THE F MICHIGAN DAILY
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 2, 1951
PAGE FOUR THE MICHIGAN DAILY WEDNESDAY, MARCH 2,1951
EINE KLEINE NAZIMUSIK?
Difficult Question, But
Berlin Group Should Play
T'rE QUESTION of whether or no the Berlin
Symphony should perform here is a valid
one, if only because an honest answer cannot be
come by easily. The arguments provided up to
date by both sides of the controversy have been,
I suggest, facile and unsatisfactory.
The spokesmen for the yes side airily dismiss
the opposition with the statement: "music has
nothing to do with politics."
Of course music has nothing to do with
politics. Just as Hamlet has nothing to do with
psychoanalysis, or the Kore of Euthydikos has
nothing to do with sociology, as much as psy-
choanalysts and sociologists have utilized these
works of art for their very specific ends.
ART IS ART; I think few were particularly
startled by the Musical Society's statement
to this effect. Many, however, have asked them-
selves whether the statement is really an an-
swer to the question (one which has been
raised many times before as to E. Pound, Giese-
The statement would be appropriate only if
the charge read: Since the conductor of this
orchestra, and several of its members were
members of the Nazi Party, the music they play
will reflect this affiliation. It will sound differ-
ent than music played by Michigan Republi-
Nobody to my knowledge has made such a
charge, or anything remotely resembling it.
.fHE ACTUAL CHARGE against the sympho-
ny's performance has to do with the con-
ductor's and certain members' voluntary asso-
c'ation with the Nazi regime. It is contended
thai,'!y this association these musicians must be,
seen as sharing the responsibility for the exter-
mination of six million Jews. I will not argue
this contention here: first, because I believe the
contentioxi to be a true one; second, I can also
admit the validity of the opposite view, one
which would place responsibility on environ-
mental or psychological forces.
THE POINT, however, is that although those
who do not wish the Symphony to play
have hade clear their belief that the musicians
are responsible, they have not made clear the
connection between this responsibility and the
I think I can intuit the connection the sin-
cere opposition (this does not include the obvi-
ously insincere LYL spokesman) has made.
This more admirable opposition is saying in
effect that "No civilized being can conscion-
ably afford to forget the enormity of the Nazis'
crime. And each civilized being is significantly
responsible for insuring that it doesn't happen
again. Each person who forgets the enormity is,
just one more force making the world less
civilized and more prone to a repetition of
As to the concert: "Our opposing the concert
is symbolic protest, 'a means of positively re-
minding those who may be forgetting. If the
symphony came and played and went without
word said, this could mean only that 6 million
victims of barbarism, of a sort the world has
never before seen, have been forgotten."
BUT HERE, I think, the opposition is in error.
Because a protest of this nature is neces-
sarily based on hatred directed toward members
of a specific group, in this case certain mem-
bers of the orchestra, however much it is
claimed that the hatred is directed toward a
criminal act. Certainly we should hate what
happened in Nazi Germany.
But there is an awesome danger in allowing
'this hatred of an ugly portion of history
to spill over into a hatred of human individuals.
(Germany hated being hungry and so took to
hating Jews). That we view the Nazis, and per-
hps all the German people, as responsible
cannot mean that we are to exterminate them.
Yet not allowing certain individuals to'play, is
but the first step toward not allowing certain
individuals to live, something the Nazi's made
only too clear. Is this the lesson to be learned
from the Nazi terror?
I think not. Whatever the spirit of forgiveness
means, and it has always meant something
pretty enormous, this spirit is the one to be
cultivated; when we forgive we are in effect
asserting that we do not forget. There is no
better way of asserting this hope for a world
in every respect opposed to the one Hitler
sought to create, than by visiting a gallery or
hearing a symphony (whether led by Nazis,
Communists or Dadas) and become ourselves
that much more humanized.
-J. W. Malcolm
FALSTAFF, opera in three acts by Giuseppe
Verdi, presented by Department of Speech
and School of Music.
