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October 22, 2009 - Image 11

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The Michigan Daily, 2009-10-22

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Thursday, October 22, 2009 - 3B

Ann Arbor's little
slice ofItaly

Ann Arbor, let's talk pizza.
In our college town, it's
often mass-produced,
made on the fly for the phalanxes
of students curled around corners
at the usual
hot spots,
namely Back-
room, Bell's,
Cottage Inn,
NYPD and y
Pizza House. A
sample of the
crowd knock- TKA
ing back beers KAICK
at Charley's
surely would agree that noth-
ing satisfies a case of late-night
munchies like agreasy, cheesy, $1
slice from across the street. I can't
argue with my college brethren's
choice of midnight snack. Late
night pizza is the greatest.
The demand for the product is
high, the customer is willing and
hunger is on the line, literally.
Eating cheap, slapdash slices at
campus haunts is clearly a must-do
college experience and Ann Arbor
has plenty of options. But more
often than not the crusts are bland,
the sauce weak, the cheese qual-
ity poor and the topping selection
These low standards make a
smatteringof chili flakes, extra
parmesan and a big gulp of soda
(yes, "soda" - not "pop") almost a
necessity in the quest to get it all
down successfullybefore heading
to the next party or back home
to the comfortable recesses of
your sheets. It's safe to say that
most Michigan students don't
seek out pizza places open past 11
p.m. for the sake of their sensitive
taste buds. But if we did, there is
no question: In terms of quality,
the cheese stands alone. Silvio's
Organic Pizza surpasses the com-
Silvio's commitment to locally
bought fresh ingredients and
innovative flavor combinations
yields a superior slice - one that
a surprisingly large number of
Ann Arborites have yet to try.
What's more, Silvio's - like its
endemically greasy, hyper-cheesy
counterparts - is also open late:
untif 3 a.i onFridy End T iida
nights. That's worth noting, espe-
cially if you find yourself around
North University Avenue in need
of a snack at 2 a.m. Silvio's location
also makes it the perfect lunch
spot, a stone's throw from the Diag
and a welcome Mom-and-Pop
alternative to the Panera, Chipotle,
Noodles & Company and Star-
bucks that surround it.
The restaurant itself, with its
gray-tiled floor, red tabletops, Ital-
ian flags and children's colored
pencil drawings hanging on the
cream-colored and exposed-brick
walls is reminiscent oftheboard-
walk eateries I used to go to with
family duringsummer vacations at
the beach. Those memories and the

soft yellow lighting inspire warm
fuzzy feelings, only furthered by
the glorious smells radiating from
the industrial-sized oven.
The neatest parts of the whole
experience, besides the vintage
stain-glass Coca-Cola clock and
the fact that the restaurant is raf-
fling off two round-trip tickets to
Italy, is the experiments taking
place in that kitchen. At Silvio's
you'll find ingredient combinations
you've never even imagined. Try a
potato, blue cheese and rosemary
pizza, or maybe a bowl of dande-
lion soup. The most popular of
these crazy creations is the truffle
pizza - fontina cheese, shitake
mushrooms and white truffle oil.
Hold the tomato sauce - this thing
is out of this world. Other quirky
finds include breakfast pizza and
the "Sweet Dream" pizza, a super
alternative to insomnia cook-
ies, topped with custard cream,
Nutella and powdered sugar. If
you desire somethingasweet, but
less colossal than a whole pizza,
you'd be a fool to pass up the can-
nolis - tube-shaped shells of fried
pastry dough with a sweet vanilla
or chocolate custard filling.
Silvio's creations may seem
unorthodoxbut they're almost
always a success. It's refreshing to
see such a commitment to innova-
At Silvio's,
organic doesn't
mean orthodox.
tion, especially in a market that
usually restricts itself to the basics:
cheese, pepperoni and ... more
cheese. Moreover, Silvio's is com-
mitted to producing a healthy meal
for its patrons. Every pizza is pat-
ted out by hand, made with organ-
ic ingredients and produced using
sustainable food practices. Silvio
Medoro and family, who work and
run the restaurant, buy their certi-,
fied organic ingredients from local
providers. You may even recognize
the tastetihe r g theese .e t
from another Ann Arbor favorite:
If the perfection of the crust,
succulent flavor collaborations and
extensive menu are not enough
to draw you to Silvio's, try a piece
for the authenticity of the flavors.
They're as genuine as any I tried
on my trip to Italy because Silvio
and his family are actually from
Italy. Always, always, always ask
about the special, and if you can't
make it out of bed, call in. They
Kalick thinks she's too good
to stand in line at Backroom like
everyone else. Tell her why she's
an elitist at lkalick umich.edu.

I'd rather not.

