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September 08, 1998 - Image 26

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-09-08

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next top: Soul mate d ikjan Tomorrow in Daily Arts:
t Stop Wonderland" makes its stop at the Michigan this U Breaking Records, the Daily Arts guide to new releases in
c The Sundance romantic comedy takes fate to new heights the music industry, returns for a special Wednesday appear-
ling the tale of a woman broken-hearted by love only to find ance. Check out the latest in new CD releases.
oul mate is waiting at the next subway stop. Check out Hope
and Alan Gelfant in this independent film at the Michigan
ter tonight at 7 p.m. Tuesday
September 8, 1998
)rawings go beyond the classroom

Rudolf Steiner Nachlassverwaltung,
Dr. Walter Kugler, began publishing
the entire collection of more than
1,000 drawings. Kugler, sensing
their relevance within a contempo-
rary art context, helped organize a
series of exhibitions in Germany,
Switzerland, Austria and Japan.
The Slusser Gallery exhibit is the
only stop in the Midwest, and part of
this exhibit's first American tour. It
is accompanied by an opening recep-
tion and lecture by art historian
Michael Howard on Sept. 13, and a
related exhibit on Steiner's other
work on differing subjects in the
Rackham Building.
Currently, the Slusser Gallery
drawings are viewed as works of art,
but questions still remain about how
Steiner himself viewed his drawings.
Curator Lawrence Rinder of the
University of California Berkeley
Art Museum feels it is likely that "in
making these drawings Steiner was
highly conscious of the meaning,

emotional impact and spiritual reso-
nance of the colors he chose."
Steiner's philosophy dictated that art,
religion and science are three essen-
tial aspects of the spiritual evolution-
ary path.
Steiner's drawings and color theo-
ries influenced painters such as
Kandinsky and Mondrian, both of
whom attended his lectures. Artist
Joseph Beuys, also a great Steiner
admirer, produced a series of chalk-
board drawings that may have been
inspired by Steiner's sketches.
Art was not his only field of influ-
ence, however, his ideas on educa-
tion (in the international Waldorf
Schools), on dance (eurythmy) and
on agriculture (the Ann Arbor
Community farm is a Steiner-based
cooperative) are still applied today.
Rudolf Steiner's diverse range of
influence make the University an
ideal place for his exhibits. Todd
Cashbaugh, the Slusser Gallery coor-
dinator, said, "We decided that it

Rudolf Steiner's blackboard drawings teach more than the standard ABCs.
would be a really good show to reach background, but should look a littlP
all audiences. Steiner was mainly a deeper The abstract colors and
philosopher but a scholar in all areas shapes are worthy of admiration and
and he influenced all fields." reflection.
Students, faculty and all other But if that is not sufficient, a look
exhibit-goers should not be numbed at the text accompanying the draw-
by the traditional appearance of ings reveal mere brilliance and are
white markings on a blackboard-like extremely thought-provoking.

'Godot's destiny is worth waiting for


By Christopher Tkaczyk
Daily Arts Editor
Every day becomes the woven thread in the tapestry
of our eventual demise. Whether we choose to pass
each day by waiting for night to fall, or to live each
exhilarating moment with the fear that it may be our
last becomes the major question proposed by "Waiting
for Godot." In a pessimistic, yet
very realistic, view of the world
Samuel Beckett brings together
four men in a dark vision of life.
W an or Beckett's tragi-comedy is set
Godot on a lonely road in the middle of
everywhere. The only physical
Stratford Festival decoration adorning the atmos-
August 8, 1998 phere is the dead carcass of a
brave tree. Vladmir and
Estragon, two vagrants looking
to meet up with a man named
Godot, decide to rest their jour-
ney at this spot in the road. The
fast-paced dialogue between the
men becomes the concentration
of the play.
Dim-witted exchanges between the men become
brilliant offerings of philosophical amazement. Not
only do these bums bicker over what to do, they ques-
tion their inborne need to find constant entertainment.
Half way into Act One the chances of passing time

quickly double when two more characters are intro-
duced: Pozzo, a wheezy old man, and Lucky, his
enslaved mute. The interaction between the four men
becomes a complex oral manipulation of life and its
raison d'etre. By the time the men stop arguing, the day
has passed and so has Godot. A boy messenger finds
them bemused, and informs them that Godot will not
make it today, but to hold on until tomorrow,
The current production at the Stratford Festival is an
encore presentation from the 1996 season, which drew
rave reviews and immediate sell-outs. The cast is the
same as the '96 production, and not a change has been
made to alter their classic performances.
Opening the play in the style of a 1920's vaudevillian
show, director Brian Bedford chose the festival's Tom
Patterson Theater stage to enshrine his Beckettian
world. Before the opening curtain, an old Victrola
record bounces and skips to the beat of the Jazz Era.
Vladimir and Estragon emerge wearing black Boler-
brimmed hats, a Ia Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin.
Stephen Ouimette as Estragon fits like a good worn
shoe. A small, spindly man, Ouimette appears to be a
weak buzzard, but his timing is perfect as his jaws grab
hold of Beckett's sarcastic dialogue and twist it into the
art which makes "Godot" a modern classic. The men-
tal confusion of his character is showcased, as opposed
to Tom McCamus' Vladimir, who possesses a more
secure belief in the meaning of life.
As Lucky, Pozzo's slave, Tim MacDonald delivered

an outstanding tirade of conscious thought. His full
four minute monologue jolted the essence of Beckett
into the witness of the audience. As random as life is,
Beckett sadly shows the world the importance of an
extreme existence. The blind Pozzo, played by James
Blendick, brought out the foolish intimacies with
which Beckett uses to paint his human canvas.
Blendick's prominent baritone makes for a natural or,
tor, giving Pozzo a respectful, adult feeling.
The comedic timing between McCamus and
Ouimette is superb. Beckett's script demands brevity
and wit of its actors. The brilliant interpolation
between McCamus and Ouimette makes this Stratford
production a theatrical life lesson.
At the end of the second day, Godot's messenger
arrives again to reannounce his former message.
Playing upon Beckett's idea that each and every day,
although a separate experience, is like every other, the
men learn that the boy doesn't remember the previou,
day and that Godot will surely come tomorrow.
Questioning death and the inevitable lull towards
such a future, Estragon arrives ata possible solution to
end the suffering of waiting out each long day. Suicide
seems the healthiest companion in this waiting room;
taking control of one's own destiny warrants the best
possible exit from this bitch of an earth.
"Waiting for Godot'" plays through Sept. 19 at the
Turm Patterson Theater in Stratford, Ontario. Call 1-
800-567-1600for more information.

Stephen Oulmette, James Blendick and Tom McCamus await their impending doom
in "Waiting for Godot."

The University of Michigan We Want You
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