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February 16, 2000 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-02-16

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

j~eied's Mandolin Magic

Go online to read Christian Hoard's

preview of the two Jazz Mandolin Project
concerts set for Wednesday and Thursday.



FEBRUARY 16, 2000


'Beauty' leads Oscar nods, but 'Cider House' surprises


By Matthew Barrett
Daily Film Editor
In Hollywood, there's nothing quite as beautiful as
Oscar gold.
And in Oscar's eyes, there's nothing quite as beautiful
as "American Beauty," the film that led the pack with
CiD nominations. Yesterday, when the nominations
were announced for the 72nd annual Academy Awards,
"Beauty" received nods for, among other things, Best
Picture, Best Director, Best Actor (Kevin Spacey) and
Best Actress (Annette Bening) and Best Original
Right behind "American Beauty" was the tobacco
drama "The Insider," which among its seven nomina-
tions were nods for Best Picture, Best Director and Best
Actor (Russell Crowe), and "The Sixth Sense" which
re ved six nominations, including Best Picture and
Be Director.
And while some may look at the many nominations for
the sharp and somewhat dark "American Beauty" as a
step in the right direction, in general the Academy stuck
to its guns and went with traditional movies over edgier
ones. Both "The Green Mile" and "The Cider House
Rules" - literary adaptations that seemed to have little
critical praise or hype going for them - scored Best
Picture nominations, with Lasse Hallstrom also picking
up a nod for his direction of "Cider House."
Perennial nominee Meryl Streep 'scored yet another
no nation for her role in the dud "Music of Heart."
Jo ng Streep in the Best Actress category are Bening,
Janet McTeer, for "Tumbleweeds," Julianne Moore for
"The End of the Affair," and odds-on-favorite Hilary
Swank from "Boys Don't Cry."

choices and include Crowe, Richard Farnsworth from
"The Straight Story," Sean Penn for "Sweet and
Lowdown," Spacey and Denzel Washington for the title
role in "The Hurricane."
Noticeably absent from the category was Jim Carrey,
who despite playing it at least somewhat straight in
"Man on the Moon," was once again left without a nom-
ination. Others who were passed over include Matt
Damon for "Ripley," Reese Witherspoon for "Election,"
John Malkovich (for playing himself) and both "Three
Kings" and "Magnolia" for Best Picture. The fact that
"Three Kings" was not nominated for editing or cine-
matography is a further smack in the face to the film-
makers and a sign that those voting for the nominations
have no concept of either category. Clueless or not, the
Academy will hand out its awards on March 26.
Best Picture: "American Beauty," "The insider," "The
Cider House Rules," "The Sixth Sense" and "The Green
Best Actor: Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Richard
Farnsworth, Sean Penn and Denzel Washington
a Best Actress: Annette Bening, Meryl Streep, Julianne
Moore, Janet McTeer and Hillary Swank
Best Director: Spike Jonze ("Being John Malkovich"),
Sam Mendes ("American Beauty"), Michael Mann ("The
Insider"), Lasse Hallstrom ("The Cider House Rules")
and M. Night Shyamalan ("The Sixth Sense")

Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences president Robert Rehme and Dustin Hoffman announce the Oscar nominations.

Swank's costar Chloe Sevigny picked up a nomination
for her supporting role in "Boys," and will be up against
Toni Collette of "The Sixth Sense," Angelina Jolie from
"Girl, Interrupted," Catherine Keener of "Being John
Malkovich" and Samantha Morton from "Sweet and
On the male supporting side, Tom Cruise leads the

pack with a nod for his daring turn as a motivational
speaker in "Magnolia." Cruise's competition includes
Michael Caine of "Cider House," Michael Clark Duncan
of "The Green Mile," Jude Law from "The Talented Mr.
Ripley" and Haley Joel Osment, the little fella from
"Sixth Sense."
The male nominees for Best Actor are all worthy

