Corpus Christi Caller-Times from Corpus Christi, Texas on July 25, 1971 · Page 61
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Corpus Christi Caller-Times from Corpus Christi, Texas · Page 61

Corpus Christi, Texas
Issue Date:
Sunday, July 25, 1971
Page 61
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Rock Opera Is Set For Corpus Christi The rock opera "Jesus Christ, Super- star'' will make its way to Corpus Christi Sunday August 8 for one performance in Memorial Coliseum. The Original American Touring Company will perform music from the opera plus "Amazing Grace, "The Lord's Prayer" and other original and traditional works at 7:30 p.m. The show is being sponsored by the Sertoma Morning Club for the benefit of Opportunity Mouse. Th(! show portrays the last seven days of Christ in a contemporary approach. The rock opera was written by two young Englishmen, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tom Rice. They are planning additions for the opening in New York sometime this fall. In the work, Christ is seen as a human being rather than a spiritual figure, and an analogy between Jesus and contemporary rock stars has been drawn. The score is drawn from rock, jazz and traditional Broadway show music. The live choral presentation is one of the first in the country since, until this spring, "Jesus Christ, Superstar" existed only on records and tapes. This company is not associated with the American Rock Opera Co. which produced a choral version of the rock opera and performed 22 of 177 scheduled presentations early this year before copyright holders filed a suit and enjoined the company from continuing its tour. A suit seeking an injunction against the Original American Touring Company lost out in federal court and the group is continuing its crosscountry tour. A panel discussion will be held immediately after the performance here. The panel will consist of representatives of the clergy, youth organizations and the cast along with audience participation. Tickets, at $4, $5 and $6, are available at the Corpus Christi Savings Kiosk in the Padre-Staples Mall or by mail from the Sertoma Morning Club, P.O. Box 7243, Corpus Christi 78415. E N T E R T A I N M E N T SUNDAY, JULY 25, 1971 TRAVEL: 6 ENTERTAINMENT: 1-4 SECTION G Books, Art: 7 HOBBIES: 5 Seeing Broadway From Other Side PATTI JO IN NEW YORK APARTMENT HAPPY OVER DREAMS . . . she is new female lead in Broadway musical 'Purlie' (AP Newsfeatures Photo) The Jazz Show Will Rise Again, Says Promoter By MAHY CAMPBELL AP Newsfeatures GEORGE WEIN, producer of the Newport Jazz Festival, which was canceled this year half way through its third concert, said, "The festival will continue. Where and under what structure, we don't know yet. Maybe in a different area or form. We're going to recreate it somewhere so fans who really love jazz will be able to hear their music. There will be a Newport Jazz Festival next year." The festival was planned to have seven concerts--one Friday night and two each on Saturday, Sunday and Monday--on the July 4 weekend. At the Saturday night concert, approximately 18,000 persons who had bought tickets were sitting on wooden folding chairs in Festival Field. Some 18,000 more, young persons, many of them with knapsacks and wine jugs, were sitting on a hillside behind the field. They could see and hear; police left them alone. But several hundred of them broke down a chain link fence and then either broke down or climbed over wooden fences to get inside the field. Some threatened audience members; many broke chairs. HOURS AFTER the audience was told to go home and had left, young persons were still dancing around on the stage, fearing up music arrangements and pulling keys out of the grand piano. The "Rev. Norman J. O'Connor, the jazz priest, said to one of them, "Why are you cioing this? You're destroying the music." The young man said, "I am the music." Father O'Connor said, "Well, then, let's hear you sing like DIonne Warwick." The concert had been canceled just before its intermission by Wein, City Manager B. Cowles Mallory and Police Chief Frank H. Walsh, who were afraid that fighting would start and people would get hurt. Around midnight the police decided to cancel the Sunday and Monday concerts as well. Wein was bitter about that. He said, "The town was peaceful Sunday morning. The festival could have gone on, on a concert-lo-concert basis. I don't Fame Without a Name By WAKA TSUNODA NEW YORK (fll -- Martin Balsam is the man who stopped short of becoming the first nude on Broadway. A few years ago, the audience saw only his hand -- the rest of him was off stage he played an actor who stripped in an audition for a nude role in "You Know I Can't Hear You When the Water's Running." Balsam also is the man who, when he goes into a restaurant, the owner says, "I saw you last night. On television, ub, what was the name of the movie?" Balsam has appeared in 33 movies, 17 Broadway plays, some 40 summer stock- productions and made over 300 television appearances. He has achieved star status without playing a single major role in films. This year, he is celebrating his 30th anniversary in the profession. '"ASTONISHING," he said. "I can't believe it. Thirty years this summer. It's been pleasurable, marvelous -- and a good portion of it dull." The 51-year-old winner of an Oscar for "A Thousand Clowns" and a Tony