Frank Pieper

Frank Pieper

Frank's Weekend Faves, April 21, 2019

The Iron Post is one of the best jazz venues around, but it's been known to rock from time to time as well. Such will be the case Thursday when it hosts a show featuring the Chicago-based rock duo OHMME, along with Mermaid Heaven and zzo.

Frank's Faves: Leading men and women as villains

"Actors endow the villain in fiction with a warmth and quality that makes them memorable. I think we like fictional villains because they're the Mr. Hyde of our own dreams. I've met a few real villains in my time, and they weren't the least bit sympathetic." — John Rhys-Davies

Ebertfest 2019 finale | Next year's festival dates announced

CHAMPAIGN — "I've heard some rumors going around town, and on TV, and in print," Chaz Ebert told the Virginia Theatre audience before introducing Ebertfest's final film on Saturday night.

"And I just want to tell you, I want you to join me back here next year, April 15th through 18th, for Ebertfest!"

Ebertfest 2019 finale | Our favorite moments

— A cute touch late in the festival's final day Saturday was Chaz Ebert inviting her daughter, Sonia Evans, and public relations handler Lee Meltzer onstage to have the audience sing not one, but two versions of "Happy Birthday" to them.

Frank's Weekend Faves, April 14, 2019

Champaign's Virginia Theatre wasn't originally on the list of destinations for Jeff Tweedy's 2019 tour in support of his latest solo album. But rest assured, it is now. After all, the former frontman for the Chicago-based alt-rock band Wilco has a pretty rock-solid fan base hereabouts.

Ebertfest 2019 Day 4 | Everyone was quite neighborly

CHAMPAIGN — "The festival was dedicated to Scott Wilson in memoriam," Ebertfest host Chaz Ebert said before the festival's showing of "Almost Famous" on Saturday.

"But I also like to celebrate people when they are alive. You know, there's this saying about bringing flowers to the funeral. I like to give people flowers when they're alive as well."

Ebertfest 2019 Day 4 | Our favorite moments

Arts-and-entertainment expert Frank Pieper's take:

Ebertfest 2019 Day 3 | A couple of family affairs

CHAMPAIGN — "Everything repeats itself," Polish actress Maja Komorowska stressed to the Virginia Theatre audience via translation by grandson Jerzy Tyszkiewicz on Friday evening.

She couldn't have been more right. And not only about the 1984 movie she starred in with Scott Wilson, "A Year of the Quiet Sun," which was shown Friday evening on Day 3 of Roger Ebert's Film Festival.

Ebertfest 2019 Day 3 | Our favorite moments

Arts-and-entertainment expert Frank Pieper's take:

Ebertfest 2019 Day 2 | Emotional 2008 film, emotional audience

CHAMPAIGN — It was an emotional Day 2 at Roger Ebert's Film Festival.

Not in a bad way, of course, but emotional in the way that families can be when they come together and embrace each other, while at the same time, share a tear or two, as well as a smile, for those loved ones no longer with them.