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Smart. Very Smart.

Our top five picks for things to do this week: Sunday morning with Frank … the Dude returns … murder and mayhem … and more

Gustavo Dudamel conducting an orchestra and a Frank Lloyd Wright home
DUDE! CALL NOW  A few tickets remain for both Gustavo Dudamel at Symphony Center and Smart Start at the Robie.

THE FIVE

Don’t-miss picks for Wed 05.12.10 through Tue 05.18.10:

1

architecture Sunday Smart Start at the Robie House
It’s too late to be the early bird—tickets to Wright Plus, the annual Oak Park pilgrimage offering peeks inside eight private residences by Frank Lloyd Wright, are sold out—but those willing to rise and shine Sunday can snag a fine consolation worm (ahem, prize). Smart Start begins with a behind-the-scenes tour of the Robie House, which turns 100 this year, followed by a leisurely stroll through Hyde Park to the nearby Smart Museum, where guides will discuss related works, including the original Robie dining table and chairs. A gourmet boxed lunch caps the morning off—which means you get your worm, after all.
GO: May 16 at 8. $100. Robie House, 5757 S Woodlawn. gowright.org

2

classical Gustavo Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic
It’s a lucky week for procrastinators—but don’t push it: A very (very) small number of rush tickets remain for the return of the Dude, aka the hottest young conductor since the invention of the curling iron. Here he leads his California orchestra in John Adams’s L.A.-inspired composition, City Noir.
GO: May 14 at 8. $75; tickets available by phone, 312-294-3000, and in-person only. Symphony Center, 220 S Michigan. cso.org

ALSO THIS WEEK: As if Dudamania wasn’t enough: Also May 14 (with additional concerts May 13 and 15), the indefatigable Yo-Yo Ma premieres a cello concerto by his Silk Road collaborator Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky.

3

theatre The Gay American
If you thought there was something tragicomical about New Jersey’s ex-gov James “I Am a Gay American” McGreevey, you weren’t alone. A troupe of youthful Kalamazoo transplants aims to make some noise with this world-premiere farce by the young playwright Kristian O’Hare.
GO: May 16-26. $10. The Ruckus at the Side Project, 1439 W Jarvis. ruckustheater.org

ALSO THIS WEEK: The wunderkind composer Joshua Schmidt (Adding Machine) provides the score for Baal, TUTA’s socially subversive bio of a drunken, womanizing wastrel; plus, a fine finale to Chicago’s mini Athol Fugard fest, Sizwe Banzi Is Dead, begins previews at the Court.

4

concerts Murder by Death
On its new album, Good Morning, Magpie, the Indiana country-gothic quartet tones down the turmoil in favor of Johnny Cash–style vocals over elegiac cello. When it comes to murderous mayhem, they walk the line.
GO: May 14 at 10. $15. Lincoln Hall, 2424 N Lincoln. lincolnhallchicago.com

5

film Work Series; Vincent: A Life in Color
A couple of Chicago-centric options at the Siskel. First: The homegrown filmmaker Jennifer Burns’s documentary Vincent—on Chicago’s iconoclast “Fashion Man,” Vincent P. Falk, known to Loop regulars for his eye-popping suits—wraps this week. Then: three films from Daniel Kraus’s Work Series, a set of documentaries inspired by Studs Terkel. Both Kraus and the subject of his latest film, Rabbi Jay Holstein, host a Q&A following the May 15 screening of Professor.
GO: Vincent: A Life in Color runs through May 13. Work Series runs May 15-20, with screenings of Professor May 15 at 8 and May 19 at 8:15. $7-$10 per film. Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N State. siskelfilmcenter.org

FREEBIES OF THE WEEK

film I Know a Woman Like That
Just in time for post–Mother’s Day catharsis, the filmmaker and onetime Evanstonian Elaine Madsen hosts a Q&A and screening of her new documentary, a collection of interviews of women nowhere near ready to throw in the towel (Eartha Kitt, Rita Moreno, Gloria Steinem) conducted by Madsen and her daughter, the Oscar nominee—and our February 2006 cover girl—Virginia Madsen.
GO: May 12 at 7. Evanston Public Library, 1703 Orrington, Evanston. percolatorfilms.org

classical Eighth Blackbird, Pacifica Quartet
The University of Chicago’s two Grammy-winning ensembles-in-residence end this year’s Contempo series with an annual performance of works by the school’s young music majors. The program’s unofficial motto: Everything but the kitchen sink.
GO: May 14 at 7:30: Fulton Recital Hall, U of C, 1010 E 59th. May 26 at 7:30: Ganz Hall, Roosevelt U, 430 S Michigan. chicagopresents.uchicago.edu.

galleries Carson Fox
The Brooklyn artist Fox is a glutton for overdoing it, a self-professed lover of glitter and “retinal bombardment” whose last show at Warren, two years ago, featured thousands of cast-resin flowers pinned to the walls—a delightfully over-the-top riot of visual excess that has us biting our nails for her next round.
GO: May 14–June 19. Linda Warren Gallery, 1052 W Fulton Market. lindawarrengallery.com

ALSO THIS WEEK: A new show by the Indiana U professor emeritus Robert Barnes, who, unlike his peers H. C. Westermann and Francis Bacon, has always eschewed greater art world trends, opens at Corbett vs. Dempsey.

Photography: (Dudamel) Chris Christodoulou, (Robie House) Tim Long

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