO Harris Bank Chicago Works: Paul Cowan

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Goshka Macuga: Exhibit A

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Museum of Contemporary Art (Tel. 312.280.2660, mcachicago.org)

Terry Atkins Recital

Shimon Attie: The Neighbor Next Door

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Mary & Leigh Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University (Tel. 847.491.4000, blockmuseum.northwestern.edu)

The Elizabeth Morse Touch Gallery

Rarely Seen Contemporary Works on Paper

Picturing Poetry

Of Gods and Glamour: The Mary and Michael Jaharis Galleries of Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Art

Late Roman and Early Byzantine Treasures from the British Museum

Cy Twombly: Sculpture Selections, 1948-1995

Capturing the Sublime: Italian Drawings of the Renaissance and Baroque

Blood, Gold, and Fire: Coloring Early German Woodcuts

Allen Ruppersberg: No Time Left to Start Again/The B and D of R 'n' R

Irv Penn Underfoot

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Ongoing Exhibit Begins January 19, 2013

Ongoing Exhibit Begins December 18, 2012

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Ongoing Exhibit Begins December 15, 2012

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Ongoing Exhibit Begins January 11, 2013

Ongoing Exhibit

Ongoing or Permanent Exhibits

Ongoing Exhibit Begins January 19, 2013

Ongoing Exhibit Begins December 15, 2012

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Danh Vo: We the People

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Recent Acquisitions of Textiles: 2004-2011

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When Collecting Was New: Photographs of the Robert A. Taub Collection

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Building: Inside Studio Gang Architects

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Burnham Library Centennial

The Art Institute of Chicago (Tel. 312.443.3600, artic.edu/aic)

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The CNCJA Cultural Almanac listings are representative of schedules from participating institutions available at time of publication.


Winter 2013CNCJA•47

Galleri es

Museums

The Dioramas Treasures Unexpected Chicago Vivian Maier's Chicago

Magic Abraham Lincoln Chicago: Crossroads of America Facing Freedom Lincoln's Chicago Shalom Chicago Sensing Chicago

From Earth to the Universe Galaxy Wall Our Solar System Planet Explorers Telescopes Shoot for the Moon The Universe: A Walk Through Space and Time Universe In Your Hands Chicago Architecture Foundation (Tel. 312.922.3432, caf.architecture.org) Chicago Model City Loop Value: The How Much Does it Cost ? Shop One Nation Under Construction Reconsidering an Icon: Creative Conversations about Prentice Women's Hospital The Unseen City: Designs for a Future Chicago Chicago History Museum (Tel. 312.642.4600, chicagohistory.org) l

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Schneider Gallery, Inc. (Tel. 312.988.4033, schneidergallerychicago.com)

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Michael L. Galfer Fine Arts, LTD (Tel. 847.722.2399, mlgarts.com)

Jack Roth

McCormick Gallery (Tel. 312.226.6800, thomasmccormick.com)

Body and Soul

Jennifer Norback Fine Art Gallery (Tel. 773.671.5945, jennifernorbackfineart.com)

Gallery Artists Group Show

Jean Albano Gallery (Tel. 312.440.0770, jeanalbanogallery.com)

Francine Turk: A 10 Year Retrospective

Carolyne Cole: New Colorful Abstracts

Gallery KH (Tel. 312.642.0202, gallerykh.com)

Michael Hernandez de Luna: Back From the Dead

Carl Hammer Gallery (Tel. 312.266.8512, hammergallery.com)

Ewa Bloch: Rememberer

Erika Harrsch - Under One Sky

EC Gallery (Tel. 312.850.0924, ec-gallery.com)

Stephen Eichhorn: Death is Not Your Friend

Ebersmoore (Tel. 312.772.3021, ebersmoore.com)

DECEMBER 2012

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48•CNCJAWinter 2013

Museums

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Titans of the Ice Age 3-D

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You! The Experience

The Idea Factory

Ships Through the Ages

Science Storms

NetWorld

Genetics and the Baby Chick Hatchery

Fast Forward…Inventing The Future

Earth Revealed

Coal Mine

All Aboard the Silver Streak: Pioneer Zephyr

Charlie Brown and the Great Exhibit

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Smart Home + Green Wired

Museum of Science and Industry (Tel. 773.684.1414, msichicago.org)

Make a Difference: The Miller Family Youth Exhibition

Legacy of Absence Gallery

Karkomi Permanent Exhibition

Spies, Traitors & Saboteurs: Fears and Freedoms in America

Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center (Tel. 847.967.4800, ilholocaustmuseum.org)

Treasures of the Collection

Teaching Lodge and Wigwams

The Photographs of Edward S. Curtis

Changing Views of American Indian Fine Art

A Regional Tour of American Indian Cultures

Mitchell Museum of the American Indian in Evanston, IL (Tel. 847.475.1030, mitchellmuseum.org)

