THE MICHIGAN DAILY NEW STUDENT EDITION ARTS THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 1994
*Newest superheroes fly into town
Flights of fancy or children's literature, students await the latest releases
By JOHN R. RYBOCK
Fantasy. That's it.
Every Wednesday, Dave's Comics on East
William gets its new shipment of comics, and
am there to indulge in my fantasy world.
And I have no shame about that, despite what
my friends will say.
I'll fully admit it - I am 22 years old and
I still read comic books. "X-Men," "Pun-
isher," "Batman," "WildC.A.T.S.," "Spawn."
They just scratch the surface. All of them are
super. Flying, telekinetic abilities, enhanced
strength or just sheer determination to do
good. The good characters embody what we
911 want to be. The bad ones remind us of the
persons within us we do not like. Corny as it
sounds, their battles represent the battles we
all go through. The old, honorable Batman
battles through Gotham with the new, venge-
ful Dark Knight. And on some level, I see
myself as both.
Comic books are the domain of the Bart
Simpsons, the underachieving 8-year-olds.
At least, that's the party line. I, as a mature
ollege student, should have nothing to do
ith them. The fools! They haven't opened
their minds to the worlds created by a man
with a pencil.
I had turned my back on those worlds. In
junior high, I swapped my comics for a stack
of girlie mags. I was young and foolish and
fairly perverse back then. My friends will tell
you that I'm not so young anymore, but the
other things still apply. I didn't pick up a
comic again until I reached Ann Arbor.
I don't remember exactly when I first
ventured into Dave's. It was the same month
that an artist, whose rise in the industry I had
missed, came out with a new "X-man" title.
Jim Lee's work was much better than the
"G.I. Joe" series which I had read years ago.
Curious, I picked up some others. I was
comic books are the
domain of the Bart
olds. At least, that's the
party line ... the fools!
amazed. Not only was the art amazing to me,
but there was something else.
Maybe I was just a little older and wiser,
but the stories seemed much better, more
complex, with more characterizations. I was
seeing things in Batman I had never noticed
before. This was not the same mind candy
which made my mom roll her eyes when I
insisted on going to Ruxton Pharmacy to get
the newest issues.
I haven't been to Ruxton Pharmacy in
years, but every week I am at Dave's, pulling
my usual reads off the shelf. Sometimes, I
sound like my father. "I remember when
comics were only 50 cents. Now some are a
buck-fifty." And that's without the cover en-
Cover enhancements are when the cover
features some neat gimmick, such as a holo-
gram or silver and gold ink, upping the price
to about $3 or $4. There are also polybags,
comics which come in a plastic bag to hold an
"exclusive" trading card or something which
you would not pay 3 cents for. But they get the
price speculators, who buy multiple copies -
one to keep in unharmed, perfect condition
and one to actually read.
Maybe part of the appeal of the comics is
shear awe at the work which the writers and
artists do. Every little doodle of mine is fully
encouraged by my maternal grandfather, who
is into creating art himself. I can make a fine
reproduction of any piece of comic book art.
But nothing original ever comes out right.
The artist fills dozens of pages each month.
Seeing in his mind an image, the artist can do
something which I cannot - recreate that
image on paper in such a way that I see what
he sees, not only the characters' positions, but
moods and attitudes as well.
Maybe it is a vehicle for some sort of
transference. Maybe, in some way, I can
project any anger or hostility I have through
Batman, and release it in my mind. Sounds
weird, I will grant you. However, my once
violent temper cooled down around the time
No, they're not reading Shakespeare or Dante - try Batman, Spiderman and Superman.
Comic book readers avidly follow the adventures of their favorite superhero or heroine.
I again started reading comics.
Or it may be a coincidence. Maybe it is
what I said earlier, that I can see myself in the
characters which I follow. It seemed, when I
was younger, that comic heroes were perfect.
Now, they are not so. Though many comics
make their characters "dark" for lack of any-
thing better to do with them, there are no
"perfect" people out in that fantasy world.
Even Superman has changed. It may just be
that I see these imperfect people, people with
faults just like myself, and see them coming
out ahead, realizing that I can do the same.
