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October 26, 1980 - Image 16

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The Michigan Daily, 1980-10-26
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Page 6-Sunday, October 26, 1980-The Michigan Daily
SURE HE CAN WRITE.. .A2 1r,; an

The Michigan Daily-Sunday
"1,.d ma ' ,. -U.,u f f

... But can you dance to him999

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Listening to Dave Marsh sound off
about Rolling Stone magazine, you'd
never guess he was a contributing
editor; he's only too happy to shine a
light on its faults. This particular chilly
October afternoon, just a few hours
before Bruce Springsteen takes the
Crisler Arena stage to launch into the
first show of his 1980 tour, Marsh is
lounging around the Student
Publications building, sipping Coke and
cheerfully biting the hand that feeds.'
Chewing it to pieces, in fact.
"Rolling Stone sucks," he says blun-
tly. "There's a couple of things every
issue worth reading, just like any other
magazine. But Rolling Stone's not apart
from the rock press anymore. In fact,
you should want it to be less and less
apart, because it's the only way
anything new can happen."
He's right, of course; gone are the
days when Rolling Stone could
seriously be considered a "counter-
culture" publication. Lately, even its

mainstream respectability has been
slip-sliding away. This past year's
issues have featured a cheesecakey
Linda Ronstadt fashion' spread and
covers adorned with the likes of Pat
Benatar and the Cars (with accom-
panying flack-pieces inside)-in short,
Creem Magazine for post-high
schoolers. This coming January, editor
Jann Wenner is even trashing the
bulky-newspaper format for Time
Magazine glossiness.
But if Marsh is bitter about the ab-
sorption of Rolling Stone into the facade
of late-Seventies hype, he doesn't show
it. For one thing, the magazine has been
a launching pad for his own success as a
rock critic. That success culminated
with this year's uncannily well-timed
release of Born To Run: The Bruce
Springsteen Story, an enthusiastic
paperback biography of the Boss that's
earned a spot on the best-seller charts.
BORN TO RUN is an intelligent, ex-
tensively detailed account of Br:uce's
career, but throughout, Marsh keeps

Daily photo by David Harris
Dave Marsh holds court for aspiring rock writers in the Daily library. "Kiss
my button, peons!"? No thanks, Dave.

his own feelings about his subject cen-
ter-stage; he's a True Believer, and can
barely write Springsteen's name
without trotting out allusions to the
mythically redeeming powers of rock
and roll magic.
In person, Marsh is more subdued; he
rarely smiles, and for every en-
couraging note that seeps into the con-
versation there are ten minutes of
grimly honest cynicism about rock and
roll's future as a popular art. Marsh's
righteously conservative musical
tastes make him somewhat of a
"Classicist" next to most of his rock-
critic cohorts. These'days, for example,
he's down on austere, hard-edged New
Wave bands like the Gang of Four and
PiL for being afraid to exhibit the raw,
explosive emotionalism central to rock
and roll. Marsh believes that music's
future lies in infusing its most popular
forms with innovative, possibly non-
rock ideas, but not the other way
Owen Gleiberman is a staff writer
for the Arts page.

around. Some people see this as reac-
tionary, but at least it's a welcome
respite from reviewers who are only too
eager to lap up the latest in arty,
ephemeral trends.
"I think what's missing in punk is
somebody who's willing to come out
and be sentimental," he says. "Rock
and roll's problem now is that there's
too much emphasis being put on
musical novelty for its own sake, from
the point-of-view of people who take it
seriously and work with it seriously.
I'm talking about all this bogus, inept,
James Brown/Sly Stone, pseudo-
funk, English-intellectual horsecrap,.
which I don't get. I didn't get it when
they called it No Wave. I don't get it
now that it's developed a little bit and
gotten a little more rational-which is
to say marketable. I don't get it
because, first of all, I don't think it's an
adequate response to the problem it
thinks it's addressing, and second of all,
I don't get it because it's not very
See STONE, Page 14

