Category Archives: Newspapers


The March 7, 1963 headlines blazoned the news across the front page of the Los Angeles Times: Three ‘Grand Old Opry’ Stars Die in Air Crash. Bodies of Patsy Cline, Hankshaw Hawkins and Cowboy Copas Found on Tennessee Hill. And it happened just four years after another plane crash took the lives of Buddy Holly, […]

The Goodman Theatre’s Wonderful Town: A Wonderful Show

Occasionally a production arrives with such startling imagination, and with performances overflowing with such zest and talent, that a viewer is at a loss for words. The production I am referring to is Mary Zimmerman’s Wonderful Town at the Goodman Theatre. The 1950s musical is based on the post-World War II play My Sister Eileen […]

Chicago Opera and CITIZEN KANE

“Samuel Insull built the Civic Opera Building for his mistress, an opera singer.” “Samuel Insull built the Civic Opera Building for his mistress, Mary Garden, an opera singer.” These two similar tales are told daily by Chicago River tour guides. And these two tales are totally false. The only truth in the tales is that […]

ASSASSINATION THEATER: The Most Important and Exciting Theater You Will See

The first great work of theater, Oedipus Rex, is a whodunit. Ever since, solving mysteries seems part and parcel of what audiences expect of the theatrical experience. I was a high school student beginning a lifelong study of theater when the shots rang out in Dallas. Being sent home from school due to an assassination […]

Do You Like Modern Art?

The always provocative “Spengler” at Asia Times has a very strong essay, “Why You Pretend to Like Modern Art” The writer’s muscular prose style, erudition, and anonymity have made a sport of guessing his identity. (Nominees range from V. S. Naipaul and Henry Kissinger through John Farrenkopf, Dmitry Shlapentokh, Nick Land, and David P. Goldman, […]