Category: Music

Elton John new biopic "Rocketman" is a wild, fun ride

“Rocketman,” the new film about Elton John from Paramount Pictures, is a wild, fun ride. With Sir Elton himself as one of the executive producers, the movie is full of color, and, of course, great music. At times, it seems like a true biographical examination of the life of the rock and pop superstar who... Read more »

"A Star is Born" shines brightly

Movies about show business are as old as the medium itself. From Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney in the 1930’s telling their teenage friends, “Let’s put on a show, guys!,” to the Broadway dancers of “A Chorus Line” (1985), there’s something inherently entertaining about watching performers perform as performers. In its fourth Hollywood version over... Read more »

New Joni Mitchell biography is exhaustive, excellent, and hits right bittersweet note

David Yaffe’s excellent new Joni Mitchell biography, “Reckless Daughter,” (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), hits the right bittersweet note about the iconic singer-songwriter: she’s a flawed human being (like all of us), of amazing gifts. Mitchell, of course, is the tall blonde musician (and visual artist) from the western Canadian province of Alberta who came to... Read more »

Chicago piano master Erwin Helfer releases new CD, plans concert at Old Town School

Chicago has been indispensable to the development of America’s blues music, and this town has had no better practitioner of blues piano than 80-year old master pianist Erwin Helfer. A long-time resident of the city’s North Side, Helfer has been performing professionally since the 1960s. An inveterate bicyclist (“that’s the way I get around,” he... Read more »

"Stars of Lyric Opera" will Shine Bright this Saturday Night

“Stars of Lyric Opera,” the free love-fest of opera singing given every year to the people of Chicago by the Lyric Opera, is scheduled for this Saturday night, May 6, at 7:30 p.m. in Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park, Michigan Ave. and Randolph St. Go! Even if you’re not a big fan of opera, or... Read more »

"Hank Williams: Lost Highway" Star Reflects on his Career, Show

Matthew Brumlow is a Chicago actor who plays the soulful country singer Hank Williams fives times each week in “Hank Williams: Lost Highway,” the drama/musical about Williams now in an extended run at Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave. On Aug. 21, Brumlow, the star of the show, was honored with a nomination for... Read more »

Chicago Actor Matthew Brumlow Reflects on Thursday's Jeff Award Nominations

  Matthew Brumlow, 40, plays the trailblazing and troubled singer Hank Williams in the musical “Hank Williams: Lost Highway,” now playing in an extended run at Chicago’s Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave. On Aug. 21, Brumlow was honored with two Joseph Jefferson Award nominations: first, his show was nominated for Best Midsize Musical... Read more »

"Hank Williams: Lost Highway" Cast Members Discuss Williams' Life

On the afternoon of Sunday, Aug. 10, following the 2:30 p.m. performance of “Hank Williams: Lost Highway,” several members of the American Blues Theater cast, as is customary, took off their costumes and make-up and participated in a post-show Town Hall-style meeting with members of the audience. The atmosphere was relaxed and informal, and the... Read more »

"Hank Williams: Lost Highway" is Rockin' Chicago Theater

“Hank Williams: Lost Highway,” which just opened at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave., is a rockin’ piece of Chicago theater. It is basically the life story of Williams, who is considered one of the greatest country musicians of all time. But in addition to actors portraying characters on stage, the audience is... Read more »

Chicago's Bob Fosse Once Again in the Spotlight

The greatest dancer to ever emerge from Chicago’s Ravenswood community is once again in the spotlight. Bob Fosse, the dancer/choreographer who revolutionized modern theatrical dancing, grew up in Chicago but left the Midwest before he turned 20 to make it big in New York and Hollywood, respectively. The renewed interest in this consummate showman’s life... Read more »