UBC Publications

UBC Publications

UBC Publications

The Ubyssey Jul 15, 1986

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 UBC Archives Serial
L Vol- V    No. 1
Vancouver, B.C.   July 9—1 5, 1 986
Excellence fund called inadequate
The B.C. government's Fund for
Excellence in Education program is
inadequate and does not guarantee a
long-term financial commitment, an
NDP MLA said Friday.
Lome Nicholsen, M LA for Nelson-
Creston, said funds allocated to universities — part of the $l 10 million
Excellence in Education Fund — are
a cut in constant dollars and will not
help operations of B.C.'s universities
and colleges.
"The money may be used to start
up new programs, but it isn't known
if the government will continue funding them. There is nothing more
than moment to moment planning,"
said Nicholsen.
The provincial government announced in June it would allocate
$271 million to the universities' operating budgets, the same amount as
UBC's budget of $163 million —
the same amount received last year
— will be supplemented by part of
$26.7 million in excellence money to
be shared with Simon Fraser and the
University of Victoria.
But Nicholsen said the additional
funds will not even cover the cost of
inflation. "There have been decreases
in funding going on for the last few
years. We're 20 per cent behind at
this point. To tack on an extra four
per cent doesn't even begin to help
the financial problems of the univer-
sites," he said.
But UBC president David Strangway dismissed allegations that the
excellence fund lacks long-term commitments as untrue.
"If you look at base operating
money, there is a clear understanding that the government is continuing its commitment to improve the
financial situations of the universities," he said.   .
Strangway said separate funds —
$2.4 million and $6 million for gra
duating assistantships and cooperative education programs — will increase the universities' operating
grants by more than 10 per cent from
last year.
The president did not specify how
much UBC's total allocations will
be, but stressed his most urgent
priority is to improve faculty salaries, even though Premier Bill Bennett said previously that "the government's priorities must be to improve
services and create new jobs rather
than pay additional money to those
British Columbians who are working/
UBC faculty has not had a salary
increase for the last four years.
Strangway said he is pleased with
the additional $4.6 million UBC will
receive for specific programs in microelectronics, engineering, biotechnology and tourism policy.
But a microbiology professor involved in the biotech lab program
which received the largest portion ol
■—-■---—        - .„   / — neil lucente photo
BEWILDERED UBCSTUDENTxnes to find right slot for quarters in desperate Blot escape attempt.
Student aid criticized as miserly
The provincial government's infusion of $1.2 million into student aid
from the Fund for Excellence in
Education is inadequate and miserly, a spokesperson for the Canadian Federation of Students said
Post-Secondary Education Minister Russ Fraser said the funds will
create aid programs that "recognize
high scholastic ability," and "alleviate the extra financial costs facing
students who live outside metropolitan areas."
But Marg Fartczek, CFS Pacific
Region chair said the funds do not
address the financial needs of students in B.C.
The money will be added to $10.9
million already set aside for students
in B.C. colleges and universities.
According to Fartaczek, the additional funds will go to aid programs
based almost solely on achivement,
and will not help the majority of students in B.C.
$1.15 million of the funds will go
to scholarships for the top grade 12
students. The remaining money will
go to a needs-based auxiliary fund,
in which the provincial government
will match dollar-for-dollar, funds
raised by university student societies, up to $100,000.
But Fartaczek said asking student
societies to raise money for student
aid is making students do what the
government isn't.
"We shouldn't have to do this.
The government only wants recognition that it is doing something to
help students. It's an insult to students," she said.
Student societies at Simon Fraser,
UVIC and UBC were asked to submit proposals to the excellence fund
at the urging of Fraser's office in a
new spirit of "consultation."
S FU student society called for the
re-implementation of the grant program — eliminated in 1984 by the
Bennett government — but their
request was rejected by the education minister's office.
Lome Nicholsen (NDP MLA Nel-
son-Creston), said the government's
rejection of the grant portion of student aid is unfair to students. "The
government is not facing the reality
of the true cost of student aid. It's
absurd that students pay $20,000 for
an education. I can't imagine beginning life that way," he said.
