Stories by Eddie Arruza

Is E.T. Phoning Earth?

| Linda Qiu

An Adler Planetarium astronomer tells us whether earthlings may, at long last, be hearing from other intelligent life in the universe.

Soprano Deborah Voigt

The "Down-To-Earth Diva" Tells All

We revisit a conversation with famed soprano Deborah Voigt about her career and autobiography.

Nuclear Sub Cooks Get High-End Chef Tips

Two U.S. Navy Culinary Specialists have spent their military careers cooking for hungry shipmates. But recently, they spent time in the relatively open kitchen space at the Union League Club of Chicago working with its Executive Chef, Michael Garbin. We follow them during a cooking session.

Lyric Opera's New Mariachi Opera

Two years ago, Lyric Opera of Chicago presented what was called the world's first mariachi opera. It was well-received and a big hit with audiences--so much so that it spawned another mariachi opera. This time around it's a Lyric Opera commission that has brought back together the same creative team and many of the same performers from the previous work. Its title is El Pasado Nunca Se Termina or The Past Is Never Finished, and it's receiving its world premiere here in Chicago.

Remembering Rev. Willie Barrow

| Kristen Thometz

She was known as "The Little Warrior." Short in stature but a towering force in the civil rights movement, the Rev. Willie T. Barrow died early this morning at age 90. We look back at her long and influential life, and the legacy she leaves behind.

Emanuel & García Ramp Up Attack Rhetoric

With less than a month until the April 7 runoff election in Chicago, the mayoral contenders ratchet up the attack rhetoric. Both candidates have harsh words for the other over who can right the city's financial ship. We have the details.

Pluto's Assassin -- and Why He's Not Remorseful

Caltech Astrophysicist Mike Brown was one of the scientists who, in 2006, led the successful crusade to get the former planet Pluto downgraded to the status of dwarf planet. He joins us to discuss what he's found far, far away in our solar system.

Is This Modern Art?

A new play at Steppenwolf Theatre has sparked a heated conversation -- precisely what the creators wanted. Based on the 2010 graffiti "bombing" of the then-relatively new Modern Wing of The Art Institute of Chicago, This Is Modern Art tells the story of the graffiti crew that carried out the event, but it also poses questions about the creation of art and who qualifies as an artist. 

Finding Finkl's Future

credit: Payton Chung

The nearly 40-acre site of the former Finkl Steel Company is prime real estate in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood. After the company's move to the south side of Chicago last year, there are  many questions over how to reuse and revitalize the parcel of land Finkl left behind.

Soprano Deborah Voigt

The "Down-To-Earth Diva" Tells All

Famed soprano Deborah Voigt stops by to discuss her career and new autobiography.

Valentine's Duo: John Pizzarelli and Jane Monheit

They are two of the best contemporary interpreters of Jazz Standards and the Great American Songbook. John Pizzarelli and Jane Monheit tell us about their influences and careers, and then give us an intimate, pre-Valentine's Day performance in our studio.

Love on Paper

In time for Valentine's Day, The Newberry Library in Chicago has searched through its extensive archives for artifacts of love. Taking suggestions from its staff across many areas of expertise, the library has created an exhibition of works on paper that express love in all its forms over the last eight centuries. We revisit the story.

Who Runs The Classroom? Beyoncé

| Nick Blumberg

Pop diva Beyoncé is arguably the most popular performer in the world. But there's much more to her than her success as a provocative pop icon. That's the idea behind a new college course at UIC that delves into Beyoncé's role in shaping "feminist perspectives and [the image] of U.S. black womanhood."

Website Launched on Chicago Area Transportation

The Chicago region's transportation network and infrastructure need substantial upgrades and funding. We take a look at a new website that details the condition of roads and bridges, and what public transportation agencies need to do to meet the area's growing needs.

Love on Paper

In time for Valentine's Day, The Newberry Library in Chicago has searched through its extensive archives for artifacts of love. Taking suggestions from its staff across many areas of expertise, the library has created an exhibition of works on paper that express love in all its forms over the last eight centuries. We get a preview.

NASA Astronaut Col. Mike Hopkins

NASA astronaut Col. Mike Hopkins belongs to the very exclusive group of just 215 people who have visited the International Space Station (ISS). But Col. Hopkins distinguished himself during his time on the ISS in a couple of memorable ways. We revisit a conversation with Hopkins.

Chicago Area Spirits on the Rise

Evanston was once the center of the temperance movement and a dry community until 1972. But now it has its very first distillery called FEW. The name just happens to be the initials of the one-time president of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, Frances Elizabeth Willard. Whatever Ms. Willard might think of that, the distillery is one of a growing number of spirits producers popping up all around Chicago. We get a taste of what’s being bottled.

Orbert Davis Discusses Recent Cuba Trip

| Travis Cornejo

Renowned Chicago jazz trumpeter Orbert Davis and Chicago Jazz Philharmonic Producing Director Mark Ingram join us to talk about what they experienced on their latest visit to Cuba.

Food Help for Veterans

Despite a gradually improving economy, the Greater Chicago Food Depository has seen an increase in low-income individuals needing food assistance. Among those in need are military veterans. We hear from veterans and the executive director of the Food Depository about why servicemen and women are among those seeking help with their food needs.

Chicago Gas Prices Fall

| Yasmin Rammohan

What's behind the plunging price of gas and how low can it go? An oil industry analyst gives us some insights.

A New Spotlight on Tennessee Williams

Tony Award-winning writer and longtime theater critic John Lahr has written an authoritative biography on the life and work of playwright Tennessee Williams. Lahr also shares memories of his father, the actor Bert Lahr.

The Futuristic Art of Chesley Bonestell

| Travis Cornejo

American illustrator Chesley Bonestell was a visionary of universal proportions. The Adler Planetarium is currently presenting an exhibition of Bonestell’s artwork. We take a look at the art and science behind his out-of-this-world paintings and how they influenced the modern fascination with what lies in the final frontier.

‘Porgy and Bess’ Back at Lyric Opera of Chicago

| Josclynn Brandon

Lyric Opera of Chicago is currently presenting a production of Porgy and Bess with two highly acclaimed singers in the lead roles.

NASA Astronaut Col. Mike Hopkins

NASA astronaut Col. Mike Hopkins belongs to the very exclusive group of just 215 people who have visited the International Space Station (ISS). But Col. Hopkins distinguished himself during his time on the ISS in a couple of memorable ways. 

Landing on a Comet

The Rosetta spacecraft's Philae lander has successfully landed on a comet.