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July 23, 1976 - Image 7

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1976-07-23

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Arts & Entertainment

Friday, July 23, 1976 Page Seven

Paray's back, and
classier than ever

Special To The Daiy
troit has not forgotten Paul
Paray. How could they? For
over fifteen years he was the
Detroit Symphony's music di-
rector, and in that time he
brought the orchestra to the
peak of perfection. Few men
rate a standing ovation for
merely walking on stage. Pa-
ray got one; never was one
more deserved. He was in town'
to conduct the DSO in the Mea-
dowbrook Music Festival, per-
forming a program that will be
repeated tomorrow night.
The concert, consisting en-
tirely of French music, began
with Berlioz' Overture to Ben-
venuto Cellini. It is, of course,
Berlioz' at his most high-spirit-
ed, Paray is a master at this
kind of music, and as always,
his performance was brisk and
Never before has the Detroit
Symphony Orchestra performed
as well. In particular, the
string tone has improved tre-
mendously over the course of
the last year; but it took Paul
Paray to create a tone that was
as magnificent as it was in-
All of this was produced with
clear and concise gestures by
the maestro. Far more than
merely coaxing lovely sound,
Paray was able to build cli-
maxes and make the music as
exciting as it could possibly be.
The end result was even bet-
ter than I had hoped it would
The second work on the pro-
gram was Chausson's Symphony
in B-flat major, op. 20. The
work, modeled after Franck's

Symphony in D-minor, is far
from being great music. Or so
I thought, until I heard Paray's
performance. He recorded the
work with the Detroit Sym-
phony many years ago, how-
ever that performance lacked
both dramatic force and dyna-
mic power.
The performance given last
night was impassioned and dra-
matic. This resulted from rapid
tempo choices, and a great sen-
sitivity to orchestral color. Un-
like many other conductors,
Paul Paray has improved with
age. A nonagenarian, Paray is
able to command tremendous
respect from the orchestra, a
direct contrast with the way
the DSO treats the current con-
ductor Aldo Ceccato. Part of
this is undoubtedly in defer-
ence to Paray's status and re-
putation, but most of it to his
superb musicianship. When will
the Symphony's less - than-
perspicacious administration al-
low Paray to conduct in Ford
The second half of the con-
cert consisted of four short
works, beginning with Lalo's
Overture to Le Roi d'Ys. This
is a lovely and powerful work
which has too long been ne-
glected from the regular con-
cert repertoire. Again, the work
was given a loving perform-
ance. Particularly notable for
their lyricism were the wind
This was followed by a suite
of pieces from Bizet's opera
Carmen. This suite, arranged
by Paray himself, preserves
the composer's original orches-
tration. It was played to per-
fection. Although the perform-
ance was perhaps not as free-

wheeling as his recording, it
gained in immediacy what it
lost in spontaneity,
Ravel's Pavane for a Dead
Princess followed. The com-
poser once remarked irritably
that "it wasn't the Pavane that
was dead, it was the Princess",
Certainly in the hands of mae-
stro Paray, even this piece
gained life. He chose a fairly
brisk tempo, complemented by
brilliant coloration and lush
Concluding the concert was
the ever - popular Sorcerer's
Apprentice of Paul Dukas. This
work, one of the most stunning
of all orchestral tone poems,
was given an extremely atmos-
pheric performance. Once again
the performance was highlight-
ed by its string tone. One could
just see the young sorcerer
commanding the brooms to
bring water. This was simply
the most vivid reading of this
work that I've ever heard.
While Paray is definitely get-
ting better, he's sadly getting
older. At the conclusion of the
first half of the concert, he was
obviously tired and worn, so
much so that concertmaster
Gordon Staples had to assist
him offstage at the intermis-
All in all, this concert was
even better than the two Paray
gave at Meadowbrook last year.
More than likely, this was due
to the fact that Paray could
concentrate this year on per-
fecting one group of selections,
as opposed to last year, when
he conducted two different con-
certs in the same week. Never
has the DSO sounded better--
and it was no surprise. They
were directed by Paul Paray.

