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November 07, 1954 - Image 7

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1954-11-07
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a:r

PAGE EIGHT

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 1954

MUSICIANS IN KHAKI TOUR EUROPE:
KP Plays Second Fiddle to Viola for GI

I

BOOKS, ART, MUSIC,
SPORTS, FASHIONS

jjg

iuTr ri an

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(Editor's Note: The following article
is written by Grant Beglarian, a
graduate student at the University
working on a doctoral degree of
musical arts in composition. Beg.
larian served a two-year stint with
the Seventh Army Symphony Or-
chestra in Europe.)
By GRANT BEGLARIAN
AVING just come marching
home after spending two years
as a draftee in our Army, I feel
impelled to share with you, who
are anticipating this duty, and oth-
ers, some experiences and one
piece of advice: Be a musician!
For those in fields other than mu-
sic there is hope too. If you are a
dancer, or if you sing, you can be
used in musicals. Do you write?
Youcanwrite them. An artist will
paint murals in mess halls or the
service clubs or design sets far
shows. All is not lost. The Army's
new policy of placing men in po-
sitions for which they are trained
(or as nearly as possible) works
quite well.
I was first assigned to teach the-
ory to band musicians at a band
school near Munich, Germany.
When the school closed, I was
amazed to find myself transferred
to an "outfit" called the Seventh
Army Symphony Orchestra, as a
violist.
This Symphony was first or-
ganized by Thor Johnson immedi-
ately after the Second World
War. It toured Germany for
about a year and was then dis-
banded.. Two years ago it was
re-established, and during my
tour of duty, was under the di-
rection of James Dixon. He is a
talented young conductor, now
teaching at Iowa University, and
a student of Dimitri Mitropoulos.
The Orchestra, within a year,
traveled twice over all of Western
Germany and Austria. Not only did
we play ih large cities-Berlin,
Hamburg, Frankfurt, M u n i c h,
Bremen, Vienna, Salzburg-but al-
so in the smaller towns and in
some villages so tiny and remote
that, I believe, only the persons
who live there and Army Intelli-
gence know of their existence.
The attendance at these concerts
was always tremendous, no matter
how thick the fog or how deep the
snow. Curiosity and skepticism
brought people to the first concerts.
Most people had never heard an
American orchestra and in many
towns no orchestra had ever per-
formed. The fact that the Orches-
tra was composed of soldiers-,
real soldiers, playing, violins, bas-

soons and oboes stunned their
imaginations. Who ever heard of
an Army's maintaining a sympho-
ny orchestra? But when no chorus
line of chest heavy beauties ap-
peared and no Hill-Billy jamboree
took over during intermission, Ger-
man fears were allayed and Aus-
trian scoffs turned to cheers. Our
programs of Berlioz, Mozart,
Brahms, Beethoven and Tschaikow-
ski delighted them and the works
we performed by the American
composers, Piston, Barber and Del-

lo Joio, were enthusiastically re-
ceived,
A LL BUT ONE or two members
of the Orchestra are young
drafted men. Some were formerly
assigned either to bands or to spe-
cial services to play in soldier
shows. Perhaps a third of the mem-
bers were, or hope to be, profes-
sional musicians in civilian life.
They, of course, gained invaluable
experience playing with the Or-
chestra and some also performed

Mother's Bad Seed'

Seen

I

n Actions of Daughter

as soloists in Concertos with the
Orchestra.
Last fall and winter, the Orches-
tra dwindled to a size where it
seemed almost impossible to con-
tinue. Many persons were sent
home to be released from the
Army and replacements were dif-
ficult to find. I must mention here
that this is when my wife, who
just "happened" to have her flute
along, became the second flutist
with the Seventh Army Symphony
and toured with us for six months.
I do not know who was more
amazed--the Germans-as she took
her place on the stage, or the old
Army Master Sergeants-as she
stood in chow-line in the mess
halls.
After Christmas, the Orchestra
was too small to give full con-
certs, so we became an opera or-
chestra. Singers were hired by
the State Department and Ameri-
ka Haus and we toured with
them giving performances of
Gian-Carlo Menotti's "The Old
Maid and the Thief," "The Tele-
phone," and "The Medium,"
which were most successful
During this period, Maestro Mi-
tropoulos, in Europe for an engage-
ment, met the Orchestra and real-
ized that unless new men were
found immediately, the Orchestra
would be without the necessary

