FRIDAY 10/13 - THURSDAY 10/19
By Cara Jepsen
13 FRIDAY Sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar has completely trained exactly one person to play the challenging 700-year-old Indian instrument--his daughter, Anoushka, who began studying with him on a special "baby" sitar when she was nine. That was a decade ago; recently sitar aficionado George Harrison said that, like her father, Anoushka "is the music." Tonight the pair play together as part of Full Circle: Ravi Shankar's 80th Birth Year Tour. It's at 8 at Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan. The only tickets remaining at press time are $69 stage seats; call 800-223-7114.
14 SATURDAY Quick--what should tormented artists do when they're thinking of killing themselves? (Hint: The correct answer does not involve a razor blade.) In her new book, The Lost Soul Companion: Comfort and Constructive Advice for Struggling Actors, Musicians, Artists, Writers and Other Free Spirits, author Susan M. Brackney suggests a long list of tactics, from the annoying ("Create an elaborate hoax") and mundane ("Open the curtains") to the practical ("Let someone proofread your suicide note"). Brackney, a self-described depressive who plans to spend a lifetime on Zoloft, will share writing tips at Barnes & Noble's World's Largest Writing Workshop today at 2 and discuss survival strategies at 3 at the store at 659 W. Diversey. Both events are free. Call 773-871-9004.
15 SUNDAY Real-life knights in shining armor were out of the picture by the 19th century, but that didn't mean chivalry had gone out of style. In fact, says art historian Debra Mancoff, this "emblem for masculinity" was depicted by Victorian gentlemen as akin to themselves in order to "defend and define their own masculinity." Today at 2 Mancoff, a Newberry Library scholar in residence, will discuss chivalry, male identity, and more at a slide lecture called Rescue Me! Victorian Medieval Masculinity at the Glessner House Museum, 1800 S. Prairie. It's $10; call 312-326-1480.
16 MONDAY Is casting a vote for Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader effectively the same as voting for George W.? Many progressive types say they feel compelled to vote for Gore because they think Bush would appoint conservative Supreme Court justices and endanger Roe v. Wade. But that might not be the case, say others. That contested 1973 decision was written by Justice Blackmun, a Nixon appointee, and as governor of Texas Bush has appointed moderates who've upheld a woman's right to choose. Tonight a group of local pundits will toss this and other questions around at a free debate called Should Progressives & the Left Support Nader or Gore? Arguing for Gore will be Denise Miles from the Black Radical Congress, Bruce Bostick from the United Steel Workers, and former In These Times publisher James Weinstein. Dr. Quentin Young from Physicians for a National Health Program, Chris Geovanis of the Chicago May Day Coalition, and Sam Smucker from the United Electrical Workers will speak in support of Nader. The debate, moderated by WVON personality Clifford Kelley, starts at 7 (doors open at 6:30) at HotHouse, 31 E. Balbo. Call 773-486-1823 for more info.
The soon-to-debut Bridge magazine has as its heady goal the fusion of different disciplines in the humanities because, says editor Michael Workman, "separate fields of inquiry all terminate in human attempts at creativity." Tonight's prerelease party, dubbed Human on the Outside, doubles as a book-release party for Workman's first novel, Relative Chill, and includes readings by Workman and Bridge contributors Cheryl Trykv, Reader staff writer Monica Kendrick, Rennie Sparks, and Greg Purcell with music by Vernon Tonges. Doors open at 8 at the Hideout, 1354 W. Wabansia (773-227-4433). Admission is $10; you must be 21.
17 TUESDAY Actor, playwright, and author Anna Deavere Smith opened her recent one-woman show, House Arrest, by "becoming"--down to the slightest facial tic and change of inflection--colorful cultural commentator Studs Terkel. For her new book based on that performance, Talk to Me: Listening Between the Lines, Smith interviewed some 400 people, both famous and not, to examine the nature of power, communication, identity, and the presidency. The tables turn tonight at 6 when Smith, whose new film, Twilight: Los Angeles, opens soon, will be interviewed by Terkel himself. The free event is at the Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State (312-747-4080).
18 WEDNESDAY Monteverdi's Orfeo is one of the oldest operas on the books, and this year Chicago Opera Theater has collaborated with the Newberry Consort to create an orchestra of period instruments for the show, which will be conducted by early music specialist Jane Glover. The production should be "very sexy and different," says a spokesperson. It's directed by Diane Paulus, the brains behind the recent off-Broadway hit The Donkey Show. Orfeo opens tonight at 7:30 (and runs through October 28) at the Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport. Tickets are $27 to $56; call 312-704-8414.
19 THURSDAY The idea behind Andrea Polli's new Web-based multimedia art project Pause is that community can be fostered by encouraging people to stop and enjoy the moment using the five senses, to listen, look, smell, touch, and taste. The installation, which combines billboards in neighborhoods around town with video interviews ("Tell me what you're thinking at the present moment") and a Web broadcast (pause.colum.edu) that starts tomorrow, opens today at the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington. It's open from 10 to 9. Polli, a digital-media and performance artist and professor at Columbia College Chicago, will be at tomorrow night's opening reception, which starts at 6:30. Admission is free; call 312-744-6630.