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February 02, 1987 - Image 8

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1987-02-02

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Page 8 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, February 2, 1987

Dancers deliver decent show

By Jose-Arturo Martinez
If the bad weather kept you
indoors, or you had other plans this
weekend, too bad- you missed out
on a sold-out dance concert at the
McIntosh Theatre, hosted by Jean
McGregor-Wiles, Lynn Balliette
and Linda Spriggs.
Introspective pieces contrasted
with extroverted seems to be the
norm in these concerts, and those
who came received a healthy dose.
McGregor-Wiles first presented
"Dancing with Birds and Fishes,"
an eclectic representation of a
surrealistic painting that depicts
birds and fish as they transform into
each other. Wiles' intense
movement and imagery helped to
bring to life some of the energy of
these transformations.
"Real Standard Time Ticks On",
a McGregor-Wiles group piece set
to music by Mathew Levy, was
quirky, vibrant, and full of energy.
It showcased McGregor-Wiles's

strengths as a choreographer with
its use of movement and group
dynamics. The vibrant colors in
the costumes and fine performances
by Melissa Deisig and Joy Grad
showed an extra quirkiness
combined with vivid facial
expressions, elements vital in this

Balliette's "Ode to Columbus,
Children and Other Great
Explorers." She appeared wearing a
neck brace, but left it backstage
during a strenuous solo. She
danced with lots of energy and no
signs of pain. Anyone who thinks
that dancers are not dedicated should

She appeared wearing a neck brace, but left it
backstage during a strenuous solo...Anyone who
thinks that dancers are not dedicated should think
again..

first choreography I have seen from
Linda Spriggs. The first part,
which featured Spriggs in a solo
using powerful, emotive floor-based
movements, may not have been
'pretty' (as much of the audience
noticed), but it nevertheless elicited
a reaction from just about everyone
in the vicinity.
The second movement featured a
tremendous change of pace. Mary
Fehrenbach, Vicky Lundell and
Marsha Pabalis joined Spriggs for
the rest of the dance based on a
story motif. The sinuous
movement, combined with the
'oriental' music by John Kaizan
Neptune, was strongly suggestive
of classical Indian dance. Vicky
Lundell and Mary Fehrenbach had a
strong sense for the dance; the three
women combined lent a sensual feel
to the work.
As a final note, all those couples
with young children too young to
appreciate what they are watching
might serve the audience better by
finding a babysitter.

dance.
McGregor-Wiles' decision to use
live accompaniment in both her
solo and group works is one that
other choreographers should
strongly consider. The added energy
of violinist Jenny Amador in the
solo, and the trio of Matthew Levy,
Andrew Dahlke and Rick Roe in the
group piece lent considerable energy
to both works.
Diane Petersen should win the
Purple Heart for her performance in

think again!
"Ode to Columbus" is easily
Balliette's best choreography to
date. It displays a lively, interesting
mastery of interplay with her
dancers. The movement appeared to
be fun for the dancers and it was
certainly pleasing to watch. The
music from selections by
Hindemith, Lutoslawski and
Stravinski kept the audience
attentive and involved..
"Under the Bodhai Tree" was the

'Mass'ive show opens Michigan in style

Just folks Daily Photo by GRACE TSAI
Sally Rogers captivates the audience at the 10th Annual Ann Arbor Folk
Festival after leading them in a rousing a capella hymn. Other enter-
tainers, included Donovan, Taj Majal, New Grass Revival, Dave
VanRonk, Peter Case, Elizabeth Cotton and Uncle Bonsai.

j
°. CENTER FOR
WESTERN EUROPEAN STUDIES
APPLICATIONS are now available for the
following Study Abroad Programs:
A cademic Year Programs:
British Programs: Cambridge, Essex,
London School of Economics,
St. Andrews, and York.
Florence, Italy.
Spring Programs:
Florence, Italy (Language)
Paris, France.
Summer Programs:
Florence, Italy
London, England
Salamanca, Spain (Language)
Tours, France (Language).