Underground Adventure

Tsavo Lions

Sue The T. rex

Ronald and Christina Gidwitz Hall of Birds

Pacific Spirits

Inside Ancient Egypt

Hall of Jades

Grainger Hall of Gems

Fashion and the Field Museum Collection: Maria Piinto

Evolving Planet

Earnst & Young Three-D Theatre

Crown Family Play Lab

Ancient Americas

Africa

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Nature's Toolbox: Biodiversity, Art and Invention

Field Museum of Natural History (Tel. 312.922.9410, fieldmuseum.org)

DuSable Museum of African American History (Tel. 773.947.0600, dusablemuseum.org) Buried Treasures: Art in African American Museums Word, Shout, Song: Lorenzo Dow Turner Reflections Dust in Their Veins A Slow Walk to Greatness Red, White, Blue & Black: A History of Blacks in the Armed Services The Freedom Now Mural Africa Speaks

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Winter 2013CNCJA•49

Museums

Interview with Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble member K. Todd Freeman

Lens of authenticity

Chicagoland Journal for the Arts

Clef N tes

A Gift to Biro-Bidjan

Tales, Myths and Nightmares: Meet The Artist

Spertus Institue of Jewish Studies (Tel. 312.332.1700, spertus.edu)

Wild Reef

Waters of the World

Polar Play Zone

Jellies

Caribbean Reef

Aquatic Show

Amazon Rising

Abbott Oceanarium

A Holiday Fantasea

Shedd Aquarium (Tel. 312.939.2438, sheddaquarium.org)

DECEMBER 2012

Andreas Mitisek takes the helm of Chicago Opera Theater with a new collaborative model that just may take COT to a whole new level

A Tale of Two Cities

Stephen Petronio Company is just one of our picks for the best and the brightest in Chicagoland's amazing new cultural season!

Guide

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Get in the know with Chicago's amazing arts & culture with a year-long subscription to Clef Notes. And for a limited time, you can save more than 50% when you subscribe online. Just visit ClefNotesJournal.com/special and sign up for four great issues of Chicagoland's premier magazine for culture & the performing arts. And when you subscribe during the month of December, you qualify for our January 2013 Subscriber Rewards drawing for two tickets to The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center's January 24th "Horizons" concert, bringing together some of the world's most talented emerging musicians with Co-artistic directors Wu Han for a concert of chamber music magic. For more information call us at 773.741.5502.

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50•CNCJAWinter 2013

Contempo w/eighth blackbird and Pacifica Quartet Brooklyn Rider

Symphony Center Presents Jazz (Tel. 312.294.3000, cso.org) Dianne Reeves: Sing the Truth! University of Chicago Presents (Tel. 773.702.8068, chicagopresents.uchicago.edu)

Muti Conducts All Beethoven Muti Conducts Brahms Piano: Louis Lortie Jackie Evancho: Songs from the Silver Screen Warner Brothers Presents Bugs Bunny at the Symphony

Symphony Center Presents w/Chicago Symphony Orchestra (Tel. 312.294.3000, cso.org) Afterwork Masterworks: Muti conducts Beethoven

Music of the Baroque (Tel. 312.551.1414,baroque.org) Mozart Celebration

after that, later, then by choreographer Tif Bullard Museum of Contemporary Art (Tel. 312.280.2660, mcachicago.org) Miguel Gutierrez and the Powerful People: And lose the name of action

Links Hall (Tel. 773.281.0824, linkshall.org) Flight Patterns by RE Dance

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Marc Cohn, special Guest Rebecca Pidgeon** Jodee Lewis / Jonas Friddle & The Majority* Swearingen & Beedle: The Music of Simon & Garfunkel* José Feliciano** Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago (Tel. 312) 369-8330, colum.edu/dance_center) Double Edge Theatre Harris Theater for Music and Dance (Tel. 312.334.7777, harristheaterchicago.org) Mummenschanz Mummenschanz Family Series Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center: Horizons

City Winery (Tel. 312.733.9463, citywinery.com/chicago) [Folk/neo-folk=*, Jazz=**, Blended/Pop, rock or soul fusion=†] l Charlie Mars**

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Baroque Band (Tel. 312.235.2368, baroqueband.org) “Gone with the Wind” Tempestuous Recorder Concertos

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Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University (Tel. 312.922.2110, auditoriumtheatre.org) Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah

J ANUARY2013

The CNCJA Cultural Almanac listings are representative of schedules from participating institutions available at time of publication.

