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December 02, 1977 - Image 7

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1977-12-02

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The Michigan Daily-Friday, December 2, 1977-Page 7

Glorious 'Hamlet' graces Power

known (feared?) around the
Speech Department as a "play-
wright's director" forquite a few
years. A "playwright's director" is a
beast more concerned with the
message than the medium, thus often
leaving his actors wallowing in their
audience's incomprehension and
boredom. Playgoers who saw Burg-
win's Othello last season will know
what I'm talking about; there was an
austerity, a pomposity about the
whole business, that made sympathy
for the characters nigh on impos-
But now with Hamlet, playing
Power Center through December 4,
all that overstarched pomposity has
vanished. Burgwin has given us a
production to share with the actors,
to roll in and savor. He even ventures
to poke fun at us at times, as when
Hamlet spits his verbal dismember-
meqt of the "groundlings" directly at
the audience.
Guest artist Robert Sevra as
Claudius was okay, but never
achieved the glowering evil I attach
to the incestuous adulterer. Still, he
was sensitive and pitiful in what is
perhaps his most crucial scene; his
prayer of repentance.
POLONIUS' "To thine own self be
true" speech and Laertes' subse-
quent departure were nicely done,
but faded into mere background for
Ophelia's striking first speaking
scene. Monique Fowler -at first
generated a robust, even lusty hu-
mor, helped along by the natural


coarseness of her voice. Her earthy
energy grabbed attention up until her
mad scenes, when another kind of
enchantment took over.

what a rogue and peasant slave am
I" soliloquy. He begins in a relaxed,
even happy mood, which makes his
cursing self-chastisement all the
more fiery later in the speech. He
comes down to the audience, seeking
a challenger on "Am I a coward?
Who calls me a villain?", and finally
settles back into 'a sympathetic,
heart-breaking dirge for the re-devo-
tion to his vengeful duty: "I, the son
of dear father murdered. . . Must,
like a whore, unpack my heart with

Edward Stasheff proved a comic
delight in the role of the Gravedig-
ger, a role he last played in Ann
Arbor 23 years ago. He would have
pleased me more had Burgwin not let
Dell Allan Potter loose as the second
gravedigger, gawking, stiff and stu-
,Space limitations prohibit proper
treatment for Carol Ann Hart, kind.;
and regal indeed as Gertrude. Willie
Brown's Polonius, though often over-
done, was amply pompous and funny:

!?;aie 4ia

. !;lsPa

the perfect holiday gift
call 764-0558 to order


-~ w...~ ~

Chico Freeman
Saxophonist Chico Freeman and percussionist Don Moye will be performing
a series of duets tonight in East Quad Auditorium. There will be two shows
at8:00 and 10:30 p.m.


's flowers in full bloom

THERE'S A magnificent garden in
full bloom at the Detroit Institute
of Art. It's a garden planted by Henri
Matisse (1869-1954), and each flower is
one of his paper cut-outs, budding with
the beauty of pure, pulsating color.
Matisse, noted particularly for his
vividly colored paintings from
around 1905, also sculpted, drew and
printed with the same enthusiasm for
color. When he was no longer
physically capable of working in
these mediums, he developed the
technique of the paper cut-out which
he found to be the simplest and most
direct way to express himself.
This exhibition, in the DIA Fordx
Wing until Jan. 8, is the first and
perhaps the last to examine the
full-range of Matisse's cut-outs.
The works radiate with the bril-
liance of their color shapes; shapes
cut from paper painted with emerald
green, fuchsia, surging purple and
yellow gouache, which are then pin
ned to another background.
This display of 57 luminous cut-outs
was organized by Dr. John Hallmark
Neff, curator of Modern Art at DIA,
and Matisse scholar. Because Ma-
tisse made many of his ..paper
cut-outs when he was over 80 years
old, Neff described the French
master as, "the only one thus far to
have had a great late period ,like
Titian or Rembrandt."
THE WORKS are hung chronolog-
ically, the earliest ones revealing hs
thought processes through the visible
pins. These show how the cut figures
were moved around until just the
right effect was achieved.,z
In Polynesia, the Sky and Poly-
nesia, the Sea, a tapestry effect is
created in the arrangement of pasted
bird or fish forms against a back-
ground of sectioned shades of blue. In
these cut-outs the balance and har-
mony of nature is revealed in the
complex environments of sky and
sea. Like all of his cut-out-forms, they
are lyrical yet simple, containing all
the intricacies of thriving life.
Matisse considered his cut-outs to
be a combination of painting and
sculpture. Cutting allowed him to
unify form and outline with each
shape congruent to a piece of colored
clay which he would build upon.
The Thousand and One Nights, a
twelve-foot long narrative work, is
considered the major cut-out in the
exhibit. The innovative master of
color created five large rectangles

