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December 03, 2003 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2003-12-03

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Michael Cogswell's interview on National Public Radio -
Cogswell, who's opening a museum in Queens dedicated to his
research on Louis Armstrong, aired homemade tapes recorded by
Armstrong, offering a glimpse of some unheard sultry notes as
well as Armstrong's appreciation of Jews.

By Michelle Kijek
Daily Arts Writer

"All of This" - The second single from blink 182's new album.
Robert Smith's melancholy vocals and lyrics add a softer, smoother
side to blink's gritty edge. The only question is, who's this Holly girl
that reappears on another track?

Courtesy of Dreamworks

My God! I look so amazing over there.

After just releasing one of the most beauti-
fully pop-deviant records of the year,
singer/songwriter Rufus Wainwright is out
performing his new material across the
United States. A talent-
ed entourage of open-
ers will be aboard for Rufus
the tour, including Wainwright
the always enter- Thursday at6p.m.
taming guitarist At St. Andrew's
Teddy Thompson Hall
and Rufus's sister, ClearChannel
Martha Wainwright.
But with the family presence and autobio-
graphical themes that his new album, Want One,
thrive on, the audience should be looking forward to
much more than just a duplicate of this past holi-
day's family reunion.
Attesting to the fact that the lyrical imagery of the
new album is distinctly reminiscent of his real life,
Wainwright made it clear that his work and personal
life were two completely separate entities. He

explained, "On one hand I can't really say that my work
and my record is my life. Only because I have real com-
mon needs like everybody else and, you know, it doesn't
matter how many songs I sing or how much I sing about it,
I still have to do the work myself, you know, just to
accomplish what everybody else has to accomplish ...
(like) finding love and happiness." Appropriately, the tour
will imbibe similar emotional sentiments.
The hope for this tour is that it will inspire a sense of
positive reinforcement to the audience it reaches. Wain-
wright commented, "The last major tour I did for my
album was at a time that was extremely up in the air. It
was right after 9/11, and so I think everybody was kind
of numb from that experience. People are searching for
justice right now, and so I think that, if anything, the
show will be more upbeat, more uplifting, but also more
With great new material and an archive of music that is
of equally superior quality, in addition to his comical laid-
back sense of humor, Wainwright is coolly confident: "I've
always put on a good show." No doubt that this tour will be
a night-after-night experience of instant pleasure.


Tim Burton - With the anticipated December release of "Big Fish"
(surprisingly not starring Johnny Depp) and his illustrated short in
"The Animation Show," Burton holds his reign as artistic master of

"The Ben Stiller Show" DVD. -This short-lived
show was sadly cancelled after 12 episodes
back in 1992, but luckily the DVD features
the 13th unaired episode. Severely underrat-
ed, Stiller's show included Janeane Garofalo,
Andy Dick and Bob Odenkirk in 30 minutes
of sketch comedies.

Brett Kelly - Weighing in at about a
deuce and a half, this young pudgy actor
tickles hearts in "Bad Santa," In all of
his movies (including the two others)
Kelly has played the role of "the kid."
Maybe it's his rosy cheeks and curly
blond locks that make him a victim to
such type-casting.

Sydney strikes back
in second Alias' set

'People' looks at life's little struggles

By Adam Rottenberg
Daily Arts Writer

J.J. Abrams' sleek espionage series
returns to DVD with "Alias: Season
Two." Following the thrilling conclusion
to season one, super secret agent Syd-
ney Bristow (Jen- .
nifer Garner) must AliaS:
continue to work
as a double agent Season Two
for SD-6 on behalf Buena Vista
of the CIA. In
addition, she now has to come to grips
with the realization that her mother
(Lena Olin) is actually alive, while
attempting to uncover the coveted
"Rimbaldi Device." If all of this seems
confusing, this DVD set will help initi-
ate you into the complicated "Alias"
Even with a strong ensemble cast,
"Alias" is Garner's show. She is near
perfect in her role and the series hinges
on her every footstep. With recent
Emmy and Golden Globe nominations
in the lead and supporting acting cate-

