Nick Smith

Nick Smith

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Patrick Combs is on a bank roll Patrick Combs is on a bank roll The Beautiful Rule June 02, 2010
Erik Friedlander mesmerizes in <i>Block Ice & Propane</i> Erik Friedlander mesmerizes in Block Ice & Propane Master cellist more than overcomes a few bumps in the road June 03, 2010

Recent Stories

  • Steve Rosenberg and friends dip into their trove of early music instruments

    Ancient Harmonies
      Rate this professor: He's a feted recording artist, world-touring musician, recipient of France's coveted Grande Prix de Disque, and chair of the music department at the College of Charleston. He's the early music world's equivalent of a rock star, and since he plays centuries-old melodies, his instrument of choice isn't an electric guitar. Instead, it's a favorite of schoolchildren everywhere. He's Steve Rosenberg, known to medieval and Renaissance music fans as the "Pied Piper of the recorder world."
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  • Chicago group keeps their comedy painfully honest

    Family Ties
      The families that work together succeed together: the Von Trapps. The Kennedys. The Mansons. The same could be said about Chicago's Elams, but they don't focus on music, politics, or murder — improv comedy is their thing. The family — the three Elam siblings Erica, Brett, and Scott, plus Brett's fiancée Jet Eveleth and Scott's fiancée Lisa Burton — have taken the Chicago comedy world by storm, honoring the mirthful memory of Del Close at the iO Theater. "Our family's close," says Erica Elam, "but we don't talk about things very much. We tell stories on stage we might never say to dad or mom, because it's a different kind of bravery to tell one-on-one than it is in front of audience." That's the charm of Dinner with the Elams — they'll do traditional improv sketches, but there's added intimacy since they're all related or engaged. "The best improv groups have a real sense of trust and support," Erica says. "But we don't just have a couple of years of history. There are decades of it between us."
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  • Two actors paint a red hot picture

    Broad Canvas
      The famous New York School painter Mark Rothko once said, "I am interested in expressing the big emotions. Tragedy, ecstasy, doom." If this sounds to you like a good basis for a play, Gladiator writer John Logan agrees with you. He wrote a two-man show, Red, about Rothko and his fledgling assistant Ken Rabin. When the pair find themselves at loggerheads, the on-stage sparks glow hot enough to make Red worthy of its 2010 Tony Award for Best Play.
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