Photos from left: Soprano Alfreda Burke with the Too Hot to Handel Orchestra (photo courtesy of The Auditorium Theatre); Rehearsal Miguel Guiterrez: And lose the name of action August 8, 2012, MCA Chicago (Photo by Nathan Keay); Members of The Acclaimed Chamber Music Ensemble The Pacifica Quartet (photo courtesy of the Pacifica Quartet); Members of eighth blackbird (photo courtesy of the ensembl).

Musi c& Dance


Winter 2013CNCJA•51

Theaters

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The Whpping Man Profiles Theatre (Tel. 773.549.1815, profilestheatre.org) The Dream of the Burning Boy

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Leaves, Trees, Forest

Greenhouse Theater Center (Tel. 773.404.7336, greenhousetheater.org) EL Stories Over My Dead Body You Can Never Tell Side Effects May Include When the Rain Stops Falling

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Chicago Shakespeare Theatre (Tel. 312.595.5600, chicagoshakes.com) The School for Lies Leave it to Ludwig

Buffalo Theatre Ensemble of Glen Ellyn (630.9424000, home.cod.edu/atthemac/bte) The Underpants

Broadway In Chicago (Tel. 312.977.1700, broadwayinchicago.org) I Love Lucy Potted Potter (Performances at Harris Theater) Cinderella War Horse Peter Pan

Black Ensemble Theatre (Tel. 773.769.4451, blackensembletheatre.org) Jackie Taylor's The Other Cinderella

A Red Orchid Theatre (Tel. 312.943.8722, aredorchidtheatre.org) The Aliens

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Spectacle

Splendor

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By DANIEL A. SCUREK The world of commercial theater has a daunting task. It’s not enough to aim for commercial viability; a Broadway production must often generate extended, sold-out runs just to recoup the cost for mounting it. Musicals, with their large casts, large production staff, lavish costumes and special effects, traditionally face this challenge most directly with nonmusical theater—a less costly venture. A brief perusal of Broadway’s current offerings speaks volumes to what has been the standby for many seasons now: few new works amidst a sea of revivals, star vehicles and derivates. Under “derivates” you have any production based on a separate work, usually from some medium other than theater. We have plays based on Hollywood films (The Producers, Legally Blonde), songs (Mama Mia, Stepping Out), novels (Les Miserable and Phantom of the Opera), even poetry (Cats). And one thing that each of these shows share is that they are all musicals. Of course, musicals are more commercially viable that non-musical theater. Yet only Mama Mia and Stepping Out actually use music as their source material. Even films like Legally Blonde or long, classic novels like Les Miserable—despite proven staying power in their original mediums—must get the musical treatment before being a safe enough bet for the commercial stage. Which brings us to the curious case of War Horse. Michael Morpurgo’s stirring 1982 children’s novel doesn’t suffer from a lack of dramatic elements. The story sur-

52•CNCJAWinter 2013


DELIGHT

delight

HUMBUG!

HUMBUG!

CELEBRATION

redemption

beauty

Magic MERRIMENT PEACE

family

charles DickeNs’

aDaPteD by

tom creamer

DirecteD by

steve scott

makiNg holiDay Dreams come true for 35 years

PhotoS By Joan Warren

November 17 – December 29, 2012

Fast. Easy. And guaranteed to get rave reviews. Give Goodman Theatre gift certificates this holiday season! GoodmanTheatre.org/GiftCertificates

312.443.3800 GoodmanTheatre.org Groups of 15 or more: 312.443.3820 or Groups@GoodmanTheatre.org major Corporate sponsor

Corporate sponsor partners

exclusive Airline of Goodman Theatre

THE MELTING POT, Promotional Partner; KIMPTON CHICAGO HOTELS, Preferred Hotel

Andrew Veenstra (Albert) with Christopher Mai, Derek Stratton, Rob Laqui (Joey) in War Horse at Cadillac Palace Theatre this December.

Winter 2013CNCJA•53


Photo By Joan Warren

Andrew Veenstra (Albert) with John Riddleberger, Patrick Osteen, Jessica Krueger (Joey) in War Horse.