Touring New York City Opera slices
through 'U' with 'Barber,' new talent

By JenniGlenn
Fine & Performing Arts Editor
The New York Opera National
Company introduces three relatively new
talents in the role of Figaro during their
touring production of "The Barber of
Se e." The show lands at the Power
Ce M r this weekend.
NYONC tours allow young perform-
ers to gain experience on the stage.
During this particular tour, the company
will perform more
than 60 shows
using two main
casts and one
New York City cover cast, which
pera National fills the chorus:
0 Company roles during the
main cast perfor-
Power Center mances. "That's
Feb. 17-19 at 8 p.m. very exciting but
also wearing,"
\ said Hung Yun,
who plays the lead
in one of the main
casts. "We have to
prepare mentally
and physically every time."
Of the three soloists portraying the
roof Figaro the barber, only James
Tay or of the cover cast has toured previ-
ously. On this tour, soloist Shon Sims
breaks into the national touring company
after four years of performing with the
main company in New York. The tour
also marks the third lead Yun's first pro-
fessional music job, as well as his first
job in the United States since leaving
South Korea to study music here.
As length of the touring engage-
m provides the singers with the
chance to master the part of Figaro.
Sims, for example, will reprise this role
with the Seattle Opera Company after
the NYONC tour is over. The tour marks
his first time performing the role of
Figaro,..so the repetition of touring will
give Sims the opportunity to perfect his
portrayal. He said his goal for the tour is.
"refinement - the sort of constantly
evolving process in developing a charac-

ter or learning a role."
The responsibility for carrying the
show falls on the singer playing Figaro.
The humorous, energetic character
appears in nearly every scene. This
strains the singers, especially when they
must perform night after night on tour.
"The amount of peformances there are
teaches you how to sing a role like this,
how to not give everything but to still
keep the audience interested," Taylor
That task will be simpler since the
company has excellent material to work
with in the form of composer Gioachino
Rossini's classic, "The Barber of
Seville." Based on the first play in a tril-
ogy by Pierre Caron de Beaumarchais,
the opera follows the barber, Figaro, as
he plots to unite lovers Count Almaviva
and Rosina under the watch of her jeal-
ous guardian Dr. Bartolo. "Figaro gets to
be the devil's advocate," Sims said.
"He's everyone's best friend."
The energetic role of Figaro provides

baritones with a lead, which is unusual.
Typically baritones end up portraying
old men or villains, but "The Barber of
Seville" breaks this norm by placing a
baritone in the title part, which is filled
with comic lines and exposed parts in the
music. "Any baritone, especially any
high baritone, wants to do this role,'Yun
said. "This is a dream role for a bari-
Yun also has his own personal con-
nection to the role. His father, a famous
South Korean singer, portrayed Figaro in
many productions. "I hope sometimes
that I share the time (onstage) with my
father," Yun said of the role.
Due to the comic aspects of Figaro,
the leads have an opportunity to empha-
size their acting skills as well as their
singing. "I'm an actor first, and this role
gives me the opportunity to work with a
language that's not my own yet commu-
nicate wonderful ideas"Taylor said.
The production's comic situations par-
tially mask the underlying political

themes of the story. Written during the
19th Century, the opera pokes fun at the
aristocracy by having the simple barber,
a sort of everyman, outsmart his social
superiors. "Now we take it more as an
amusement, and our production focuses
more on the comedy aspect,' Sims said.
The humor helps make "The Barber
of Seville" an enduring classic, since the
audience relates to the plot easily.
"People think opera is about sitting there
and listening," Taylor said. "With this
piece, you really want to be involved in
it. It really speaks to the humanity of us."
The opera's music has become as uni-
versal as the message. Films and car-
toons sample famous portions of "The
Barber of Seville" regularly. "People
really know the show without knowing
it," Sims said. "Now you'll hear the
whole piece and see how it fits together."
Music and plot contribute equally to
the show's long-standing popularity.
"The Barber of Seville" continues to be
See OPERA, Page 8

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