Cult with personality

At the State Theater, 'Rocky
Horror' continues its long
run as a midnight staple
Daily Film Editor
Seeing "The Rocky Horror Picture Show"
in the privacy of your own home is a bizarre
experience, and it leaves you baffled. Taken on
its own merits, the film is
a sexually charged Fran-
kenstein's Monster stitched T
together from various pop- Horror
culture elements: B-movie Picture Show
horror, jukebox musical and
circus sideshow. The plot is Tomorrow
some nonsense about a mad and Saturday
scientist named Dr. Frank- at midnight
N-Furter (Tim Curry) who At the State Theater
corrupts the sexuality of a
young engaged couple while
building his own Speedo-clad sex slave. The
film is still fun for those unfamiliar, but almost
incomprehensibly so.
As "Rocky" fans might say, though, it's the
midnight screenings that really drive you insa-
"I actually saw the movie for the first time
before a midnight showing, and I was like, 'This
is a weird movie,' " recalls Charlotte Raines, a
School of Music, Theater & Dance junior. "And
my friend was like, 'No Charlotte, you have to go
to a midnight showing. It will change your life."'
Raines attended her first midnight showing
in her senior year of high school. Since then, she
has attended many more in New York, Jackson
and Ann Arbor, and she also played a Phan-
tom (a member of the ensemble) in MUSKET's
2007 production of the original Broadway stage
play. Such is the transformative power of seeing
"Rocky Horror" with the right audience.
Simply put, a midnight screening of "The
Rocky Horror Picture Show" is unlike anything
else in popular culture. It lies somewhere in the
intersection between film, live musical theater,
burlesque show and food fight. The film, which
flopped during its initial release in 1975, has
gained eternal life in the decades since thanks
to a freakishly devoted global fan base. The
elaborate spectacles staged around the midnight
screenings have transformed "Rocky Horror"
into arguably the biggest cult film of all time.
The State Theater knows how to cultivate
Ann Arbor's population of "Rocky" fanatics,
and tomorrow and Saturday it will continue the
long-standing tradition of the midnight screen-
ings, scheduled as usual just before Halloween.
This year the theater will be upping the ante by
hiring Tickled Fancy Burlesque Company for
the event.
"We were trying to think of ways to make
midnight movies a bigger production," said
Christine Tremblay, assistant manager of the
State Theater.
For the past couple of years the theater has
brought in Dynamic Tension, Inc., a performance
troupe that specializes in "Rocky Horror," but
this year it decided to mix things up a bit.
If you're a "Rocky Horror" virgin - some,

one wh 's never attended a midnight screening
before - you're probably asking why it's neces-
sary to even hire a performance group in the
first place. After all, it's just a movie, right?
Wrong. There are actually three components
to the midnight showings that don't involve the
movie actually playing on the screen. The first
of these components is a "shadow cast," a group
that acts out musical numbers and other scenes
from the film in front of the screen while it plays
behind them.
"It's like a live show and a movie at the same
time," explained Raines, who will be helping out
with production aspects of this year's shadow
The cast doesn't do anything halfway: It fully
commits itself to the roles, using props and dress-
ing up in the appropriate costumes, which more
often than not involve drag, heavy makeup and
fishnet stockings. The shadow cast also usu-
ally performs a pre-show, which could incorpo-
rate anything from the "Thriller" dance to the
"deflowering" of the virgins in the audience (see-.
ing who can make the best orgasm noises, etc.).
Secondly, there are the "callbacks" - words
and phrases that the audience is primed to yell
at the screen duringcertain moments. Although
the exactcallbacks vary between locations,some
are universal. Yelling "Asshole!" at the character
of Brad Majors (Barry Bostwick) and "Slut!" at
Janet Weiss (Susan Sarandon), for example, are
standard procedures. The callbacks help to unite
the community in the theater and transform the
proceedings into a much more participatory
experience. Everyone knows what to say and at

what times.
Jeffrey Zebrowski, a fifth-year Residential
College senior and "Rocky Horror" devotee,
remembers how he had read an audience partic-
ipation script for the film online before attend-
ing his first midnight screening so he wouldn't
be left in the dark. He didn't want to stand out
. as a virgin, because it's easy for the audience to
hone in on those not participating. Zebrowski
admits that he'll target virgins at the screenings,
as well.
The third component at the midnight show-
ings is the use of props. At many of the perfor-
mances, audience members will bring objects to
the theater that are then thrown at key moments
in the film: rice during the opening wedding
scene, toast when one of the characters proposes
a toast, toilet paper when Brad exclaims, "Great
Scott!" and much more. in recent years, includ-
ing this year, the State Theater has banned the
use of props to help with the cleanup process,
much to the annoyance of "Rocky" fans.
Still, Zebrowski can understand why it was
necessary to stop the props.
"When people get water thrown on them,
when they get rice thrown on them., (the theater
managers) aren't too thrilled," he said with a
But props or no props, the legacy of "Rocky
Horror" will live on for a long time, and this
Friday and Saturday all of the cult's members
will once again do the "The Time Warp" in the
aisles of the State Theater.:Buy your $8 ticket in
advance, because they'll sell out. Fishnet stock-
ings optional - but encouraged.

International Opportunities Fair
2-6 pm, Michigan Union
Meet representatives of 55+ organizations and explore options for:
* internships
" volunteering
" teaching abroad
" international careers
The International Careers Speaker Series wraps up with:
Peace Corps & Your International Career
7-8:30 PM, Michigan Union
Need more information?
647-a2299sicoverseas@umich.edu . http://internationacenter.umich.edu/swt
Sponsored by:
The Career Center - The center for Global Health - The center for Global and Intercultural study
College of Engineering - Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy - Germanic Languages and Literatures
IternationalCenter ~ Intem ational institute
the School of Information~ The School of Natural Resources and the Environment
The School of Pubic Health ~ The School OT Social Work


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