54•CNCJAWinter 54•CNCJAWinter2013 2013


rounds Albert, a young English lad who befriends his father’s plough horse, Joey, just before the start of World War I. The bond between Albert and Joey grows, but eventual financial problems cause Albert’s father to sell Joey to the English army. Albert tries unsuccessfully to get Joey back. During the war, Joey eventually winds up in German hands, where he is put to hard labor. Meanwhile, enough time has passed that Albert, now old enough to defend his country, enlists in the army and joins the war effort. And, yes, Albert and Joey eventually reunite. But there are many other hurdles and astonishing circumstances to navigate. It sounds like the stuff of almost-too-amazing to be true war stories taken from real life. But Morpurgo actually used several first-hand accounts to tell a story which has largely gone overlooked: millions of horses were put into service in the British cavalry during World War I. In fact, more than a million horses died. This focus makes Morpurgo’s novel unique in a field of literature chronicling the Great War. This is also what makes Morpurgo’s novel so attractive to the dramatic mediums of stage and screen. What many people might not know is that this stage version actually predates the 2011 Steven Spielberg film. Morpurgo initially found live theater a more accessible medium for his story. The stage version, which will play in Chicago (for a very limited three-week run) at Broadway In Chicago's Cadillac Palace Theater, has actually been performed since 2007. Of course, much can be said for the film’s influence. The stage version of War Horse drew spectacular crowds in England but was not to be seen on this side of the Atlantic until the film grossed nearly $200 million worldwide and garnered six Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture). Surely the film’s release had much to do with securing the New York production at Lincoln Center in April of 2011. The New York version even bested the film's own hardware count, garnering five Tony Awards, including Best Play. Before the film, the stage version created its own unique stir. Where the film naturally uses actual horses to tell its story, the stage version would require a more practical solution. Indeed, when one considers the challenges of creating the stage version of a story so focused on animals, one wonders why a stage version was even an option. But contrary to what one might expect, a stage version would prove more accessible than film. Morpurgo had been trying for year to adapt his book into a screenplay, but he eventually gave up; the challenge of creating the narrative for a story told from an animal’s perspective proved just too difficult. It was actually playwright Nick Stafford who adapted the novel for the stage. And it was the stage version that stirred the interest of film producer Kathleen Kennedy to inquire about the film rights. As luck would have it, Morpurgo and fellow writers Lee Hall and Revel Guest took another crack at the screenplay just in time to pique Steven Spielberg’s interest. And the rest, as they say, is history. But what was it about the stage version that inspired a film producer more than the book? Spectacle—the same kind of spectacle that wins over theater-goers in the largest houses around the world. Because what the stage version of War Horse does is something that film revels in: create an illusion so brilliantly that the artistry of the illusion becomes the spectacle itself. It’s not just the stirring story of a boy and his horse that creates a theatrical phenomenon, it’s the promise of the spectacle of bringing the seemingly impossible to life. And in the stage version, that is accomplished by the truest stars of this production, the amazing artist of South Africa's Handspring Puppet Company. What Handspring has done in War Horse is create a series of life-size equine figures operated by puppeteers who mimic the movements and nuances of actual horses so accurately that you nearly forget that they’re even there. It’s even more amazing when you consider that the life-size puppets themselves are abstractly designed, vividly revealing the puppeteer where the bulk of the torso would normally be and a skeletal grid of lined structure used to create the outline of the animal's body. Although correct in size and scope, there is no attempt to try to create a lifelike replica of a horse. The result is something highly-stylized and enormously effective, which, in the hands of skilled story-tellers, only enhances the drama—because at the heart of this production is a powerful story, powerfully told. That is what will command Chicago's attention this winter. And it might very well be what they remember most. Yet and still, no one can deny that it’s that amazing spectacle that gets them in the door.

Winter Winter 2013CNCJA•55 2013CNCJA•55


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Our weekly byte-sized version of the something wonderful we put into every issue of Clef Notes Chicagoland Journal for the Arts!

SNIPPETS

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The CNCJA Cultural Almanac listings are representative of schedules from participating institutions available at time of publication.

Want more Clef Notes? Sign up online at ClefNotesJournal.com for Snippets, our free weekly e-newsletter with updates on arts and culture throughout Chicagoland. With Snippets, we bring you news, interviews, performance reviews and our weekly picks for Chicago's must-see arts & culture performances!

Field Museum of Natural History (Tel. 312.922.9410, fieldmuseum.org) Maharaja: The Splendor of India's Royal Courts Extreme Mammals Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center (Tel. 847.967.4800, ilholocaustmuseum.org) Spies, Traitors & Saboteurs: Fears and Freedoms in America Museum of Science and Industry (Tel. 773.684.1414, msichicago.org) Christmas Around the World and Holidays of Light Smart Home: Green + Wired Shedd Aquarium (Tel. 312.939.2438, sheddaquarium.org) A Holiday Fantasea

Chicago History Museum (Tel. 312.642.4600, chicagohistory.org) Magic

Marc Hauser: Body Language

Schneider Gallery, Inc. (Tel. 312.988.4033, schneidergallerychicago.com)

Peter Ilsted Salvador Dali

Charles Dulac Henri Ibels Henri Riviere Paul Davis

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McCormick Gallery (Tel. 312.226.6800, thomasmccormick.com) Jack Roth

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Body and Soul

Jennifer Norback Fine Art Gallery (Tel. 773.671.5945, jennifernorbackfineart.com) In Metamorphosis: Featuring the work of Vivian van Blerk and Douglas Stapleton