Simon Seshadri, Alma Mater Society president, said only programs
which assist top grade 12 students
were accepted by the education ministry. He said the AMS did not ask
for the return of the grant portion of
the student aid program.
"It would have been unrealistic,"
said Seshadri. "If our proposal did
not involve excellence it would not
have been accepted by Fraser's office.
"Excellence is the name of the
fund, and the AMS had to deal with
it. We played by the new rules and
got the extra money for student aid,"
he added.
Seshadri admits however that the
proposal will not help the vast majority of students who do not fall into
the top 10-20 per cent range.
"The key to the student aid problem is in the terms of loan repayment
and in successful remission terms,"
Seshadri said.
The loan remission program proposed by student council was rejected
by the Socred government.
"It was just too hard to sell to the
government," the AMS president
$1 million of the fund will go to
the top 10-20 per cent grade twelve
scholarship winners who must relocate more than 50 kilometers to
attend a B.C. post-secondary institution on a full-time basis. A onetime award of $500 will go to students who rank just below the scholarship level.
In addition, $75,000, will provide
a $500 one-time award to B.C. college students who have completed a
minimum of one year's full-time
study in the university transfer or
technology program and who have
transferred to another post-secondary
institution in the province.
ment. "People view academics as
bottomless pits, but it is impossible
to start anything if we don't have the
funds," said Dr. Douglas Kilburn,
acting head of microbiology.
"1 think we can make a start with
the funds, but we could certainly do
with more. We need a long-term
commitment in funding and the provincial government should support
us in this area," Kilburn said.
Still, Nicholsen insists the excellence fund will not be sufficient to
improve the quality of education in
"We talk about excellence in education when we're not even in the
ballpark anymore. I've been around
for 14 years and have seen the gradual deterioration of the educational
system. Strangway has to be positive. What else can he do?"
the funds ($2 million), said what the
universities really need is ongoing
financial backing from the govern-
B-lot toll blasted
Come September 1 students will
be charged 25 cents to exit B-lot.
Gates have already been installed
at all B-lot exits.
The B-lot parking system change,
implementd without student consultation, has angered Alma Mater
president Simon Seshadri.
"When the committee decided to
go ahead with the proposed changes
they never consulted the students
who are 99.9 percent of the users of
B-lot," said Seshadri.
Vice-president finance Bruce Gellatly said the change will not hurt
students. "The 25 cent fee is based on
the 32 dollars charged last year.
Twenty-five cents a day, five days a
week works out to 32 dollars so there
is no increase in fees for students."
But a quick calculation reveals
paying the fee five days a week over a
32 week academic year works out to
Enrollment down
Students would rather work at
Expo than go to UBC this summer
UBC's director of extrasessional studies said Monday. Norman Watt
expects about 400 less students to
enrol in summer session this year
than last, and is a large factor in the
anticipated drop.
"Expo's on and kids have jobs. In
previous summers when they didn't
have jobs they would attend classes.
But if they are working they won't
go," said Watt.
Last year, 4,438 students enrolled
in summer session. This year approximately 4,100 have enrolled to date.
Watt expects about 100 people will
drop out after the course deadline
date, but says he is not worried
about the decline of about 10%.
Watt said summer enrollment has
gone up and down for the past
twelve years. "A decrease was not
unexpected," he said.
In 1976, the total number of students enrolled in summer session
was 6,531. Enrollment figures remained above 5,000 each year until 1985,
when they dropped to 4,438, representing a 30% decrease from 1976.
Spring session enrollment also
dipped, below the 4,000 mark for the
first time in three years.
Watt said that cutbacks and budgetary restraints were mostly responsible for the decline over the past two
"If the courses are not available
then the students simply cannot enroll
in them," said Watt.
Kevin Brewster, a porter at UBC's
Health Sciences Centre, said he dislikes the system. "It will not be convenient at all to constantly have to
fiddle around with change," said
Yasim Visram, architecture 2, estimated the new system will cost him
about $75 in parking fees this year
because he must travel to and from
the campus several times a day.
But Seshadri said he will wait and
see how students react to the new
system this fall. If he receives enough
complaints he will consider petitioning for the use of a card detector
system in place of inserting a quarter.