Let's face it, at eight years old which
one of us would have turned down a
chance to trade places with Shirley
Temple? Leslie Winick, producer-
manager of the Young People's Theatre
(YPT) of Ann Arbor and a recent
University graduate, believes that
children want to perform. "Kids call
me up and ask me 'What kind of classes
do you offer and how can I be in a
show?' That kind of enthusiasm can't
be coming from pushy stage mothers.
It's from the kids themselves." And
that's what YPT is all about. It's
theatre for kids, by kids.
From its inception four years ago,
YPT has expanded its program from
classroom work to a 12-member touring
company, studio productions, and
workshops. YPT also sponsors visits by
professional groups and trips to other
theatres for its members.-Says Winick,
"Through their experience in theatre
the kids learn to work with others. They
gain discipline and become part of a
team. They've got to learn these skills
sometime and it's great if they can
learn them while they're young through
DORIS SPERLING, an elementary
school teacher at Bryant Grade School
in Ann Arbor and one of the founders of
YPT, recalls a comment made at one of
the first meetings of YPT in 1977 by a
senior at an Ann Arbor high school. "He
said that he had taken the same drama
class three times over because it was
the only acting class he could take. Our
feeling for kids who have this love of
theatre is that there should be an oppor-
tunity for them to act." Meryl Miller,
another co-founder of YPT, felt that it
was important to give children an op-
portunity to begin acting at a young
age. He once told Winick, "If I find a
junior in high school that's interested in
acting, it's already too late for him. He
already has too many inhibitions."
Winick describes first through third
graders as "real creative. By catching
them so early they have no inhibitions,


they're ready to do anything." Winick
points out, "the least opportunities for
participation in drama exist during the
pre-high school years. YPT never has a
problem filling up our classes for the
younger grades, because there is no
place else for the kids to go."
aspects of theatrical production, in-
cluding acting and technical work. The

performed for more than 50 groups in
southeastern Michigan, including the
Performing Arts Festival of Detroit's
Attic Theatre and the Furray Festival
of Community Theatre, a statewide
competition for amateur theatre groups
where YPT won the award as the most
outstanding group.
The studio productions provide an
opportunity for YPT members who are
not in the repertory company to prac-
tice their art. Each year the group
produces two studio shows. Last year's
studio production for the fourth through
sixth graders, "Little Ki and the Ser-
pent" (which was directed by
Janiszewski) had to be cancelled
because of a power failure. Although
YPT wanted to reschedule "Little Ki,"
they did not think it would be finan-
cially possible. Janiszewski recalls,
"But at the last minute a woman from
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two major acting classes are Creative
Drama and The Actor and Production.
Creative drama stresses im-
provisational skills while the produc-
tion class focuses on working with
scripts. YPTers can also take classes in
interpretation, voice technique, make-
up and stage management, to name a
few. The group also sponsors shorter
workshops throughout the year. Past
workshops have included mime with
noted area performer 0. J. Anderson,
and a costumer.
Improvisation is the "strongest
point" of YPT's repertory company ac-
cording to Winick. Two out of the three-
shows performed by this year's com-
pany-"Merlin" and "The Three
Musketeers"-were formed by im-
provising on a general outline. "The
kids tend to freeze up with scripts,"
says Lorel Janiszewski, a former YPT
instructor. "They think they have to act
in a certain way." Janiszewski, who
graduated from the University last
year with a B.A. in Theatre Arts, had
one of her first experiences in theatre
with the now defunct Junior Light
Opera (JLO), an Ann Arbor children's
theatre group similar to YPT. Accor-
ding to Janiszewski, "Working with
JLO was one of my best learning ex-
periences as an actress. There was a
much tighter structure to the work that
I did with the University. I was urged to
experiment a lot more at JLO. And
groups like JLO and YPT encourage
'kids to get involved in technical aspects
of theatre earlier, such. as running
lights and making sets."
LAST YEAR the repertory company

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