The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on May 16, 1997 · Page 25
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 25

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Salina, Kansas
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Friday, May 16, 1997
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Page 25
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FRIDAY MAY 16, 1997 THE SALINA JOURNAL encore! WHAT'S HOT / D2 EXHIBITS / D3 WHAT'S GOING ON / D4 D MUSIC Hanson bops its way to top :Oklahoma youngsters have •a hit single with 'MMM Bop' from their infectious album By NEIL STRAUSS The New York Times to a contract •;>vith Mercury Records . TULSA, Okla. — Hanson seems too good to be for real: three angelic-looking brothers aged 11 to 16 from Oklahoma with heaven-sent voices, the ebullience of the Jackson 5 and a No. 1 single. A music fan's first urge may be to dismiss Hanson as the product of manipulative parents or a record-company marketing strategy. After all, the producers of the moment, the Dust Brothers, worked on the band's new album along with songwriters for hire who have written for Aerosmith, the Righteous Brothers and Michael Bolton. <;, But the music tlT , . tells another sto- 1 gOt mlS tape ry. Not only is the find loved it band's current Ufiu luveu il, S i n gi e) "MMM but I Was Bop," 'infectious, rnmrinresl it u P liftin g and emo ' isuni/iuwu n tionally charged, was fake" butsois -> ustabout J every song on -Jgteve Qreenberg "Middle of No- 5&ho signed the group ^here," its new al>•£?.. • bum — which is the group's third, believe it or not. ^ And the talent •" seems to come ;,from the Hanson brothers themselves. •;« "Our parents didn't push us into this," -;$aid Zachary Hanson, the 11-year-old. f"This was our thing. But they helped us *$ith it. They said, 'I'm going to drive you $kj where you want to go and get you what £y0u need.' " ^1; Their career began one evening in Ok- ^fjahoma when the boys began singing and Realized they could harmonize. In 1992, '-the three little blond-haired boys per- ;$6rmed for the first time at an arts festival ?.in Tulsa, their hometown, singing a cap- 1 pella, finger-snapping doo-wop versions of ; songs like "Splish Splash," "Johnny B. > Goode" and "Summertime Blues." If-After learning to write original songs Sand recording a rhythm-and-blues record £«ftth hired musicians, the brothers each *ifecided to learn an instrument. <T; Taylor, 13, borrowed keyboards from a *;8?iend, Isaac, 16, bought a guitar at a pawn *8fiop and Zachary found drums in the attic. !>• Prouder of its second album, "MMM- ::Bop," which had early versions of three ; of the songs on its new record, Hanson • sent copies to the big record labels. •; "I got this tape and loved it, but I was i : Convinced it was fake," said Steve Green- T-berg, who ended up signing the band to rJMfercury Records. "I was sure there was •'Some adult pulling the strings or the vo- ^Bals were manipulated, and they weren't Sjjsally playing their instruments. J>1 "But then I saw them at a county fair in JT^ansas, and they played and sang just as • Svell they did on the record. There wasn't - Sn adult in sight — except their dad, who : was loading up the equipment, and their .', mom, who was selling T-shirts." ;,';-•'In conversation, the brothers seem 3 more intelligent than some musicians 'three times their age, talking with pas- "•jjjon about the early rap label Sugarhill, * the pioneering rhythm-and-blues of Stax •;itecords and the roots of rock 'n' roll. £": Having just been to Times Square in •'J3ew York, where they were recognized -jiearly a dozen times, the brothers were pushed with excitement. ; "This is completely fulfilling our ex- "pectations, if not exceeding them," said •Isaac. "You can't expect to have a Top 10 -Single. You can only hope to be in the Top '40. And to be played on MTV as much as "we're getting played is incredible. We ^didn't think people would think we're -gbol enough." DAVIS TURNER / The Salina Journal Jack Stewart plays Bill Fast and Delia Burch plays Old Danielle In a scene from "Old Goat Song," one of the one-act plays to be performed this weekend as part of a Weekend of Shorts at the Salina Community Theatre. Role Playing Volunteers stage one-act plays for a Weekend of Shorts By CRISTINA JANNEY 77ie Salina Journal ne play in the Salina Community Theatre's Weekend of Shorts i may leave you with more ques- lj tions than answers. The police drama, "Answers" is one of five one-act plays and short theater pieces that comprise the theater's third annual Weekend of Shorts at 8 p.m. tonight and Saturday. The plays are produced, directed, acted and staged by community theater volunteers. The other plays are "Blind Date," a comedy; "Old Goat Song," a drama; and "Variations on the Death of Trotsky," a farce. The short piece "Theatre," written and directed by Salina South High School senior Michelle Vignery, will be performed as a pre- show feature. The plays are part of the theater's Pocket Productions program, which is a program for volunteers to produce or direct shows. The plays often reflect alternative subject matters or theater styles that aren't always produced as part of the theater's regular season. The plot to "Answers" is simple. Police arrest and