THE MICHIGAN ]DAILY
SUNDAY, NOVRM$ER 22,x964
PAGE TWO THE MICHIGAN RAlLY SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 22, 1964
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ARTS and LETTERS By Steven Haller
To Translate, or Not To .. .
Of the two operas being pre-
sented by the University Musical
Society today, Franz Lehar's "The
Merry Widow" will be sung in an
English translation and Charles
Gounod's "Faust" will be sung in
the original French. Thus the
ever-present controversy is stim-
ulated once again: should a for-
eign-language opera invariably be
translated into English when sung
in this country?
Prof. Ralph Herbert of the
school of music, who has sung
with both the New York City
a foreign language. If the opera
is a drama, you lose the dramatic
effect if you can't understand the
words; if it is a comic opera, you
have to understand the witty lines
in order to get the point of the
joke," Herbert points out.
He adds that there is one major
camp in this country made up of
what he terms the "snobs." This
category is not meant to include
educated people, but is made up
mainly of people who don't under-
stand a word that's sung and
don't really care, since they show
up only to be seen, or to enjoy
the singing (as opposed to the
"Many times the audience might
not understand what is going on
due to the diction of the singers;
even with a French production,
many French members of the
audience don't know what the
singers, in their American drawls
and twangs, are saying.
Some other members of the
school of music, however, hold
different views on the subject.
They feel that many dramatic
operas, for example, need not in-
variably be translated, since the
audience can listen to the opera
in terms of the general manner
of characterization and not neces-
sarily grasp the details of the
plot. For such theatre-goers, a
basic feeling for the drama itself
is all they need; their concentra-
tion is directed to the music, not
Who's A Snob?
In fact, they claim that this is
as it should be, pointing out that
opera was originally drama per
musica, "drama through music."
Shuddering at a broad usage of a
term such as "snobs," they remind
the partisan of translated opera
that most knowledgeable people
wouldn't think of listening to the
opera in any language except that
in which it was written.
This second camp also points
out that in the music anyway;
Verdi didn't write the words to
"Aida" and Puccini didn't write
the. text of "La Boheme." If the
composer is successful with his
music, he will be successful with
the public, these individuals sug-
Despite the claim by many
original-language partisans that
the majority of operas are not well
suited to being translated into
another language, Herbert feels
that most operas can be "just as
beautiful, if not more so, in an-
other language. He points out that
the text of the opera "Salome"
was taken from a poem by Oscar
Wilde, who is no German-yet
just because the composer of the
opera, Richard Strauss, was Ger-
man, the beauty of the original
text has been forsaken.
He adds that there is one place
in the text where the metaphor
"falling like unripe figs from the
fig tree" is used in the German
text, even though the original
English poem more accurately says
"ripe figs." Herbert suggests that
there is no good reason for per-
petuating such a statement.
"In case a French opera such as
'Faust' is sung in impeccable
French-not American "French"
-by a French touring company,
it would be a different story. As
it is, however, I would prefer that
the original language be reserved
for recordings or for a special
language-or if the singers can't
speak English, as is often the case
with a touring company," Her-
The members of the other camp,
on the other hand, suggest that
if the opera is of high quality and
is given as such, a translation
might be a good idea; but for
most productions it really doesn't
make that much difference if only
a synopsis is offered rather than
a full translation. One of these
individuals sums up his views by
quoting Mozart: "The words must
always be the obedient servant of
City To Vote
Petitions circulated to place a
proposal for the establishment of
a community college on the Jan.
15 ballot were recently filed with
the Washtenaw county clerk.
The proposal for the establish-
ment of the college will also in-
clude the election of a six-man
board of trustees if the voters
pass the proposal.
By a special vote of the execu-
tive board of the citizens com-
mittee, the election date was mov-
ed to Jan. 15 from Jan. 19.
State law prohibits elections
being within 40 days of each other.
Ypsilanti had scheduled an elec-
tion on their own school issues
The entire county will be able
to vote on the community college
proposal, Jan. 15.
URGES OPEN DEBATE:
Dial 665-6290 Shows at 1, 3, 5,
7 and 9:05 p.M.
By MICHAEL HEFFER j
"It's important for the student
to enlarge his realm of discourse,"
Prof. Stephen Tonsor of the his-
tory department said Thursday.
Speaking at Frost House on
"Secularism, Gossip, and the In-
tellectual," Tonsor said "we resort
to gossip groups where our ideas
find acceptance," rather than
chance open debate. Talking about
"how intellectuals ought to be-
have," he said "most intellectual
talk is gossip."
After defining gossip as "ordi-
nary discourse about a narrow
range of topics associated with
one group," Tonsor spoke of "in"
groups. In these groups intellec-
tuals "gossip" about each other,
and "remove themselves from
society," he said.