gories, people looking for drama should
be satisfied with the show's ever-
unfolding cliffhangers and deceptions.
The series took on a bold change in
direction with the episode "Phase One"
that aired after this year's Super Bowl,
and Abrams' commentary on it helps to
divulge the reasons behind the radical
shift away from the status quo. In spite
of the changes, the show still filled each
hour in the second half of this season
with action and intrigue.
As one of the best and most exciting
hours of television, the DVD set now
makes each episode readily available
and commercial free. The video is
shown in a widescreen aspect ratio that
ABC uses for its Hi-Definition broad-
casts, making the picture on the set far
superior to what is normally on the air.
A Dolby digital audio track accompa-
nies the episodes and highlights the
drama. The six-disc set has the standard
set of features found in most film
DVDs with episode commentaries, pro-
duction featurettes and even deleted
scenes. By including as many extras as
most standard movies, "Alias: Season
Two" rates as one of the most complete

might feel from
day to day ...'
Michael Zahler
said about the first
time he read
"Other People," a
play by Christo-
pher Shinn. Zahler
portrays Stephen,
one of the lead

Thursday -Saturday
at 7 p.m. and
Friday at 11 p.m.
At the Arena Theater

By Melissa Runstrom
Daily Arts Writer
"I've never read anything that I put
down and said, 'My God, there is so
much! This has everything that you

also lives with Petra, a poet who strips
for the money and the pure joy of it.
She develops a relationship with a
Wall Street banker at work who wants
to see how she lives. According to
Taryn Fixel, the director of the play, it
is about "the masks that we put up to
the world."
All three of the characters struggle
to figure out how to make their lives
into something that is long-term and
satisfying. Like most people in their
twenties, they wonder if they will
have any effect on other people. "I'm
here and present, but next year where
will I be?" Zahler described some of
the inner turmoil of the characters.
The cast found it necessary to meet
outside of rehearsal to understand
their characters better. They wanted to
have more to bring into the practice
itself. This desire resulted in, accord-
ing to Zahler, an "extremely support-
ive" atmosphere, despite rehearsals
being scheduled late in the evenings.
Fixel, the director, felt however, that
the late hours may have had an unex-

pected advantage for the production.
Commenting on how it added to the
realism of the characters, she said,
"People would come into rehearsal at
eleven after long days, and as much as
you try to forget that, you carry it
with you."
"This is a very scary play to do; it
deals with a lot of very sensitive
issues, things that we deal with in
real life but never want to confront,"
Fixel said. "The play asks the audi-
ence to deal with the things that we
shield ourselves from having to deal
with. The audience will have to con-
front the judgments that they pass
on people."
"It is a map, the way the lines are
written," Zahler said, agreeing with
Fixel that the play is dependent on the
language composed by Shinn. "Char-
acters talk for pages," Zahler added.
"Sometimes you get poetic text that is
the star of the show, like Shakespeare,
and your job is to fill the language
and make it beautiful. Here, (the text)
is just to live in."

No relation.

DVD releases to hit the market.
ABC is standing behind "Alias" and
hopes that pushing DVDs onto the mar-
ket, a la FOX's "24," will help boost the
show's ratings. This strategy should not
scare viewers into thinking that the
show is in any danger, though, because
it has been renewed until 2007. If any-
one is still complaining that there is
nothing good on TV, then this set should
alleviate any concerns about the gems
that are still out there.

characters in the new play.
The plot revolves around the lives
of three people who live together.
Stephen, a struggling playwright and
film critic, invites his ex-lover, Mark,
to spend the holidays at his apartment.
Mark, fresh out of rehab and having
found God, has invited a kid from the
street into Stephen's home. Stephen

Show: *****
Picture/Sound: *****
Features: ****


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