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October 14, 1993 - Image 11

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-10-14

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The Michigan Daily - Weekend etc. - Thursday, October 14, 1993 -3

Rogues Trial'promises outrageous three-ring circus fun

It's payback time and here comes John Cricket.
This is not your typical prankster - this is John
Cricket, the ultimate con-man, and the main character in
Ariano Suassuno's play, "The Rogues' Trial." In this
crazy comedy Suassuno uses this character and others to
satirize religion, wealth and human frailties.
This clever con-artist has got some serious scores to
settle. Along with his sidekick, Chico, he is setting out to
get revenge on those who have wronged him. These
individuals include his negligent, insensitive employers,
the money-hungry members of the local clergy and any-
one else who happens to get in his way. John knows
everyone's weaknesses, and all the good angles. All he is
going to do is dangle the right worm, and his enemies will
follow their own petty greed and obsessions to their
demise. Unfortunately, even the best plans can go astray,
and even this mastermind can't foresee everything. On the
verge of complete success, one seemingly insignificant
miscalculation leads to John's undoing. Suddenly, he
finds himself face to face with his most distinguished
opponent: the Devil. Now let's see if he can talk his way
out of an after-life in hell.
"The Rogues' Trial" has been chosen by University
Productions as this season's opening presentation. It's a
Brazilian comedy which can be compared to anything
from a visit to the circus to a modern British Miracle Play.
The playwright describes the opening of the play as if it
were a scene taking place in a three-ring circus. The actors
bound out onto the stage with all the energy and hoopla of
the Big Top, and naturally, the play is narrated by a clown.

In this outrageously comical and dynamic atmosphere,
Suassuno playfully explores the modern obsession with
material wealth. He probes various human shortcomings
in a light hearted and hilarious manner. The end product
is a fast-paced, anything-goes kind of comedy.
The University's presentation of "The Rogues Trial,"
which is directed by Jerald Schweibert, promises to be just
as lively as the script's portrayal. Melinda Teter, the
assistant director, and a grad student here at U of M
compared the production to "going to the roller-skating
rink when you were in seventh grade, with all the lights
and the movement, someone falls, another person gets
up." Schweibert described various special effects such as
elaborate lighting, balls of fire and fog. He also said the
production was very physical and ensured a "circus-like
atmosphere ... it should be quite a show."
Schweibert said he chose to direct this piece because of
the kind of acting involved. "It's different fromstraight
realism," he remarked. "The sense of truth is expanded. It
is a good exercise and experience for the actors."
He also described it as a good experience for the
audience. "This play is a Brazilian piece, which is not
something you get to see that often." Despite its foreign
culture, the quick wit and tongue-in-cheek humor of "The
Rogues' Trial" has a universal appeal, and as Schweibert
said, "It's a comedy which everyone can relate to and

I UES'TRIAL will be presented October 14-
16 and 21-23 at 8p.m., and the October 17 and 24 at 2
p.m. at the Trueblood Theater. General admission
tickets are $10 ($6 students). Call 764-0450.

The U Players open the season with "The Rogues'Trial," a contemporary Brazilian farce by Ariano Suassuno.

~)fij~x osx eole A p
After tbeDaily came outlast week,
About five or sixpeopletold me, "Hey,
ead your column." Of course, two
were the Weekend editors, one was
aoother Daily editor, one was my
roommate and I myself was one of
them - but I couldn't understand
what I was saying at first because I

lying to medical

school: When life hands you a lemon ...

had food in my mouth (not to mention
smeared all over my face and body).
It comes as no surprise to me that
unless I force them, even my friends
don't read this stuff - and I'm not
offended. In fact, it's given me a great
idea. I'm going to use this space as a
kind of secret, private journal. I can
even rip to shreds all the jerks I know
and this is thlaM b"We ahey,' ever
see it!
So, today's journal topic is going
ta-be my day at a med school inter-
larrived at the admissions office
at #:00 a.m. The first of the day's
events was the presentation by the
Dean of Admissions. There were six

interviewees altogether, and we were
all on our best behavior, crowded
around the polished conference room
table in the Admissions Conference
Room. We were making our first foray
into the world of office and responsi-
bility, and each sat carefully upright
and intent on the face of the Dean,
whohadentered with an executioner's
remorseful calm, as if to say, "It's too
bad I will have to kill most of you."
He plopped himself down in a
business-like manner and in an in-
stant an uncivilized blood-lust ex-
ploded on the features of his well-
groomed face. Squinting at us menac-
ingly, he said in along southern drawl,
"Now listen here, lackeys. Some a
you are gonna get in here, but not if I
can help it. My tastes are what you
might call fine, because they can af-
ford to be. I got every little pre-med
puppy from coast to coast squealing
at my ivy covered gates.
"The rarer the better. I accepted a
kidthe o qterday whohadn'taen the
MCAT, flunked out of school, was
legally blind and didn't even apply
here -in fact he was suffering from
syphilis-related schizophrenia and
only had three weeks to live, God rest
his soul. But you know what that boy
did? He ran up to me and put scratch
and sniff stickers all over my head,

the rascal. He was the only boy that
ever made a statement like that and
that's what I'm looking for. I'm look-
ing for diversity. I want the type of a
class that when it's put together you
can stand back and say, 'Now look at
that goddamn messed up freak show.'
"Let's put it this way, when I got
700 interviewee files to go through,
it's 4 a.m. the night before I have to
turn in my acceptances, I'm drunk out
of my skull and dancing around my
apartment nude with my 3-D glasses
on and the calypso sounds of Harry
Belafonte roaring in my ears, you
better have something like a wake-up
call in your application -something
that sets you apart."
The dean, who was slavering
heavily on the table at this point,
regained his composure. "Best of luck
to you, now - dickheads."
My interview was next. I was ex-
tremely anxious. The interviewer
asked me why I wanted to be a doctor,
and I told him: in order to demnytify-
and defy illness, using the intellective
organization of phenomena to enable
life-preservative action. Actually I
forgot to tell him that. Instead I could
only manage to stammer, jumping
awkwardly out ofmy chair and knock-
ing a lamp over, "Whoot! There it is!
Whoot! There it is!"

At noon, we ate lunch in the Sur-
gical Intensive Care Unit. Some of
the patients were really nice. I almost
picked up a girl. So what if she was
semi-conscious and nauseated - she
had a great personality. As I left, I
tried to kiss her, reaching tenderly for
her neck, accidentally blocking her
stoma, choking her.
It was a rough day. The day was an
instantiation (I'm getting to like the
word 'instantiation' -- instance as a
symbolic incarnation of the general,
or something) of the general charac-
teristics of my life: futility, neglect,
lack of respect from my peers and
superiors, failure to score, bad gas,
major lacerations on the nose and
eyes, etc.
As I reflected back on the day,
staring into my cup of tea, I thought
back to the words of the guy from
Harvard who had his interview before
mine. Pausing for a moment as he
stormed down the channel of entitled
privilege, energized by his own un-
hampered competence, he spared me
this: "Oh little man, perhaps there is

room yet for you too in this land of
giants." I hugged his knee and cried
thankfully as he shook his leg in a
desperate effort to free himself.
But before succumbing to total
despair, I remembered, looking up
toward the last strains of light filter-

Write for Weekend etc.
Call 763.0379J

ing through the urine-stained, par-
tially burned curtains of my scummy
apartment window, what my grandma
always used to say - "When life
hands you a lemon, rip life's head off
and shit down its throat." Oh,
Grandma, my, my.


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