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January 12, 1934 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1934-01-12

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Four sturs means extraordinary; three stars definitely
recommended; two stars, average; one star, Inferior;
no stars, stay away from it.

Ruthven, I think it was, said once that man is
the only animal who wages mass "interspecial"
war, if I may use the word. Maybe I could knock
the stuffings out of you, "Critic," and some things
in your weird letter made me want to do so when
first I read it.
When burglars raid my home, when gangsters
sack my business, or when my wife is insulted I
consider myself ready to haul out some good old
American shooting-irons or do some beating-up
with my fists. I take offense quickly, and in my
youth I was considered the neighborhood rowdy,
but hating all Cubans, all Germans, and all Rus-
sians goes against the grain with me.
Now a word about these Russians, or, as you
probably say, damned Bolsheviks. I think Com-
munism is a great tonic for a country where for-
merly a man took more care of a pregnant cow
than a wife in like condition. I respect Stalin as
a man who has riveted 160,000,000 to a common
determination. Can't you agree with this and still
know that we will never, within our lifetimes, have
Communism here? (Read the Chase excerpt.) To
me, they're all much the same - Washington,
Jefferson, Henry, Lincoln - Lenin, Stalin, Lit-
vinov, and Troyanovsky. I thank Heaven that life
has been made more interesting for me to live
by these men, and others from every nation.
Unless you change your views, "Critic," I hope
you, a citizen not in uniform, get popped during
the next war by a stray piece of shrapnel while
cashing a check.
(Signed): One who enjoys hearing- Wil-
liam Tell Overture, Poor Butterfly, Stars
and Stripes Forever, I'll Be Faithful,
and Die Wacht am Rhein.






Thursday, January 18 at 8:15 P. M.
Hill Auditorium - Tickets $1.00, $1.50, $2.00
Choral Union Concert Series

The Theatre
A Review®-
4 JACK AND THE BEANSTALK" is great stuff!
It's robust, lusty stuff! It's the sort of frank
melodrama that the theatre has for years been too
sophisticated to accept, save in anaemic, burles-
ques. It is sob stuff in the old Boucicault tradi-
tion, with the addition of satire of the Lewis Car-
roll variety, and no small degree of comedy that
is in one sense slapstick and in another sense sly.
This review is not addressed to children, who will
swallow the play whole and enjoy .it hugely; it is
directed at grownups who feel (a) that nursery
fables are not mature enough to be worth their
while, and (b) that, if they go at all, it is only for
the pleasure of seeing children act. This second
conception is wrong because the youngest member
of the cast is apparently in his teens, and the re-
mainder of the players considerably older; and
the first is faulty for reasons which I am about to
point out.
Imprimis, the mielodramatic portions of "Jack
ajd the Beanstalk" are genuinely moving to all
those persons who are able to junk their rational
inhibitions for two hours. Louise Pliss as the
widow Bess, Jack's mother, devotes the first act
to tearful pleading with Rafe (heh heh) Heywood,
played by Robert Hogg, that he may not put her
son Jack in gaol (old sp.) for the unwitting theft
of a cow. There is nothing laughable about her
sacrifice of all her worldly goods in order to pre-
vent the imprisonment; once the perversion of
twentieth century polish is temporarily discarded
by the audience, this act is heart-rending.
Item, the satire in the play, albeit simply, is
pleasantly biting. Russell McCracken, director
yesterday predicted that adults would find the
giant (Paul Bauer), so terrible to us in our nurs-
ery days, a ridiculous bluff. The statement was
correct. His awe-inspiring mouthings and his ter-
rified wife are tempered by a complacent "Well,
that's so . . ." whenever she mentions his in-
Item, the comedy (sustained with great effi-
ciency by Betty Spooner as Tyb, the giant's in-
adequate little wife) is neatly executed. Simplicity'
is here, as elsewhere, the dominant note; but the
bully's blustering bravado and Tyb's tear timor-
ousness are almost ideally played off against one
Item, the players have striven valiantly to ex-
tract the pith of their roles and present it to the
audience, and the result is sheer delight. First
honors are divided about equally between Jack
Stalter as Jack, Mr. Bauer, and Miss Spooner, but
this is far from being a disparagement to the rest
of the cast.
Item, the scenic effects are above the Ann Ar-
bor average. The beanstalk is almost convinging
(beanstalks never are completely so); and the
mid-air "edge of the place where time begins"
is exquisite. Much credit must also be given the
music, specially composed by Jack Conklin for this
Finally, Mr. McCracken has turned in a
masterly job of direction. It is largely his skillful
work that has resulted in the complete acceptabil-
ity of this illusion play.
These remarks should not mislead mothers who
are planning to send their children to one of the
three additional performances -Friday and Sat-
urday matinees and Friday evening. "Jack and
the Beanstalk" is hand-tailored for children. They
will roll in it. But adults will equally enjoy it -
provided, as the saying is, they allow themselves
to be reborn.
Collegiate Observer
Co-eds at Tulane University prefer the stream-
lined figure regardless of the Mae West craze, and
eat plenty of green vegetables to try to keep it.
* **
A Valpariso College student is being ac-
cused of wearing his riding habit to bed in-
stead of his pajamas. "It's only an act of pre-
paradness," he explains. "I'm subject to



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