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January 27, 1977 - Image 5

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1977-01-27

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Arts & Entertainm ent Thursday, January 27, 977 Page Five


MICHAEL PONTI may very well
have the most. powerful left hand
in the business and an extraordinar-
ily quick right hand as well. The
pianist made his Ann Arbor debut
on Tuesday evening in Rackham, be-
ginning the recital with Beethoven's
Eroica Variations, Op. 35.
The two themes on which the piano
variations are based appear in Beeth-
oven's Third Symphony (the Eroica),
composed two years after Opus 35.
Ponti's control was evident even in
the first notes - he produced a strik-
ing, stark quality as every note sound-
ed clearly, but did not resound. This
effect caused the theme to be mem-
orable throughout the variations which
In rapid passages, Ponti's left hand
popped from octave to octave, em-
phasizing the bass line through his
agility and power. The pianist's musi-
cal ideas were well thought out, as
was evident in his delicately curved
THE INSTRUMENT in Rackham did
not make Ponti's job easier. It had



'Small Cliange': Homage to kids

a wooden sound and Ponti had to work
to produce his fortissimos. Also the
action of the piano keys could be
heard in fast, light passages, especi-
ally during trills. Though the piano
seemed to interfere with the fluidity
of the musical line, the pianist com-
pensated well.
Ponti interpreted Chopin's Sonata
in B flat minor, Op. 35 in a way which
enhanced the beauty of the composer s
style. Ponti carried the continuously
flowing phrases just to the point of
highest intensity before relieving the
tension with a new phrase. He broad-
ened tempos while crescendoing for
another dramatic effect.
Ponti displayed his tremendous
technique in the Scherzo movement;
his octaves were executed with bouncy
ease. Ponti created artistic rubatos
in the slower, lyric section but should
have treated the extension of the
melody - a descending scale - as
importantly as the melody.
THE FAMOUS "funeral march"
movement became much more than
a cliche under Ponti's expertise. The
tempo of the dirge was fast enough

so as not to drag. Again the pianist,
properly, kept the bass line ominous-
ly heavy. In the contrasting section,
Ponti caressed the poignant melody
and brought out a smooth arpeggiated
bass line. The return of the dirge
theme proved to be a stroke of the
Ponti's genius. He began lightly and
gradually grew louder to produce the
utmost intensity, then changed to the
nevt phrase at exactly the right mo-
ment. The short Presto of fast rumb-
lings ended abruptly with Ponti's ac-
centuated chords.
The Three Preludes, Op. 35 by
Scriabin, though performed after in-
termission, perhaps were not enough
contrast from the Chopin. They are
short pieces with much interplay be-
tween the hands, performed precise-
ly by Ponti. His undulating phrasing
in the second prelude became a sub-
d'ied musical monotone, producing an
interesting effect. Ponti's pedal re-
leases were sometimes disturbingly
blurred ends of phrases.
A more interesting Scriabin work,
Satanic Poem, Op. 36 followed. Its
jazzy rhythms, changing characters,
sudden loud chords and chromatic
melody contributed to the feeling of

urgency. The ending was truely satan-
ic with both hands playing in the ex-
treme registers of the piano.
PONTI SEEMED to have been look-
ing forward to performing the Rach-
maninoff Sonata in B flat minor, Op.
36. In the first movement he was able
to play chords at a fiery tempo as
well as producing shimmering water-
falls of sound in the treble.
A thoughtful mood prevailed in the
second movement as Ponti's perform-
ance became more passionate. He
wove melodies, countermelodies and
accompaniment into the most moving
moments of the concert. The vigorous
third movement was a proper vehi-
cle through which to display Ponti's
demonic technique, though a few times
his virtuosity overshadowed some im-
portant musical ideas.
Ponti captured an entirely differ-
ent spirit in an encore, Ravel's "On-
dine" from Gaspard de la Nuit. He
produced an angelic, tinkling, harp-
like sound in the upper registers.
Ponti's incessant moving and floating
quality perfectly depicted the "on-
dine," or water-sprite, of the title.
Even Ponti's glissando and runs were
amazingly as smooth as liquid.