Or maybe that is all psycho-bull. Maybe
the only reason I read them is that they are just
so fun to read.
Maybe I shouldn't analyze the reasons
behind my love for comics. To quote that old
brew commercial, why ask why? This is what
I know - on any given Wednesday, I can be
found at Dave's buying my "weekly fix." And
if I am not there, I am probably dead.
University Musical Society
University Musical SocitY
Calendar of Events
The University Musical Society hosts many more concerts and events. Call 764-2538 for more
lands top artists
for coming season
By MELISSA ROSE BERNARDO
CHORAL UNION SERIES:
The Philadelphia Orchestra
Wolfgang Sawallisch, conductor
Tuesday, October 18, 8 p.m.
Frederica von Stade, mezzo-
Martin Katz, piano
Sunday, November 13, 4 p.m.
Marris Jansons, conductor
Yefim Bronfman, piano
*Tuesday, November 29, 8 p.m.
Guarneri String Quartet
Sunday, October 2, 4 p.m.
Uptown String Quartet
Friday, October 21, 8 p.m.
The Second Annual
UMS Theatre Residency:
The Shaw Festival
"The Front Page"
Wednesday, November 16, 8
Friday, November 18, 8 p.m.
Saturday, November 19, 2 p.m.
"Arms and the Man"
Tuesday, November 15, 8 p.m.
Thursday, November 17, 8 p.m.
Saturday, November 19, 8 p.m.
Sunday, November 20, 2 p.m.
The Chick Corea Quartet
Saturday, October 1, 8 p.m.
The Michael Nyman Band
Saturday, October 8, 8 p.m.
The Martha Graham Dance
Friday, October 28, 8 p.m.
Saturday, October 29, 8 p.m.
Sunday, October 30, 2 p.m.
(Program III: Celebration of an
Saturday, October 29, 2 p.m.
Whirling Dervishes of Turkey
Friday, November 4, 8 p.m.
A Celebration of the Spiritual
Jester Hairston, conductor
with the UMS Choral Union
Sunday, November 6, 4 p.m.
Tuesday, November 8, 4 p.m.
Friday, November 11, 8 p.m.
Roberto Aussel, guitar
Friday, December 2, 8 p.m.
Saturday, December 3, 8 p.m.
Sunday, December 4, 2 p.m.
UMS Choral Union
Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra
Thomas Sheets, music director
By far the biggest sponsor of con-
certs and performances on campus is
the University Musical Society
(UMS). Now in its 116th season,
UMS prides itself on bringing the
finest in the performing arts to Ann
Arbor. And no matter where your
tastes lie - be it classical, jazz, dance,
opera or even theater-the UMS 1994-
95 season has something for you.
The musical society divides its
season (59 performances this year)
into three sections: the Choral Union
series, the Chamber Arts series and
Choice Events. As a student, unless
you need chamber music to breath,
you're better off buying individual event
tickets rather than season tickets.
The Choral Union series consists
of 11 orchestra and/or solo perfor-
mances, all of which take place in the
4,000-seat, acoustically perfect Hill
Auditorium. Highlights include the
Philadelphia Orchestra, the duo of
violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter and pia-
nist Lambert Orkis, and the Detroit
Symphony Orchestra. Internationally
renowned mezzo-soprano Frederica
von Stade will make an appearance in
November, and flautist Jean-Pierre
Rampal will delight audiences once
again in January.
All eight of the Chamber Arts
events will be performed in the cozy,
1,200-seat Rackham Auditorium. Be
sure to catch the acclaimed Uptown
String Quartet, not to mention
Vivaldi's "The Four Seasons" as per-
formed by the Academy of St. Mar-
As a special treat, the Cleveland
Orchestra will spend a weekend in
Ann Arbor. Led by Christopher von
Dohnanyi, the orchestra will perform
a Choral Union concert, a special con-
cert with piano virtuoso Emanuel Ax
and a Chamber Arts concert.
But maybe your taste doesn't run
quite so traditional. Look to the Choice
Events for more eclectic events, often
with an ethnic or uncommon flair.
