The title character of Aditi Brennan Kapil's Brahman/I is a stand-up comic of ambiguous sexuality—ambiguous, at least, insofar as Anglo-American norms are concerned, there being no viable "other" classification to round out "male" and "female." Born with bonus genitals, this Georgia-reared child of Indian immigrants (favored nickname "B") lived as a boy until puberty started working its magic on him, at which point he found himself opting for makeup and saris. B's mother and the family doctor each tried to get her to declare for one team or the other—Go Penises! Go Vaginas!—but she refused to cut off her options. Literally or figuratively. Continue reading >> $35, $20 for students and seniorshttp://aboutfacetheatre.com
An overview of Washington's life and projects as mayor. Harold Washington Exhibit Hall, 9th floor.
Leonard Slatkin, conductor (Barber, Gershwin).
When Alexander Eisenschmidt moved to Chicago in 2007, the German-born architectural theorist was disturbed by how the city talks about its buildings. Sipping a glass of rosé in the cafe at the Art Institute's Modern Wing, he describes a kind of "museum-ification." ¶ Take, for example, the time architect Rem Koolhaas proposed that his student center at IIT incorporate the Mies van der Rohe–designed Commons Building—it sparked public outrage that the new structure attacked the "purity and simplicity" of the existing architecture. "Preservationists have instilled this attitude in policy makers and politicians," Eisenschmidt says. "If we don't look out, [architecturally] we will be very quickly forgotten." Continue reading >>
Percy Grainger Wind Band Festival.
Sculptures by Morgan Elder and Charles Kelman replicate designs found in domestic spaces. Reception 4/3, 4-6 PM.
High school students involved with the Albany Park Theater Project worked with professional directors and designers to devise this powerful performance about a horrific case of child abuse, based on the actual experiences of a former ensemble member (an earlier version was produced in 2006). The teens play a Duggar-size brood who are kept in a cold, single-bulb basement by their Bible-thumping father; he lets them out only to administer sadistic punishments, represented by paint smeared on their arms, legs, and faces. The atmosphere is oppressive and otherworldly, thanks to Izumi Inaba's prisonlike costumes, Stephanie Paul and Maggie Popadiak's ritualistic choreography, and Mikhail Fiksel's eerie sound design. Combined with the fear and emotional deprivation conveyed by the cast, the results are haunting and heartbreaking. —Zac Thompson $10-$25
The source material for this TUTA Theatre production is a brief, admirably efficient short story by Guy de Maupassant, about a Parisian bureaucrat who knows when he's got it good but has no idea why. Rene meets champagne-effervescent Emily at a party where the other male guests literally dance attendance on her. Quiet as he is, he summons up the nerve to woo her and ends up married to her. Rapturously so. Emily is loving, lovely, lively, and such an accomplished money manager that her husband's paychecks seem to stretch on and on. Of course there's something wrong. But complacent Rene doesn't ask questions—doesn't even think to formulate them—until the answers are too clear to ignore. The tale offers a wonderfully ambiguous gloss on the notion that ignorance is bliss, and adapter-director Kirk Anderson does a mostly masterful job of filling it out for the stage (although a poetic interpolation involving a girl and a bird falls flat). Anderson's stylized staging is swift and clear, and his leads—Layne Manzer as Rene, Carolyn Molloy as Emily—are so sweetly matched it's tragic. —Tony Adler $15http://tutato.com
Photographs of the Mecca Flats building, the south-side apartment building turned housing project that stood at 34th and State for more than 60 years before its demolition.
Work by photographer Christopher Williams that critiques the conventions of commercial images and photojournalism.