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October 10, 2003 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2003-10-10

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October 10, 2003



Luck be a
lady tonight
with 'Dolls'
By Melissa Runstrom
Daily Arts Witer
You've just picked up your tickets
from the Michigan League ticket office
and make your way up the red stairs to
the Mendelssohn Theater. You grab your
playbill and heed the advice of a friendly
usher at the door. After finding your seat
the lights dim and very slowly the cur-
tain opens. You don't know exactly what
to expect but you know you are viewing
one of Broadway's biggest successes, the
original "fable from Broadway."
Great music, true love and a wonder-
ful cast combine
for University Pro- Guys and
ductions' presenta- Dolls
tion of "Guys and
Dolls." Thusday Saturday
The musical was Saturday and
originally pro- Sunday at2 p.m.
duced in 1950, and $8 Students
with traditional $15.20 Adults
songs like "Luck At the Mendelssohn
Be a Lady" and Theater
"Sit Down, You're
Rockin' the Boat," it is as entertaining
as ever. "The music is classic now in the
minds of many," director and musical
theater Prof. Mark Madama said.
The story takes off when Nathan
Detroit, the organizer of a floating crap
game in New York, bets Sky Masterson
to make the next girl he sees fall in
love with him. Of course the next
women happens to be Miss Sarah
Brown, a do-gooder Salvation Army
type. At the same time Nathan is hav-
ing his own relationship woes. His girl-
friend of only 14 years is pestering him
to walk down the isle, something the
gambler obviously isn't rushing to do.
"I wanted to do a traditional Broad-
way show from the golden age of
Broadway," Madama says. "It's not
contemporary in feeling or in acting
technique, butethe problems are as vital
today as ever, and the characters as
vital as any ever written." He says that
he chose this classic show so that the
actors could experience this specific
kind of play. "It's ultimately the actors'
personalities and approaches in this
particular production that makes a
unique live experience."
"This production, with the unique
personalities of the performers, will
have its own personality," Madama
said. He lets the actors bring their
own sense of humor and awareness
of the world to the staged situations.
They will bring their experiences and
perspectives to a story which is,
"funny, touching and ultimately uni-
versal in themes of love and the divi-
sion of love and work." Madama also
asserts that it "will delight anyone
looking to see a bright, splashy,
funny musical comedy."


Film school be damned:
Tarantino s rise to greatness

By Julie Sills
For the Daily


Undergraduate and graduate students drawn from schools
all over the University, together in one room, making some
of the best music on campus. Who are these talented, out-
standing, energetic University students? Let me introduce
you to the Michigan Pops Orchestra!
"The Michigan Pops started eight years ago to create a

fun all-student orchestra committed to
diversity across campus," said Michael
Chang, its longest-serving member,
and this is just what the Pops have
done. Chang, currently in his eighth
year, is a perfect example of the play-
ers' loyalty and devotion. Joining the
group as a freshman in the fall of
1995, and still a strong member today,
he rehearses with the Pops every Sun-
day night in Revelli Hall (also where

enhancing musical
Pops in
Sunday Nov. 9 at
8 p.m.
At the Michigan

2003 concert, "Pops in Space," that includes pieces from
"Star Wars," "ET" and "Apollo 13," to Dave Matthews
Band's "Satellite," and more classical works, such as,
"Moonlight Serenade" and "It's only a Paper Moon." Lees
looks forward to taking advantage of the theatrical aspects
of performing at the Michigan Theater. Last year they
played "Fantasia" songs while showing clips from the
movie, and this fall Lees is "excited to surprise the audi-
ence with all of the multi-media and visual displays they
have in store."
Like many of the Pops members, Fatima Syed grew up
playing the violin, continuing throughout high school.
When she came to the University as an engineering student,
she hoped to keep up her passion and in finding the Pops
Fatima felt right at home. Now in her third year, and execu-
tive director of the board, she feels, "The Pops, who are a
part of UAC, are most unique because they are the only
completely student-run orchestra on campus." She further
commented, "It's great to be on the board because not only
do you play with the group, but you're a part of making the
entire picture run smoothly."
With a larger turnout this year than ever before at their
annual fall auditions, the Pops unfortunately had to turn stu-
dents away for the first time. They were, however, overjoyed
by the excitement everyone displayed in joining. If you
missed the fall audition you can contact the group for a pos-
sible spring tryout.
"In rehearsal it is critical to work together, to breathe
together," exclaimed Lees. This group really does that -
they are more than just members of an orchestra, they are
artists and friends, "All together under the basis of making
awesome music and meeting cool people."