EC Gallery (Tel. 312.850.0924, ec-gallery.com) Ewa Bloch: Rememberer Gallery KH (Tel. 312.642.0202, gallerykh.com) Carolyne Cole: New Colorful Abstracts Francine Turk: A 10 Year Retrospective

Smart Museum of Art - University of Chicago (Tel. 773.702.0200, smartmuseum.uchicago.edu) Goshka Macuga: Of what is, that it is; of what is not, that it is not, 2 Awash in Color: French and Japanese Prints

Renaissance Society at The University of Chicago (Tel. 773.702.8670, renaissancesociety.org) Passing Through The Opposite of What it Approaches, Chapter 25

focus: Hito Steyerl Museum of Contemporary Art (Tel. 312.280.2660, mcachicago.org) Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec: Bivouac National Museum of Mexican Art (Tel. 312.738.1503, nationalmuseumofmexicanart.org) Keepers

Rarely Seen Works on Paper Building: Inside Studio Gang Architects

The Art Institute of Chicago (Tel. 312.443.3600, artic.edu/aic) Steve McQueen

J ANUARY2013

Sign up online for

Museums

56•CNCJAWinter 2013


Winter 2013CNCJA•57

Musi c& Dance

1 2 3 4 5 6 Baroque Band (Tel. 312.235.2368, baroqueband.org) 21st Century Brandenburg Project Chicago Chamber Musicians (Tel. 312.819.5800, chicagochambermusic.org) Composer Perspectives w/Esa-Pekka Salonen Chicago Opera Theater (Tel. 312.704.8414, chicagooperatheater.org) The Fall of the House of Usher City Winery (Tel. 312.733.9463, citywinery.com/chicago) [Folk/neo-folk=*, Jazz=**, Blended/Pop, rock or soul fusion=†] Corky Siegel & Chamber Blues with special guests Sue Demel and Matthew Santos † l Tim O'Brien & Bryan Sutton* Iris Dement* Vusi Mahlasela / solo acoustic* Idan Raichel Project† Pat McGee, Special guest Liz Longley * Chicago a Capella (Tel. 773. 281.7820, chicagoacapella.org) Spirit/Breath/Voice: Movements from a Renaissance Mass Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago (Tel. 312) 369-8330, colum.edu/dance_center) zoe | juniper Harris Theater for Music and Dance (Tel. 312.334.7777, harristheaterchicago.org) l l Hamburg Ballet Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center: Blockbusters Walt Whitman's Soul Children of Chicago Dance Works Chicago: Eat to the Beat Links Hall (Tel. 773.281.0824, linkshall.org) after that, later, then by choreographer Tif Bullard l Ratio of Mindsey to Kelpin Fraction: Dance in Progress Joffrey Ballet (Tel. 312.386.8905, joffrey.org) 1 2 3 4 5 6 American Legends Music of the Baroque (Tel. 312.551.1414,baroque.org) The Water Music— and More Museum of Contemporary Art (Tel. 312.280.2660, mcachicago.org) l l l Miguel Gutierrez and the Powerful People: And lose the name of action International Contemporary Ensemble – ICElab: Carla Kihlstedt and Phyllis Chen Symphony Center Presents w/Chicago Symphony Orchestra (Tel. 312.294.3000, cso.org) l l The Infernal Comedy: Confessions of a Serial Killer w/John Malkovich Piano: Angela Hewit Special Event: Kodo CSO: Mark Elder conducts Rachmaninov and Sibelius w/Garrick Ohlsson piano CSO: Esa-Pekka Salonen conducts Wagner's Tristan and Isolde Beyond the Score: The Tristan Effect MusicNOW: Voices CSO: Yo-Yo Ma and Esa-Pekka Salonen University of Chicago Presents (Tel. 773.702.8068, chicagopresents.uchicago.edu) l Steven Isserlis, cello & Kirill Gerstein, piano Kristian Bezuidenhout, harpsichord Pacifica Quartet Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio

February2013

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Theaters

ArtMuseums

58•CNCJAWinter 2013

The City & The City Lookingglass Theatre (Tel. 773.477.9257, lookingglasstheatre.org) Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo Northlight Theatre in Skokie (Tel. 847.673.6300, northlight.org) The Whpping Man Profiles Theatre (Tel. 773.549.1815, profilestheatre.org) The Dream of the Burning Boy Victory Gardens Theater (Tel. 773.871.3000, victorygardens.org) Disconnect Writers Theatre in Glencoe (Tel. 847.242.6000, writerstheatre.org) Sweet Charity The Art Institute of Chicago (Tel. 312.443.3600, artic.edu/aic) Building: Inside Studio Gang Architects The Artist and the Poet Picasso and Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art (Tel. 312.280.2660, mcachicago.org) Destroy the Picture: Painting the Void, 1949-1962 Renaissance Society at The University of Chicago (Tel. 773.702.8670, renaissancesociety.org) Passing Through The Opposite of What it Approaches, Chapter 25 Smart Museum of Art - University of Chicago (Tel. 773.702.0200, smartmuseum.uchicago.edu) The Sahmat Collective: Art and Activism in India since 1989