Ken Parsigian
We were sitting around the Taste Club the other day (a club
whose entrance requirements consist only of the possession of
impeccable Taste), and discussing Bridge, as we so often do. I
polished off the rest of my foie gras as I listened to Mitch extol
the virtues of finesse. "None of your silly grand coups for me,"
he said, picking at a hamburger terribly well done. "Why, a
simple ace-queen tenace over a king is worth six squeezes."
"Squeezes?" I said brightly, those particular plays being
my forte. "Why, certain hands beg for a squeeze!"
"I'll say," said Jeffrey. "Why, I had an unbeatable hand just
this afternoon, unbeatable by the pressure of a squeeze."
We urged him to tell us about it, and he required no further
prompting. Grabbing the back of our rich friend Philthy's bank
statement, he wrote down the following hand:
4 x x x
* K Q x x
T. A 10 x

4 A 10 x x
V xx
f J 10 9 8

A x x
y J x x
f x x x
4 K J x xx

V A K x x x
# A x
4 xx
"My partner, after a long and psychotic bidding sequence,
jumped my four notrump to six hearts, and I, having mentioned
them earlier, simply gaped as he put down the not inadequate
dummy." Jeffrey paused and lit a cigarette.
"West opened the jack of diamonds, having read in Watson's
book that the correct lead from jack-ten-fourth might as well be
the jack," he continued, "and I won my Ace, East following low.
"I had 2 spades, 5 hearts (providing they broke 3-2), 3 dia-
monds, and 1 club-11 sure tricks in all. The 12th could come
from spades if that suit broke favorably, but that was unlikely,"
Jeff said as he ground out his butt and quickly lit another.
"No," he sighed, "there had to be a way to make the hand
without a spade break. Stopping only a moment to survey the
hands, I quickly realized that if the person with the long diamonds
had the long spades too, then I was facing a baby simple squeeze.
Rather proud of myself, I must admit, I led my King of spades,
which West won with the Ace. He returned a heart to my Ace.
I led a small club to dummy's Ace, then drew trumps, West show-
ing out on the 3rd round. There was still the chance spades would
break, so I led both my Queen and Jack. But East showed out the
Jack, setting the stage for my squeeze. At this point the hands
* K Q x
. + xx

4 10
f J 10 9

4 --
4 x
T. K Jx x

# x
4 x
"On my penultisate heart, West shed a club, as did dummy
and East. Now, I led my last little spade and spread my hand.
West was fixed. If he tossed a spade, my 8 would be good, and
if he threw a diamond dummy's King and Queen would drop his
10 and 9, making dummy's small diamond good for 12th trick," he
said finishing the last of the port
"And that is how you played the hand?" I asked.
"Well, uh," he hedged, "iot, uh, exactly -"
"I remember," said Mitch, who had been trying to find a 12th
trick via a finesse. "I was dummy, and you didn't make the hand.
Although I'm not qiute sure why. Maybe if you had tried a deep
"Nonesense," Jeff replied, "but you are right. I didn't make
the hand. That palooka, Philthy, did me in. When I led the King
of spades, he ducked; And he ducked again when I led the Queen.
Now, I could no longer rectify the count, and had to concede down
"A remarkably brilliant defense from our not so brilliant
friend," I replied, "maybe we have misjudged him."
"No, no, no," Jeff exclaimed, shaking his hand wildly. "You
don't understand. He didn't do it on purpose. He had the Ace of
spades mixed in with his clubs, and he didn't realize it until the
4th trick, when I led clubs!"
"Did I do that," said a surprised Philthy, who had been
strangely quiet the whole time. "Well, at least it didn't cost the
contract; that would have been unforgiveable."

A2 Medieval Festival to open
The Ann Arbor Medieval Fes- 3 pm Burns Park; August 1 cert of medieval and Renais-
tival is back again, with a se- 11:00 am The Ark, 3 pm The sance music, using instruments
ries of programs the last week- Arboretum. from the Stearns Collection, di-
end of July and on into August. The dramatic offerings in- rected by Prof. Thomas Tay-
As in past years, the group will clude St. George. and the Dra- lor. The Interlochen Collegium
Present a complete medieval gon, The Farce of Master Pet- Musicum will also perform, and
fair (August 7 & 8) replete with' er Pathelin, and from the Wake- there will be a program of me-
medieval dramatic offerings. field Cycle, a mystery play, dieval dancing (including mor-
The weekend before that, a The Killing of Abel. ris dances and courtly danc-
toutring company will perform ing.)
at area parks. The schedule: The University's Collegium There will also be an arts
July 31 11:00 am, West Park, Musicum will perform a con- and crafts exhibition.

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