FOR the second time in less than five years
Sir John Falstaff is occupying the Univer-
sity's opera stage, tnough this time with a
good deal more significance. Nikolai's Merry
Wives of Windsor, the earlier production, is
of course not in the same league as Verdi's
masterpiece on the same theme. Unquestion-
ably Verdi's Falstaff holds the same position
iri nineteenth century opera as the Mozart
opera buffas do for the eighteenth. If one
were to rank them, they would both be sitting
alone on top. The only thing similar in last
night's production of Falstaff to the -Merry
Wives was, outside of the same dramatis per-
sonae, a few costumes. This only pointed up
the comparison. The current production of
Falstaff is a stimulating musical experience of
which Prof. Blatt, the director of the opera
workshop, and all singers involved can be
For their first production of any Verdi opera
and for sheer musical demand, the University
players could not have chosen a more ambi-
tious project, yet only in a few small places
did any of the music seem beyond their means,
and these were mainly due to the orchestra.
IT WAS not a question of the orchestra play-
ing too loud, they are much too important
in this opera, but rather the shortcomings of
Lydia Mendelssohn. Prof. Blatt wisely never
had the more immature voices try to shout
above the orchestra, a fact that would have
caused undue competition, but let them sing
with their normal capacity, thus causing the
acoustical shortcomings to be the only com-
plaint of the evening.
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What was most sparkling in this perform-
ance was its musicality. Blessed with many
singers of talent, and an orchestra which was
more than responsive in their enthusiasm and
vitality, Falstaff literally breathed musical
animation and vivacity. One cannot help but
feel in this opera that it was not just Verdi's
genius that make this work a masterpiece, but
equally the perfect craftsmanship of this
master, who knew the ins and outs of the
voice like few composers before or after him.
With vocal lines so well-conceived the possi-
bilities of musical characterization are much
enhanced. From last night's singers little moth
could have been asked in bringing these latent
characterizations to fruition.
INEVITABLY Falstaff sinks or swims as does
the lead role. Much is demanded of this
character, from violent anger to amorous buf-
fonery, from high falsetto murmurs to low
grumbling in the bass. Yet all in all if Fal-
staff is not sung with lyricism, with that
golden-tqned voice that is basic to all Italian
opera, the more extreme effects lose their
Undoubtedly Prof. Blatt had Robert Kerns
in mind when he chose to do Falstaff. Mr.
Kerns, who has been in opera hereabouts for
several years now, has matured into a bari-
tone of unusual tonal quality and lyric bril-
liance. Even though his performances in the
past have always been tops, he surpassed him-
self last night with a performance truly ex-
POINTING up a contrast to the lyric bari-
tone of Mr. Kerns, was the dramatic bari-
tone of Thomas Tipton, making his first ap-
pearance in the University operas. Mr. Tip-
ton, as his role of Ford demanded, exploited'
the intense, more muscular quality of the bass-
baritone. Particularly was he effective in Ford's
second act monologue, in which he is called
upon to sustain anger and bitterness through
an exceptionally long and treacherous vocal
Among the women's voices Mary Mattfeld,
Dame Quickly, showed a beautiful contralto
voice. Her acting was one of the humorous
high spots of the opera; her voice with its
mellow low tones and broad tones was one
of the musical delights.
DOLORFS Lowry, Mistress Ford, and Joan
Rossi, Mistress Page, handled the roles of
Falstaff's two amorous objectives with vocal
ease and acting ability. Both lent fine voices
to primarily ensemble roles, and both stood
out in the solid musical backing they gave
to these parts. Miss Lowry, who had the
most to do since she was the only one with
which Falstaff actually makes contact, was
especially brilliant in her glimmering stage
presence. Priscilla Bickford sang the role of
the young lover, Nannetta, with lovely lyricism
and acting composure. Her last act aria was
another high point.
The rest of the cast, Donald Pressley-Dr.
Caius, William Merrell-Bardolph, James Berg
-Pistol, and William Cole-Fenton, Nannet-
+ ,.. m- o 1 n r 7.. .1 1 . _4 ...U ...