They are separated from the
community when they talk among
themselves, and no one else bene-
fits, he continued.
Groups professing the same doc-
trine, he said, often "withdraw
from the world into sects." He said
this is common of most fields ex-
cept science, which "doesn't per-
mit sectarianism." However Ton-
sor pointed to the case of Dr.
Andrew C. Ivy and a few others
who "refused to accept debate
within the scientific community'
on the value of the drug
Tonsor thenrelated "sectarian-
ism" to the intellectual life onj
campus. He said he found that the
various departments in the Uni-
versity are separated. "Professors
do not know what is going on" in
other areas, he said.
He noted that several depart-j
ments, such as history, political
science, and sociology all have
something to saygto each other,
but they do not get together.,
Observing that today's students
are too "inward" looking, he
urged students to try out ideas on
others. "Why don't you challenge
your lecturer or classroom instruc-
PROF. RALPH HERBERT
Opera and the Metropolitan
Opera for several years, explains
that there are two different
schools of thought on this sub-
ject: some say that any opera
given in this country should be
sung in English. Others are equal-
ly emphatic in expressing their
preference for hearing the opera
in the original language. In gen-
eral, he includes himself among
the latter number.
tor?" he suggested. Tonsor urged
that "debate displace gossip"
In answer to a question on the
college system, Tonsor said he
thought acceleration "is a hazard
to education." Referring to the
taking of 18 or 19 credits and the
"temptations of the trimester sys-
tem" on the student to graduate
in three years, he said that stu-
dents are in too much of a rush
"to get on the labor market."
Tonsor urged students to read
more, and widely. He recommend-
ed the journals, where "intellec-
tual life takes place." In the
articles written there, he said, the
great intellectual debates occur.
Total residence credit enroll-
ment at the Big Ten universities
and at the University of Chicago
is at a record 316,492, an in-
crease of 24,874 over last year,
according to University Registrar
Edward G. Groesbeck.
The totals include approxi-
mately 64,000 freshmen, an in-
crease of about 9000 over last
fall, Groesbeck indicated.
"The enrollment picture has
changed rapidly during the past
y e a r," Groesbeck commented.
"Some of the 11 schools had to
control their enrollments for the
first time this fall.''
However, Groesbeck expressed
belief that all qualified in-state
students will find room in their
respective state universities next
year. But, he added, in many in-
stances the applicants may not be
able to enroll in the fall and may
have to choose the summer or win-
The 11 universities are members
of the Committee on Institutional
Cooperation, a group formed sev-
eral years ago to stimulate vol-
untary cooperation and to elimi-
nate extensive duplication in ad-
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because you think
traveling is expensive?
Cut it out.
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COLLEGE RELATIONS DIRECTOR
Washington, D.C. 20008
I Dear Sheraton: Please rush me an application for a
| free Sheraton Student ID Card. I understand it will get
me discounts on room rates at Sheraton Hotels &
1 Motor Inns. Good Deal!
95 Sheraton Hotels & Motor inns'
- ----"----""""""" m "'" """""""""-"""
"It's asking too much
average audience to sit
three hours of an opera
PROF. HAROLD E. WE THEY
of the history of art department
was named the 1964 Henry
Russel Lecturer, Friday, by the
Regents. The Daily ran the
wrong picture of the recipient
of the award yesterday.
The Week To Come: A Campus Calendar
SUNDAY, NOV. 22 the electrical engineering depart- phony Orchestra, directed by Josef
2:30 p.m.-The New York City ment will talk on "Electron Blatt, will give a public concert
pera Company will present in Physics" in the fourth of the in Hill Aud.
nglish, Franz Lehar's "The Merry "Electronics Showcase" series of FRIDAY, NOV. 27
Vidow" at Hill Aud. programs in 1042 East Engineer- 8 p.m.-The Professional Thea-
3 p.m.-The Ann Arbor Civic ing. tre Program will present the As-
'heater will hold try-outs for TUESDAY, NOV. 24 sociation of Producing Artists in
Night of the Iguana" in the Civic 12 Noon-Rev. Donald P. Smith an extra performance of Pisca-
heater Bldg., 803 W. Washington. will speak on "A Single New tor's "War and Peace," adapted
4 p.m.-Recitals will be given by Humanity" at a luncheon in the from the novel by Leo Tolstoy, in
iano majors in the School of International Center. the Lydia Mendelssohn Theater.