question a suspect in a homicide. But at the end of the play, audience members are left with the questions of did this guy really do it or is he being railroaded by the cops? Director Brad Meier said the play leads its audience members on an emotional roller- coaster and forces them to question their own ideas of justice and fairness. "Answers" was one of the best short plays of 1984 and was performed off-Broadway in New York. Weekend of Shorts • WHAT: A collection of one-act plays and short theater pieces. • WHEN: 8 p.m. today and Saturday. • WHERE: Salina Community Theatre, ?03 E. Iron. • TICKETS: $6 for adults and $4 for students. Jack Gallagher, who plays Frank, one of the police officers in the play, was a police officer for 23 years and acted as the technical adviser for the play. His law enforcement experience has helped add realistic details to the production, Meier said. "We're not sure he is the right guy, but he's handy," Gallagher said of their murder suspect. "Somebody's broken a dish, and we need somebody's head to close the case." Although Gallagher disagreed with the officers' methods in the play, he said he can identify with the cynicism of these tough cops. "I've seen enough dirt and crap, good people and bad people," he said. "After awhile, you get sick of dealing with other people's problems." The language and action in the play is adult and realistic. Meier said he was concerned the play might not appeal to a conservative Salina audience. "I have to make it realistic," he said. "This an intense situation, and the cops are not going to be saying, 'Golly darn.' " Meier, who is a psychiatric nurse at Salina Regional Health Center, said he hoped the play would encourage victim advocacy and motivate viewers to elicit change. "I hope they take a look at their roles in society and at those who have authority and power and those without," he said. Seeking and avoiding love "Old Goat Song," directed by Bob Sears, is a about old and young love. The main character, Bill Fast, meets a 17- year-old waitress who reminds him of his late wife. He falls in love with the waitress, and for the ailing man, it's like falling in love with his wife all over again. Jack Stewart, 68, said the role of Bill was a challenge because he has to play both a 70-year- old man on his deathbed and a 21-year-old just home from World War II. "I am 70 year old," he said. "The lights go down, and bang, I'm across the stage, and I am 21." While Bill Fast is trying to rekindle old love, Sarah Nancy in "Blind Date" is trying to avoid romance. Sarah Nancy, a sharp-tongued young woman in the 1920s, is trying to resist the match-making efforts of her pushy aunt and uncle. The author of "Blind Date," Horton Foote, also wrote the the Oscar-winning screenplay for "To Kill a Mockingbird." "Variations on the Death of Trotsky" is a free-wheeling slapstick comedy about the Russian revolutionary ruminating on his life and death. Gary Demuth, director of both the Trotsky comedy and "Blind Date," said his biggest challenge in directing the cartoon-like farce was getting the actors to act seriously in comic situations. NOWPLAMNGINSALINA • BASQUIAT ART CENTER CINEMA RATED R This film tells the story of Jean-Michel Basquiat, an artist wtw rose from the ranks of the homeless to the top ti«f of the New York art world in the mid-19809,Basquiat, played by Jeffrey Wright, became famous as;a graffiti artist and Wtocott) and Andy Warhol (David Bowie). The movie 'give* us an intimate took at the New Yak art aoent, complete w* agents, critics, coUedors and dealers. But H it tht amazing and tragicistgry of Batfluiat that hoWe our attentl«j.' x " > ' ' • BREAKDOWN *** RATED R KurtRutweU «tara In the taut, akiUM aed surgteatty middle of the desert, he goes on a crusade to discover what happened to her. Good performances by Kathleen Quintan as the wife, and J.T. Walsh as a local truck driver. ^ FATHERS'DAY *_ MID STATE RATEDPG-13 Robin Wiltons and Billy Crystal star in a brainless feature-length sitcom with too much sit and no com. They're both toW by Nastassja Kinski that they fathered her teen-ager, and go on a search for the missing boy, eventually teaming up. Lazy writing, predictable situations, dumbed-down characters, and did they need to haul a drug dealer into a plot this lightweight? • THE FIFTH ELEMENT *** SUNSET RATED PG*13 One of the great goofy movies, a feast for the eyes if not for the brain, Bruce Willis stare as a 23rd-century cab driver who teams up with a beautiful and powerful alien (Mllla Jovovich) to save the world from an influx of evil that occurs every 5,000 years. Spectacular special effects and wondrous visuals redeem a messy plot and a drawn-out last act. * VOLCANO *tt MID STATE RATED PQ-13 Tommy Lee Jones does a professional job of helping a routine, assembly-line disaster movie with surprisingly cheesy special effects. I expected to see a volcano tower- Ing over LA, but the lava takes a shortcut through the city sewer system. * CENTRAL MALL (healers ar.clc4*dwr«i« wo* is done on the lour new theaters. All eight wW open May 23. **** Excaltent *** Good ** Fair * Poor SUGGESTIONS? CALL JIM HAAG, ENCORE! EDITOR, AT (913)823-6363 OR 1-800-827-6363 OR E-MAIL AT sjnews®saljournal.com

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