WASHINGTON - The boys in
the White House are rolling
up their sleeves as never before
to defeat the Sam Rayburn $20
tax-reduction amendment. Long-
distance phones all over the USA
were busy last week trying to pres-
sure certain wavering congress-
men. This week they are working
Last week, for instance, Assist-
ant President Sherman Adams
phoned Gov. Robert Kennon of
Louisiana, an Eisenhower Demo-
crat, and asked him to do some
Governor K e n n o n, in turn,
phoned various governors whom
he knows personally, asking them
to pressure their own Congress-
men to vote against Speaker Ray-
burn and his $20 tax reduction.
Among others, Kennon called Gov.
Phil Donnelly of Missouri, a Demo-
crat, who did not bolt to Ike,
asked him to work on the Missouri
His words fell on barren ground.
Governor Donnelly did not exert
himself. No votes were changed
aiong the Missouri representa-
tives in Congress.
Sam's Trump Cards
REASON FOR White House con-
sternation over the $20 tax
reduction is because of two trump
cards in Sam Rayburn's hand.
Trump No. 1-He appoints the
conferees to the Joint Committee
of the House and Senate which
will finally iron out the tax bill.
They will be stanch Rayburn sup-
porters. With the Senate likely to
defeat the $20 reduction, Sam's
conferees will stick to the bitter
end, and the Senate will probably
have to yield.
Trump No. 2-The tax bill, to
which Rayburn has tacked his $20
tax reduction, will expire April 30
unless Ike gets some action. And
he wants action badly. He needs
to have that bill renewed so badly
that he can't very well veto it,
even if the $20 tax reduction is in
the bill. For the bill continues
wartime excise-profit taxes and
So if Rayburn's amendment
stays on, Ike is hooked. If he ve-
toes, he may not have a tax bill
at all. Also, a veto would put him
in an even worse spot politically
with several million small tax-
That's why Sherman Adams is
working the long-distance phone
overtime to try to switch votes in
Friendship vs. Politics
DURING THE first weeks of Eis-
enhower's term in 1953, he
enjoyed excellent personal rela-
tions with Sam Rayburn, at that
time demoted in favor of Joe Mar-
tin as Speaker of the House. But
one day, when the Eisenhower
budget went to Congress, Ike went
out of his way to slap Democratic
failure to balance the budget.
Whereupon, Rayburn made one
of his infrequent speeches. He took
off the gloves and blasted Eisen-
hower for sending that kind of
critical message. And he dared
Eisenhower to balance the budget
-which so far has not been done.
That afternoon, Rayburn got a
call from the White House asking
him to breakfast next morning
with the President. Eisenhower op-
ened the breakfast by saying:
"Sam, I thought you were a
friend of mine."
Rayburn replied that he was;
but that in the American system
of government, loyalty to your par-
ty was more important than
friendship, and he was not going
to let the Democratic Party be un-
Country vs. Politics
TWO YEARS passed. When Eis-
enhower prepared to send his
Formosa Message to Congress,
Speaker Rayburn conferred with
Ex-Speaker Joe Martin and both
decided Ike didn't need any spe-
cial authority from Congress to
take action in the Formosan cri-
sis. So Martin got the President
on the phone. Both he and Ray-
burn, in a three-way conversation,
told Eisenhower that the special
resolution was not necessary; that
he already had all necessary au-
Ike appeared to agree. After the
conversation, Rayburn went back
to his own office and told a group
of Democrats that the Presidential
message was off; Ike would not
However, the President sent it
just the same. And after it was
sent, Rayburn jammed it through
the House in record time. He work-
ed just as hard as if the message
had come from a Democratic Pre-
sident. For the prestige of the na-
tion was at stake and Sam put the
nation ahead of politics.
Three weeks later, when the Re-
ciprocal Trade Bill was at stake,
Rayburn stepped down from the
rostrum and personally urged the
bill's passage. His personality, his
"How About A Good-Will Experiment?"
P . ,
A$~ \ 4
Fascism Revival .. .
