STD (Stuff to Do)—October 17, 2008

Thumbsuckers, fashion designers, and, of course, Mozart

By Christine Yang

Friday / October 17

While thumb sucking is usually suppressed at an early age, the effects of a neurotic childhood and insecure parents are much harder to grow out of. In Thumbsucker, based on the novel by Walter Kirn, Justin is a 17-year-old who still sucks his thumb. His new-age dentist—interestingly enough, played by Keanu Reeves—tries to wean Justin from his so-called dirty habit. This effort soon pushes Justin to search for self-identity by exploring the depths of Ritalin and girls. A Q&A session with author Walter Kirns will be held after the film. (Max Palevsky Cinema, 3 p.m., free)

The Council on University Programming puts on its annual Blues and Ribs event, featuring live Blues music and dancing. However, its biggest draw for students will most likely be the plethora of free Southern food. (Ida Noyes, 9 p.m., free)

Saturday / October 18

Students Promoting Interracial Networks’s annual show A Spin at Love takes on typical daytime-television dating games in hopes of raising awareness of cultural differences. Dinner is provided, and a dance will be held following the show. (Hutchinson Commons, 8 p.m., $3)

Rival composers Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Antonio Salieri weave a comedic tale of deception and jealousy in Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s production of Amadeus. Salieri believes that God’s gift of brilliant talent is poorly bestowed on the immature and alcoholic Mozart and attempts to destroy him. Mozart’s music is prominently featured in the play, which was also adapted into an Oscar-winning film. (800 East Grand Avenue, 8 p.m., $70)

Sunday / October 19

Reggae singer Matisyahu gets his Jew on at the Vic Theatre. The recently named spokesperson for Kenneth Cole has not released a new record since 2006, yet still manages to consistently draw crowds to shows with his delightfully catchy songs in Yiddish and English. Matisyahu will be performing with politically charged hip-hop group Flobots. (3145 North Sheffield Avenue, 7:30 p.m., $28)

Monday / October 20

Doc Films presents O. Henry’s Full House, an anthology of short films by writer O. Henry. The five stories are each directed by a different auteur and feature actors Marilyn Monroe, Charles Laughton, and Anne Baxter. John Steinbeck narrates the film and also makes a rare screen appearance to introduce each story. (Max Palevsky Cinema, 7 p.m., $5)

Tuesday / October 21

Famed designer Isaac Mizrahi will be doing a book signing downtown at the Michigan Avenue Borders. Mizrahi, the creative director at Liz Claiborne who currently has a clothing line at Target, is promoting his book How to Have Style. Although Mizrahi may be a fashion mogul, do not expect a judgmental Tim Gunn-esque response if you show up wearing last fall’s pumps. (830 North Michigan Avenue, 7 p.m., free)

Wednesday / October 22

While it may seem as if string instruments in rock songs went out of style with Yellowcard, the new TV on the Radio album seamlessly features an entire string quartet. The band makes its Chicago stop on its tour to promote their new album, Dear Science. The experimentalist band has undoubtedly evolved since its first album, OK Calculator. If its music videos are any indication of how the band performs live, it is sure to be an eclectic evening. (4746 North Racine Avenue, 7 p.m., $24)

Yes, the songs are admittedly catchy—and how dreamy is that Brendon Urie? Panic at the Disco, the band that has been consistently been touted as the “next” Fall Out Boy, plays at the Allstate Arena with fellow masters of catchy-but-overplayed-songs Dashboard Confessional and the Plain White T’s. The bands are ironically touring for Rock Band’s eponymous tour. (6920 North Mannheim Road, 7 p.m., $25)

Thursday / October 23

Provocative video artist Omer Fast will be on hand at the Gene Siskel Film Center for a screening of a collection of clips from his repertoire. The Israeli-born Fast is best known for juxtaposing personal recollections with mass media as a means of creating dissonant and contrasting short films. There will be a discussion with the filmmaker after the screening. (164 North State Street, 6 p.m., $7)

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