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Friday 7/13 - Thursday 7/19

JULY

By Cara Jepsen

13 FRIDAY Sean Hopp's disturbing, otherworldly paintings bring to mind a Nietzschean aphorism: nothing is true, so everything is permitted. The same could be said of the Rubber Monkey Puppet Company's 3-D shadow-puppet play, Loong, which features magic ladders, talking animals, and the eponymous dragon. The show will be performed midway through tonight's opening reception for "Burden of Illusions," a new exhibit of Hopp's work. It runs from 6 to 11 and the performance is at 8 at the Rubber Monkey Puppet Company, 1801 W. Byron, suite 2q2. Call 773-412-3282 or see www.rubbermonkey.org for more. There's a suggested donation of $5 for admission.

14 SATURDAY "Leashed and behaved" pets and their owners are invited to attend today's DOGooders breakfast panel at WomanMade Gallery, where the topic will be helper dogs that find missing people and provide animal-assisted therapy for children and people with disabilities. The discussion will include a dog-training demonstration and will be followed by a tour of the gallery's "Cats & Dogs" exhibit, which has sold more work than any of its other shows. The free panel will include representatives from Chenney Troupe, Chicago Regional Search & Rescue, Rainbow Animal Assisted Therapy, Dog Advisory Work Group, and Call of the Wild School for Dogs; it runs from 10:30 to noon and the exhibit is open until 4 at WomanMade Gallery, 1900 S. Prairie (312-328-0038).

15 SUNDAY This weekend the grounds of steel manufacturer A. Finkl & Sons will be turned over to HEAT, a Chicago Gateway Green-sponsored street fair where attendees will be able to watch artist Dessa Kirk weld steel from an old Cadillac into a flower sculpture, listen to live music, test-drive a new Mercedes in "off-road-like" conditions, dance at an outdoor disco, watch Grease under the stars and, of course, eat. It's Saturday from noon to midnight and today from 10 AM (when it kicks off with a funk brunch) to 10 PM at the steel plant, 2011 N. Southport. Admission is $5 before 6 PM; after that it goes up to $10. Call 312-494-6743. i The goal of the two-year-old Stockyards Theatre Project is to produce high-quality works that "have women's roles and issues in mind, whether they are written by women, directed by women, designed by women, or are reinterpretations of classic works by male authors that question and/or recontextualize the gender roles contained within them." Tonight's fund-raiser for the collective will include a raffle and performances by folksinger and Stockyards member Tina Paraventi, folk-punk group Strange Friends, and Walk About Theatre Company, among others. It's from 7 to 10 at Four Moons Tavern, 1847 W. Roscoe. It's free; the company gets a percentage of all food and drink sales. Call 773-377-5001, ext. 6487, for more information.

16 MONDAY Dubya's "use now, pay generations later" energy plan will be the focus of tonight's Forum on the Energy War: Bush Policy or Tragedy? One suspects the conclusion will be the latter; the free event, sponsored by the Nuclear Energy Information Service, starts at 7 at the Conrad Sulzer Regional Library, 4455 N. Lincoln (847-869-7650).

17 TUESDAY How to Be a Working Comic--An Insider's Guide to a Career in Stand-Up Comedy began as handouts for Dave Schwensen's stand-up workshops. "I felt I had to give [students] something and it grew and grew until I had a book," he recently told an on-line chat group. Schwensen, former talent coordinator for A & E's An Evening at the Improv, will discuss his book (which includes a foreword by Ray Romano) tonight at 7:30 at Barnes & Noble, 659 W. Diversey. It's free; call 773-871-9004.

18 WEDNESDAY "If I could come back as anything--I'd be a bird, first, but definitely the command key is my second choice," writes poet, essayist, activist, and lecturer Nikki Giovanni. The author of such books as Black Feeling, Black Talk, Black Judgement, The Women and the Men, and Blues: For All the Changes was a leader of the black poetry movement and one of the original self-published performance poets. She'll read from her work tonight at 7 at the Guild Complex at the Chopin Theatre, 1543 W. Division (773-227-6117). Poet Kim Ransom, author of The Black House, and the youth performance company Urban Credo are also on the bill. Admission is $12, $10 for students. It'll be followed at 9 by a benefit reception for the Guild Complex; tickets are $50, $20 for students.

19 THURSDAY Team Chicago won the Great Lakes Regional Lifeguard Championship last year, and they'll be back to defend their title against teams from Wilmette, Milwaukee, and elsewhere at this year's competition, where 500 lifeguards will compete in 14 events, such as surf rescue and open swim. It starts tonight at 5 PM and also runs Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM at Montrose Beach. It's free to watch; call 312-742-4920. i In 1994, Oxford geneticist Bryan Sykes, one of the world's leading authorities on DNA and human evolution, set out to find a living descendant of the 5,000-year-old "Ice Man" discovered in the Italian Alps in 1991. When he did locate one, she turned out to be living in Dorset. Through further studies he determined that most Europeans are descended from one of seven women who lived 150,000 years ago. How he figured this out--along with mostly fictional descriptions of how those women may have lived--is the focus of his book The Seven Daughters of Eve: The Science That Reveals Our Genetic Ancestry. He'll discuss his work tonight at 7 at Transitions Bookplace, 1000 W. North. It's free; call 312-951-7323. i

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