By MICHAEL BROIDY dishes out not love; but bruises plays an almost complete un-
IRECTOR Francois Truf- and welts, can be seen as this derstanding of young ,people
faut's newest look at film's Antoine Doinel. and beautifully brings forth the
youngsters, Small Change (at Yet even here, Truffaut's op- universality.of our childhood ex-
the Fifth Forum), skillfully and timism wins out - the mother periences. .
humorously examines the pas- is carted off by the police and The children used in the film
sage from childhood to early the boy. will now have at least are all non-professionals and
adolescence. Although this a chance. The vast difference are all wonderful, since Truf-
theme is certainly no stranger in style between Small Change faut's skill in directing chil-
to Truffaut, his treatment is and The Four Hundred Blows dren is unequalled anywhere..
completely fresh and surpris- reflects Truffaut's growth as a Truffaut has remarked that
ingly honest. filmmaker and as a humanist. although Small Change is his ul-
Although the children in the The sharp blacks and whites of timate film on childhood so far,
film are placed in a small Antoine Doinel's Paris are it is not his final word on the
province of France, they could now replaced by soft, warm subject. His next is eagerly
just as well be from you own colors of provincial France.. I awaited.
neighborhood; who hasn't had Small Change lacks the tech-
to contend with an adorably nical bravura of The Four Hun-
mischievous youngster who is dred Blows; there are no
always' 'close to trouble, felt breathtaking mile-long track- C
sorry for the kid who wasn't ing shots which characterized artstic writing?
as well-off. or sneaked furtive the earlier film, few startling If you are interest-
glances at the clock, desper- flash pan's, and no bizarre ed in reviewi 1-
ately hoping the bell would ring camera angles. In fact, the roetry. and music
before being called on? 's style as a whole is quite sim- or writinr teature
I could hear the audience'spe iel elcin h a stories a b)o0 U t the
sot u o ecg to adple, nicely reflecting the na- dr ama. dance, rt m
soft murmurs of recognition and oftesbjtmaerdaaanefln
iitre of the subject matter. arts: Contact Arts
familiarity as the various inci- Ed i toh r, cm 'The
dents and characters unfolded TRiJFFAUT and his long time lulu higan Iaily.
on the screen. associate Suzanne Schiffman
Small Change catches many have fashioned a totally realis-
of what Truffaut has earlier, tic screenplay, one which dis-
called "privileged moments" of
childhood - the first kiss, a
youngster's crush on an older
woman, and of course the nev-
er - to - be - forgotten abortive
"first make-out" attempt.



Jazz re-releases show

You (Muse MR 5099).
frills or fancy stuff comes fr
Ms. Jones - just straight-ah
fine singing. "I'm just a f
footed singer. I can't get wi
all this choreography. I ne
wanted to be an actress,"s
"Lock My Heart" and
For You" are from one of E
Jones' great personal influen
-Billy Holliday. She sings ma
of the great band numbers su
as "Gone Away" and "If Tha
the Way You Feel."
Jones' sang a long time wi
the Earl Hines Band and n
often appears with tenor
Houston Person, who is also
this album. They are familiar
Detroit audiences-occasiona
playing the Watts Club.
The production here is cle
- very similiar to Etta Jon
in a nightclub, that is, ath
* * *
cissus (Milestone M-907
Henderson's tenor here has b(
and soul - his broad sound
immediately distinctive. M
of this music was recorded
Paris with the cream of Fren
rhythm sections: Joachim Ku
J.F. Jenny - Clark, and Dan
Humair. Henderson's tenor c
move, as "Power to the P

ple" testifies. Two pieces with phy's own sides feature a gen-I
Jack DeJohnette were recently; uine bop extension in the park-i
to added to finish the recording, er mold. Besides Carter and
No including an evocative "Good Roy Haynes, Jaki Byard and
om Morning Heartache." Booker Little are the main in-
ead d * strumentalists. Dolphy's work on
lat- Creative Construction Company bass clarinet, as on "Bird's
ith Vol. II (Muse MR-5097). This is Mother" is stunningly versatile.
ver the conclusion to the New York Another superb recording recall-
she concert by the Company which ing some of the great Prestige
begins on Muse MR 5071. Most sessions.
All of the group are founding mem-:-
tta bers of Chicago's AACM includ- DILL EVANS Montreux III'
ces ing Anthony Braxton, Leo Smith, (Fantasy F-9510). Evans is1
any Muhal Richard Abrams, and simply great in duet with the
uch Steve McCall. The Company is strong and sensitive bassist Ed-
at's completed by LeRoy Jenkins die Gomez alongside, and theyi
and Pihard Davis. The compo- prove it again at this 1975 Mon-
'ith sition "No More White Gloves" treux set, It's an encore -re-
ow is a collective improvisation ex- cording following the highly ac-
rist tending to a wide range of tex- claimed first duet with Gomez,
on tural richness and innovation. Intuition (also on Fantasy).
to The musicians know each oth- Catch the Evan's subtlety on
lly er inside out - a necessary in- "Elsa" and the beautiful "I
gredient in vibrant improvisa- Love You" and with another
can tion. great pianist's songs (John Lew-
s is of the Modern Jazz Quartet)