filled with magical shapes, referring
to the story of Scheherezade, a
heroine of the Arabian Nights.
THE BEAUTIFUL colors, flowing
with life and mysticism are constant-
ly changing, yet establish spatial re-
lationships and rhythm within the
work. Deep red cut-out hearts border
the bottom of the piece, balancing the
jet black, and vividly powerful green
hearts bordering the top. Like all of
Matisse's cut-outs, The Thousand
and One Nights shouts with joy,,
happiness and positive feelings to-
ward life.
The exhibit continues on the second
floor with a reconstruction of stained
glass windows, ceramic murals, a
tabernacle door and liturgical vest-
ments, Matisse designed for a small
Dominican chapel in southern
The two long rectangular windows,
entitled The Tree of Life, are a
vibrant exaltation of Matisse's joy
for life. The irregular blue, yellow
and green leaf shapes seem to move
by stretching and straining until they
reach the powerful sun disc that cuts

across both panels.
Other masterpieces include The
Swimming Pool Which Matisse
worked on at night due to his acute
insomnia. This is an incredible study
in negative and positive forms which
glide through space, radiating a
sense of nautical beauty, changes
and frolic.
THE WILD POPPIES is the cut-out
the DIA is in the process of purchas-
ing. The poppy has been a symbol of
death and sleep since antiquity, and
represents the aging artist's physical
state one year before his death.
Despite his illness, the work still
thrives with passionate color and
intense light.
The enthusiastic master viewed his
art as a means of emitting light and
felt light aided in recuperating the ill.
Due to this, he frequently surrounded
his room and sick beds in French
hospitals with his works.
Matisse's cut-outs are like the most
beautiful, dreamy, fanciful flowers
the human imagination can conceive.
Like flowers too precious to pick,
they implant a sense-of joyful energy
upon the human soul.
The University of Michigan
Artist & Craftsmen Guild
10 a.m.-8 p.m.
10 a.m.-5 p.m.
U-M Coliseum, Ann Arbor
Fifth Avenue at Hill Street

Matthew Casey's Horatio was aw-
fulness itself. Exhibiting an astonish-
ing Midas touch in reverse, every
scene, virtually every line he
touched, turned to mud. The only
relief from his travesty of a perform-
ance came when he improved enough
to be merely unnoticeable towards
the play's end. He even managed to
drag down John Wojda, in the title
role, in several of their scenes
And speaking of John Wojda:
Bravo. He and Burgwin have symbi-
otically created an ,ever-so-sympa-
thetic and truly unorthodox Dane. As
he chats' with Rosencrantz and
Guildenstern in the first act, he
manipulates a difficult bit of script
with dexterity, persuading his com-
patriots that things are going well for
him, while his inner thoughts,
fraught with unhappiness, give the
audience a different picture.
Law School Films
James Stewart, Jean Arthur
Frond Copra's 1939 classic
Room 100, Hutchins Hall
(Low Quad)
Show at 7:00 & 9:30

t 3
Lydia Mendelssohn Theatre December 1, 2,3,1977 8:00pm
Tickets $3.00/ $3.50 available at UAC Ticket Central in the
Michigan Union. A UAC Sophshow Presentation

Sun Dc-
9-3 01 ill

Xmas Sale



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Arts brief
The Ann Aroor Symphony has im-
mediate openings in all string sections
for the Tuesday, December 20th con-
cert in Hill Auditorium. The concert
will include works by Thaikovsky,
Vaughan-Williams, and Mozart, as well
as traditional Christmas carols. All
bow-slingers are invited to attend.

T er5d998rLP is
Q5rdis 798 per disc.
per disc series price

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