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January 14, 1994 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-01-14

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Social commentar

Judith Sloan is a woman of many
moods, or more accurately many per-
sonalities. She is Sophie, a wise Jew-
ish grandmother who worries that all
the oil spills in the ocean will affect
the heating in her apartment. She is
also Jennifer, a precocious seven year-
old who shocks the audience with her
honest insights.
In fact, Sloan, who calls herself an
actress, comedienne and performance
activist, can be any one of several
characters during her performance.
A wild hairdo and even wilder
American dreams transform her into
Rheba, a punk hairdresser who fanta-
sizes about fame for herself and her
band, the Comb-outs. A provocative
campaign button reading WEWOWA
(Women exploring Women's Occu-
pancy of the White House action com-
mittee) introduces Muriel, Sloan's
candidate for the presidency. A gut-
tural New York accent and obnoxious
attitude characterize Michelle Bogus
Lawsberg, whom Sloan dubs "the
consumer advocate from hell."
Sloan says that these diverse char-
acters represent different aspects of
her personality and foster honest, un-
cut communication with her audi-
ence. "[The characters] allow me to
say things I wouldn't normally say."
Sloan isn't sure which characters
from her entourage will join her in
Ann Arbor, but Sophie will certainly
take the stage. Muriel will also make
an appearance, spewing political
rhetoric and. declarations on the rights
of women. And of course, Judith Sloan
will come, starring as herself, provid-
ing a bittersweet comedy routine re-

plete with strong social commentary.
Her characters introduce a myriad
of subjects from fear of death to
women's liberation to the country's
"obsession" on the issues surround-
ing gay rights. Most notably, how-
ever, her routine centers around cur-
rent issues in the news which she
discovers buried in the paper.
"I'm addicted to The New York
Times," Sloan admitted. " I find most
of the really good stuff on page A24."
"Good stuff' includes anything from
a politician's dirty laundry to adver-
tisements for the home shopping net-
work. In addition to her newspaper
addiction, Sloan discovers a great
amount of her material from televi-
sion networks like C-SPAN, often
targeting Republican senators.
"Jesse Helms will speak in sub-
liminal sexual language sometimes.
For example, when Roberta
Aachenberg, a lesbian, was up for a
federal appointment, he said, 'Well, I
would never put a lesbian in a posi-
tion like that.' I usually end up on
stage saying, 'Oh no, Jesse? What
position would you put her in?' It's
great," she laughed.
Sloan may call herself a comedi-
enne, yet she maintins her routine is
"not all a laugh a minute." Through
her characters, she volleys between
pain and pure humor. She may be part
grandma and part little girl, but on
stage, Judith Sloan is all herself. "I do
my stuff. I say what I think. either
people like it, or they don't."

ywith a sassy. edge

M LK Day Events
The Black Arts Orchestra Opening Concert, Sunday at 7 p.m., Hill
A Celebration of the Arts: Performed by art, music and theater students
with the group Highest Praise, Monday from 1:30 - 3:30, Rackham Audito-
num and Third Floor Galleries.
The Winans Closing Concert, Monday at 8 p.m., Power Center.
"Boyz in the Hood": Sunday at 7 p.m., Michigan Theater.
"Hidden Heritage: The Roots of Black American Painting": Monday at
10 a.m., Museum of Art.
Lectures, Discussions and Exhibits
Ethiopian Art: A Re-examination, Monday at 10 a.m., Tappan Hall room
Making it Work: MLK Collaborative Quilt Project, Monday from 9 - 11
a.m., Art and Architecture Building.
For information about these events or others, call 936-1055.
Da! Russian Music!
This concert could be considered a warm-up for the five-day long
Shostakovich marathon coming up at the end of the month. On this concert,@
the Shostakovich will be diluted with trios by Smetana and Mozart. This
moderate-sized helping of Shostakovich should prepare audiences for the
upcoming all-Shostakovich concerts which will presented by another visit-
ing Russian ensemble, the Borodin String Quartet. The performance of the
complete quartets of Shostakovich will be an unprecedented emotional
ordeal, whereas the Tchaikovsky Trio will be merely a concert, but hope-
fully a good one. The concert will be on Saturday at 8 p.m. at Rackham
Auditorium. Tickets are available for $14, $16, $22 and $26 from the UMS
(764-2538). $8 Student Rush tickets will be sold at the Union Ticket Office
from 9 a.m. until noon on Saturday. UMS and North Campus Commons will
also co-sponsor North Campus Student Rush, from 11:30 a.m. until 2 p.m.
on Friday, next to Little Caesar's.
More Russian Music!
If you're one of those people who just can't get enough of that Russian
music and the Tchiakovsky Trio isn't enough for you, head on out to
Orchestra Hall in Detroit. The acclaimed Detroit Symphony Orchestra will
give the United States premiere Pytor Ilitch Tchiakovsky's "The Snow
Maiden." Conducted by the great Neeme Jarvi, with mezzo-soprano Irina
Lekhtman, tenor Vladimir Grishko plus the Choral Union of Ann Arbor's.
own University Musical Society. Get there tonight (3711 Woodward,
Detroit) at 8 p.m. or tomorrow night at 8:30. Tickets are $50 (box), $31, $28
and $15.
Jazz at the Bird
In case you didn't make it to see Mose Allison at the Bird of Paradise last
night, you're not out of luck. Allison will be performing tonight and
Saturday at 9 and 11 p.m. at the Bird; advance tickets are $10. If you can
make it to the show, by all means go - Allison is one of the greatest jazz
guitarists that has ever lived and the shows promise to be special. But you
can only go if you're over 21, unfortunately. In that case, just go get some
of his records. They're more than worth it.