uentin Tarantino doesn't have a
film school diploma hanging
from his wall. No, the
Knoxville, Tenn., native
learned his trade and cultivated his per-
versely quirky, creative mind from a
much more sublime and reflective
place than any university: behind the
checkout desk of a video store.
Accompanied by long-time col-
league Roger Avary, Tarantino spent
his early years tirelessly watching
celluloid classics and analyzing
them for himself and his eager cus-
tomers. Now, some 20 years later,
it's quite evident that his early
research and focus is paying off.
Tarantino has undoubtedly proven
himself to be a master both behind the
camera and with pen and script in hand,
but what exactly makes him so great?
What about the eccentric cinephile and
his ways endears people so?
Just think for a moment about the
general approach he brings to the
table: a big-screen cocktail of ultra-
violence, humorously salacious dia-
logue and intriguing, well-sketched
characters. It's safe to say that this
technique has since been emulated on
countless occasions and carries with it
a very unique appeal.
But it's not just Quentin's knack for
all things crude or his ability to make
light of accidental murders or the sexu-
al undertones of Madonna songs that
makes him such an able artist. Perhaps
more importantly, he has great rever-
ence for the classics and a very sound
understanding of the characters, stories

and filming techniques that made the
box-office triumphs of yore so amaz-
ing. He doesn't attempt to over-com-
plicate his plots or outsmart viewers
with sleight of hand; rather, he just
makes deeply nuanced, rich stories and
characters that make you fall in love
with their depravity.
His monumental work "Pulp Fic-
tion" is exemplary of this approach. He
makes the escapades of two sleazy hit-
men, a lowlife boxer and some
cracked-out druggies into a tightly
woven epic journey of sorts that cannot
be denied its place among the greats.
It's a simple, pulpy tale of criminal
dealings that Tarantino made excep-
tional through a reverential approach
that draws on classical techniques and
motifs but enhances them just enough
with his own zesty innovation. It does-
n't attempt to outwit the audience or
appeal to the higher sensibilities; it's
unapologetically crude but in the most
artful of ways.
Tarantino's style and approach to his
craft have brought him this far and
gained him great distinction, but "Kill
Bill" provides him with perhaps the
grandest outlet for his special creativi-
ty. Even the crummiest of filmmakers
could make something out of a story
about buxom ninja assassins; just the
thought of this concept in Tarantino's
hands is arousing.
Zach isAmerican; his name doesn't
mean shit. You can reach him at

the Michigan band rehearses), while he pursues a graduate
degree in electrical engineering. "There have been several
conductors during my time here and they all have the mark
of the Pops - the difference with them is that they are all a
lot of fun" Change comments.
Fun isn't enough to describe the Pops' current conduc-
tor's enthusiasm for his love of music and for the Pops.
Chris Lees, relaxed on his podium, smile from ear to ear,
directs his group of 75 artists, easing them through an eclec-
tic mix of musical pieces with a positive encouragement
that produces an energy felt throughout the entire room.
Currently, the Pops are at work on their upcoming fall

'Assyria' makes for intimate evening at the Arena

By Sarah Peterson
Daily Fine Arts Editor

ting them to work together," related Hill, and
that was a big reason why he chose this play

"The play is about two men who get togeth-
er to act out fantasies of power and relation-
ships, and try to play head games with each
other for fun," said John Hill, director of the
Basement Arts production of "The Architect
and the Emperor of Assyria." He went on to
say that the basic themes in the play include
power, totalitarian states, playing in life and
going too far. With a cast of two (Charlie
Kelcha and Adam Miller-Bateau), a producer
(D. Ross), a set designer (Bryan Huddleston)
and a lighting designer (Meg Raphoon), this
play is as intimate as the Arena Theatre where
it will be performed.
"My interest is working with actors and get-

to direct.
With only two cast mem-
bers, it forces the director
and the actors to work
closely. The other reason
why he picked this play was
for its surrealistic charac-
teristics. "I've thought for a
long time that there needed
to be a performance of an
avant-garde play here on
campus. It's really helpful
for young actors to do that
type of thing and they don't

and the
Emperor of
Friday Oct. 10 at
7 p.m. and 11 p.m.
At the Arena Theater

brilliance, "The Architect and Emperor of
Assyria" is simply an extremely fun play.
There are a lot of unexpected twists and turns
that will shock the audience while making
them laugh. Unlike a traditional, naturalistic
play, the plot line is very loose, and really
only used as a catalyst to move from one sce-
nario to the next, but this uniqueness creates
its fascinating qualities.
As a graduate student in theater studies, John
Hill has been around theater for a long time.
With this production though, he is extremely
excited and especially pleased with the enthusi-
astic collaborative effort of the cast and crew.
He remarked how he was quite pleasantly sur-
prised by everyone's brilliant ideas and how
easily they worked together.
Now, Hill is just excited to see how every-
thing comes together and how the audience
will react. He stated that the play "stretches an

That's me in the corner ...

get the opportunity to stretch themselves in
that way with material other than that which
you find in a surrealist or avant-garde play."
Hill went on to say that past its technical

actor's imagination in ways that a traditional,
naturalistic, realistic play doesn't," and tonight
he hopes that "The Architect and the Emperor
of Assyria" will stretch the imaginations of the
audience as well.

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Come To the Open Casting Call at
University of Michigan
Friday October 10th from lpm-5pm
Tappan Room (1-s floor Michigan Union)

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