To the Editor:
THE decision that two Nazi
Party members should have the
license to play music on our cam-
pus, or in this country is appall-
ing. There are several things
which have to be considered.
What is the issue involved? Is
it that the Berlin Philharmonic
should not be allowed to play?
Hardly Aestheticism is not the
issue. It is that Nazi Party mem-
bers should not be able to rise
again into positions of promi-
nence without so much as a blink
of the eyelash on the "objective"
cloud of "culture."
These men renounced "culture"
when' they joined the Nazi Party.
There is a great distinction here
between a German and being a
Nazi. The ordinary German was
caught up in the whirl, apathetic
or unaware he was struggling to
find some solution to hunger, un-
employment, national depression.
The Nazi Party member is not
"guilty by association," but guilty
by deed, by active participation!!
These are men who were con-
sciously participating in a regime
which decided that six million
Jews, countless scientists, artists,
humanists and other nations were
to be destroyed.
Why, some may ask, should any-
one be concerned by the appear-
ance of only two Nazis on a con-
cert stage? For this reason: this
is not an isolated event. There is
a conscious policy at present of
"excusing" the "ex-Nazi," war
criminals, "artists," munitions
makers and Party officials are
rising again rapidly into power.
Because there is a pattern of re-
viving Fascism this is a very real
threat to world peace.
Apathy or attendance at this
concert is not only an affront to
those who suffered under Fascism,
but is a means of tacitly condon-
ing the revival of degeneracy and
I wonder how many would go
to hear Hitler play the piccolo at
To the Editor:
CONTRARY TO David Kaplan's
editorial, the Berlin Philhar-
monic controversy does not in-
volve the issue of cultural ex-
change. The widest cultural ex-
change should be supported in or-
der to encourage friendly n
tions among all countries.
The issue is this: should
honor leaders and members o
orchestra who have not renour
Nazism and militarism, butv
on the contrary, intend tof
the United States to make the
vival of the Nazi war mac
more acceptable to American
Let us welcome anti-Nazi C
mans; let us welcome Germ
who want to clean house, to
nazify and de-militarize. Let us
welcome those Germans who c
the same torch today as they
fifteen years ago.
In 1938, when Wilhelm F
waengler, late conductor of
Berlin Philharmonic, and a mi
ber of the Nazi Council of S
was to come to the United St
the nation's leading musicians
fused to solo with the New Y
\ Philharmonic "if its leader ww
be the man who had accepted
profited by the Nazi regime."
engagement was cancelled.
After the war, public pr
compelled the Chicago Symph
to cancel a concert with F
waengler. Pons, Horowitz, Ru
stein, Piategorsky, Brailowsky
others announced they would t
cott the Chicago Symphonyi
was led by a collaborator of1
Rubinstein stated: "Had F
waengler been firm in his de
cratic convictions he would h
left Germany. Many persons
Thomas Mann departed fromt
country in protest against
barbarism of the Nazis. Furtwae
ler chose to stay and chose
perform believing. he would b
the side of the victors."
These protests remain vali
long as German exist who n
the dreams of Hitlerism.
Because the German questio
so vital today, the League in
you to hear former State Sen
Stanley Nowak, Thursday, Ma
3, 7:30 p.m., 103 South 4th,t
will speak on "Rearmament
Germany: Does It Mean Peac
Labor Youth Leagu
Cryptic Economics. .
To the Editor:
HISS JUDY Gregory, '56, in
three latest contribution
Institutional Economics, as p
lished in The Daily last wv
shows a vast knowledge and c
mand of the worse sort of psue
LETTERS TO THE EDITOi
(Continued from Page 2)
International Harvester Co., Chicago,
Il.-men in BusAd, Liberal Arts, Com-
merce and Engrg. for Motor Truck and
General Sales. Positions in Michigan
and upper Ohio.
Mutual Life Insurance Co. of New
York-men with W~th. majors, Econo-
mic or Business majors for positions as
Actuarial Trainees and Management
Fri., March 11--
t' Northern Trust Co., Chicago, Ill.--
men in LS&A and BusAd for General
Openings in Trust, Banking, Operating,
and Staff Depsrtments.