for "I Can't Hear You" has not only endured what he calls a "dangerous and hazardous occupation" but has gone to the top and stayed there without much socializing on tiie cocktail party circuit. "It's distasteful to me. I'm incapable of doing it," he says of the practice of trying to land a role through friendship. "I know how quickly a deep friendship disappears when one is refused a job. I've seen terrible things happen: friendships breaking up in seconds." He has always offered his acting ability on the basis of. quality alone; and that quality is the product of Actors Studio. "When you really want to cry, you try not to cry. And if you try not to cry, tears com'e Into your eyes. I owe a lot to Lee Strasberg." BALSAM, WHO is the son of a New York ladies' sportswear manufacturer, got into acting because it was the only thing he wanted to do. The early part of his life was spent appearing in school plays, sitting in the balcony of Broadway theaters with an 80-cent ticket, and working as an usher fn order to see plays free. "Acting comes naturally to me. My job is to tell stories and I get pleasure out of doing it, starting from A and going to Z. Even when I'm tired, if I go out there on stage, there they are. I accept it." "T almost quit many times. Not that I wanted to, but because nothing was going on," he said. But when he cooled down enough to admit there may be other occupations in the world, he "discovered I'm not qualified for anything elsa." Jobs can come out of the blue after several months of idleness. "I got a call one night and the next day I was in Sicily," he said. He went there recently to play his first major role in a motion picture whose original title is: "Confessions of a Police Chief to a District Attorney." It was produced by an Italian company and has to do with law and the Mafia. quarrel with what was done Saturday night. But that emergency was over Sunday morning. "They could have announced there would be a Sunday afternoon concert at 10 or 11 Sunday morning and thousands of people could have come. "There weren't any kids in the hills. And the police had all night to get help from the governor to see that they didn't come back. There were a number of things they could have done and they chose to do none of them. The police were just happy to see everybody get out of town," WEIN SAID, "We are, conservatively, $100,000 in the hole. We would have shown a profit of $100,000, the first time we ever hit that kind of money. All we needed was good weather and we certainly got that. Day to day we had exactly the ticket sales we had projected. Sunday night would have been our biggest. "It might have been the greatest of all Newport Jazz Festivals. Look at the excellence of the musical performances so far." There was talk among musicians of a benefit concert to help Wein pay his bills. Some musicians told Wein to pay them only enough to get them out of town. Also, a number of persons who had bought tickets were deciding not to ask for refunds, to help lessen the financial loss. Wein said, "The Newport Jazz Festival is my business, but it is more important than that. It means so much to musicians and people who come every year." Wein said that his talent budget was $130,000 but overhead for items like police protection, rent, sound system, lights, was $150,000. THE DAY after the long weekend he said, "I gave a check for $21,000 to the city for pob'ce. It bounced today. They said they're going to take criminal action. Whatever money I've got now is going to be paid back to the public. The city later. I've always paid all my bills. I won't go under. I'm going to pay every penny." Asked why he thought the young people broke into the festival, Wein said, "It's a defiance of authority of any kind. Even if the concert had been free, somebody is telling them it's free. The fact you're giving it to them makes them mad. Who are you to let them sit on the hill?" By MARY CAMPBELL NEW YORK (AP) -- Patti Jo, the 22- year-old female lead of the musical "Purlie," had seen one Broadway show in her life before she went on the Broadway stage herself. That show was "Purlie." She had gone to it after she'd been hired as a replacement for Melba Moore, to see how it went. Miss Moore had grown restive in a show about black people which isn't militant and left it. But Patti Jo says she isn't the militant type. She had been singing in nightclubs, starting in rock 'n' roll bars and strip joints, including songs from "Purlie" in her act and dreaming about Broadway. In fact it was a newspaper review of a Miami engagement last winter that brought Patti Jo to the attention of "Purlie" producer Philip Rose and got her the job of Lutiebelle, the sweet young thing discovered in the junfor choir by sharp- eyed Rev. Purlie Victorious. When Patti Jo talks about her brief history, the themes that recur are determination to become a star and saving money to use to further her career. SHE WAS born in Otter Creek, Fla., named Ethel Patricia Demps, with three older brothers and three older sisters. Both her parents died when she was very young. Reared by the oldest sister, Jane McKenzie, Patti Jo, as she was always called, grew up in DeLand, Fla., then Miami during high school years. She went to Florida AM in Tallahassee, "determined to get through," and did, graduating with a major in speech and drama. Demps didn't sound