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November 08, 1990 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 1990-11-08

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The Michigan Daily -Thursday, November 8, 1990- Page 7

i .H

theater review
What happens in those pink houses?

by Sharon Grimberg

Mean-minded intolerance and petty
bigotry - it's the stuff that small
town, Midwestern dramas are made
of. And The Rimers of Eldritch is
no exception, complete as it is with
shrewish middle-aged gossips, minor
sexual indiscretions, a wholly
pathetic social pariah and an
inseparable respect for the Church
and the Law.
But though Lanford Wilson's
play harps on a theme that is sorely
over-tired, it's so richly layered and
so cleverly constructed - one scene

overlapping with the next the past
mingling with the future, the present
repeating itself - that the subse-
quent narrative pastiche remains
fresh and ultimately rather poignant.
The Rimers of Eldritch, which
was first seen in 1967 at the off-off-
Broadway showcase, Cafe La Mama,
opened at the Ann Arbor Civic The-
ater on November 1. Directed by
Anne Kolaczkowski Magee this par-
ticular production genuinely conveys
the pungent spirit of Wilson's
play- the tragedy of an old man
murdered, a lover left, an innocent
wrongly accused. The players are

almost always all on the stark set
together, they group and regroup and
under Magee's capable direction the
melange of shifting scenes is deftly
transformed into almost film-like
montage.
Annie Wagner's performance as
Patsy Johnson is particularly de-
lightful, as the petulant, boy-ob-
ssessed, overly made-up teenager
who is perpetually mortified that she
comes from such a miserable back-
water. "Don't you think he's cute
though?" she squeals to her best
friend with a prodigious shudder.
And Michelle Trame gives a lyrical

performance as Eva Jackson, the dis-
abled young woman, who delights in
autumn frost.
But there are a couple of in-
stances of injudicious casting. Tim
Morley, isn't old enough to play
Skelly Mannor, the town hermit and
the gossips aren't the acerbic, pug-
nacious baggages they should be.
But by and large the players totally
immerse the audience in small town
America.
THE RIMERS OF ELDRITCH
plays this Thurs., Fri., and Sat.and
next weekend at 8 p.m. at the Ann
Arbor Civic Theater, $6.

French prints have belle air

by Ami Mehta

EE-oo!
Mojo Nixon has been saved by rock'n' roll! After slagging off Martha
Quinn ("Stuffin' Martha's Muffin"), Debbie Gibson ("Debbie Gibson's
Pregnant with my Two-Headed Love Child") and banks ("I Hate
Banks"), the risin' one returns without washboard slappin' Skid Roper
in tow. Instead, he has a real band - though John Doe, who played on
his latest release Otis, isn't touring with him - like Elvis or Don
Henley. Otis features a touching tribute to that Bono wannabe in the
song "Don Henley Must Die." Mojo encourages flash photos to be
taken during the show because they make him feel like Elvis. But then
so does being bloated. Mojo comes up the middle of a hat trick at the
.Blind Pig tonight, with the Cave Dogs opening and those Jersey geeks,
the Dead Milkmen, headlining. Tickets are available at Ticketmaster
and Schoolkid's in advance for $10 (plus the evil service charge). Cover
is also $10 at the door. Doors open at 9:30 p.m.

MISS OF ARC
Continued from page 5
stake for heresy.
Unlike George Bernard Shaw's
Strict attention to the actual histori-
pal chronology in his play St. Joan,
also based on the Joan of Arc legend,
Anoulih is much more free with his
characters and events. Anoulih be-
gins with Joan's trial, and the im-
ortant instances in her life are acted
out from there. The effect is like
Shakespeare's play-within-a-play,
leveling with the inner drama provid-
ing concrete events, and the outer
scaffolding focusing more on the
idea of Joan. "He's not being true to
history," says director Kevin Saari.
"But he's being true to the idea of
what Joan represents."

Like the classic Greek tragedies,
knowing the legend beforehand only
serves to enhance one's enjoyment.
"It's more that (the audience) are able
to look at what things in society
Joan is going against... (since) they
know the history they can concen-
trate on the larger issue of the play,"
says Saari. It's a "mixing of
(dramatic) styles... some distortion
is almost impressionistic," he con-
tinues. It all serves to dramatize Joan
of Arc's sacrifice, and allows the
audience revel in her valor.
The RC players will present THE
LARK in the East Quad Auditorium
at 8: p.m. on Thursday, Friday and
Saturday and November15,16b
and17. There are 2 p.m. matinees
Sunday and November18. Tickets
are $5.

The words "city" and "country"
conjure up very different visions.
While the country brings peaceful
and simple living to mind, the city
invokes images of a crowded and
busy atmosphere. This contrast ex-
isted in many countries around the
world in the 19th century, but
especially in France, where the
wheels of industrialization were
beginning to turn.
These changes can best be shown
through visual forms like the paint-
ings in the exhibition, City and
Country in French Prints, 1850-
1900 at the Museum of Art. This
display of artwork explores the way
that French printmakers perceived
these two regions during the second
half of the 19th century.
Both the country and the city
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transformed drastically during this
era due to the increase in transporta-
tion, population and urbanization.
This urban-industrial revolution
caused perceptions of the country and
the city to differ as well. The coun-
try came to represent the idealized
past whereas the city focused more
on the future.

To reinforce the all-pervasiveness
of the themes of both city and coun-
try, artists associated with Realism,
Impressionism, Post-Impressionism
and Romanticism are showcased in
this exhibition. The prints reflect the
social upheavals that France was
going through which shaped
reflections on urban and rural life.

Many of the country print artists
portray rural life as untouched by
modern progress despite the ongoing
changes taking place. There is a
sense of permanence in the images
of the rural landscapes of France that
these artists found fascinating and
they tried to capture these sights on
See FRENCH, Page 8

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