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April 18, 1994 - Image 9

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-04-18

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The Michigan Daily - Monday, April 18, 1994 - 9

'Reich' lives through 'Hell'


"Wilhelm Reich in Hell" is a virtual three-ring circus
that you can't see anywhere else.
Performance Network'sproduction of "Wilhelm Reich
in Hell" was a challenge. A challenge to how we think, and
a challenge to our perceptions of right and wrong, where
Wilhelm Reich in Hell
Performance Network
April 14, 1994
nothing is what it seems.
Wilhelm Reich (Abdullah Saremi) is on trial in Hell,
for the "perverted" ideas that he had while alive. Reich is
'forced to defend himself against a system that has already
convicted and sentenced him. The banner above Reich
changes from "the mad doctor" to "the guilty party."
The Ringmaster (Dennis Platte), also takes on the
identity of a Judge and Satan. The Vincent Price-like
Platte had long hair, manipulating and controlling every-
one with an urbane, but malevolent manner. Platte's
characters "desire negative entropy," and are the com-
plete opposite of the cultured air and English accent of
Reich, setting him apart from his accusers.
The entire play switches between prosecution and
*defense, in a breathtaking display of verbal acrobatics and
The prosecution, led by the Marquis de Sade (Ian
Stines), and his assistant Masoch (David Chirzanowski)
puts on a "Honeymooners" meets "The Three Stooges"

act, in which Stines would be a perfect Moe.
Chirzanowski was capable, entertaining and seldom
serious; with his quick jokes and wry wit, he quickly
became the bane of Sade's existence. Stines was compel-
ling as a capricious, vindictive, and volatile Sade.
The entire play combines the elements of slapstick and
farce to create a comic and laughable atmosphere. Under-
lying all of it is a serious message: Know what you believe
in, and stand up for it.
The actors cavort and caper about the stage, providing
a lot of energy and whimsicality. There is an abundance of
vivacity from the actors, especially from Stines, whose
volatile nature lends to the abuse he heaps on the rest of the
actors. You begin to feel sorry for him as he is forced again
and again into displays of his volatile temper that have him
physically active throughout the entire play.
The actors go out into the audience, and appeal directly
to them, placing the audience in the role of jury. The fourth
wall between audience and stage is ripped down, in the
same confrontational manner in which the actors and
playwright try and break down the attitudes and beliefs of
the audience.
The entire play is like looking through a mirror at an
image that is slightly skewed - an altered reality that is
governed by different rules, and allows you to understand
how Alice must have felt when she stepped through the
looking glass.
WILHELM REICH IN HELL plays through April 24 at
the Performance Network (408 W Washington).
Performances are Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m.
and Sunday at 7p.m. Tickets are $7-$10. For more
information call 663-0681.

Pink Floyd
The Division Bell
C olumbia
From the preposterous album
cover to the 11 impeccably produced
songs within, "The Division Bell" is a
superbly crafted piece of product. And
that's what it is - product. If Pink
Floyd wasn'thitting the roadthis sum-
mer, there would be no reason for this
to exist. In fact, there is no reason for
"The Division Bell" to exist. When
*he tickets went on sale, they sold out
immediately - before anyone had
heard a note of the new album. It
didn't matter. The audience is paying
to see the band bring out the floating
pig, the dry ice, the airplane and the
laser - all the visual effects that will
keep you from noticing how dull the
band is.
Since Roger Waters left the band,
,Pink Floyd has lacked any unifying
heme other than trying to sound like
Pink Floyd. Both "A Momentary
Lapse of Reason" and "The Division
Bell" are meticulously crafted discs,
whereevery note falls intoplace. From
the wailing female backing vocals
and the stately, slow tempos to the
lush synthesizers and David
Gilmour's blues-soaked guitar, ev-
erything sounds like the classic Floyd
&lbums of the '70s. The problem is,
that the two albums are just sound;
there's no substance. Not only is there
no musical growth (if anything, it's a
retreat to everything before Waters'
masturbatory epic, "The Wall"),
Gilmour goes out of his way to re-
move all of his own personal idiosyn-
crasies that were apparent on his un-
der-appreciated solo albums. It would
eone thing if the new version of Pink
'Floyd sounded like a Gilmour solo
project; at least that would have some
artistic integrity. Instead, the band
sounds like ahack Floyd tribute band,
hauling out their old licks ("Have a
Cigar" is now called "What Do You
Want From Me") and sound effects
(the distasteful radio smash, "Keep
Waters' recent solo albums may
hot have been as accomplished as
"Dark Side of the Moon" or "Wish
You Were Here" (in fact, "Radio
K.A.O.S." is arguably the most em-
barrassing album ever released), but
at least they reached for new concep-
tual and musical heights. Gilmour's
Pink Floyd is only concerned with
moving the records out of the store
and putting bodies into the stadium.
4onsequently, "The Division Bell" is
not a piece of art, it's a piece of
product. Pink Floyd is now a brand
name and they deliver their trade-
mark music. Consumers will buy it as
a knee-jerk reaction, without hearing
the music inside. And as a piece of
product, "The Division Bell" is splen-
did; it delivers everything that it is
expected to. Which means, it's fine as
k ackground music or filler on album-
riented radio but it will never merit
repeatedplaying like "Meddle," "Dark
Side," "Wish You Were Here," or
even "Animals" and "The Wall."
Or for that matter, "The Piper At
the Gates of Dawn." After all, there
was a time Gilmour wasn't even in