By John Ganun
After three nights of full hou -
ses and the rededication of the
Michigan Theater, Leonard Bern -
stein's Mass is over. From Tho -
mas Bloom's set design, which
prompted creative staging and
movement, Martha Andrew-
Schmidt's vibrant costumes, Paul
Brohan's dramatic lighting, and
David J. Lau's well-appreciated
sound reinforcement, to the su -
perb direction and performance of
all involved, Mass was a quality
show. However, with nearly 200
artists on stage, something is
bound to be not quite up to the
level of the rest of the show. But
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I didn't notice what it was.
Much of the blame for this lies
on the shoulders of director Ro -
bert Chapel. His developed sense
of what works on stage allowed
the beauty of Bernstein's work to
truly shine. He knows how to ca -
pitalize on the fun of children
running on stage without letting
it get sloppy. He knows how to
stage spontaneous chaos. Most
importantly, he knows how to
please an audience.
Chapel resisted the temptation
to let the show rely on the heavy
philosophical questions which are
constantly brought up in Mass.
Attention was concentrated on the
story of the Celebrant, who gains
the respect of his congregation,
loses it, then retrieves it by the
virtue of their faith.
Keith Austin Brown suc -
cessfully masters this role,
around which Mass revolves. Be -
ginning with his first entrance
from the aisle in plain clothes (as
if he were a member of the au -

dience), his golden baritone voice
appeases the audience, with the
soothing "A Simple Song." As
the Celebrant, he constantly ex -
emplifies devotion towards God,
until he no longer can stand up to
the doubting questions and re -
jections of his followers. In
"Things Get Broken," Brown cre -
ates a believable explosion of the
psyche of the Celebrant, lasting
nearly fifteen minutes. Wallow -
ing in confusion, self doubt, and
an ever-burning desire to serve:
God, he strips off his priestly
robes and leaves the stage, after
which he returns, to find a con -
gregation of new-found faith.
Strongest under Chapel's direc -
tion was the Street Chorus, four -
teen multi-talented performers
who represent all walks of life
and serve as antagonists of the
play. Their enthusiasm fulfilled
Bernstein's joyous "Kyrie Elei -
son," the rollicking fun (and
biting sarcasm) of "God Said,"
and the viscious "Agnus Dei."

An ensemble this vocally profi -
cient, energetic, and provocative
is a rarity.
Balancing the voices of the
Street Chorus were the ever-pre -
sent Acolytes, performed by the
eight member J. Parker Copley
Dancers. As constant servers of
the Mass, their wonderfully cho -
reographed movements moved the
show along smoothly. It's a good
thing they were dressed in black,
or they would have stolen the
show.
Added to all this were the rich
sounds of the Ann Arbor Cantata
Singers, and the Ann Arbor Sym -
phony Orchestra, under the di -
rection of Bradley Bloom, along
with the Boychoir of Ann Arbor,
directed by Thomas Strode. Their
performance amplified the show
not only in quantity, but also in
quality.
Bernstein's Mass served as a
successful opening event for Ann
Arbor's newly made-over "grand
dame." Congratulations.

-now

Michigan Daily
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Artists exhibit work at
(continued from Page 7) Tension and foreshadowing play a emo
skilled handling of the medium. He role in only a few of the works, and Cost
is an expert at setting mood and even in those their effects are cold
atmosphere; in a four-part series minimal. The city scene presented the
named for the seasons, one can feel in "Landscape, London" seems no displ
the breezes of spring, warm more threatening than a trout and
sunlight of summer, and the joy of jumping from a stream in "Painting amo
being outside on such days. in Springtime." both
However, Wynn does work up Any
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gallery
tions in one example, "The'
tume Party." Brighter, harsher
rs and interior lighting within
scene coupled with the eerie,
laced look of a Hawaiian dancer
a man wearing a mouse's head
ng others, set a tone which is
inviting and disturbing.
one who has ever felt uncom -
able at a party when they were
posed to be "enjoying"
nselves can relate to the piece.
Jowever, "The Costume Party"
ms to be an exception in the
rall group. The paintings
age rather than provoke. All the
es are pleasant to look at and
nisce upon and relevant in their
right, because they represent
stablished and well liked niche
merican painting.
oth exhibits can be seen
day through Saturday from
0 to 5:30 until February 11.
Simsar Gallery is located at
North Main Street and
fssion is, free.

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