Last year, parking rates jumped
25 percent from $24 to $32.
Seshadri said the system penalizes
more people than it helps. "For the
person who is in a car pool the system is great but for people who must
leave several times a day the system
is unfair. Nursing students, medical
students and pharmacy students, for
example, will have to pay a lot more
money and will be really inconvenienced," said Seshadri.
Program funded
The department of political science
will expand teaching and research in
the area of military and strategic
studies this fall at UBC.
The federal Department of National Defence has given the University a
grant totalling $450,000. Part of the
money will be spent on research
work, but most of the funds will be
used to pay the salary of a new political science associate professor over
the next five years.
Professor Mark Zacher, director
of UBC's Institute of International
Relations, insists there is nothing
sinister about the grant. "The defence
department wants only to improve
the teaching of international issues
in Canadian universites," he said.
According to Zacher, the Department of Defence has been giving
money to different universities since
the late 60's. UBC's grant is quite
generous, he said. Dr. Douglas A.
Ross, an expert on Canadian foreign
policy, will teach graduate and undergraduate courses in strategic studies
as well as a new course in Canadian
foreign policy. Zacher said it is an
important step to have a permanent
position created in this field.
The political science department
will use the fund to examine everything from Canada's continued participation in NATO to her role in the
United Nations' peacekeeping forces. c a
Page 2
The Summer Ubyssey
July 9—15. 1986
Just how excellent is the provincial government's Fund
for Excellence in Education?
The funds were allocated to introduce new programs
and help B.C. educational institutes build upon their
"existing excellence," but it is hard to see how $ 110 million
will even begin to improve the deteriorating quality of
education in the province.
How will funds as small as these help universities and
colleges which have suffered at the hands of Socred budget
cuts, experienced eroding operating-budgets, and have
been forced to lay off faculty?
The government has allocated a pittance to special
science programs in the hopes of improving B.C.'s
But the idea that the economy will boom from these
allocations is nothing more than Socred P.R. What educational institutes in the province need is a long-term committment from governments — both provincial and federal — to help them recover from the damage that has been
done since the introduction of the Bennett restraint
What or who the funds will actually help is a mystery
that educators in the province have yet to uncover.
Sefior Fellow
"^ Litfc   7Zt Imh
Policy discriminates
witness a strange  Spector on
year  ubl. may
For the first time in UBC's history the president has,
Another blow has been dealt to
post-secondary education in B.C..
this time by UBC's senate, which
voted April 23 to limit to 750 the
number of transfer students accepted
into 2nd and 3rd year arts programs
at UBC.
The decision, ratified by the Board
of Governors, will have no direct
transferred to UBC last fall would
not have been accepted under the
new policy.
students in order to be accepted into
the same programs, a requirement
which discriminates unfairly against
college students and clearly signals
UBC's lack of support for B.C.'s
community colleges.
It's hard to tell just how much
damage the decision will do to the
colleges. The immediate effects felt
by college students are minor, but
the door has been opened for more
serious  restrictions  in  the  future.
without departmental consultation, hired a civil servant to  effect on students already enrolled at
.    r . , j     r •..• r c ii xt UBC, who only have to pass their
the previously unheard of position of senior fellow. Nor- courses in order to be acJpted but
man Spector, the deputy premier and mastermind behind it could hinder many college stu-
restraint, has been offered a part-time teaching position dents hoping to eventually transfer
r     ., to UBC. About 50 students who
running tor three years.
The day after the Spector appointment, UBC was finally
granted its allotment from the Fund for Excellence.
By hiring Norman Spector, administration president
David Strangway and the board of governors have outraged faculty and jeopardized university autonomy.
Faculty members are enraged because under restraint     Transfer students must now a
orchestrated by Spector, provincial government funds for chieve a higher standard than UBC
education have been miserly. This has resulted in closed
departments, frozen salaries for four years, an exodus of
faculty tor better paying universities, larger classes and
reduced support staff.
Faculty was especially startled by the way Spector was
hired, or rather appointed, by President Strangway.
According to Faculty Association president Barrie
Morrison no senior fellow has ever been appointed at
UBC. Faculty members voted unanimously to question
the appointment, saying it gives the appearance of the
university "bending to strong political pressure and violating university autonomy."