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A Red Orchid Theatre (Tel. 312.943.8722, aredorchidtheatre.org) The Aliens Broadway In Chicago (Tel. 312.977.1700, broadwayinchicago.org) I Love Lucy Mike Tyson: The Undisputed Truth Buffalo Theatre Ensemble of Glen Ellyn (630.9424000, home.cod.edu/atthemac/bte) The Underpants Chicago Shakespeare Theatre (Tel. 312.595.5600, chicagoshakes.com) Minsk, 2011: A Reply to Kathy Acker Julius Caesar Cadre Short Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet Circle Theatre in Forest Park (Tel. 708.771.0700, circle-theatre.org) The Ritz Congo Square Theatre (Tel. 773.296.1108, congosquaretheatre.org) The Fall of Heaven Court Theatre (Tel. 773.702.7005, courttheatre.org) Skylight First Folio Theatre in Oakbrook (630.986.8067, firstfolio.org) Jeeves Takes a Bow Goodman Theatre (Tel. 312.443.3800, goodmantheatre.org) Other Desert Cities Teddy Ferrara Greenhouse Theater Center (Tel. 773.404.7336, greenhousetheater.org) Side Effects May Include When the Rain Stops Falling Leaves, Trees, Forest

February2013

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The CNCJA Cultural Almanac listings are representative of schedules from participating institutions available at time of publication.


Winter 2013CNCJA•59

Galleri es

Field Museum of Natural History (Tel. 312.922.9410, fieldmuseum.org) Maharaja: The Splendor of India's Royal Courts

Geoffrey and Carmen: A Memoir in Four Movements

and The crooner talks life, music to Ravinia bringing his Large Band

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Chicagoland Journal for the Arts

of San Francisco Museum of the Art examines the impact the passion Steins Family and and tion of they inspired in the apprecia modern art.

a Legacy unveiled Modern

Carrie Hanson and The Seldoms celebrate 10 years crashing boundaries of modern dance through mind-bending innovation.

Creativity

Chicago Shakesp celebrates a quarter century Shakespeare. celebrating Boundless

YEARS G & COUNTIN eare Theatre

A preview of the historic Paris Opéra Ballet as they kick off their American Tour at Harris Theatre.

Paris Comes to Millennium Park

SUMMER 2012

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3rd Anniversary Issue

Fascinating new MCA exhibit examines the mystique of the skyscraper and the impact its allure has had on our own identity

Identity

TOWERING

Two major Chicago exhibitions examine the prolific photographer's powerful work this summer.

Picturing Dawoud Bey

We talk shop with Grant Park Music Festival artistic director Carlos Kalmar and find out what he has planned this summer for devoted fans of Chicago's über-popular outdoor music celebration.

Crowd PLEASER

A ProgrAm of merit Merit Music’s incredible contribution to the city’s music education legacy

By Patrick M. Curran II

the Uncommon DivA

A look at opera star Frederica von Stade as she prepares for her last staged Chicago performance

Mayor Daley’s grand vision for a revitalized Chicago Theater District has been a long time coming, and Broadway In Chicago has had a significant role in making that a reality.

Bringing Broadway to chicago

Winter 2010

Concert Journal for the Arts

Clef N tes

Stirring UP LAUgh ter Chicago’s 2009 Humaniti es Festival and its celebratio n of the many sides of laughter

Listings for permanent or ongoing exhibits at museums listed in the Almanac can be found on pages 47, 48 & 49.

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For special advertising opportunities, contact Account Executive Jason Montgomery Tel. 773.741.5502 or e-mail: Jason.Montgomery@ClefNotesJournal.com

For advertisers looking to reach an audience that is cultured, sophisticated, and values strong branding, there's no better place for your message than Clef Notes. Our readers open our pages for the best in Chicagoland arts and culture.

Clef N tes

the Arts

Lyle's Large Life

SUMMER 2011

Chicagoland Journal for

Clef N tes

DuSable Museum of African American History (Tel. 773.947.0600, dusablemuseum.org)

Gallery KH (Tel. 312.642.0202, gallerykh.com) Carolyne Cole: New Colorful Abstracts Francine Turk: A 10 Year Retrospective Hinge Gallery (Tel. 312.291.9313, hingegallery.com) New work by Scott Ashley and Lorna Marsh New work by Raul Mendez Jennifer Norback Fine Art Gallery (Tel. 773.671.5945, jennifernorbackfineart.com) In Metamorphosis: Featuring the work of Vivian van Blerk and Douglas Stapleton Michael L. Galfer Fine Arts, LTD (Tel. 847.722.2399, mlgarts.com) Charles Dulac Henri Ibels Henri Riviere Paul Davis Peter Ilsted Salvador Dali Schneider Gallery, Inc. (Tel. 312.988.4033, schneidergallerychicago.com) Marc Hauser: Body Language