Campbell Soup Co., Chicago, Ill.-
men with majors in Accounting, In-
dustrial Management and Chemistry
forDepartmental Training in Manage-
ment and Accounting.
For appointments contact the Bu-
reau of Appointments, ext. 371, room
3528 Admin. Bldg.
Lecture. "Problems and Prospects of
European Union." Henri Brugmans,
Rector of the College of Europe, Bruges,
Belgium. 4:15 p.m., Rackham Amphi-
Alpha Kappa Phi, professional busi-
ness fraternity, presents H. D. "Des"
Dardenne, Trade Relations Manager of
McCall's Magazine, speaking on "The
Magazine and Modern Merchandising,"
Wed., March 2, at 3:00 p.m. in Room
141, School of Business Administration.
William W. Cook Lectures on Ameri-
can Institutions, Eighth Series: "The
ela- Politics of Industry"-Walton Hamilton
of Washington, D.C. Lecture V, "Sa-
lute to the Emerging Economy," Thurs.,
we Mvarch 3, 4:00 p.m., Room 100, Hutchins
f an Hall. Public invited.
who, Academic Notices
e re- Pre-professional affiliation will again
hine be discussed at the Education meeting
Wed., March 2, at 4:15 p.m. in the Ed-
IS? ucation meeting Wed., March 2, at 4:15
Ger- p.m. in the Education School Lounge.
nans We will have copies of the PTA con-
d- stitution and a field representative for
de- MEA will be present. Those who at-
not tended the meeting Feb. 24 are es-
arry pecially requested to attend.
Scholarships for Engineers. Applica-
'urt- tions from undergraduate engineers for
ut- the 1955-56 Scholarship Awards are now
the being received. All applications must
em- be in by Fri., March 11. Blanks may be
tate, obtained in the Secretary's Office, 263
ates, West Engineering Building.
me- Geometry Seminar will meet Wed.,
s to aid W. Crowe will discuss, "Projective
and Metrics in Minkowski Geometry."
TAnalysis Seminar. "The Constructive
Theory of Polynomial Approximation"
Dtest will hold an organizational meeting
hony Wed., March 2, at 9:00 a.m. in Room
'urt- 3010, Angell Hall. Further information
bin- can be obtained from J. L. Ullman.
and Engineering Mechanics Seminar. Prof.
boy- Victor L. Streeter will speak on "A
if it Quick Response variable Flow Control
Hit- Device" at 3:45 p.m., Wed., March 2,
in Room 101, West Engineering Build-
'urt- 402 Interdisciplinary Seminar on the
mo- Application of Mathematics to Social
have Science will meet Thurs., March 3,
lik Room 3401 Mason Hall from 4:00-5:30
p.m. N. Smith will speak on "Values
and the Decision Process."
Departmental Colloquium. T h u r s.,
Mar. 3 7:30 p.m. in Room 1300 Chemis-
try. Edward C. Olson will speak on
"Polarographic Behavior of Aromatic N-
nitrosohydrozylam ines." Moe Wasser-
man will speak on "Structure and
Photoconductivity of Thin Lead SulAde
Seminar in Applied Mathematics will
meet Thurs., March 3, at 4:00 p.m. In
Room 247 West Engineering. Craige E.
Schensted of WRRC will speak on,
"The Luneberg-Kline method and the
Derivation of Asymptotic Formulas for
Three - Dimensional Scattering Prob-
Actuarial Seminar will meet Thurs.,
Mar. 3 Ft 4:00 p.m. in Room 3212. War-
ren Orloft will continue the discussion
of "Interpolation in Terms of Opera-
Seminar in Mathematical Statistics
will meet Thurs., March 3, 3:30-5:30
p.m., Room 3010 Angell Hall.- Howard
Reinhardt will conclude his discussion
of Chapter 7 and Joseph Wrobleski will
begin discussion of Chapter 8 of Coch-
ran's "Sampling Techniques."