JUDITH SLOAN will perform at
Hillel's Green Auditorium on
Saturday at 8 p.m. Tickets are $5-
$10. Call 769-0500 for more info.

Yikes! Judith Sloan sure looks like a woman of many personalities.

Various Artists
New Music Indonesia vol. 1 &
Lyrichord Discs
Don't be fooled by the title. These
CDs are some of the few examples of
non-Western "new music" that aren't
synth-swamped, regional imitations
of Madonna. Instead, they represent a
radical diversion from the world mu-
sic typically recorded and marketed
to the first world.
Experimental music in the extra-,
Euro world has gone unnoticed, de-
spite Cage's and Reich's Eastern out-
Completing the circle of inspira-
don, Indonesian experimental music
'has been evolving over the last 50
years in West and Central Java.
Lyrichord's two volumes of Indone-
sian new music are the first to spot-
light komposisi baru (new composi-
Much of the novelty of these re-

cordings stems from hybridizing tra-
ditional instruments with untraditional
voicings. Ekagustdiman pioneers new
kecapi (zither) tunings in "Diya," a
spacious and densely layered piece
with cyclic repetitions of voices, gongs
and strings.
At the opposite extreme, volume
one's title composition superimposes
ragged and smooth textures. An afi-
cionado of Cage's sound=music pon-
dering, Roesli's "Asmat Dream"
opens with distorted magnetic tape
effects and natural night sounds.
Roesli adds subtly shifting sound blan-
kets and looped samples to an other-
worldly dream of uncertain dread and
catatonic calm.
The compositions documented in
volume two are even more gamelan-
steeped than those of volume one.
Although Sadra's piece uses English
text excerpted from The International
Herald Tribune to highlight the
struggle between modernity and popu-
lar traditions, "Stay a Maverick" com-

mingles Sundanese, Balanese and
Javanese musicianship.
The title and closing pieces of
volume two deviate more abruptly
from tradition. The melodic vocals
are the backbone in "Mana 689," sta-
bilizing abrupt percussion explosions.
Loosely scored through chaotic verse
notation contained in a circle, the

closing work is a volcanic drum duo
that will challenge your perceptions
of Indonesian music's docility.
As the fifth most populace coun-
try in the world, these two volumes of
komposisi bapu expose one facet of
contemporary Indonesian music's tre-
mendous diversity. Listen and learn.
- Chris Wyrod


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The life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. comes to the Michigan Theater in the traveling production of "Ain't Got Long to Stay Here" at 8 p.m. Monday. Creator
and actor Barry Scott plays King in the production which chronicles his life from the bus boycott of Montgomery, Alabama through his assassination in
Memphis, Tennessee. Scott took 17 years to develop this production which is now on a national tour and is stopping in Ann Arbor to celebrate King's
birthday. The show features the Progressive Choir of New Hope Baptist Church of Ann Arbor which will perform the original music and traditional spirituals of
the play. The show is sponsored by the Tennessee Repertory Theatre. Tickets are $20 and $13.50 and are available at the Michigan Theater box office.

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