February2013

Advertise with

Museums


Karyn Peterson's Exhibit Picks

The Museum of Science and Industry Charlie Brown and the Great Exhibit

Exhibits

Winter 2013 exhibits Picklists

Photo bY J. B. Spector

For nearly 50 years, Charles Schulz researched, wrote, designed, and drew each Peanuts strip that appeared in daily and Sunday newspapers. In achieving his boyhood dream of drawing a comic strip, he also wound up spawning an industry, bringing existential dilemmas to the funnies and conducting a master art class in the process. Charlie Brown and the Great Exhibit explores Schulz’s personal history and his role as the sole inspiration and artistic talent behind Peanuts and its unique cast of characters. The exhibit runs through February 18, 2013. Visit msichicago.org or call 773.684.1414 for more information.

EXHIBITS

The Field Museum Maharaja: The Splendor of India’s Royal Courts Discover the dazzling world of India’s legendary rulers, and explore their fascinating political and cultural role in Maharaja: The Splendor of India’s Royal Courts. From the pomp and circumstance of spectacular processions to the stunning inner sanctum of a king’s palace, experience royal life during an era of great change in India at The Field Museum. Maharaja runs at the Field through February 13, 2013. Visit fieldmuseum.org or call 312.922.9410 for more details.

Theater

Adam Paxton's Theater Picks

Chicago Shakespeare Theatre School for Lies Amid a glittering world of gossip, glamour and scandal, a gaggle of misbehaving characters chatter away in hilarious rhyming couplets in Tony Award-nominee David Ive's delightful farce. Barbara Gaines’ ensemble features acclaimed Stratford Festival actors—and real-life husband and wife—Ben Carlson and Deborah Hay. Staged in the uniquely personal setting of CST’s Courtyard Theater, this blissfully entertaining production promises to keep you laughing all the way home. School for Lies runs at Shakespeare Theatre through January 20, 2013. Visit chicagoshakes.com or call 312.595.5600 for more details.

Photo courtesy of Chicago Shakespeare Theatre

The Art Institute of Chicago Picasso and Chicago Featuring such diverse and significant works from the museum's own exceptional holdings and from collections throughout the city, Picasso and Chicago not only charts the full gamut of Picasso's artistic career but also chronicles the growth of Chicago as a place for modern art and the storied moments of Charlie Brown and the Great Exhibit now running at the Museum of Science and Industry. overlap that have contributed to the vibrant interest in Picasso from 1913 to today. Exhibit runs February 20 through May 12, 2013. Visit artic.edu or call 312.443.3600.

Broadway In Chicago War Horse This powerfully moving and imaginative drama, filled with stirring music and songs, is a show of phenomenal inventiveness that's currently playing to packed houses in London, New York and Toronto. At its heart is a profoundly touching story and astonishing life-sized puppets brought to life by South Africa's Handspring Puppet Company, bringing galloping, charging horses into the action right before your eyes. War Horse runs at Cadillac Palace Theatre December 5, 2012 through January 18, 2013. Visit broadwayinchicago.org or call 312.977.1700 for more information.

theater

Citadel Theatre of Lake Forest Little Women Citadel Theatre's world premiere of a new adaptation of Louisa May Alcott's beloved story will be one of the biggest sleepers of the Chicago theater season. In this classic work, the March sisters face hard times when they lose their fortune, but learn to thrive by loving the family and friends in their lives. Little Women runs at Citadel through December 30, 2012. Visit citadeltheatre.org or call 847.735.8554 for more details.

60•CNCJAWinter 2013

Above: Deborah Hay will perform the role of Celimene in Shakespeare Theatre's winter production of School for Lies, staged in CST's Courtyard Theater at their home on Navy Pier.


“We had an incredible E X P E R I EN C E working with Colin and I can guarantee you will too!

K ATE M. CHICAGO

C O L I N LY O N S W E D D I N G P H O T O G R A P H Y C o l i n Lyo n s We d d i n g P h o t o g r a p h y i s a s m a l l c o m p a n y o f photographers and friend s who invite you to be a par t of our c o m m u n i t y. T h e c o u p l e s w e p h o t o g r a p h f e e l l i k e n e w f r i e n d s ; we strive to provide you with the best experience pos s ible.

“One word describes Colin - the Best! ”

ANGEL A R . B U FFALO GROVE

N e e d t o s e e m o r e? R e a d y f o r a n a p p o i n t m e n t ? C a l l , e m a i l o r v i s i t o u r w e b s i t e t o d a y !

