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July 29, 1971 - Image 2

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1971-07-29

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Poge Two

THE MICHIGAN E

Page Two THE MICHIGAN

rcrPartss
Streetcar': Players'

By JIM HENNERTY
The University Players have
mounted a very good production
of Tennessee Williams' A Street-
car Named Desire at Lydia
Mendelssohn Theater. This par-
ticular presentation makes a good
case for the play's strengths,
while also pointing up some of
their weaknesses.
The confrontation of Stanley's
sensual realism and Blanche's in-
sane magic succeeds in gripping
the viewer's head and heart.
There is a tragic incompatibility
between the earthy, vigorous
sexuality exuded by the "com-
mon" husband and the decadent,
heavily perfumed fantasies of his
sister-in-law.
At the same time, it is fairly
evident that the playwright gets

carried away in the last act. The
tone becomes too hysterical, too
consciously theatrical, and con-
sequently less persuasive.
Blanche's fantasies go on too
long, and Stanley's brutal action
strikes this viewer, at least, as a
not totally convincing one.
Robert Porter, the director, has
wisely chosen an even-tempered
approach to the work. The pac-
ing is decisive . without being
rushed. The three-hour perform-
ance is consistently absorbing,
unaided by gimmeckry or false
hysteria.
The direction plays down flam-
boyance in the characters as
well. Stanley, for example, su-
perbly played by Edward Cic-
ciarelli, is not the pure slob and
sexpot he is sometimes made out

strength
to be. For once he is eminently
believable and non-eccentric -
a young working-class man who
is vigorous and mildly vulgar in
his habits.
Nancy Heusel's Blanche is like-
wise convincing. The character
must be eccentric to a certain
degree, of course; but here the
eccentricity is a definite part of -
the personality. Too often in
Williams' plays, we view the mad
Southern gentlewoman as a doc-
tor would a particularly extreme
mental patient.
The production can be faulted
only on very basic grounds. If a
viewer finds it cold, dispassion-
ate or unexciting - he disagrees
with the essential idea of the di
rection. I, for one, find the un-
derstated approach shows the
play off to its best advantage
and makes for an absorbing and
entertaining evening of theater:
Zuckerman, Ehrling, Sibelius

COMING-SATURDAY-JULY 31
Stunning color award-winner: Claude Lelouch's
A MAN AND A WOMAN
ANOUK AIMEE, JEAN-LOUIS TRINTIGNANT
(Original version: French dialogue, English subtitles)
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auditorium a SATURDAY 7:00 & 9:30 p.m.
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TONIGHT AND TOMORROW NIGHT!

By JOHN HARVITH
Romantic repertoire held sway
once again at last Saturday
night's Meadowbrook Festival
concert featuring 23-year old
Israeli violinist Pinchas Zuker-
man, conductor Sixten Ehrling,
the Detroit Symphony, Henry
Wieniawski and Jean Sibelius.
Wieniawski was one violinist-
composer in a long line of vir-
tuosos spawned in the wake of
the greatest nineteenth-century
string wizard and spiritual found-
er of the Romantic cult of vir-
tuosity - Niccolo Paganini.
Wieniawski's Second Violin Con-
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certo is cast after Paganini's
works in this form: it is tuneful
and extroverted with more than
ample opportunity for the erst-
while pyrotechnician to display
his bag of tricks. As with so many
pieces of Romantic bravura,
however, this concerto is a cha-
meleon which will be only as ef-
fective as the soloist's musical
instincts command.
Not unlike Ann Arbor Summer
Concert Series pianists Earl
Wild and John Ogdon, Zukerman
had the requisite "technique to
burn", negotiating dazzling oc-
tave runs and chromatic scales
with Heifetzian lightning speed.
Unfortunately, Zukerman's simi-
larity to the above - mentioned
pianists extended to sacrificing
the overall structure of a work
for flashy effects. Thus, he lin-
gered a bit too schmaltzily over
hummable melodies with exces-
sively wide vibrato (even outdo-
ing Francescatti at times) and
then raced through stunts in a
dry, unexpressive, but metro-

nomically exact fashion. In short,
Zukerman shares the frustration
of many a contemporary per-
former at trying to reconcile a
computer - efficiency technique
with Romantic temperament. JW
Ehrling's bout with Sibelius'
First Symphony proved as archi-
tecturally ill-calculated as Zuker-
man's Wieniawski. After the
smooth tempo . transitions and
masterful dynamic shaping of An-
dre Previn at the previous week's
concert, it came as quite a shock
to hear Ehrling's nervously pre-
cipitate crescendi which accelera-
ted to premature climaxes, and to
witness the composition degener-
ate into episodes with retarded
lyricism pitted against frenetic
agitation.
The Michigan Daily, edited and man-
aged by students at the University of
Michigan. News phone: 764-0552. Second
Class postage paid at Ann Arbor. Mich-
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Michigan 48104. Published daily Tues-
day through Sunday norein Univer-
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carrier, $10 by mail.
Summer Session published Tuesday
through Saturday morning. Subscrip-
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DIAL 8-6416
YOU MUST BE 18 OR OLDER
PROOF OF AGE REQUIRED
ALL SEATS $2.50
TH E UNPUBLISHABLE NOVEL
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At
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AUDE A
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at 6:30 p.m. sharp!a

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SUMMER FILM FESTIVAL/ orson welles
NOTE In Answer to Your Many Inquiries, This Is e Original
SbtteVersion in 35 mm, Not the Inferior Dubbed
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