THE MICHIGAN DAILY
Sunday, October 13, 1968
Page Two THE MICHIGAN DAILY Sunday, October 1 3, 1968
By GAYLE LENHOFF
After four years of exile, theT6 e ' I
Living Theatre has returned to The 1968 Frankenstei
New York to create on the stage
of t he Brooklyn Academy of Act IThe Old and the
Music a mute and terrifying A mediation the purpose of which is to lead to hammer.
Julian Beck and his wife, Ju-H
dith Malina, founded the Living If it succeeds the play is consummated. How can we end hum
Theatre in 1951. Sets were built If it fails it becomes a victimization. The Capitalist speaks
of string, rags and scrap lum-
ber. Actors were the radicals The net is thrown, the coffin is brought. The Oracle prophesie
of the Eisenhower-crewcut era.
"We were broke after our sec- Someone says NO. The Body reversed.
ond production," admits Beck.
Each new theatre was success- A procession begins. The Generals, the
ively closed by fire regulations
and accumulated debts. Others say NO Workers and the ex
No large 'foundation ~would Automation.
Noparge foundaion would They are hunted, they are electrocuted, they are
support them because Beck
could not afford to pay his ac- gassed, they are guillotined, they are racked, The laboratory is con
tors Equity rates. The F o r d they are hanged, they are garrotted, they are The Cabalists build t]
Foundation said if Beck could beheaded, they are crucified, they are shot.
not finance professionalism, The Doctor implants
they would not finance Beck. They plead for their lives. Body on the laborato
Finally, in October 1963, the Two survive.
Internal Revenue Service en- Foot, brain and eye a
tered the theatre and declared' A storm rises.
-that the building w a s seized. The failure of the hea
The Becks had not been able to Prof. Frankenstein takes the heart of The
afford income tax. Victim. Paraclesus appears a
*Judith Malina asked the IRS tidee
if she could ga into their dress- The Dead Shall be Raised. eud apears and or
ing room for a small personala
item. IRS refused. Julian Beck Burial by Church and State. Norbert Wiener app
tore the door off its hinges ac- They lower the Hanged Man. electrodes.
tors and crew, planted them- ,
selves inside the building and re- The Body is painted. The electrodes are at
fused to come out. Beck called
it "anarchist direct action.". The Workers scream. The Creature moves.
The Becks were jailed, releas-
ed, and opened up under a new
name. of press dispatches, riots and the theatre 300 members of Stu- sac
But, they had seceded from "scandales." dents for a Democratic Society sky
America. In 1964, the group The Living Theatre returned protested, demanding to be let Ap
went to Europe. For four years to New York on guarantee of a in. So the Becks agreed to give bo
the Living Theatre, renamed 'le round trip ticket and opened an extra performance. Most of en
Living,' toured the continent, vith Paradise Now. The climax the SDS delegation sneaked in suf
drawing alternate applause and of the play occurs when actors through the stage door anyway,
attack. and audience troop out into the condemning the Living Theatre uli
The disciples of Artaud saw streets. The people loved it. The for not breaking the regulations wo
them as ultimate actors - that police descended, and the Becks of the system. po
is, sacrificial victims, immo- et al were arrested for indecent But the Living Theatre breaks pa
lating themselves by their art. exposure. the system itself. Frankenstein, set
They were ejfected from the The police demanded cancel- which ran for six days at the in
Avignon Festival. They became lation of the next performance. Brooklyn Academy of Music I
a legend fabricated by a welter But the show went on. Outside earlier this month presents a her
The collective scream
Win a Aj m My
Poor come with snow and
. The Marxist march,
Capitalists, the Marxists,
explanatory Voice speak of
s the Victim's heart in the
and directs the graft of the
ders the sexual graft.
ears and advises the use of
rificed, Icarus falls from the
y, the Four Horsemen of the
pocalypse ride by, the Word is
rn and the police arrest the
tire cast who break jail and
ffer death by fire.
At one time, the program sim-
taneously included the entire
irks of Ibsen. This is made
ssible by the use of a com-
rtmentalized scaffolding for a
t. A separate action can go on
The performance is incompre-
Tnsible without a libretto pro-
am which lists each action.
he action is a cross between a
schian circus ; and the Span-
Any suspense must be main-
ined by the physical feats of
t actors. But aside from three
four moments when the rhy-
im and spectacle are breath-
king, the acrobatics are clum-
and ill-coordinated. The act-
g - when any conventional
ting occurs - is painfully
amateurish. The cast has no
training and it shows.