like a theatrical last name to Patti Jo, and she couldn't think of another one, so when she started singing on weekends while in college, she just called herself Patti Jo. She met a man at a college drama festival in Atlanta who told, her to come to New York when she got out of college and he'd help make her a star. She arrived in New York, found out he had something else in mind, and turned around and went back to he.r sfster's in Miami, not pausing to see even one of those coveted Broadway shows. IN MIAMI, performing, she met a young singer, Barry Smith, who gave her some adv'ce -- see a music teacher, gnl an arranger, quit singing hard rock, work up an act, get a manager -- all to get better bookings and make more money. That advice she took. She says, "I guess my determination and his encouragement made it; I started investing my money Mo an act. No one had ever suggested anything like this to me. I knew I wouldn't be in hard rocfe forever, but I'd never done any ballads or commercial tunes before. It was a challenge, but I didn't hesitate in going into it." Then Smith brought his own managers, Mr. and Mrs. John Ghennan, around to hear Patti Jo, three times. All were disasters. "The first time I didn't even sing. All us girls had turns of doing a solo and that night I didn't get to sing. They couldn't have heard me anyway because the band was so loud. Then I got fired from that place, and a number of other disappointing things developed. But I had saved my money. That was one thing in my favor. I invested in arrangements." THE NEXT time, only Mrs. Gherman came, to a strip joint, where Patti Jo was singing between appearances by strippers. She says, "It was the first time I ever heard my arrangements played with more than a piano. When the band started my first tune, I didn't even recognize it. I fought through it, thinking the next one has to be better. The next one was a little bit worse. It was really horrible." The third time, Patti Jo says, "I went into a lounge where there was no more than enough room for a piano and a very thin person. I couldn't get into what I was doing; I just didn't have enough room. This time the tunes were played much better, but all I could do was stand there and sing. I couldn't move." The Ghermans signed her anyway and got her a 10-day job in a Catskill resort last summer, with option to renew. She says, proudly, "They took the whole summer." Then it was back to Miami and engagements in better clubs. During the day, without, her managers knowing, she worked as a switchboard operator, then a file clerk. A reporter for Variety reviewed Patti Jo's nightclub act last winter in Miami, especially liked the songs from "Purlie" and said Patti Jo should be on the Broadway stage. Somebody showed the review to producer Philip Rose and he phoned the Ghermans and said he wanted to talk to Patti Jo. Then came a quick trip to New York, two auditions and the words Patti Jo screamed when she heard, "Welcome, Li'Mebelle." Patti Jo says that Cleavjn Little, who i- ln.ys Purlie, helps her aixl gives her advice. He tells her. "Whenever you're on si age be aware of everything that's going on. Be observant, listen and respond to whatever is there. Respond as it comes. And relax." She tries to do it, Patti Jo says, but the relaxing part isn't easy. "I know my stomach is always going to turn a couple of times." Film on Drug Users Does Not Preach By FRANCIS TAYLOR © Newhouse Newt Service Director Jerry Schatzberg, whose stunning movie, "The Panic in Needle Park," opened two weeks ago in New York, is neither for nor against drugs. Though the film is thoroughly anti-drug in portraying the life of a heroin addict in New York City, Schatzberg takes no position on the question of narcotics. Except that he considers acid brain-damaging. And except that he considers heroin brain-body-and-soul damaging. Schatzberg's point is that he doesn't sermonize and he wouldn't allow the film to preach. It doesn't have to. The daily life of the young addicts is so horrifying, it reaches so effectively into the viewer's consciousness that the movie surely helps turn some people away from dabbling in hard drugs. When he first read the script for "The Panic in Needle Park" Schatzberg turned it down because it seemed too topical. That earlv version of the screenplay included the involvement of hippie life-styles and a black-white factor that seemed to date the story. "I DIDN'T choose the subject at all," Schatzberg says honestly. "It chose me. After I read an early version I heard Al Pacino was interested and wanted to play Bobby. So I read the script again and saw that it could be changed to something I'd want to do." Pacino, who zooms to screen stardom in this movie, had been known chiefly to New York theater-goers as an award-win- Egad, Igor, How Time Has Changed Your Looks By PHIL THOMAS NEW YORK w -- Strange things are happening -- at least in horror movies. Back in the good old days, the horror film buff had only to glance at the screen, see the saturnine features of Bela Lugosi and knew he had a vampire on his hands-or neck. Nowadays, all is confusion, what with attractive, well-endowed young ladies wandering on screen, giving no clue to their real identity until they pull back their full red lips and show long, pointy teeth. A vampire in starlet's clothing. And there was a time when the mad doctor