June 15, 1989 |
Funny, the columns that draw mail. I always expect reaction from columns that deal with controversial subjects, but I get much more from columns that deal with mundane matters, the stuff of coping with the minutiae of everyday life and feeding our souls. Two recent cases in point: a column about a box of theater playbills I've collected over the years and one about our dachshund puppy. I received in the mail last week a red, dog-eared notebook with "Plays and Players" embossed on the cover.
April 30, 1989 |
There's something in this book to offend everyone: blacks, Jews, Arabs, Italians, Irish, women. Author William Kotzwinkle, who was most successful with his novelization of "ET: the Extraterestrial," seems to have rebelled against the saccharine sweetness of ET. With a vengeance. Howard Halliday is the editor of Chameleon Publications, a group responsible for the sleaze that clutters most newsstand racks. Their magazines include lurid romances, soft-core pornography, true crime, celebrity drivel, and a pseudo-religious rag for the desperately faithful.
April 21, 1989 |
In its six years of existence, Vaudeville Nouveau has been doing its level, and frequently off-level, best to raise the much-maligned art form of rubber-chicken juggling to new heights--12, 13 feet to be precise. Wacka wacka wacka. There are wheelbarrows full of loopy humor in the threesome's retro-hip theatrical act. But there is an equal amount of mind-boggling, eye-popping, gravity-defying physical dexterity. The wildly kinetic show comes to Saddleback College in Mission Viejo tonight.
August 26, 1988 |
In the annals of show business childhoods, preoccupied as they are with horror stories, few sound more golden than Anne Kaufman Schneider's. Her father was playwright George S. Kaufman, the acerbic and celebrated Broadway figure who brought people like Irving Berlin, Moss Hart, Groucho Marx and Alexander Woollcott home to dinner. "To me it was a normal childhood," remembers Schneider. "I mean, there would be George Gershwin playing the piano. Once Charlie Chaplin came to a party.
March 6, 1988 |
Jonathan Miller strides down the aisle of the Embassy Theatre, rehearsal site for his much-talked-about production of "The Mikado." He places a bottle each of orange juice and mineral water on the stage edge and pulls a package of trail mix from his pocket--all the while eyeing a background prop and removing his tweed jacket. There is work to be done.
November 28, 1987
Last week was not the best of times for the once-proud Big Ten. First, Ohio State President Edward Jennings dismisses football Coach Earle Bruce with all the class and finesse of a bull in a china shop. Then, when he tries to justify his actions, it's like a scene from a Marx Brothers' comedy. Then we have the talented, but arrogant, Bobby Knight. In baseball, it's three strikes and you're out. The Indiana coach has had three swings--hitting a Puerto Rican policeman during the 1979 Pan American games, throwing a chair during the Indiana-Purdue game in the 1984-85 season, and now the forfeit to the Soviets.