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February 17, 1984 - Image 6

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The Michigan Daily, 1984-02-17

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41

ARTS

The Michigan Daily

Friday, February 17, 1984

Page 6

Bernstein gives amazing

performance

By Bob King
IN THEIR cardigans and oxfords at
Wednesday's rehearsal, one facet of
the Vienna Philharmonic normally lost
in the glare of harmony became
evident: the orchestra is composed of

individuals. They're devoted, 100 per-
cent musicians, but they are 100 per-
cent individuals, too. And young. "They
look like a college orchestra, but ..,"
trailed off Bernstein, whose casual ap-
pearance hid nothing of his splendor,
"some of them are really 'just kids."
This was no exaggeration, the first horn
is 23.

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Age and all else apart, there is
nothing but love between Bernstein and
the orchestra: "We've become so close,
closer than I was with the New York or
in Israel . . . I guess it's this repertoire
- that's what they live for.
"They grew up in the city with
Mozart, Schumann, Haydn,
Beethoven," glows Bernstein, "I can
think a phrase, and they play it."
Clairvoyant or not, the orchestra per-
formed with intense emotion, Bernstein
merely fine tuned them as did
Shakespeare his thoughts into verse.
Reflecting on a recent recording of
Mozart's Symphony No. 41 with this
group, Bernstein smiles "the adante is
simply to weep; in all of 'Jupiter,' I've
never heard anything like it." Ann Ar-
bor would find out the same this.
evening.
As Bernstein ascended the podium,
the more-than-sold-out audience fell
silent with awe, this reaction was im-
mediately justified by the exposition of
"Jupiter." For lack of skill to praise
properly, I can only say the orchestra
lived up to its reputation: mere words
fall short.
The strings glowed in harmony
musicians hear only in their sleep. The
interpretation was sharp, yet smooth,
the energy tempered with classic
restraint. By the third movement Ber-
nstein was himself in dance, conducting
not by motions but example. The ap-

plause called the maestro back on stage
three times.
After intermission, P.C. Boylan,
Dean of the Music School, announced
that Wednesday's performance by
Leonard Bernstein and the Vienna
Philharmonic was their 100th perfor-
mance together, a fact that had sur-
prised Bernstein at rehearsal more
than it did the audience this evening.
The evening's crescendo came as our
own Hal Shapiro ascended the podium
to re-introduce Leonard Bernstein and
the 'Philadelphia Philharmonic,' an
oratory clearly supported with an ap-
plause of laughter. Fired by this initial
triumph, the President moved onward
to explain the aesthetic importance of
this concert in each person's life, its
cultural value, the attendance, stopping
short of Bernstein's horoscope only at
the incessant coughing of the first cello.
The orationnwas astimely as a Bud-
weiser commercial at a frat party:
there wasn't one unappreciative neuron
in the entire audience. ;
Bernstein then reascended the
podium, and Brahm's Symphony No. 2
began; the maestro drew sound from
the musicians like a necromancer
draws spirits from a circle: the origin
never seemed orchestral.
Following a standing ovation, again
divided into three parts, Bernstein left
the stage for the evening. But, as
Shapiro had pointed out, this wasa per-
formance that left no one unaffected.

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By Paul Clipson_
A MAN ARRIVES at a train station.
As he nears his train, another man
exits a taxi and makes his way to the
same train. Both men enter the same
carriage from opposite ends, walk
towards each other and sit down facing
one another. They are strangers -
strangers on a train. One man acciden-
tally bumps the other's legwith his foot
and apologizes. A conversation
develops. Watching Alfred Hitch-
cock's Strangers On A Train, onecannot
suspect that this chance meeting will
eventually lead to murder. It does.
Suspicion and murder are two of Hitch-
cock's favorite themes, and he uses
them brilliantly in this chilling and
suspenseful film.
Strangers On A Train is the type of
gripping, creepy movie for which Hit-
chcock earned his nickname, "The
Master of Suspense." this is a gem of a
thriller packed with weird characters
and famous scenes. The film accen-
tuates Hitchcock's knack for telling a
story in purely visual terms, as in the
opening train station sequence where

the camera focuses on only two pairs of
shoes, following their fateful paths
which eventually cross; in the same
way, a train follows a track which
crosses many others.
The story is meticulous and full of
twists that are part of the film's appeal.
Guy Haines (Farley Granger), a tennis
star, bumps into Bruno Antony (Robert
Walker) on a train on its way to
Washington, D.C. The two strangers
chat over lunch. Guy is quiet, reserved
and conservative. Bruno, on the other
hand, is an unabashed. irresponsible
playboy. His passion for drinking,
driving at high speeds (with his eyes
closed) and plotting imaginary mur-
ders, borders on the insane. As they
talk, Guy becomes alarmed at Bruno's
knowledge of his private life. Bruno
reads the "scandal sheets" which
frequently publicize Guy's tennis
career, his strained marriage to an
adulterous wife and his affair with a
beautiful senator's daughter, Anne
Morton, whom he wants to marry.
Bruno tells Guy that he, too, has a
problem. He hates his father. So much
so that he often dreams of the different
ways in which he could kill him. Bruno

'angerso1,
suggests that if Guy murders his ol
man, Bruno will kill Guy's unfaithful-.
wife, Miriam, who will not consent to ai-_
divorce. Thus,. there would be tw&)
motive-less murders, and two perfect
alibis. At this point, Guy realizes Bruno
is nothing less than a lunatic and-
jokingly tells him that his plan is a-.
sound one and disembarks. Unfor:
tunately for Guy, Bruno takes this reac-.
tion to be Guy's consent to his morbid-
plan, and murders Miriam that night.
To make matters worse, Guy had a
conspicuously violent argument with
Miriam that same day, making him a
chief suspect for the murder.'Guy soon
learns that Bruno expects him to carry
out his part of the "bargain." Guy must
now murder Bruno's father. If he
doesn't, Bruno will frame Guy. What.
began as a casual conversation on the,
train has thrust Guy into a suspicious
world where Bruno and the police con-
front him at every turn.
The film has its strengths and
weaknesses. Some of the dialogue is
unconvincing, perhaps because the'
script passed through several screen-.-
writers' hands during preproduction.;
Ruth Roman's performance as Guy's.
lover, Anne Morton, is just too stiff and,-
cold to be engaging. Roman and Farley.'
Granger were thrust into playing the:
leads, against Hitchcock's wishes, by' l,
the production heads of Warne
Brothers. Granger is effective
see STRANGERS, Page 7
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