Sweet Honey in the Rock will
reprise their stirring performance from
the '92-'93 season; the New York
City Opera Company makes its yearly
visit with Rossini's "The Barber of
Seville"; the Lincoln Center Jazz Or-
chestra returns to town. Other high-
lights include the Michael Nyman
band, Ute Lemper and the Spiritual
Ensemble of Harlem.
To honor the 100th birthday of the
dance impresario, the Martha Graham
Dance Company will give four Ann
Arborperformances. Another big event
is Garrick Ohlsson's performance of
"The Complete Piano Music of Fredric
Chopin." His three performances com-
prise the first portion of that cycle; look
for Part Two in the '95-'96 season.
Ohlssonwill performthis special project
in just three cities nationwide.
Last year UMS held its first the-
ater residency when the Stratford Fes-
tival of Ontario came to the Power
Center. This year we welcome the
Shaw Festival, direct from Niagara-
on-the-Lake, Canada. They bring their
productions of "The Front Page" and
"Arms and the Man" in a week-long
visit which also includes visits to Uni-
versity classes, workshops and post-
Whew! And that's not even half of
the UMS season. The best thing about
UMS- next to their season, of course
- is their Half-Price Ticket Sale.
Keep an eye out for ads and posters
announcing their student ticket sale
in September. You can purchase up
to two tickets to as many shows as
you'd like. Quantities are limited,
so you should get there early.
If you miss the ticket sale, don't
sweat it. UMS often offers half-price
student rush tickets on the day of the
event, depending on availability.
As they say at UMS, "This is the
moment." So start getting ready for
that ticket sale.
offers variety oI
music for all tastes--,
By MATT CARLSON
Like Monty Hall's "Let's Make A
teal," Schoolkids Records offers you
three doors to choose from. Behind
door No. 1 you have the original
store, recently remodeled to better
serve your needs of rap, hip hop, jazz,
blues, world music, major label rock
and numerous other musical genres.
Behind door No.2, you can satisfy your
independent/alternative fix at the
Schoolkids Annex. Finally, behind door
o. 3, you can blissfully treat your ears
Io the orchestrated sounds of SKR Clas-
Whichever door you choose, you
can be sure that you won't get a don-
key-drawn wagon or a giant rocking
chair. What you will get though is one
of the finest selections of CDs, cas-
settes and (gasp!) vinyl in the Ann
Arbor area or in the entire country for
that matter. And considering that
*choolkids Records on Liberty is the
only independent store in a medium-
sized college town, their reaching
national acclaim is a large accom-
"We have the advantage that we're
Ann Arbor's only independent record
chains and the small used stores. Be-
sides having a collection of used CD
titles, Schoolkids' three-store combi-
nation offers you, the record buying
public, a large space in which to shop.
But they only place one of each title
out on the shelves. The rest are placed
on wall racks or in back stock.
"That makes it easier in my mind
for a customer," Bergman said.
"You're not wading through a bunch
of duplications. It gives you a more
accurate view of what's available,
and it also allows us to carry more
titles per square foot than any other
store in town. It allows us to have a
world-class selection while keeping
our stores as intimate as possible."
The intimacy of Schoolkids is in-
creased by a knowledgeable, caring
staff, an aspect that is certainly not
unique to retail stores, but one facet of
which the store is proud.
"Generally, when we help cus-
tomers," said store manager Joe
Chase, "we hook them up with music
they like. We're not just a bunch of
pompous knuckle heads walking
around saying we have the only good
taste. I think we get to know our
- -m n -.- - - == =- - ....... a....
CDs fill the classical music section of Schooldkids Records on East Liberty.
Schoolkids features the latest in rap, hip hop, jazz and much more.
Rolling Stone and Musician magazine.
"What we're doing with the label
is what we try to do with the store.
one filled by the stores. The musi-
cians on the label may not fit the
formats of other Ihal s. oSchoolkik
STERNS COLLECTION - Music Bldg. N. Campus
Rare musical instruments displayed
W-Sat. 10-5, Sun. 1-6 FREE 763-4389