Zoology Seminar: Dr. H. Lewis Batts,
Jr., assistant Prof., Department of Zool-
ogy. Kalamazoo College, will speak on
"An Ecological Study of the Birds of
a 64-Acre Tract In Southern Michigan,"
Wed., March 2, at 4:15 p.m. in the Nat-
ural Science Auditorium.
Verdi's Opera, "Falstaff," will be pre-
sented by the Department of Speech
and the School of Music promptly at
8:00 p.m. in the Lydia Mendelssohn
Theatre March 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5. Late-
comers will not be seated during the
first scene. There is no overture.
La Socledad Hispanica will meet
Wed., March 2 at 8:00 P.m. in the
Michigan Room of the League. Panel
discussion on "Life in Latin America
and Life in the United States." Gisela
Luque, Debora Rozental, Arturo Go-
mez, and Charles Donnelly. Prof. L.
Kiddie will act as moderator. Dancing
Hillel: Reservations for Fri. Evening
Dinner at 6:00 p.m. Must be made nd
paid for at Hillel ry Thurs., any evening
from 7.00-10:00 p.m.
E p i sc o p a1 Student Foundation.
Breakfast at canterbury House follow-
ing the 7:00 a.m. Holy Communion,
Wed., March 2. Student and Faculty-
conducted Evensong Wed., March 2, at
5:15 p.m., in the Chapel of St. Michael
and All Angels.
Ulr Ski Club meeting in Room 3 K
& L of Union ed., March 2 at 8:00
p.m. Election of officers. Movies.
Varsity Debating will meet Wed.,
March 2 at 4:00 p.min room 4203 An-
gell Hall to view the Northern Oratori-
cal League Contest. Announcements.
Sophomore Engineering C o u n c i,
Board meeting Wed., March 2 at 5:00
p.m. in Room 1300. East Engineering.
Lutheran Student Association Wed.,
Mar. 2, 7:30 p.m., Lenten Vespers. 40
minutes. Meditation on "The Second
Word from the Cross." Corner of Hill St.
and Forest Ave.
Pre-Medic Students invited to the
meeting of the Pre-Medical Society to-
night, 7:30 p.m., Auditorium C, Angell
Hall. Business & organization, lecture
by Prof. B. Meinecke on "The Essence
of Medical Culture," movie.
Student Zionist meeting Wed., March
2, at 8:00 p.m., Hillel. Discussion on the
organization's founding convention.
Wesleyan Guild. Wed., March 2. Mid-
week Tea in the lounge, 4:0-5:15 p.m.
Mid-week Worship in the chapel at
Generation: Organization meeting for
all students who wish to become staff
members. No previous magazine experi-
ence necessary. 3:15 p.m. Generation
office, Stud. Publ. Bldg.
Pershing Rifles. Regular company drill
Wed., March 2. Report to TCB in uni-
form at 1930 hrs.
Christian Science Organization Testi-
monial Meeting, 7:30 p.m. Thurs., Fire-
side Room, Lane Hall.
International Center Tea. Thurs., Mar.
3, 4:30-6:00 p.m., Rackham Building.
Senior Board meeting Thurs., March
3. at 8:00 p.m. In the League. Room
will be posted on the bulletin board.
Executive cabinet will meet at 7:30 p.m.
Sailing Club. Meeting Thurs., Mar.
3, 7:45 p.m., 311 W. Eng.
Episcopal Student Foundation. Stu-
dent and Faculty-conducted Evensong
Thurs., March 3, at 5:15 p.m., in the
Chapel of St. Michael and All Angels.
Four seminars dealing with various as.
pects of "Everyday Christianity,"
Thurs., March 3, at 8:15 p.m., in the
Phi Sigma Society continues Arctic
Series. "Birds of Northern Baff in Is-
land," by Dr. J. Van Tyne, Curator of
Birds, and "Some Aspects of Mammal
Life in the Arctic" by Dr. W. H. Burt,
Curator of Mammals. Both illustrated.
