When Chicago choreographer Joseph Holmes died at the height of his artistic achievement, he left his company in the hands of Randy Duncan, an intense young dancer who'd been his student and friend for more than 12 years. Under Duncan, the Joseph Holmes Dance Theatre has emerged as one of the city's most exciting and entertaining troupes. Tonight's show at the refurbished Regal Theatre is also the premiere of a new work--Duncan's Joseph, a tribute to the company's founder. The word on the street is that it's a wonder. Tickets are $12 for students and seniors, $15 for everyone else at the box office and through Ticketmaster (559-1212). Show time is 8 at the Regal, 1645 E. 69th St. For information and reservations, call 721-9309.
Tensions in the Middle East continue to dominate the late night newscasts (not to mention our letters page), but better debate than silence. The current crisis will get another airing when Amira Dotan, the first female general in the Israeli armed forces, and Dr. Mariam Mar'i, a leading Palestinian Israeli scholar, take a look at problems in their homeland. Among other things, they'll touch on the special role played by Israeli women in bettering Jewish-Arab relations. These leading Israeli women will be appearing together in a free lecture tonight at 8 at the Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation, 303 Dodge in Evanston. Tomorrow the two will be at Columbia College, 600 S. Michigan, at 3; Sunday, at Chicago Sinai Congregation, 5350 S. Shore Drive, at 11 and at North Shore Congregation Israel, 1185 N. Sheridan in Glencoe at 4. For more details, call 944-5394.
Gardening in the city is a perverse joy, but some of us are more deranged than others. That's why we'll be at the Chicago Botanic Garden's spring gardening programs--"Choosing and Planting Trees and Shrubs," "Using Annuals Effectively," and "Growing Perennials." All three are offered from 10 to noon and again from 1 to 3 today, at the CBG, I located on Lake Cook Road in Glencoe, a half mile east of the Edens. Programs cost $10 each, admission to the garden is free, parking is $2. For more information, call 835-5440.
Hesiod, the Greek poet, proposed that the muses, with their ear for perfect meter and form, could make any lie seem true. Today, a New Art Examiner-sponsored panel will discuss whether the message is more than the beauty or imperfections of the medium. Art in the Realm of Politics starts off with a special work-in-process screening of a documentary film about political painter Leon Golub. It will be followed by the panel, composed of local artists, critics, and teachers, beginning at 8 at Randolph St. Gallery, 756 N. Milwaukee. Tickets are $10, $5 for students and RSG members. Reservations are strongly encouraged. For more information, call 836-0330.
It's a hip place to be, Phyllis' Musical Inn: smoky, dusty, and dingy, it fulfills most expectations of contemporary urban bohemia. Just look at the kind of stuff they book: tonight's main act, Hand to Mouth, features Chicago magazine senior editor David Jackson doing live pop, funk, blues, and rock. Show time is 10, admission is $3, and Phyllis' is at 1800 W. Division. Call 486-9862,
Oh, oh. It's back. The Antichrist was resurrected last spring from his 12th-century slumber by those good-time folks at the American Medieval Players. Their Production of Apocalypse Then, the 12th-century music-drama Play of Antichrist, was the first staging since 1160 of this tale of deceit, destruction, and faith. For those who missed it, the AMP are at it again. Tonight's performance at the First Presbyterian Church, 824 Waukegan Road in Deerfield, is the last of the run, so don't miss it. Curtain time is 4:30; tickets are $15, $8 for students and seniors. information and reservations are available by dialing 465-5031.
Granville Island in Canada's British Columbia was once given up for dead. It sprouted above the water without a purpose in today's economy. But once Focus Consultants took over, Granville turned into a hotbed of development, with theaters, housing, restaurants, and even a brewery. The fortunes of a Canadian island may not seem too relevant at first, but consider that some folks propose the same kind of thing for Goose Island, Navy Pier, and a few other Chicago spots. J. Allan Hammond, founder of Focus, will talk about the Evolution of an Island today at noon at First Chicago Center at Dearborn and Madison. $5 at the door. For more information, call 996-2006.
The very definition of what constitutes a family is constantly undergoing change. And single parents, whether they have custody of the kiddies or not, face a variety of challenges. Parents Without Partners, a support group for single parents and their families, will be holding a free orientation program tonight at 7:30 at the Presbyterian Church of Western Springs, 5250 S. Wolf Road in Western Springs. For more information, call 354-9344.
Witty, caustic, even perverse, the Chicago Imagists always provoke with their use of language and the human figure. One of the group's most important exponents is featured in Christina Ramberg: A Retrospective 1968-1988. The exhibit is free and open to the public at the Renaissance Society, 5811 S. Ellis. Doors open at 10 today. Call 702-8670 for more.
Olympic Gold Medalists Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean are listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the only skating team awarded nine perfect scores in world competition. That's even more impressive because Torvill and Dean have a penchant for stretching, if not breaking, the rules. Ice dancers, as opposed to figure skaters, Torvill and Dean perform a complex, athletic art. Although they attended the Calgary games only as commentators for Australian television, they still managed to cause a stir with the choreography Dean developed for the French skating team. They'll be live and in person tonight with the Ice Capades in "Salute to Hollywood"--7:30 at the Rosemont Horizon, 6920 N. Mannheim Road in Rosemont. Tickets are $12.50, $10.50, and $8.50. Call 635-6600 for more information.
Thousands of dollar-off coupons have blanketed the city since Act I Bookstore, one of Chicago's only theater-book shops, decided to change locations. The coupons are good starting today at the shop's new headquarters at 2632 N. Lincoln. There will be racks and racks of monologues, plays, and other readable theater things. The doors will be open from 10 to 8. Call 348-6757 for more.
Donald Hower, a financial consultant, is sure he knows The Four Best Places to Put Money Today, and he doesn't mean under the mattress, in the cookie jar, in the sock drawer, or buried in the backyard. Hower's talk is part of the free "Investigating Investing" series at the Skokie Public Library, 5215 Oakton in Skokie. It begins at 7:30 PM. For more information, call the library at 673-7774.
Northwest Divorced Catholics say, "Themes of forgiveness can be found in the Bible, in prayers, even in the media." Pat Dolan, a nurse at the Shriners Hospital for Crippled Children, will try to explain how the unholy media ended up in the same breath as the Bible and prayers when she leads a Forgiveness Workshop at 7:30 tonight. If she can't come up with a good one, we'll gladly forgive her. The seminar is at Our Lady of Victory Parish, 5211 W. Sunnyside and it's free. Call 763-8228 for more information.