It is in cases like this when appearances and timing are
so vital. When the university licks the boot that has for so
many years stomped on it, questions arise. Whose idea was
it to hire Spector? Did this idea come from UBC or Victoria? Why didn't they go all the way and appoint Spector to
the board of governors? Now there is a part-time job he
could feel at ease with. He wouldn't even have to move his
Spector has not yet said whether he has accepted the
post or not. Strangway, for his part, has only explained the
appointment as an "interesting opportunity to bring in an
interesting person." Although he said "it would be quite
sensible to have an advisory committee" to study future
Together they make strange senior bedfellows indeed
July 9-16. 1986
The Summer Ubyssey is published Wednesdays throughout
the summer session by the Alma Mater Society of the
University of British Columbia, with additional funding from
the Walter H. Gage Memorial Fund and the UBC Alumni
Association. Editorial opinions are those of the staff and not
necessarily those of the university administration, or of the
sponsor. The Ubyssey is a member of Canadian University
Press. The editorial office is Rm. 241k of the Student Union
Building. Editorial department, phone 228-2301 /228-2305;
advertising, 228-3977.
What will really hurt the colleges is
the message that the transfer system
and spirit of co-operation shared
with post-secondary institutions has
broken down. For the past five years
the colleges have been struggling
against drastic cutbacks in government funding, and now it seems even
UBC is set against them.
UBC, of course, has also been
experiencing funding cuts in recent
years and the decision to limit access
is obviously a political statement to
protest the lack of money. Unfortunately, the statement has backfired
in that it has caused more damage to
B.C.'s community colleges than to
the Social Credit government's educational policies.
Post-secondary education in this
province is in bad enough shape
already; it is an area in which the
different institutions obviously need
to co-operate to survive. If UBC's
senate had been willing to consult
with college adminstrators before
taking unilateral action, perhaps they
could have made a joint statement
which would have had a greater
impact on the public and politicians
of B.C.
In 1962, UBC president John Macdonald wrote a report outlining the
direction to be taken in post-secondary education in British Columbia.
His plan was based on a system of
community colleges located in smal
ler cities throughout the province.
The more conveniently located institutions in the plan were meant to
make education affordable for more
people, and allow universities to
concentrate on third and fourth year
education and research programs.
The years since the publication of
the Macdonald Report have seen the
development of comething similar
to what was envisioned in 1962; students who cannot afford to move to
Vancouver can choose to take academic courses at a community college before transferring to a university to complete their degrees. These
people do not deserve to be discri-
minted against simply because they
cannot afford to come to UBC in
their first year.
It is ironic that a U BC publication
initiated the integration of community colleges into our educational system and that a UBC senate decision
is now playing a part in the colleges'
gradual deterioration. The time has
come for UBC to become more
aware of the environment in which it
operates and to begin to work with
B.C.'s other post-secondary institutions rather than against them.
Jennifer is an independent Ubyssey staffer who paints herself purple.
The freestyle section is open to
Ubyssey staffers to express their
not O.K.
The Citrus Boycott committee is
asking all Canadians not to buy any
citrus fruit or juice, fresh or frozen as
support for the Canadian forest workers being put out of work by existing or proposed tariffs.
There are several reasons for targeting citrus, one being Congressman Sam Gibbons who wrote the
bill to curb lumber imports being
from Florida, and another is that
citrus fruit is almost all from the
U.S., so no Canadian producers will
be hurt by accident.
Anyone interested in joining our
Committee or wanting more information should call me at 883-9666 or
write to PO Box 2390, Sechelt, B.C.
VON 3A0.
Ian A. Vaughm
All letters must be brief and typed on
a triple-spaced, 70-character line.
They must be delivered in person
with identification shown by 4:30
p.m. the Friday before publication
to the Ubyssey office, SUB 241k.
The summer Ubyssey reserves the
right to edit for brevity, spelling and
grammar, and libel. Sexist and racist
letters will not run.