[usic Recital Hall. 3 p.m. - Ben H. Bagdikian, SATURDAY, NOV. 28
7 p.m.-The India Students As- author, critic and editor, will 8 p.m.-The PTP will present
ociation will present "Nehru- speak on "How Political is the the APA in an extra performance
[an of Two Worlds" and "Nehru American Press" in Rackham of Brendan Behan's "The Hos-
asses Away" in the Multi- Amph. tage" in Lydia Mendelssohn
urpose Rm. of the Undergraduate 4:15 p.m.-Dr. Peter Rossi, di- Theater.
ibrary. rector of the National Opinion SUNDAY, NOV. 29
7 and 9 p.m. -- The Cinema Research Center, will speak on 12 Noon-Richard L. Cutler, in-
uild will present Orson Welles' "Problems of Local Community coming vice-president for student
Macbeth" in the Architecture Organization" in the Social Work affairs, will host "Childhood:
ud. Aud., Frieze Bldg. Worlds to Discover" on WWJ-TV
8:30 p.m.-The New York City 8:30 p.m.-The University Sym- Channel 4, Detroit.
MORE MUSIC FOR MORE PEOPLE
Internationally acclaimed as the world's foremost Jazz
personality, with his quartet. Gregory Millar and Ray-
burn Wright conducting.
SUNDAY, NOV. 22
CIVIC CENTER-8:30 P.M.
Tickets available at Paramount Newsstand in Lansing
or through Lansing Symphony Office, P. O. Box 1334,
Telephone IV 2-0573, and at Box Office of Lansing
Civic Center on Concert Night.
Leave this brochure where
your dad can see it.
Want to spend 45 fascinating days touring the continent? Leave
BOAC's brochure where it'll do the most good. You won't be sorry.
It's a chance not just to see Europe, but to get to know it. A chance to
meet students and teachers of other countries. A chance to visit the
museums and art galleries you've always read about. A chance to hear
great music, and see great ballet. A chance to talk to people-to find out
how they live, and think, and feel about things. It's also a chance to
relax and get a tan (the tour includes sunny places as well as cultural
ones). How much does the whole wonderful holiday cost? $1099.30*
from New York. If dad thinks that figure is a little high, remind him
that you'll be away all of 45 days and that the price is all-inclusive.
*Price based on economy air fare and double occupancy in hotels.
It could get you
r-British Overseas Airways Corporation
530 Fifth Avenue, New York, N. Y. 10036
Please send me your free brochure describ.
ing all of BOAC's 1965 student tours. AndI
don't limit it to the 45-day trip. Just send it
soon. Dad's been in such a good mood lately.'
Zip Code I
My Travel Agent Is_
L.... ...... 0703
All over the world BOAC
takes good care of you
SERVICES OPERATED FOR SOAO.CUNARD BY BOAS
Opera will present "Faust" in
French in Hill Aud.
MONDAY, NOV. 23
12 Noon-Rev. Donald P. Smith,
personnel secretary of the Com-
mission on Ecumenical Mission
and Relations, United Presbyter-
ian Church, will speak on "A
Single New Humanity"-a dis-
cussion of the ecumenical mission
around the world-at a luncheon
at the International Center.
4 p.m.-Prof. Albert Ando of
the Wharton School of Commerce
and Finance will speak on "The
Extreme Quantity Theory and the
Naive Keynesian Model" in Rm.
101 of the Economics Bldg.
4 p.m.-Irwin Scollar of the
Rheinisches Landesmuseum, Ger-
many, will speak on "Five Years
of Archaeological Discovery from
the Air in Rheinland" in Aud. B.
7:30 p.m.-The Young Socialists
Alliance will sponsorJack Barnes,
national YSA leader, in a lecture
entitled "The Myth of American
Liberalism" in 3529 Student Ac-
7:30 p.m.-Prof. J. E. Rowe, of
TICKETS-$3 Reserved Seating
-$2 General Admission
Forget to pick up your ticket for the
WILLOWPOLITAN Bus on Nov. 25
And don't forget,seating for the Philharmonic Series-
is available at $7 reserve, and $4 general admission.
Tickets to Metropolitan are
and to Willow Run $1.25
1209 S. University
Buses will leave every 2 hours be-
tween 12:30 and 6:30
Tickets may be
Fishbowl on Nov. 23 and 24 from 8
a.m. to 4 p.m.
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: LAST TIMES TONIGHT MACBETH
Orson Welles' originally controversial, now classic interpretation of William I
Shakespeare's great tragedy. 1
U IN ~THE ARCHITECTURE AUDORUM
* ADMISSION: FIFTY C ENTS
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Shows Start at 1 :00
2:40-4:45-7:00 & 9:05
The Big One
Of The Great
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
STUDENT EMPLOYEES UNION
GENERAL MEETING SUN., NOV. 22
THIS is what's
Major policy decisions
Filling of vacancy on Executive Comm.
/N CONCER T
HAL ZEIGER presents
WITH PULL ORCHESTRA
DON'T GET STUCK WITH THE SHORT END OF
ALL STUDENTS WELCOME '
Get Your Tickets BEFORE Thanksgiving to
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