There is no art in the Living
Theatre, and this is precisely
why they are so remarkable. You
have to see them. They are a le-
gend. Their theatre is them-
selves. They don't want your
money, they want your soul.
The Living Theatre proclaims
themselves as a "collective
scream." They are welded to-
gether in a Frankensteinian
commune by frustration, hun-
ger and a fantical devotion to,
"The price t h e y pay," ob-
serves playwright Kenneth
Brown, "is often a loss of per-
spective, a collective insanity,
an Artaudian madness that fills
a theatre with hollow fore-
boding and shattering pretense."
And they reveal a fundamen-
tal truth. There can be no true
theatre in American society.
By true theatre I mean acom-
pany in which there are no
"stars," a troupe trained from
youth in mime, physical dex-
terity, combining Meyerholdian
dynamics with emotional truth.
A troupe containing within it-
self technicians, and a. director
who has the gift of creating
each succeeding play in its own
organic form. That does not and
has not e v e r existed in this
country; I don't believe it ever
will. The Living Theatre is the
closest we have come. We lost
Europe had this in the twen-
ties in the Russian theatre stu-
dios of Stanislavsky, Meyerhold
and Vakhtangov. Berlin had it
with Brecht's ensemble. And be-
tween huge time gaps, now and
EM Uaa CARPINTER ROAD
then, theatre will live. But those
times cannot be preserved as old
films can be hunted up and re-
This is the tragedy of the Liv-
ing Theatre, for although they
are the closest we have come
to total drama, they do not live
beyond themselves. They go
through rites, death rites -last
rites of the theatre?
After 3%/ hours of Franken-
stein, the stage darkens, and a
man cries out, "Thank God. I
can't believe they've finished."
The audience laughs and ap-
plauds him. The stage lights
flare. ,The actors applaud the
"PLrANET OF LIFE"
"NO ONE Admitted Under 18
Unless Accompanied By A Parent"
WHAT ?YOU'VE ONLY SEEN
F"T HE G RA DUA TE" ONC E ? ?
There comes a time when
you have to take a stand
for peace, against war
for love, against hate
for freedom, against blind force
for sex, against puritanical fascism
for me, against you
ACADEMY AWARD WINNER
BEST DIRECTOR-MIKE NICHOLS
JOSEPH E. LEVINE
MIKE NICHOLS-LAWRENCE TURMANrouvCW
This is Benjamin.
He's a little
THk GRADUATE TICOLOR PANAVI$IOrt
SUNDAY 3-5-7-9; Mon. and Tues. 7-9
The Fugs have a new record..
It Crawled Into My
monster formed of Freud, Par-
acelsus, Norbert Weiner and
victims. Our society has created
these people who lift the mas-
sive limbs of Frankenstein to-
ward the audience. They fright-
en us; they are thin and mus-
cular, young and hard. They
have lost their innocence, and
they remind us that we too have
lost what innocence we possess-
ed - and replaced it with a lie.
They want to form us in their
image, and we, in turn, demand
that they rebuild themselves.
Frankenstein is not a play.
The dramatic confrontation- is
between 'the audience and the
actors. It 'is a silent battle and
The plot is a collage of vio-
lence and mythology. Between;
the creation and the liberation
of the monster, Cabalists build
the Golem,' Daedalus learns to
fly, Zeus rapes Europa, the Min-
otaur is born, more victims are
1235 S. UNIVERSITY.
Marcello Mastroianni in Albert Comus'
SUBSCRIBE TO THE MICHIGAN DAILY
1429 H ill St.
Today at 5 P.M.
Members $1, Non-members $1.25
Boschian circus, Spanish Inquisition
1, 3, 5, 7, 9 P.M.
r Y ..; . d4
Monday, October 14
"CITIES, URBAN PROBLEMS"
(Speaker to be announced)
Tuesday, Oct. 15th
and the University"
"AN ARTISTICT ACHIEVEMENT!"
is the best written, most seriously acted American movie in
a long time."
NEXT FRIDAY, Oct. 18--"BARBARELLA,"
Founder and Director
Expert on Contraceptive
-_ _ -- -- - - I
JANIS JOPLI N
One Nite Only
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 15
Grand River at Beverly
Saturday and Sunday
Directed by Luis Bunnel, 1950
TICKETS $1.50 on sale
Hill Auditorium Box Office Open Sunday at noon
Open Reception after program at Kappa Sigma
Fraternity,806 Hill St.
!I I 3
[I, 4 ;