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November 20, 1989 - Image 9

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The Michigan Daily, 1989-11-20

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The Michigan Daily - Monday, November 20, 1989 - Page 9

REVIEWS
Continued from page 8
Birdie brings
back boppers
Imagine a throwback to the
W1950s when the days of rock 'n' roll
idols, cool dudes with slicked hair
and smooth moves and chicks with
ponytails and boy-crazy minds pre-
vailed. In Happy Days this scene
worked well, but it didn't quite jell
i the UAC-Soph Show production.
o Bye Bye Birdie this past weekend.
The show got off on the right
foot. Teenage idol Conrad Birdie
(tom Daugherty) gives one last kiss
tq teenybopper Kim Macafee (Ellen
foffman) from Sweet Apple, Ohio
oa The Ed Sullivan Show as a pro-
niotion scheme conjured up by
Wrdie's manager Albert Peterson
(Tito Guerra) and secretary Rossie
Alvarez (Janet Caine). Daugherty fit
his character to a tee complete with
tle greased look, sideburns, various
*sequined outfits and enough pelvic
gyrations to make Michael Jackson
jimp back. Upon first entry, his
niacho-man stage presence was much
lice the Fonz's in Happy Days,
causing girls to fall into a mindless,
sdattered and swooning frenzy from
just one look.
One of Birdie's most devoted
fans, Ursula Merkle (Courtney
CALL
Continued from page 8
out the uncompromising group as
one of the bands to watch in the
coming decade.
Although the group started out in
the "new wave" scene of the early
'80s, their recent albums show more
clearly The Call's solid roots in the
earlier rock'n'roll tradition of influ-
ences like Bob Dylan and The Band.
Their trump card, though, is the
Oklahoman Been's heroic voice, the

Loveman), represents the epitome of
idol worshipping. She and the rest of
the Birdie-crazed teenagers were hu-
morous in the beginning of the
show, but their idolatry soon became
hackneyed. Other aspects of the
show, such as the constant bickering
of Mrs. Peterson (Michelle Watnick)
with son Albert and wife-to-be Rose,
also became trite in the second act.
Her portrayal of an overprotective,
cantankerous mother didn't come
across the way it should have; her
ridiculous flirting with Birdie was
also very unbelievable.
The relations between Albert and
Rose were, however, more realistic.
After eight years of high-strung Al-
bert promising Rose he would go to
college, become an English teacher
and get married to her, he finally
comes through with the promotion
for Birdie to make all of their plans
and dreams come true. Of course on
the road to eternal happiness they
run over a few potholes: Mama
Peterson, Albert's insensivity to
Rose and Rose's running away from
Albert. In the end everything works
out peachy keen including Rose fi-
nally expressing her true Spanish
identity with her flair for dancing and
singing extraordinaire. She proved to
be the dominating force behind the
manager-secretary relationship that
turned into a bond of mutual depen-
dence.
The well-known songs such as
"Put On A Happy Face," "A Lot Of

Livin' To Do" and "Kids" kept the
show afloat with good music and
voice from the band and cast mem-
bers. The strength of the chemistry
between the Macafee family also
provided favorable reactions. The re-
lations reminded one of the Cun-
ningham family in Happy Days
with the cautious guidance of Mrs.
Macafee, the overreactions of Mr.
Macafee, the desire for puberty from
Kim and the tomboy nature of
Randy.
Some scenes that didn't seem to
mesh could have been cut under the
discretion of director Wendy Lippe,
and some of the overacting could
have been dampened to tighten the
overall performance and spotlight the
main characters. Bye Bye Birdie had
strong points in its singing and cer-
tain acting but, overall, sitting at
home with a bowl of popcorn watch-
ing Happy Days reruns could have
been just as satisfying.
-Ami Mehta
The Pixies
lambast all too
briefly
Last Thursday, The Pixies left
me in emotional ruin. The Pixies are
not a band you just kind of like -
they're not Squeeze. They're a per-
verse perfection of a dream you
probably shouldn't have. Something
your mother would warn you about,

saying that you'll go blind if you
listen to it too often or too in-
tensely.
Vocalist Black Francis, an unas-
suming and distinctly pear-shaped
man, concussed the wanting crowd at
St. Andrew's Hall as expected. All
the frightening ungodly lyrics of
incest and violence were too erudite
~ and poignant to be mere speculation.
Boston's finest export, and one of
the few groups on the 4A.D. label
worth seeing live, highlighted most
of their material from their third al-
bum Doolittle. "Monkey Gone to
Heaven" and "Debaser" were gregari-
ous crowd pleasers. Black Francis'
primal screams and Gordon Gano-
esque vocals, always free from pre-
tension, had a confidence lacking in
their last Detroit appearance with
Love and Rockets. The Pixies were
much more entertaining in a smaller
venue.
Suddenly, after only 45 minutes
of violent bliss they walked off
stage. No encores. No warning. No
apology. On went the house lights
and out came some swarthy crewman
bastard to explain the group was be-

AMY FELDMAN/Daily
Cast members huddle in the UAC-Soph Show production of Bye Hye
Birdie. The '50s found a home in the Mendelssohn this weekend.

ing electrocuted by their instru-
ments. A short circuit and it was all
over. They still hadn't played their
bodacious single "Here Comes Your
Man." The frustration of thwarted

expectations was that you couldn't
blame any specific thing. The Pixies
were great regardless, but that unctu-
ous crewman bastard...
-R. S. Lee

Fun fact #26: Former Michigan Daily Arts writer
RJ Smith is now gainfully employed at the Village
Voice. In his happy days here, he wrote about Jazz.
You can too. Don't miss this remarkable career
opportunity. You'll get free tickets and records too.
Call 763-0379.

most powerfully sincere in all of
rock. He offers the testimonial au-
thority of U2 without the grand-
standing ego, and his band backs up
the sweeping, dramatic sounds of
Scotland's Simple Minds with a
solid blues/rock-and-roll foundation
of freight-train rhythms and power-
saw guitar.
Their new album, Let the Day
Begin, enforces a sonic simplicity
that stresses their strongest points.
The earth-quaking title track is the
kind of working-class tribute only
Been could pull off; "For Love," an
epic tale, conjures the mystery of
filming in Morocco on Martin
Scorcese's The Last Temptation of

Christ, in which Been starred as the
apostle John: "It was so incredibly
crude and physical and primitive and
criminal and dangerous," Been said.
"And at the same exact time it was
this phenomenally mystical, spiri-
tual place. And it's these two things
living and coexisting together." It's
the same duality which makes The
Call's mix of music and message
such an unlikely - and remarkably
captivating - phenomenon.
THE CALL, with opening act The
Graces, appear at the Nectarine
Ballroom tonight. General admis-
sion tickets are $10.50; the doors
open at 9 p.m.

INTRODUCTORY SYSTEM

I

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DON'T FORGET
ABOUT THE ONE
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* 222 State Plaza e 769-4211

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