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Humor

ENTERTAINMENT
March 29, 2014 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
Upper Darby's Todd Rundgren has forever been, as the title of his 1973 masterpiece says, A Wizard, a True Star . As one of few artists you could comfortably call a genius, the genre-jumbling multi-instrumentalist/producer/multimedia jockey has been an innovator of warm psychedelia, contagious cosmopolitan pop, blue-eyed soul, and existentialist prog-rock - sometimes all on one album. His career, while not always platinum-plated, has won a devoted following, judging from the sold-out Sellersville Theater Wednesday.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 5, 2014 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
Southern Gothic playwriting in Philadelphia theater has no better friend or practitioner than Jacqueline Goldfinger. Since her arrival in 2008, the Tallahassee, Fla., native - who came here when her cellular biologist husband Larry got a job at Temple University - has displayed a knack for blackly comic eccentricity, decay, and alienation the wretched likes of which haven't been seen since William Faulkner. In the dark genre, her plays' flippant humor, the genuine laugh lines, are a treat.
NEWS
December 20, 2013 | By David Patrick Stearns, Inquirer Music Critic
Often heard though seldom seen, Wolfgang Rihm is considered Germany's greatest contemporary composer. But he lives such a circumscribed existence he's in danger of becoming an enigma. By no means is he a J.D. Salinger-level enigma, but you won't find him coaching the world's great orchestras in the best way to play his complex works - though often they'd welcome the advice. And don't bother asking him to come to the United States for the high-profile performance of Astralis - written in 2001 and one of his most circulated works - on Friday by the Crossing choir at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Chestnut Hill, which will be repeated Sunday at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. Getting him to leave his hometown of Karlsruhe takes some persuading; there and in his tiny Berlin apartment, he writes one uncompromising work after another for the likes of violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter and conductor Riccardo Chailly.
NEWS
December 9, 2013 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Phillips Simkin, 69, a Philadelphia artist who created installations using his humor and off-the-wall artistic vision, died Tuesday, Nov. 26, of congestive heart failure at his home. In his artist's statement, Mr. Simkin wrote that he regarded his art activities as pseudo-enterprises "often laced with a dose of sardonic wit and humor, parody and puns. " He hewed to that vision. He was most renowned for casting and copyrighting the crack in the Liberty Bell at Independence National Historical Park, which he did after receiving permission from the National Park Service.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 17, 2013 | By Dan DeLuca, Inquirer Music Critic
Back in 2011, the country-noir electronic music artist known as Daughn Gibson, who headlines Johnny Brenda's on Friday in support of his album, Me Moan , was playing drums in the heavy rock band Pearls & Brass and finishing up work on a history degree at Temple University. "I was living in South Philly and was messing around, using a computer to make songs and sounds," says the 33-year-old Nazareth, Pa., native, talking on the phone as he drives between tour stops in Portland, Ore., and San Francisco.
NEWS
May 24, 2013
THERE ARE MANY kinds of desperation, as many as the stars above and the souls beneath them. The death of a child, the disintegration of a marriage, homes lost to floodwaters and whirlwinds, all of these things can drive you to - and beyond - the point of suicide. And yet, there are sources of strength as varied as the sorrow. For one man, that source was found in unwritten words, tapped out on prison walls and shared with his captured brothers in Vietnam. Major Gen. John Borling, a 6 1/2-year "guest" at the infamous Hanoi Hilton is, like Joyce Kilmer and Wilfred Own, a soldier-poet.
SPORTS
March 29, 2013 | BY BOB COONEY, Daily News Staff Writer cooneyb@phillynews.com
LOS ANGELES - The day starts out light for the La Salle Explorers as coach John Giannini knows the value of rest, especially at this time of the season. The team isn't required to be anywhere until a 10 a.m. breakfast in the basement of their hotel. While a lot of food does get consumed, the session primarily consists of laughter. Tyrone Garland, owner of the now-famous Southwest Philly Floater, cracks everyone up with some witty - and secretive - one-liners. His main audience is Ramon Galloway, who stands up to laugh loudly after a Garland quip.
NEWS
March 22, 2013 | By Jim Rutter, For The Inquirer
To succeed, every story needs to find its readers. Unfortunately, "the biggest problem with being a writer is that all your readers are human beings. " If that sort of barb-laced quip appeals, keep reading. Theresa Rebeck's smart, sharp Seminar , presented by Philadelphia Theatre Company at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre, shows four aspiring novelists enrolled in the private weekly workshops of rock-star literary editor Leonard (Rufus Collins). During these sessions, Leonard tears through their manuscripts with overt insults, undisguised flirting, and vague compliments.
NEWS
March 12, 2013 | BY JOHN F. MORRISON, Daily News Staff Writer morrisj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5573
YOU HAD TO STEP pretty quickly to keep up with Charlene Rubin Menkin. She set a brisk pace despite having limited use of her limbs from a childhood bout with polio. But whether being helped along with a cane or, later, with a motorized scooter, Charlene wasn't about to restrict herself in any way. She taught high school, traveled extensively and was the life of any party. "When she would come into any room, people just flocked to her," said her daughter-in-law, Darlynne Menkin.
NEWS
March 8, 2013 | BY JOHN F. MORRISON, Daily News Staff Writer morrisj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5573
YOU HAD TO STEP pretty quickly to keep up with Charlene Rubin Menkin. She set a brisk pace despite having limited use of her limbs from a childhood bout with polio. But whether being helped along with a cane or, later, with a motorized scooter, Charlene wasn't about to restrict herself in any way. She taught high school, traveled extensively and was the life of any party. "When she would come into any room, people just flocked to her," said her daughter-in-law, Darlynne Menkin.
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