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November 13, 1989 - Image 9

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1989-11-13

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ARTS_

The Michigan Daily

Monday, November 13, 1989

Page 9 7

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I ' 1

Jethro Tull: It
bites
Although Ian Anderson did his
best to entertain Saturday's audience,
Jethro Tull basically disappointed
their Ann Arbor fans. The show be-
gan with the members backlit, play-
ing behind a screen; it promised to
be fun. Unfortunately, this didn't
amount to much as Jethro Tull
lacked their old creativity.
t Bites opened the show by play-
ing a few releases from their new al-
bum, Eat Me in St. Louis. The guys
in the band threw the audience into

hysterics when they immersed them-
selves in the music by throwing
their heads back and forth and falling
on the stage. A typical opening
band, It Bites had one of those lead
singers that makes the viewer turn
off MTV. With his unkempt, long,
blond hair and black-and-white
checkered clown outfit, the lead
singer was almost cute as he sang
hard rock love songs about his little
broken heart. The keyboard player
talked to himself and clawed at the
audience.
Finally, Ian Anderson led Jethro
Tull (two guitarists, a keyboard

player, and a drummer with an ex-
treme personality) onto the stage.
Anderson started by playing and
singing into his famous flute (which
had a microphone inside) while danc-
ing around the stage.
The band members, although be-
ginning to show signs of aging,
seemed fit as they danced around
with Anderson. All five men were
dressed in Old English style clothing
which complemented their antique-
looking instruments.
It's not the fault of Jethro Tull
that the concert was disappointing.
The 1irge number of speakers in a
such a small auditorium as Hill
made the music so loud that most
people covered their ears to hear bet-
ter. The flute and acoustic guitar
could barely be heard over the ob-
noxious screeching of two electric
guitars.
Also, their newer songs, which
filled most of the program, were dis-
appointing. They resembled heavy
metal noise instead of the classic
Jethro Tull sound we've come to
love. The audience craved old tunes
and even though they did play fa-
vorites such as "Aqualung,"
"Locomotive Breath," "Oh, God!,"
and "Thick as a Brick," these weren't
enjoyable due to the terrible acous-
tics.
There were, however, some re-
deemable moments during the two-
hour show. The use of colored lights
contributed to the music, and the old
organ-like keyboard actually had
steampipes that whistled during a
few selections. Also, five people
dressed in white, wearing white
masks and miners' hats with bright
lights, roamed the stage spotlighting
Anderson from time to time.
Perhaps it would have been best
if Jethro Tull left the public spot-
light while they were still unbeat-
ably hot.
-Lynne Cohn
Fond memories
of Yesterday
What would our lives be like
without memories, those cherished
glimpses of experience that inform

Torya Beard as Babs provides some welcome comic relief to Fanshen Cox's Laverne in Long Time Since Yesterday,
a well done University Players production.

our being and guide our moments on
this earth? Memories can serve as
blissful reminders of past chapters of
life, but they can also taint the reality
,of the present, allowing a static
vision of a changing world to dictate
one's attitude. In P.J. Gibson's ex-
traordinary drama Long Time Since
Yesterday, presented by the Univer-
sity Players in the Trueblood The-
atre, past confronts present in a
moving revelatory exploration of
five college friends who convene to
share the loss of a former classmate.
Under the direction of Charles Jack-
son, the young female ensemble
stylishly and intelligently handles
the emotional crests of Gibson's
provoking script.
Gibson's play of the hidden
struggles that these women, known
in school as the "Rainbow Six,"
have had to face to secure their rung
on the social ladder does not so
much draw conclusions about the
circumstances surrounding Janeen
Earl-Taylor's suicide as it explores
incidents in these women's lives. By
witnessing conversations and
subjective flashbacks, the audience
becomes the objective eye, sifting
the truth from the five converging
viewpoints.
From the first scene of a young
Janeen and her best friend Laveer
Swan (both played with a shy hon-
esty by Mershon E. Dye and Tashia

Munson) reading from a book the
girls call "erotica," the action is
sharp. These are bright, well-edu-
cated little women in navy school
uniforms who are just beginning to
learn about life and love. Dye gives
Janeen a prudish excitement that
complements Munson's "ahead of
my time" self-assurance and mis-
chievous grin. Even in childhood, it
is Laveer, or "Lavie," who impels
Janeen to follow her own feelings
with "Who cares about being re-
spected?" and "I stay 'on punish-
ment' but I also have fun."
From childhood, the scene
changes to the living room of a well
appointed early 20th Century home
with its wooden stairs, bookcases

and parquet floors. The five actors
enter the Earl-Taylor home
solemnly, each carrying a red flower
and a memorial prayer card. They
walk silently through the room, each
deep in her own meditation.
Quickly, the group comes to life as
they drink, eat and share vital scraps
of their own lives as well as memo-
ries of Janeen.
The play's two main characters,
an older Laveer and Panzi Lew Mc-
Vain, are the source of intense con-
flict. The cause of Janeen's death is
perhaps hidden somewhere in their
stories and revealed through flash-
backs in both of their minds. Fan-
shen Cox's Laveer is a relaxed,
See REVIEWS, page 11

A Tribute To
The Black Panther Party
Mon. Nov. 13, 7pm
Hutchins Hall rm 100, Law Quad
Film: Black Panther, a documentary
Keynote speaker: Ron Scott,
former Detroit Black Panther
Also, Michael Dawson, professor in the Center for
African and African American Studies
sponsored by UCAR ant the BakerMandefa Center

JULIE HOLLMAN/Daily
Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull: Are you hiding your flute, or are you just happy
to see the sold-out crowd at Hill Auditorium Saturday night? Only his
tailor knows for sure.

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