Mozambican rhythms with a certain
pop sensibility and infectiously happy
guitar, percussion and horn lines is
one to be respected. While the music
is invariably upbeat, Ghorwane's lyr-
ics reflect the long and brutal civil
war that threatened to destroy the
country. The incredibly catchy horn
section in "Mavabwyi" belies its de-
scriptions of the pain of colonial rule
as the song asserts that Mozambique
will experience similar horrors as long
as it remains embroiled in civil war.
Ghorwane does take a few humor-
ous turns on "Majurugenta," how-
ever. "Matarlatanta," with its beauti-
ful call-and-response vocal pattern,
refers to a popular skirt from the 1950s
and suggests that modern
Mozambican women could use a bit
more modesty in their dress. Ulti-
mately, the music of Ghorwane is
about carrying on in the face of pain.
Though saxophonist Jose Zeca Alagre
was beaten to death in April 1993, the
band has continued to play for the joy
of it. It is a testament not only to their
commitment but also to the healing
power of music.
- Dirk Schulze
Randy Crawford
Don't Say It's Over
Warner Bros
For all believers in reincarnation,
this CD may support your belief;
surely Randy Crawford is the reincar-
nation of Ella Fitzgerald in all her
singing splendor.
Crawford's roughness of tone,
complimented by her command of
style, is exemplified throughout this
musical collection. In "Don't Say It's
Over," Crawford's voice mysteriously
parallels that of Aretha Franklin, al-

though her musical accompaniment
has more of a Whitney Houston back-
"Love's Mystery" has both deep
bass and a jazzy undertone; this song
leaves little to be desired. The same is
true for the faster "I'm Glad There is
You." The only possible exception to
the "avoid-the-fast-beats" rule could
be the song "Elusive Boogie" which
is reminiscent of Natalie Cole's hit,
"Pink Cadillac."
Her faster-paced songs do indeed
take back seat to her slower, more
sensuous tones. When you do select
her slower tunes, I suggest you wear
your seatbelt. You will be blown away.
"Mad Over You" is certainly the
best song on the CD. It's the type of
song that gives you a warm feeling
inside and will have you slow-danc-
ing with your favorite mop or broom
handle for hours on end.
"Year After Year" is a celebration
of the beauty of our natural world-
springtime, flowers, children, etc. But
Crawford doesn't sing like some sort
of sap. Her tone has a fresh approach
which will appease the staunchest
critics. All in all, "Don't Say It's
Over" is a beautiful collage that you
won't soon forget. Buy it; it's worth
every penny.
- Eugene Bowen
Various Artists
Africa in America
Discos Corason
African rhythms are the pulse of
American music. The transposed
polyrhythms can be found in almost
every part of North, Central and South
See RECORDS, Page 10

The potential for human suffering is interesting to watch. And, while one might have an occasional car wreck to
rubberneck at, there is normally a substantial lack of opportunity to satiate the darker desires of the human mind.
The photo of Kurt Cobain's dead foot in the Detroit News last week can hardly begin to compare to the freakish Jim
Rose Circus Sideshow in this department. Be warned, though, that while it has no natural born freaks, the Sideshow
boasts of some of the most eccentric performers to have ever existed. Their acts range from a mild bug eating all
the way to a gentleman hanging heavy things from his penis (which sometimes starts twisting in the wind). Rose
himself is a combination of a camival barker and number one freak, announcing for the others and doing everything
from eating light bulbs to putting his face in broken glass while someone stands on his head. Hey, you could do
that! This self proclaimed "circus of the scars" will be performing tonight at the Michigan Theater at 7:30 for a
paltry $10. Finals are coming up, and you could probably use the catharsis.


April 30, 1994
12:00 NOON




.u "r v v sa .w "rv.

Students will receive1
place from 9:00 a.m. -
25 through Thursday,

10 tickets
4:00 p.m.,
April 28.

each. Distribution
beginning Monday,



& 9 3 O

(Corner of North University and Thayer)

Lower Level, below



** Please remember that all students

must wear academic

participate in Commencement.

dress to


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