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i n f o @ C o l i n Ly o n s P h o t o g r a p h y. c o m Winter 2013CNCJA•61


Winter 2013 Picklists

Danc

Brittany Rice's Dance Picks Joffrey Ballet Nutcracker Celebrating its 25th year in Chicago, the cherished Robert Joffrey & Gerald Arpino Nutcracker will captivate audiences with its brilliant costumes, larger than life scenery, entrancing storytelling and Tchaikovsky’s famous score performed live by the Chicago Philharmonic. Joffrey's Nutcracker runs at Auditorium Theatre from December 7 – 27, 2012. Visit joffrey.org or call 312.386.8905 for more information.

Dance

Photo by Herbert Migdol

Harris Theater for Music and Dance Hamburg Ballet Considered one of the world's greatest ballet companies, the awe-inspiring Hamburg Ballet makes its Chicago debut at the Harris Theater this season, presenting the Chicago premiere of “Nijinsky,” by acclaimed American ballet dancer and choreographer John Neumeier. Based on the life of legendary Russian dancer Vaslav Nijinsky, “Nijinsky” draws upon the pivotal events in the life the one of the most popular dancers of his time, as well as his most important roles as a dancer, such as Le Spectre de la Rose, Pertrushka and the Golden Slave. The ballet is infused with a lush score with music by Chopin as well as Rimsky-Korsakov’s haunting Scheherazade. See Hamburg Ballet in their Chicago debut February 1 and 2, 2013. Visit harristheaterchicago.org or call 312.334.7777 for more details.

Joffrey Ballet's beloved production of "Nutcracker" will run this winter December 7-17, 2012 at Auditorium Theatre.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Miguel Gutierrez and Powerful People The Brooklyn-based Miguel Gutierrez creates performances that explore philosophical questions about life, desire, and the search for meaning. "And lose the name of action" focuses on improvisation to explore body and mind consciousness in both the performers and the audience, who are seated onstage in a space designed by Gutierrez. Each of the six dancers has worked with Gutierrez for several years on the connections between dance, neurology, and paranormal conditions. This intriguing work, co-commissioned by MCA Stage, will prove to be one of the most thought-provoking dance performances this season. Performances run January 31 through February 3, 2013. Visit mcachicago.org or call 312.397.4000 for more details.

dance

Music music Fred cummings' Music Picks

Harris Theater Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center In its second season in residence The Society brings Chicagoans a concert of works that truly could be called chamber music blockbusters. Strauss, Franck and Rorem provide some of the genre’s most eloquent and powerful moments in this power-packed program. Baritone Randall Scarlatta will be joined by a formidable slate of musicians including Gil Kalish, piano; Anne-Marie McDermott, piano; Ani Kavafian, violin; Ida Kavafian, violin; Richard O’Neill, viola; and Mihai Marica, cello. Performance takes place February 8, 2013. Visit harristheaterchicago.org or call 312.334.7777 for more details. Symphony Center Dianne Reeves-Sing the Truth! Legendary songstress Dianne Reeves returns to Symphony Center in a program honoring the music and spirit of great female artists. Reeves, along with stellar vocalists Angelique Kidjo and Lizz Wright, will perform the music of three legends—Miriam Makeba, Abbey Lincoln and Odetta—along with songs made famous by Billie Holiday and other jazz greats. Above: Acclaimed jazz chanteuse Dianne Reeves performs Sing the Truth!, a Performance takes place January 18, 2013. Visit cso.org or call 312.294.3000 for more details. tribute to the great women of song, at Symphony Center this winter.

62•CNCJAWinter 2013

Photo courtesy of the artist

Symphony Center Gustavo Dudamel and The Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela What started as a government-funded program to teach music to at-risk Venezuelan youth over 35 years ago has become one of the greatest success stories in classical music. The Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela is the premier touring ensemble of El Sistema, led by the L.A. Philharmonic's dynamic Gustavo Dudamel. Performance takes place Sunday, December 2, 2013. Visit cso.org or call 312.294.3000 for more information.


MAKES A GREAT HOLIDAY GIFT!

HAMBURG BALLET “gripping at first sight”– The Independant “A great performance of a great work... one of ballet’s most ambitious projects.” – The Independant

FEBRUARY 1 + 2, 2013 7:30PM The Chicago premiere of NIJINSKY by acclaimed American ballet dancer and choreographer John Neumeier.

HarrisTheaterChicago.org | 312.334.7777 Season Sponsor

Official Airline of the Harris Theater

Winter 2013CNCJA•63


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Winter 2013 Issue of Clef Notes Chicagoland Journal for the Arts  

Digital Flipbook version of the Winter 2013 Issue of Clef Notes Chicagoland Journal for the Arts

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