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March 15, 2000 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-03-15

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*Free films, free funr
Courtesy of donations by Ani Difranco, Greg
Brown and Gillian Welch, who will playing
in Ann Arbor tomorrow night, students with
a current ID get in free at the Ann Arbor
Film Festival screenings today. 7 p.m.
michigandaily. comn/arts


MARCH 15, 2000


Student directors debut in Basement

By Jim Schiff
Daily Arts Writer
Basement Arts is proud to present
two student-directed musicals in one

The Baker's
Wife & A
Little Night
Power Center
Thursday to Saturday

weekend. An
original show,
coupled with the
revival of a late
'70s musical,
demonstrate the
burgeoning tal-
ent of some of
the University's
most gifted writ-
ers, composers
and performers.
The first show
of the weekend
is "The Baker's
Wife," with

of "Pippin" and "Godspell" fame.
This underappreciated musical from
the '70s tells the story of a young
French woman struggling to find
happiness in love. Unsatisfied with a
marriage to an older baker, she
desires a more passionate relation-
ship. She falls in love with a younger
and better-looking man and is forced
to choose between the two men. On
identifying with the main character,
director Caroline Peacock said,
"People have to make big life deci-
sions like hers all the time."
Nos novice to the stage, Peacock,
has appeared in campus productions
of "A Little Night Music," "Balm in
Gilead" and "Casino Paradise," as a
musical theater major. Though she is
making her directorial debut, she is
taking on the challenge of starring as
the baker's wife. Hoping to have a

successful career as a performer,
Peacock said that musical theater is
quite possibly the best communica-
tive art in that it can be used to teach
and audiences to learn."'
Saturday brings two performances
of "Trespasses," an original show
written and directed by Musical
Theater junior Rob Rokicki. Jack, the
main character, is unable to reconcile
an argument with his brother, who
was killed in a subway accident. With
an incredible burden of guilt, Jack
must learn how to forgive himself
and his family. Rokicki said, "I think
a lot of college kids can identify with
the play - things they've done in the
past that escalate somehow."
Experienced in front of and behind
a camera, Rokicki was recently
onstage in "Love's Fire," and is
appearing in University Productions'

"Cabaret" in April. "Trespasses"
explores a variety of musical genres
and is loosely based on Aeschylus'
"Orestia." With more than 15 new
songs, this workshop concert is
designed to see where the show can
go and present it for the first time.
Rokicki said, "The cast is wonderful,
they're really learning stuff fast."
With unsurpassed dedication to
their craft, the Basement Arts actors
and directors bring fantastic works to
the stage. Both shows are sure to
show off the students' incredible tal-
ent and delight the audience at the
same time.
Due to extentuating circum-
stances, the third Basement Arts pro-
duction of the weekend, "Elise," will
not take place as originally planned.
For more information on show
times, call 764-6800.

Courtesy of Columbia Records
MUSKEIT's production of "Godspell"I Is loosely Inspired by the original 1973 show.
Production Casts

music and lyrics by Steven Schwartz

Ani DiFranco reigns independently

*i 'pell'
By Rosemary Metz
Daily Arts Writer

Awash in a sea of soft blue, green
and white costuming, the ensemble
chorus of "Godspell" opens with a
spirited rendition of "Prepare Ye the
Way of the Lord." Any similiarity
between this weekend's MUSKET'
production and the original presenta-
tion of this production, a musical ver-
sion of the Bible's New Testament, by
Stephen Schwartz stops there.

Power Center
Fri. & Sat.at8 p.m.
Sun. at 2 p.m.

Theatre perfor-
mance senior and
" G o d s p e 11"
director Charlie
Jett said that this
production is
there is no campy
"Godspell" rou-
tine. We want to
make this play
appealing to all
people of all reli-
gious faiths and
those with none."
Jett makes dis-

actions become more intense, the
beauty of each person is revealed to
one another. Such is the ability to
"see" truth, according to this millenial
There is one dark character, who
assumes a dual role. John the Baptist,
who later portrays Judas the traitor,
struggles with his inability to "see"
truth, constantly mocking, taunting or
questioning the crowd. LSA junior
Tommy Ryan VII portrays this out-
sider, a peripheral character who influ-
ences the play's direction. There is a
"blue book," into which parables and
lessons are recorded. Each member of
the crowd takes a turn at inscribing in
the book, which is hinted to be the
Mitchell Kiven, an assistant direc-
tor, explained the choice of colors for
the costumes and all advertising.
Green is used to' denote the earth or
fertility, while blue's meaning comes
in the exploration of self and con-
sciousness. Finally, white is chosen for
the peacefulness, for the amalgam of
all colors, and, most of all, for its
essence. These colors connote the
minimalist approach of this work.
Popular culture is rife throughout
this presentation as late 20th Century
icons pop up here and there. There is a
visit, for example, from the gonzo
journalist himself, Hunter S.
Thompson. As the orchestra is at cen-
ter stage with the players, there is a
sense of inclusion in the production
and surprises abound. The topmost
secret is revealed at the end of the play
(a clue can be found in a currently
Academy Award nominated film).

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Role model to all Indl bands, femnue-olkster Ani DIFranco appears at Hill
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tinction between institutional religion
and spirituality, stating that "the truths
of this play are basic and simple, com-
mon threads which run through all
human activity, such as kindness, love,
forgiveness." The familiar songs,
including "Day by Day" and "All for
the Best," are retained, but each is
given a fresh and innovative spin.
The Jesus role is shared among 26
,ensemble cast members, who question
themselves and each other about the
ability to see truth. As the group inter-

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