players to do anything. The time
and interest he generously gave to
us influenced the Army to take a
more serious view of the worth
and use of the Orchestra.
By spring the Army, by check-
ing their records, had found more
than 100 young musicians, sent
them to the Orchestra to be audi-
tioned, and rehearsals began for a
new tour of the Operas and, once
again, the concerts. The Army now
has a balanced and excellent sound-
ing orchestra of seventy men. The
second year, we were invited to
play a series of concerts at the
Passau Music Festival. In Passau,
the Orchestra also played for te
appearance of the Paris Ballet at
the Festival and for the opera per-
formances of Beethoven's "Fi-
delio."
Truly, this orchestra is one of
the two things in Germany and
Austria which gain respect and
good feeling for the United States
from the people. The Orchestra
and the Amerika Haus Libraries
and Information Centers, (whose
funds have been reduced) reach
thousands of people who otherwise
are ignorant of any good Orches-
tras, literature or music coming
from America. The Orchestra even
pleases those who do not like us
very much. -The Russians loved
us in Vienna.

(Continued from Page 6)
deress who killed her own family
and then the family of her husband
except for one little girl. Looking
up newspaper accounts, Christine
finds that her father (though she
now knows it was her adopted fath-
er) reported the event. She also
learns that he wrote what became
a famous story about the one per-
son saved from the clutches of the
woman; a little blonde girl named
Christine.
THE REALIZATION of the "bad
seed" that she has passed on to
her daughter is overwhelming, yet
author March has written with
such great understanding and
depth about the psychological as-
pects of the event and its environs
that the reader cannot help but see
the situation before him.
Rhoda goes into action a third
time and Christine is determined
that this morbid and lethal drive
with which she has impregnated
her daughter come to a halt. Fate's
intervention at the novel's con-
clusion is the author's way of
pointedly showing how catastrophic
fate can be.
The strength of Christine lies in
her weakness while Rhoda's weak-
ness is her strength. Christine does
not like to think and prefers to
let life go on around her. Her
daughter would rather enter the
world about her. While making it'
a maelstrom, she does only what
she desires, for, in reality, the
girl has.no relative sense of right
and wrong.
The first few chapters are a little
weak in construction for the narra-
tive, in the third person, tells the
reader of impending doom rather

than permitting the action to speak
for itself. Later in this terse
work, March lets his characters
speak and immediately the novel
proceeds on its suspense-filled
well-conceived way.
"The Bad Seed" is worth the
experience in its reading to show
what can be done not only with
good plot and theme but with a
masterful story-teller who knows
how to write, and most important,
to write well. It is too bad that
there will be no other books by
William March.

h .______

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 1954 ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN
Foreign Policy in Perspective: 195

Invites You To Hear
"High Fidelity Worthy of the Name"
THE, INCOMPARABLE

"Bolero"

By DANIEL WIT
Visiting Assistant Professor
Department of Political Science
LEADING Republicans have said that
*their "dynamic, new, foreign policy"
has "eliminated war," ended appease-
ment of the Communists, created a strong
Asian policy and "laid it on the line" to
our European allies in order to compel
them to cafry their full load in the strug-
gle against the Soviets.
Former President Truman has noted
'blunder after blunder" in the conduct
of our foreign affairs since 1952, while
other Democrats have charged the Ad-
ministration with complete confusion,
war mongering and total ineptness.
Amidst all this sound and fury, bluster
and bravado-intensified of late by pant-
ing politicians frantically charging to-
wards the electoral finish line-what ba-
sic significance can be found in the course
of American foreign policy during the
last two years? What sort of reasonably
objective analysis can be made?
To begin with, one must realize that,
in the policy conflict between isolation-
ism on the one hand and some form of
collective security, support for interna-
tional organization and participation in
balance of power politics on the other,
isolationism has gained only minority
political support in the United States
since 1932. The reasons for this derive
from the very nature of the Twentieth
Century and America's position in it.
The mass of the population and its
leaders have found it extremely difficult
to ignore the fact that technology has
almost destroyed the relative insularity
of Nineteenth Century America. Know-
ledge of the existence of Soviet bombers
capable of reaching us in some half doz-
en hours across the Arctic has forced
most Americans into an awareness of the
fact that the world is really round-that
Europe and Asia are not just remote
continents on'the other side of vast ex-
panses of water which function as im-
pregnable defenses for the U.S.
Frequent headlines which describe
American dependence for vital resources
on areas outside the Western Hemisphere,
the degree of popular, physical, psycho-
logical, and material participation in the
struggle to defeat Germany and Japan,
and the post-war position of leadership
thrust upon us have all served to height-
en American insight into the nature of
our involvement with the rest of the
world. One must indeed be living in an
ivory tower to be able to ignore the ex-
tent to which isolationism, today, rep-
resents no more than meaningless nega-
tivism incapable of resolving any of our
foreign policy problems but fully capable
of promoting our collective assassination.
THAT SUCH was realized by all major
post-war points of view was clearly
demonstrated during the "great debates"
which raged from 1947 to 1952. For, in
the course of those widely publicized ex-
changes concerning the definition and
propriety of the Truman Administration's
containment policy, both of the leading
critics of elaborate U.S. involvement in
global leadership-former Senator Taft
and ex-President Hoover-insisted with
some measure of validity that they were
not traditional isolationists, either. Sen.
ator Taft thus argued in behalf of ex-
tremely limited American military aid to
Europe and avoidance of military en-
tanglements on the Asian mainland un-
less and until the Europeans could them-
selves produce armed might capable of
stopping the Russians in the event of an
attack. Even Mr. Hoover, however-whose
position was more extreme than Taft's-
emphasized the importance to American
security of a friendly British bastion
while agreeing with Senator Taft on the
necessity for great air and naval power
based outside what he felt to be our
Western Hemisphere Gibraltar.
In effect then, by 1952 the cause of full
blown isolationism was pretty dead. The
real foreign policy alternatives involved
either the perpetuation of some combina-

