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September 14, 2001 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2001-09-14

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Feel the Schwartz!
"Star Wars" Spoof "Space-
balls" is showing tonight at the
Natural Science Auditorium
at 7 & 9 p.m. Tickets are $3.
michigandaily. com/arts


SEPTEMBER 14, 2001

Hendricks soars vocally
at the Bird of Paradise

- Moll

By Denis Naranjo
For the Daily
The vocal vitality that is Jon Hendricks means
virtuosity whenever he picks up a microphone.
You can rightfully label his artful profile lyrically
dynamic, one blessed with a duality of poetry and

The Bird of Paradise
Tonight and Tomorrow
8 p.m. & 10 p.m.

improvisational style. These
days Hendricks vocal jazz
torch still bears a fortuitous
Distancing many singing
peers behind him, Hen-
dricks' vocal kinetics shine,
rhythmically attuned no mat-
ter the uptempo groove. In
reflection, he's a chameleon
of grand dimension, known
to embrace Be-bop feverish-
ly one minute, scat inven-
tively the next, oftentimes
churning out tangents of
vocalized movement with

class and distinction. All this makes this weekend
a highbrow affair for vocal jazz lovers.
At Ann Arbor's Bird of Paradise jazz club Fri-
day and Saturday, patrons get to absorb his
artistry for two shows nightly, at 8 and 10 p m.
Hendricks is the first headliner comprising the
new Bird of Paradise Concert Series, presenting
major jazz artists annually in a seasonal subscrip-
tion format. And it's a rare appearance for Hen-
dricks - he doesn't usually play smaller venues.
His Ann Arbor arrival is just up the freeway
from his vocal jazz teaching duties at the Univer-
sity of Toledo. Joining Hendricks' trio will be
New York-based pianist Peter Michelich.
Appreciating a vocal palette like Hendricks' is
a welcome experience apart from casual crooners
and balladeers pervasive in jazz today. No one has
yet decided to follow his creative mark, and for
good reason. No one can keep up with his pac-
Likewise, few singers earn plaudits like Hen-
dricks. Carmen McRae once tabbed him "the
greatest lyricist in the world." Cerebral jazz piano
maestro Thelonious Monk claimed that Hendricks
was "the only one I want to lyricize my music." A
validation test comes easily once you check out
his live persona.
Such is his drawing power that next January,
National Public Radio will broadcast a live con-
cert "Louis Armstrong: The Revolution of
Swing" as a part of its Jazz at Lincoln Center

Hendricks will join trumpeters Nicholas Pay-
ton, Jon Faddis and Clark Terry in a celebratory
salute to Satchmo. Obviously, Hendricks is never
short when it comes to keeping applauded musi-
cal company.
For Hendricks, 79, it's been that way since his
teenage years in hometown Toledo, Ohio where
he chummed around with a local jazz pal, soon
his mentor and an icon, piano great Art Tatum.
Through the years, Hendricks has lived and
worked from the Atlantic to the Pacific and was
even an expatriate for a while, living in Europe
from 1968 to 1973.
Hendricks has performed with many of the
most famous names in jazz, including Charlie
Parker, Count Basic, Duke Ellington, Dizzy
Gillespie, Art Blakey, Miles Davis and Thelo-
nious Monk.
Such wide-ranging musicality resurfaced on
the classic 1990 Denon release, "Freddie Free-
loader." Backed by luminaries Tommy Flanagan,
Stanley Turrentine, Wynton Marsalis, Bobby
McFerrin, George Benson and Al Jarreau, Hen-
dricks wrote words to lauded tunes by Basic,
Monk, Davis and Armstrong.
The ebullient Hendricks is generally hailed as
one of the more quick-witted and adroit singers in
jazz history. A career break came in 1952 when
his "I Want You to Be My Baby" was recorded by
Louis Jordan.
His enduring talent was clearly evident with
the pioneering vocal trio Lambert, Hendricks &
Ross (with Dave Lambert, Annie Ross) in the
mid-50s, commonly considered the best vocal
jazz group ever recorded.
After the trio broke up in 1964, his solo
exploits and vocal ensemble work with wife
Judith, and children Michelle and Aria continued
to cement his notoriety. He's perhaps best known
for originating vocalese, a technical artistry
melding the authoring and singing of specialized
lyrics to instrumental jazz classics.
His vocal ensemble credits include Rare Silk,
The New York Voices and The Manhattan Trans-
fer. With the latter, he collaborated on the
groundbreaking, Grammy Award-winning
recording "Vocalese" in 1985.
This time Hendricks revamped a songbook of
jazz classics, ranging from "Killer Joe" (Benny
Golson), "Airegin" (Sonny Rollins) and "Sing
Joy Spring" (Clifford Brown) to Miles Davis'
"Move," with his specialized lyrics embellishing
all instrumental verses and history-making solos.

