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November 01, 1983 - Image 5

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1983-11-01

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ARTS

The Michigan Daily

Tuesday, November 1, 1983

Page 5

The Moody Blues travel in time

By Mike Cramer
HE MOODY BLUES overcame
jsound system problems, broken
strings, and middle-age Saturday night
and ended up putting on a super-group's
rock show for the not-quite-capacity
Crisler arena crowd. Much like the
band itself, the concert was full of
ironies: it was mellow, but it rocked; it
was confident, but unpretentious; and it
carried a flavor of the 80s, 70s, and 60s,
sometimes simultaneously.
Drummer Graeme Edge looked like a
55-year-old psychology prof, flutist Ray
Thomas like a cross between a hippie
and the owner of a Greektown
restaurant, and keyboardist Patrick
Moraz like your best friend's dad
decked out in 80s chic. Only guitarist
Justin Hayward looked young,
probably because of his shiny blond.
mane, combed a la 1969.
The crowd, too, was mixed. To my
left sat a graying suburban-looking
couple, in front of me a pair of flower
children who could've walked to the
concert via time-warp from the days of
Iron Butterfly and the Strawberry
Alarm Clock. On my right sat some
stylish young women of the eighties,
who were such great Moody Blues fans
that they quit gabbing and giggling only
long enough to squawk "Play 'Blue
World'!" They should have stayed
home and listened to Duran Duran or
something.

spaceships to flowers to acid-trip-out-
op-art were flashed onto the white
paneled backdrop, beginning with the
first song and continuing on and off for
the whole concert.
The group played a lot of newer stuff,
including six songs from 1981's Long
Distance Voyager, and six from the
new album, the Present. Most of The
Present songs sounded pretty good -
very Moody Bluesy - an 80s sound with
a hint of 70s and 60s (or vice versa). In
fact, I find the single, "Blue World, "
the least thrilling of all the new songs
they played.
Despite the semi-emphasis on newer
material, the Moody Blues knew the
crowd was there to hear the old stuff.
They didn't let us down, as they finished
up by playing five classics in a row.
"I'm Just a Singer in a Rock'n'Roll
Band" prompted the flower children in
front of me to dance. "Nights in White
Satin" made the crowd go completely
bonkers, and made me feel two things:
that I might just as well have been
transported into 1968 (corney, but
true), and that I was definitely seeing
and hearing a bonafide super-group.
"Legend of a Mind" (Timothy Leary)
was quite a treat, and it elicited the
second straight standing ovation from
the once-mellow ' crowd. "The
Question" kept the crowd on its feet,
clapping, screaming, and stomping for
quite a while after the band left the
stage. After about 10 minutes of con-
tinuous noise from the fans, the
Moodies returned to crank out a sizzling

Justin Hayward
... aging gracefully
The Moodies started slowly, opening
with dry ice fog and a new song, "Sit-
ting at the Wheel," followed by
"Gemini Dream" and "Tuesday After-
noon." All three of these songs were
marred by feedback, muddled vocals,
and poor mixing. Luckily, the sound
problems were pretty much corrected
by the fourth song, and weren't much of
a problem for the rest of the show.
During "Gemini Dream", a three-
dimensional, big-scale satellight
descended to hover above the stage,
which it did for the rest of the show.
Wild visuals ranging from pictures of

John Lodge
... not so gracefully
version of "Ride My See Saw." The
house lights came on in the middle of
the song, which was kind of an annoying
way to close a very good concert by an
amazing band.
Anyway, the five Veteran Cosmic
Rockers known as the Moody Blues put
on a fun, 23-song, three-decade show.
They all handled their instruments with
great skill - bassist John Lodge's
vocals were good, Thomas' and
Hayward's vocals were fantastic.
Despite its slow start, Saturday's show
was distinctively Moody Blues and
distinctively super-group.

_
u

'Patch' will be fertile

The University of Michigan
COLLEGE OF LITERATURE, SCIENCE,
AND THE ARTS
Eighth Distinguished
Senior Faculty Lecture Series
GARDNER ACKLEY
Henry Carter Adams
Distinguished University Professor
of Political Economy
in a three-part series, will discuss
Some Uses of Economics
NOVEMBER 1
The Growth of Economic Knowledge
NOVEMBER 3
The Size and Economic Roles of Government
NOVEMBER 8
Government Stabilization Policy

ii

i4

By Bob King
HAT CHILDREN'S theater? For
W the University Drama Depar-
tment, this is an appropriate question.
But no, unlike real-estate south of
Miami, The Plotters of Cabbage Patch
Corner is for real. The U of M's Drama
Dept. is reentering the children's
theater market after a hiatus of several
years.
Why this sudden change of policy?
Most of it stems from one source --
Jamie McDowell. Ms. McDowell is a
talented and obviously motivated doc-
toral candidate who six years ago also
began a Children's Theater program at
Delta College. She directed such
children's classics as Androcles and the
Lion and Alice in Wonderland (which
on many levels can baffle adults as
well). In fact, in 1979 Ms. McDowell was
chosen as the U.S. representative to the
International Children's Theater
Congress in Madrid - certainly not
child's play.
Who is this' play for; freshman
theater students, or those ubiquitous
honors English Majors? Sure, but more
importantly, The Plotters of Cabbage
Patch Corner is for the children of Ann
Arbor. According to Jennifer Schipper
of the Profesisonal Theater Program,
their staff has corresponded with over
150 children's groups, ranging from the
local public schools to day care groups
to Boy Scout troops (don't worry about

security in the theater). Public interest
doesn't seem to be a problem.
The play itself is unique in that it
requires direct audience participation,
which besides being a riotous
educational experience for the
children, would probably make good
entertainment for the adults.
According to Ms. Schipper, the visual
effects alone warrant a trip to the
theater. The set and costumes arethe
product of many hours of dedicated
work, and she assures us that this is a
very professional production. The ac-
tors and actresses are all U of M
Masters of Fine Arts students, who also
Sperform in all of the major PTP per-
formances. Besides, at $1.00 per ticket,
you really can't go wrong.
Another factor to consider is that this
may be the only children's performan-
ce by the Drama Department for
several years. Though Ms. McDowell is
very dedicated to Children's Theater,
the Drama Department in general is
not. So if you're at all interested, nab an
ice-cream cone, saunter over to the
Mendelssohn Theatre this week, and
enjoy a rare opportunity to take in a
professional quality children's play.
The Ann Arbor Civic Theatre ad
that ran on Oct. 30th had an in-
correct Box Office number. The
CORRECT NUMBER IS
668-8480
The Daily regrets the error

A reception in Rackham Assembly Hall
will follow the final lecture
RACKHAM AMPHITHEATRE
8:00 P.M.
All lectures are open to the public

, as4t p .
? , . 4 . ,
'81

Signing up Doily Photo by DAN HABIB
Stevie Ray Vaughn takes a break from his current tour to sign records at
Schoolkid's preceding his Sunday night appearance with the Moody Blues.
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Ann Arbor Civic Theatre presents
THE
PHILADELPHIA STORY

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