Rackham Amphitheatre, 8:00 p.m.,
Thurs., March 3. Open to the Public.
(Refreshments after meeting for mem-
bers and guests). Business meeting -
7:30 p.m. to elect new officers for Beta
La Petite Causette meets Thurs.,
Mar. 3, from 3:30-5:00 p.m. in the left
room of the Union cafeteia. Ici on ne
parle que le francais. Venez tous jouer
au Scrabble en francais.
Congregational-Disciples Guild. 7:00
a.m., Thurs., Mar. 3. Breakfast medita-
tion in the Guild House Chapel. If you
plan to come, please call Guild House by
Hillel. Thurs., Mar. 3, 8:00 p.m. Organ-
izational meeting of graduate group.
DAILY OFFICIAL BULLETIN
scientific criticism of the Ameri.
can Economic System. What she
lacks in theoretical apparatus she
adequately compensates by use
of brilliant new phrases like "Dis-
tribute the accumulated wealth,"
"those in economic power," "cor-
porate privilege" and "usual re-
curring depression." I'm afraid
however, that I find it impossible
to reasonably take issue with her
on any of her many points. This
is not because I agree with her but
I cannot be at all sure what she is
trying to say. Cryptic language is
the domain of the modern poet
but it is not fit for an expounder
of economic and social criticism.
Although I'm sure it would be as
futile as it would be unkind to
suggest that MissGregory subject
herself to a few hours of the In-.
troductory Course in Economics,
I would appreciate it greatly if
before she again takese typewriter
in lap she would bone up a bit on
syntax and grammar.
At the Orpheum ...
ROMEO AND JULIET
A FEW years ago Tom Lea's nov-
el, "The Brave Bulls," was
made into a movie with Mel Fer-
rer. It had several good bullfight
scenes, a lot of descriptive back-
street photography, and a couple
of good performances. In spite of
this, it was not what the novel
was; indeed it was not really much
of anything except a- fathful re-
production of what the action in
the book must have looked like.
What it neglected to tell was what
it all felt like-how the matador
felt, how the promoter felt, even
how the bull felt. It missed that
half-cynical exaltation which was
the novel's main excuse for exist-
Something similar has happen-
ed in the handsome British-Ital-
ian film production of "Romeo and
Juliet" which is running this
ducer's effort to make it plausible
is in fact, what keeps the film
from being Shakespeare's "Romeo
and Juliet," the hymn to youth and
BUT TO FORGET Shakespeare
for a moment, let us consider
the film's strengths. First of all,
it is set in an authentic Verona,
a bright and brawling market-
place city where blood feuds seem
as natural as ripe vegetables. It is
a town of wooden gates, long stair-
cases, and hoodlum cavaliers.
Tempers are perpetually hot, the
swordplay is electric; only the duke
and the great, solemn cathedral
stand for peace and harmony. Sec-
ondly, the film has cast its char-
acters with close attention to phys-
ical appearance. Tybalt really
does look like a cat; Juliet is love-
ly; and Romeo is the poet-knight
incarnate. Third, the adapters
have wisely dispensed with many
of the lines from the play; they
know they are making a movie
and that mrvic ai.A, a. a,.
thing like the impact of what it
was necessary to cut out. Shake-
speare's "Romeo and Juliet" is full
of light and shadow, festivity and
gloom, blossoming and dying. The
film is almost without contrasts.
It is not easy, of course, to find,
satisfactory substitutes for the
force of a lyric measure or the
mood of a dimly lighted stage.
But simple authenticity, in the
name of authenticity, will not suf-
fice. Documenting the reason for
the failure of the Friar's message
to reach Romeo will not do it;
-cutting Mercutio as a loudmouth
will not do it; showing us Tybalt's
corpse as it really looked rather
than as Juliet imagined it will not
do it; and giving us standard
close-ups of even the nicest-look-
ing man and woman in the world
will not do it. If you try to do it
this way, you end up with a pro-
duction that it is impossible to
parody (as "Romeo and Juliet"
is often so easy to parodyY. But