Courtesy otTheBrds of Paradise
John Hendricks is just happy that after 79 years of
life, he still wears the hell out of cool pimp hats.
Yet, another career zenith came when he wrote
and directed the musical revue "The Evolution of
the Blues" for the 1960 Monterey Jazz Festival.
It was a special commissioned piece for recog-
nized Monterey festival founder Jimmy Lyons.
In 1996 Hendricks performed a re-interpreta-
tion in Monterey with guest vocalists Dianne
Reeves and Joe Williams.
Hendricks' vocal pyrotechnics remain epic
centerpieces on recordings handed down by sax-
ophonist Gary Bartz, bandleaders Count Basie
and Art Blakey and pianist Dave Brubeck, but to
name a few. He also appeared on and toured
(including a 1996 Hill Auditorium date) for
Wynton Marsalis' Pulitzer Prize-winning record-
ing of "Blood On The Fields" (SONY/Colum-
Recent solo recordings include "Boppin at the
Blue Note" and "Live at the Blue Note," both on
Telarc Jazz.
Tickets for tonight and tomorrow's show are $25
(20for students) at the door or call
(734) 662-8320

Arnold Schwarzenegger in "Collateral Damage."
Tragedy to effect
Fall's TV lineup
By Jeff Dickerson
Daily TV/New Media Editor
The entertainment world has responded to the horrific acts on Tuesday by
delaying the 2001 Emmy awards as well as the new fall season.
The TV world suffered the untimely death of David Angell, executive pro-
ducer of the show "Frasier" and passenger of one of the two planes to collide
into the World Trade Center. The FOX reality program "Murder In Small
Town X" winner Angel Juarbe is among the hundreds of missing people in
the rubble of lower Manhattan. The reality show contestant was a firefighter
and among the first to arrive on scene.
NBC was first to announce the postponement of the season premieres of
their returning shows as well as the debuts of their new programs such as
"Emeril" and "Crossing Jordan."
CBS, ABC and the WB reacted shortly after, announcing their schedules
would also be pushed back a week.
CBS is replacing the debut episode of their new drama "The Agency,"
which featured a terrorist bombing in London. The series centers around a
group of CIA agents and happens to be the first television program to be
allowed to film within CIA headquarters. The episode also briefly mentions
Osama bin Laden, the terrorist suspected in this week's attack.
Perhaps the biggest news of all came from the football empire where both
the NFL and NCAA announced the postponement of all football games this
Saturday, Sunday and Monday. The NFL has yet to decide whether or not to
schedule another week or to simply have a 15 game season.
Hollywood is also forced to remove possible offensive material relating to
the largest terrorist incident on American soil. The latest Arnold
Schwarzenegger film "Collateral Damage" was scheduled to open on Octo-
ber 5, but has been delayed indefinitely. The film includes a scene of a ter-
rorist bombing and as a result Warner Bros has removed all advertising as
well. "Spiderman," one of the potential blockbusters of 2002, has seen its
trailer been removed from theaters because of the dominate image of a heli-
copter trapped in a web between the two towers of the World Trade Center.
Many other changes in the entertainment industry can be expected in the
next few days as the news continues to envelop all of our interests.

'The Deep End,' is an almost-perfect
rendering of life at its most dreadful

By Lyle Henretty
Daily Arts Editor

As an actress, Tilda Swinton looks so normal she almost appears
freakish on the big screen, where any pretty face with an iota of acting
ability can be hailed as the next best thing. Swinton's beauty lies in her
strong face and deep eyes, which she seems to have complete artistic
control over. While many actors rely on quivering lips and various
degrees of eye-squinting to relate their characters state of melancholy to
the viewer, Swinton can project more feeling with a
twitch of a cheek muscle than most Hollywood
actresses could with their whole bodies (silicon
enhanced or otherwise).
The Deep Swinton has brought an air of professionalism and
End integrity to such varied roles as the title character in
Sally Potter's surreal adaptation of Virginia Woolfe's
Grade: B+ "Orlando" to her devastating turn as Margaret Hall in
Scott McGehee and David Siegel's "The Deep End."
At State Based on Elisabeth Sanxay Holding's story "The
Blank Wall," the viewer encounters Margaret driving
through the washed out hues of Lake Tahoe to a boxy,
harmless-looking building that houses a gay strip
club. Margaret implores that the seedy (a trite adjec-
tive, but the only one that really fits) owner Darby
Reese (Josh Lucas) to stay away from her teenage
son. Reese turns up at her home that evening, pledging statutory love,
and turns up floating in the lake that borders the Hall's backyard the next
While the audience is aware this is an accident, Margaret believes her
son has slain the greasy beast to save himself. The film delves into Mar-
garet's personal hell as she turns from human to animal, fiercely protect-
ing her young from the watchful eye of the police.
After a harrowing first half, with Margaret slowing shedding her mid-
dle-class veneer to as she dumps the body and attempts to cover up her
son's involvement with Reese, wayward blackmailer Alek (Goran Vis-

