Tuesday, November 29, 1983
The Michigan Daily
The many joys of jitterbugging
By Laura Clark
T HF JUKEBOX in the corner of
Joe's Star Lounge blared a.
nostalgic beat, one I had heard before.
Croissant, egg, Canadian bacon,
cheddar cheese, Holandaise sauce
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A tiny brunette took the hand of a slim
handsome man in the center of the dan-
ce floor. Their feet moved in a
simultaneous motion to the treble chor-
ds, while their bodies swayed with the
aid of their moving arms. Their
movement looked synchronized and
well practiced, but their dancing style
seemed outdated. This would be my fir-
st experience learning how to jitterbug.
My partner and I timidly ventured
onto the dance floor. Five other couples
gathered around the small brunette
who introduced herself as Vicki
Honeyman -and her partner as Jim
Kruz. I guessed everyone else in the
class had, at one time or another, dan-
ced the jitterbug before - except my
partner and I who grew up learning the
hustle at high school dances.
Vicki shuffled the girls to one side of
the room, while Jim took the men to the
other side. Our first task was to learn
the basic step. Toe, heel, toe, heel, back
step, step forward. Repeat. My par-
tner looked confused at the other end of
the room. The elderly lady next to me
wasn't catching on. For one hour I
repeated the basic step till it became
almost part of my normal locomotion. I
rejoined my partner and we attempted
to try the basic step together clasping
our hands. This, we would learn, is the
My partner enjoyed the control he
had over the moves we would execute
on the dance floor. "It's a very sexist
dance, women are never allowed to
lead in almost every turn or move,"
laughed Vicki. The most important
item for the female to remember is that
she must be ready to respond to every
arm movement her partner makes.
For every movement of,his arm might
result in a different turn or spin. I
almost felt like a ragdoll as my partner
turned my body in different spins and
turns on the dance floor. But the ex-
citement I felt was something I had
never experienced before while dan-
My enthusiasm was shared by other
members of the class.
"I haven't had this much fun since
second grade," exclaimed one
To my surprise only one woman in the
class had taken a jitterbug lesson, an
Arthur Murray course circa 1940. The
others quickly reminded me jitter-
bugging was out of style during their
"But I'm glad it's gradually coming
back," said one of the '60s children.
Carlos Rodreigez, who was "dragged
(here) by his girlfriend" agreed, "It's
not like any other kind of dancing. I'm
really- glad I learned. It gives me
another side of dancing to show at par-
ties and bars." Rodreigez says he en-
joys latino and disco dancing, however
jitterbug has moved to the top of his
Vicki and Jim will be offering another
course in this nostalgic art beginning in
January. The advanced class begins
January 9th and the beginning class
starts January 11th. The cost is $25 a
person. Interested persons should con-
tact Joe's Star Lounge for information.,
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fl nnAAnl Iri IafDC
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CALLFORDETILS quad occupancy
By Elliot Jackson
THERE IS NOT MUCH that a folk singer from the British
Isles can do to increase the stature of Rudyard Kipling's
reputation. Kipling enjoys a curious position in the pantheon
of great story tellers. Though his ideas are considered
somewhat out of date and even downright embarrassing
upon occasion, he continues to be read, discussed, quoted -
and even sung.
Yes, 'ung. Since 1970, Peter Bellamy, a singer of
traditional songs, has been setting Kipling's poems to music.
The "Barracks Room Ballads" spring immediately to mind
as likely candidates for melodymaking, though they are not
the only ones. There are those of us who hold the image of
Kipling as a scribbler of jingoistic doggerel; a graduate of
that "toddy-rum-and-hi hi hi" school of versifying which the
intellegentsia of nowadays love to deprecate.
-But it's not true! I am afraid I must report that a different
image of the man comes through upon perusal of his poems
- some of them at any rate. Something like "Oak and Ash
and Thorn," which describes the magical properties of each
of these trees, reveals a side of Kipling which I would hesitate
to describe as mystical, but which is certainly preoccupied
with the darker and more elemental forces of life.
It is the spirit of this side of Kipling wtich Bellamy
illuminates so beautifully, if not perfectly. In his wanderings
through the world since 1969, Bellamy has spread his word
about Kipling, in addition to entertaining us with his ren-
ditions of traditional songs. So come to the Ark tonight
prepared not only for abit of Cooch Behar and Singapore, but
a healthy blast of British air as well. Peter Bellamy may not,
be able; to increase the stature of Rudyard Kipling's
reputation. But he can certainly improve its lustre.
FOR LARGE PARTIES.
By Cheryl Baacke
C OMIC OPERA automatically brings to mind Gilbert and
Sullivan, and the University's Society is preparing to
bring Ann Arbor some comedy, as well as "magic, romance,
a tea party and a love philtre," in their production of The
The plot centers around Alexis, a young, misguided man
played by Mike Huntress, who administers a love potion to all
the members of his village. Things are confusing as
everyone falls in love with the first person of the opposite sex
they see, and the only way the spell can be broken is if either
Alexis or the Sorcerer (played by Peter-John Hedlesky)
gives his life to the Devil.
The full-length operetta was the first successful effort of
W.S. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan. When the work was
written in 1876, the London Times called it "an extravagance
of the best, set forth in Mr. Gilbert's raciest manner, full of
genial humour and such droll fanties as come to him so
readily. . . Above all the music is spontaneous, appearing in-
variably to spring out of dramatic situations."
Production of the operetta lapsed after a revival in 1884,.
but the University's Gilbert and Sullivan Society promises to
demonstrate that The Sorcerer is "a delicate masterpiece
well worth appreciating."
The University's Society is managed by students and is
composed of students, faculty, and members of the com-
Performances at the Lydia. Mendelssohn Theatre begin
November 30 and continue through December 3 at 8 p.m.
each night, with a Saturday matinee at 2 p.m.
Tickets are on sale at the Mendelssohn Box Office for $5.50
and $4.00'for Wednesday night and Saturday matinee and
$6.50 and $5.00 for the remaining nights. For further ticket
information, call 763-1085.
Daily Classifieds Bring Results-Phone 764-0557
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