About James Smith

Posts by James Smith:

Mischievous Medieval Minstrels at the top of the Logan Center

By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic It can be fun and fascinating to learn about something just as it coalesces into being. Sunday night the newly formed University of Chicago Medieval Minstrelsy gave their first concert and I was there at the ground floor. And by ground floor I mean the penthouse of the university’s(…)

New murder mystery novel draws from Hyde Park

New murder mystery novel draws from Hyde Park

By JEFFREY BISHKU-AYKUL Staff Writer Hyde Parker K.B. Jensen has published a new murder mystery novel, drawing inspiration from the neighborhood and her professional life. Entitled “Painting with Fire,” her book tells the story of an unemployed woman sharing an apartment with a man who has a shadowy past, on the heels of a murder(…)

Murray Elementary wins Illinois Spotlight Award

Murray Elementary wins Illinois Spotlight Award

Murray Elementary wins Illinois Spotlight Award By DASCHELL M. PHILLIPS Staff Writer Murray Elementary School recently received its second Illinois Spotlight Award. The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) gives the award to schools with high poverty rates that are closing the academic achievement gap. Murray, 5335 S. Kenwood Ave., is one of 37 schools(…)

Landscape architect reimagines Olmsted’s Jackson Park, makes pitch for conservancy and nixing golf driving range

By JEFFREY BISHKU-AYKUL Staff Writer Nearly 40 people packed into the Hyde Park Historical Society, 5529 S. Lake Park Ave., last Monday evening for the first neighborhood appearance by a landscape architect who may shape Jackson Park for years to come. Vermont-based architect Patricia O’Donnell was picked earlier this year by privately-funded non-profit Project 120(…)

Hyde Park teacher who cared for carjacking victim calls for trauma center

By LINDSAY WELBERS Staff Writer A man who was recently pinned underneath a car following a carjacking in Hyde Park waited 15 minutes for an ambulance to transport him to Northwestern Memorial Hospital for treatment. On Saturday, May 10, around 11 a.m., a 16-year-old boy entered a vehicle that had been left unattended at the(…)

Better Government Association to host citizen watchdog training

The Better Government Association (BGA) will be hosting a citizen watchdog training session next Wednesday, May 21, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the U. of C. Institute of Politics, 5707 S. Woodlawn Ave. The event will focus on the Freedom of Information Act and how citizens can monitor their government. The event is free,(…)

Chicago Ensemble charms at I-House

By M.L. RANTALA Classical Music Critic The Chicago Ensemble, now in its 37th season, is clearly one of Chicago’s most durable music performing groups. Artistic director Gerald Rizzer has consistently proven that he can craft engaging programs that combine well-known works with music off the beaten path. Sometimes the lesser-known pieces are by the most(…)

Review: “In the Garden: A Darwinian Love Story”

RECOMMENDED Where: Lookingglass Theatre Company, Water Tower Water Works, 821 N. Michigan Ave. When: through June 15 Tickets: $45-$70 Phone: 312-337-0665 By ANNE SPISELMAN Theater Critic   The very best thing about the world premiere of Sara Gmitter’s “In the Garden: A Darwinian Love Story” at Lookingglass Theatre Company is Andrew White’s performance as Charles(…)