the bass clarinet. Don't let the i
uniqueness of this setting put
you off.
Great Guitars (Concord CJ-
23). Another encore for three of
the greatest guitarists Charlie
Byrd, Barney Kessel, and Herb
Ellis. They first came together
with the Concord 'Festival in
1974 and repeated again this
year. Watch; for the exciting
Ellis and Kessel duet on "Mak-
in' Whoopee," Byrd's solo gem
"Body and Soul," and all three
in the closing medley finishing
with Benny Goodman's "Flyingj
Straight Ahead (Pablo 2310-
778). Ella Fitzgerald's trio
(Tommy Flanagan, Keter. Betts,
and Bobby Durham) join the
great tenorist Davis in a totally
satisfying and mellow encoun-
ter. Davis played many years
with Count Basie and is one of
the few remaining giants who
encompasses so many of the
past influences. Listen for what
Davis can do to such oft-played
pieces like "Wave" and "On A
Clear Day" and others like his
own "The Chef" and "Last
Train From OLerbrook."
jION FADDIS Youngblood (Pab-
lo 2310-765). Faddis' style is
often compared with Dizzy Gil-
lespie's and he does include two
of the master's numbers. Like
most greats, however, Faddis
combines past elements with his
own originality and strength.
He's a familiar figure from var-
ious bands and recordings and
now it's a pleasure to hear him
as a leader. Listen for Monk's

THE FILM is almost the flip-
side of TriTffaiit's earlier look
atchildhood, The Four-Hundred
Blows. The cruelty and hope-
lessness of -the earlier film is
now been replaced by a re-
a r ie laxed sense of uentleness and
innocense, Truffaut, has be-
came more optimistic.
" 'Round Midnight'" and Gersh- Small Change is, neverthe-
bluesv "Prelude No. ,, less, laced with a certain bitter-
win'srness - the battered boy who
S -~ lives in a ramshackle house
PLAS JOHNSON Positively with his witch-like mother who
(Concord CJ-24). Many West
Coast studio musicians like
Johnson are seldom recognized
this far east but Concord is do-
ing its best to rectify the situ-
ation. Johnson's featured also
on The Blues (CJ-15), and Old
Folks (CJ-11) with the Hanna-
Fontana Band. On Positively
listen especially for the lovely
Johnson alto work on 'Cottage
for Sale" and his ballad blow-
ing on "Lover Man" and "My l
Foolish Heart.",

Special Attractions


kipnIS mime theatre
Tickets available at PTP Ticket Office
Mendelssohn Theatre Lobby, Mon.-Fri. 10-1, 2-5
For Information Call: 764-0450
Tickets also avilla at all Hudsons

Jan.31; 8pm



Magic (Prestige P-24053) as .
in musical magic, is the appro-
priate title of this early 60's
recording by Eric Dolphy and
Ron Carter. One record of this;
two-record set, Where?, was or-
iginally issued as Carter's first,
as a leader. In it he adds cello
to his bass work, something
which he didn't pursue. Listen1
to the stimulating interplay be-s
tween Carter and pianist Mal1
Waldron. Dolphy's at his best;
on flute in "Yes Indeed." Dol-'

in "Django" and "Milano." 1
gether (Vanguard VSD-
79377). It's a strange combina-I
tion but the controlled energyj
of an Elvin Jones carries it off
with the sensitive Oregon inter-
play. Ralph Towner's pieces
take much of the spotlight, in-I
cluding the lovely "Brujo" and
the opening' number, "Le Vin."
Paul McCandless charms well,f
especially whenever he picks upj



14~0 Cover Tonito]
11 ,i 12 1 89zz~9

Homemade Soup and Sandwich-50c
Friday, January 28th
802 MONROE- (Corner of Oakland)

y j
-'TALL prints & posters 25% off
Large selection of prints 50% off
All framed items 25 % to 50% off
Alll 1977 calendars 25% off list
Selected Art, Craft, Architecture books 35% off
Selected remainders marked down to absurd prices
(Note: Does not include custom framing which is
already the best & least expensive in town.)

'You were saying...?'
Glen Iruett as Teddy seems to be attempting to get something across to Mark Mikulski (Step-
hen), during a scene from PTP's production of When You Comin' Back, Red Ryder", playing
through this weekend in the Arena Theater.
There IS a difference!!!


Flexible Programs and Hours
tl..r 2 vnnc o nv nr~n rn nrlctir ncc Cmnl rl ccc UniemnnI

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