njic) shows up and all of the internal tension is torn from Margaret and
made external. Alek and his anonymous partner have a concrete evidence
linking Reese to Margaret's son, a link that shows just how far their rela-
tionship had gone. With the introduction of the haunting Visnijic, the
film's tension ratchets up another notch, making the film almost unbear-
able to watch.
To the viewers immediate relief (and, ultimately, the detriment of the
film), Margaret strikes up an uneasy relationship with the blackmailer.
She finally has an ally, even if she can't completely confide in him.
While this does not destroy the film's uncomfortable atmosphere, it
alleviates it slightly. This comes off as a weak move from a writer who
abandoned his own concept, or possibly a frightened producer with a
strong desire to placate the audience.
While the relationship never slips past a troubled camaraderie, it is still
too convenient for a film that forces the viewer to contemplate such dev-
astating themes.
The Lake Tahoe setting, as it should in a film of this caliber, becomes
a character unto itself. The beautiful lakefront becomes oppressive, as
Margaret drowns in her own anguish, and the audience in the films unre-
lenting pain and tension.
As Margaret begins to loose control of her life, the viewer feels as if
they are loosing control of the film. One almost wants to get up and leave
in parts, yet the desire for catharsis grips them until the final reel. The
ending itself is a study in minimalism, despite a seeming climactic battle
between Alek and his ruthless partner. The ending is as painful as the rest
of the film, and just as realistic.
Croation Visnijic has had several smaller film roles, but is most proba-
bly know for his role on TV's "ER" as Dr. Luka Kovac. He is a fine actor
and his Alek is necessarily complex. He does his best to make the move
from blackmailer to supporter.
While he is not as gifted as Swinton. Visnijic understands how to use
his naturally steely eyes as a wall hiding his soul from the outside. He
stands on his own in scenes with Swinton, and he makes a possibly one-
note character into a living, shocking human being.
The rest of the cast mostly stays out of Visnijic and Swinton's way,
attempting to make small impressions. The
FJ weakest link is Lucas, who comes off as
such a monster that there is no emotional
reaction to his death.
Character actor Peter Donat plays Mar-
garet's kind but clueless father-in-law. Donat
is a pro and can pull off his kind-yet-gruff
demeanor to a T, without falling into carica-
ture. Jonathan Tucker, as Margaret's son, is
appropriately antagonistic towards his moth-
er, yet portrays the young man as deeply
pained by his confused sexuality and inabili-
ty to communicate with his caring mother.
Their relationship is one of the most real-
istic in recent film memory, not simply
showing rivalry between parent and child,
but the actual break-down of simple discus-
sion and alienation that leads to fighting and
awkward silences.
nhi fim minldhe honored at Oscar

"Follow the white ... where am I? Where's Bill?"
Keanu' s 'adal
center of lawsuit
By Andy Taylor-Fabe
Daily Film Editor
Last week, a Federal judge refused to prevent the release of the Little
League baseball movie "Hardball," starring Keanu Reeves, despite the
objections of Chicago Little League Coach Bob Muzikowski, whose
life the film is supposedly based on.
Muzikowski originally attempted to block the film's release because
he said that the film misrepresented him and the kids that he coached.
Paramount's claim is that the film's plot is fictional and that it is only
inspired by the Daniel Coyle book about Muzikowski, "Hardball: A
Season in the Projects." Muzikowski responded by asking, in an inter-
view with the Chicago Sun-Times, "If it's not a true story, why are they
filming on my block?"
Attorney Tomas Harvey, who represents both Muzikowski and youth
leader Al Carter (who is also allegedly depicted), claims that the movie
portrays the African-American youths in the film as foul-mouthed
delinquents and racist caricatures, when they were actually well
behaved and decent.
Muzikowski also claims that he never released the riphts to his story

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