easily was identifiable by a deformed creature, usually named "Igor," lurking at his elbow and giggling maniacally. Now, in the film "Dr. Phibes," "Igor" has been replaced by "Vulnavia," an attractive, young brunette who not only doesn't giggle she doesn't even speak. "I DON'T know why they don't let me speak," says Virginia North, the tall, former model, who plays the part. "Not speaking is more sinister I suppose. But, then, I do get to scream." Miss North also doesn't find a woman doing the "Igor" bit unusual. "The reasoning behind it is obvious," she says, "It's nice to see a pretty girl in a movie." A non-speaking role in a horror show Isn't new to the 24-year-old Miss North. Shp once appeared in a play in London called "Council of Love," in which she was silent throughout the performance. "I played the daughter of the devil," she said with a laugh. "I'd go around and do terrible things. The people who made the movie saw rne in the play and decided I was what they wanted. You might say I was ready made for the movie part." In the movie, Miss North plays "girl friend, dancing partner and sidekick" to Dr. Phibes (Vincent Price), "and I help him to do nasty things, such as murders. All the murders he concocts are horrific. He doesn't just kill someone, he thinks up terrible things involving bats and rats and that sort of thing." SHE REGARDS not being able to speak In a rola as "a bit frustrating, since everyone else is out there doing their bit and you have to depend mostly on your face, especially your eyes, to get your bit across. "But, then, not speaking is far easier than having to speak since you don't get nervous about, your lines and how to remember them." The film was made in London, Miss North's home. The daughter of an American father and an English Mother, she spent most of her life in England so she says she feels English. She has been an actress "only about four years. Before that I was a model- clothes and that sort of thing. Then I mot. the man who was to become my agent and he asked me if I had ever thought of being in films and I told him that I hadn't but that I would like to and that was the start of it." The film is her fifth. Her sixth may be a sequel to "Dr. Phibes." Its makers reportedly are considering a follow-up, and Miss North is willing to go the "Igor" route again. "Why not?" she says. "I like work." SPEECHLESS ROLE FOB VIRGINIA NORTH IN FILM 'DR. PHTOES' . . . she helps fiend do nasty tilings, such as murder (AP NtwttwtorM Photo) ner for off and on Broadway performances. Schatzberg had made only one movie before this, "Puzzle of a Downfall Child" with Faye Dunaway, a not very successful tale of a fashion models failures as a person and finally as a model. Since Schatzberg had been a fashion photographer, had known Faye when she was a model and was thought to be in love with her years ago, most people assumed the director's debut film was authobiograph- ical. He says it wasn't, though the life of models in the fashion industry is familiar to Schatzberg. HOWEVER, for his second movie he wanted something not remotely related to his own life. He found it in "Needle Park," especially when he made his first visit to the dusty little park that is hardly more than a traffic island at Broadway near 72nd Street. Schatzberg, who looks much younger than his 44 years, had never met addicts until he began preparations for the movie. "Just sitting in that park and listening to them, I was devastated," he says. "As we went on preparing the movie I heard more and more. All of them are going to get straight . . . but always starting Monday or next week or after some event that will never happen." The director didn't consciously decide to include or leave out of the film any mention of the rehabilitation centers in New York where many former addicts are learning to live without narcotics. "I simply didn't use that aspect of the addict's life because it wasn't in the script," he says. "The addicts I saw and heard on the West Side in the Needle Park area didn't speak of the centers and I don't see how they belong in this particular story." I HAD raised the question because in New York City most addicts are aware of the existence of programs designed to help them quit the hideous life shown in the movie. However, Schatzberg's answer is acceptable. "The Panic in Needle Park," is so effective that, its few weaknesses are minor. But Schatzberg, not one to hide behind excuses, recognizes the problems, such as the girl being on the street when her lover is busted, on information she has given the police. "It was strictly for drama," the director says with a wry grin. "And we did have a bit too much of the needle going into the arm, at least some of that shot too close. I'd change that if I could but can't." There's little that needs changing in the movie. "The Panic in Needle Park" shows what needs changing, the lives of the hooked. That's an education all by itself. Baud Show Canceled The regular summer Sunday night concert by the Corpus Christi Municipal Band will not be held today, because of the danger of Infection by mosquitoes. Ferris Arnold, band manager, safd that the Corpus Christi Health Department has requested the postponement of the concerts until the danger from VEE is over, but that he hoped they will bfl resumed next week.

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