Death of Isolationism
Has Led to Many Splits

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1' -

AT THE ART MUSEUM-Described as a "very good reproduction," this copy
of the famous "Victory of Samothrace" dominates the main hall of the Univer-

sity Museum of Art in Alumni Memorial
tion of collective security and balance of
power politics, capped by continued
though no longer excessively optimistic
participation in the United Nations, or
what might be called the Taft-Hoover
neo-isolationism.
THE CAPTURE of the Republican nom-
ination in 1952 by General Eisen-
hower settled the "great debate" as fat
as official policy was concerned. For, the
Eisenhower defeat of Taft constituted one
more victory for the advocates of an
American foreign policy of active inter-
national leadership. Prior to his nomina-
tion, Mr. Eisenhower had made it very
clear in testimony before the Senate
committees and in debate by press con-
ference with Senator Taft that he re-
garded any withdrawal from Europe or
reliance on air and naval power as an
invitation to disaster. In fact, during the
last few months preceeding the Republi-
can Convention, Eisenhower openly stat-
ed that he had become interested in the
Presidential nomination not so much
through opposition to the Truman poli-
cies as through fear that the neo-isola-
tionists would take over the Republican
party and then go on to capture the
White House. It was this very agreement
on major foreign policy alternatives with
the Democrats, as well as the General's
vote-getting possibilities, which also led
so many Democrats to urge earlier that
their nomination be offered to the future
Republican President. Moreover, the most
powerful' Eisenhower supporter among 1
Republicans-Governor Dewey-had him-

self clearly indicated prior to 1952 that
he was in favor of a policy of global
containment of the Soviet Union which
went beyond the Truman position of com-
mitting us to defend key areas through
partial mobilization. The stated Dewey
view was that we should draw a line
around the globe and then engage in full
mobilization in order to defend it against
any Russian incursion.
THE PERIOD from 1947 to 1952, there-
fore, indicated quite clearly that an
Eisenhower Administration, whether in
behalf of the Democrats or the Republi-
cans, would perpetuate the T. R. Roose-
velt-Wilson-F.D.R.-Truman advocacy of
U.S. leadership in world affairs. In addi-
tion, the Eisenhower-Dewey views ex-
pressed during the same period made it
a good bet that 1952 to 1954-with Mr.
Dewey's former foreign affairs advisor as
Secretary of State-would not involve any
drastic departure from the containment
policy embarked upon in 1947 by Mr.
Truman.
From the hindsight of 1954, the ex-
pected has generally occurred. A foreign
policy combining aspects of collective se-
curity, balance of power, and support for
the United Nations has been conducted
with some new verbal twists but also with
a continuation of many of the same
strengths and weaknesses characteristic
of "Trumanism."
During the last two years the Eisen -
hower Administration thus has com-
pleted the Korean truce negotiations in-
itiated by its predecssor instead of just

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