If you have any questions or comments, or just want to shoot the
breeze, drop by S U B 241 k, or call us
at 228-2301 / 05,	
Luncheon Smorgasbord
Authentic Chinese Cuismv
V,l»  Fr'     11   30 " 00  p   n.
l"S4 SWpm   9 00 (j "■
2142 Western Pa-kwdv
UBC Village
, .^<e	
I n.   n. O
hair and suntanning co.
10 SESSIONS —$39
r 20% Student Discount
I on hair services
I 5784 University Blvd.
I (in UBC Village) V2 Blk. away
j 'Offer valid witn presentation of this ad!
, s^	
224-1922   |
224-9116   |
 I July 9—15, 1986
The Summer Ubyssey
Page 3
UBC denies access to college students
' A senate decision to restrict the
number of college transfer students
to UBC discriminates against colleges, says a Canadian Federation of
Students spokesperson.
"The Social Credit government is
responsible for the continual under-
■funding and increased class sizes of
colleges. The senate has responded
in a cowardly fashion. They want
students to pay for a deteriorating
quality of education," said Stephen
Scott, CFS Pacific Region executive
UBC's Senate decided April 23 to
restrict the number of college students entering university to 750. Last
year, a total of 749 college students
transferred to UBC in first and second
John Waters, president of the Institute of College Educators, said the
senate decision runs contrary to the
entire principal of maintaining col
leges to increase accessibility to universities. "Colleges were designed to
increase student access to universities. UBC's new policy hurts that
access," said Waters.
Waters said that colleges have
spent 15 to 20 years creating university credit courses. "Now students
can't be sure of the integrity of the
entire transfer concept," he said.
But arts dean Robert Will said the
restrictions do not discriminate ag-
^ neil lucente photo
CREATURE FROM LAGOON emerges  from UBC tarpit. Terrorized locals  escape obliteration Dy adding
more chlorine to water. Creature, red-eyed, retreats slurpily.
Foreign students must pay more
REGINA (CUP) — A decision by
the University of Regina Board of
Governors to introduce a 50 per cent
differential fee leaves only two provinces that do not extra bill international students for their education.
The move to charge the university's 445 visa students more than
other students points to a grim future
for international students and the
university, forsees Sel Murray, U of
R student services advisor.
The decision leaves Manitoba and
Newfoundland as the only provinces
that don't charge differential fees.
Murray says fewer visa students
will enrol at the university. "This will
mean that the university will get
even less money from this source. 1
don't think that charging visa students differential fees will increase
the university funds by any appreciable amount," he said.
The Board of Governors is believed
to have introduced the differential
charge to beat back a $6 million
deficit. General tuition fees were
raised almost six per cent.
Most visa students already enrolled
in programs will be able to complete
their studies, Murray says, although
some will invariably have to leave.
"What the (board hopes) to gain —
i.e., hard cash from students — will
be more than offset if a student
decides not to come to Regina," he
The decision will diminish Regi-
na's standing among international
students. "Visa students don't come
to Regina for the beautiful weather
and the vast cultural exposition here.
They come here because there was a
welcoming spirit, and because they
weren't treated as being different,"
he said.
Regina may have started the fees
because of common misconceptions
about international students, according to Kurt Tischler, international
student advisor at the University of
Saskatchewan in Saskatoon.
"There is a misconception that the
international students who come
(here) are wealthy. I wouldn't say
that the majority of them are wealthy.
They're struggling," he said.
"I'm really concerned that putting
barriers in the way of free movement
of students from one country to
another would hurt universities in
the long run," he said.
ainst college students.
Student senator Neil Benson said
the majority of student senators did
not support the resolution. "The
whole thing is a mystery. There is no
evidence that the cuts will be needed,"
said Benson.
Waters said the restrictions will
prevent people from attending colleges. "First of all, college courses
and programs will be cut, and then
faculty will be laid off," he said.
According to Will, 68 percent ot
college students transferred to UBC
in first year. Last year, 500 college
students transferred into second year
and only 249 entered third year.
Langara Student Society president
Andrea Robertson said the Senate
decision will also cut off university
access to students living in the interior. "What happens to these people?" Robertson asked.
Challenge 86 ignores
AMS organizations
Challenge '86, a government scheme
to create jobs for students, is a farce,
a spokesperson for CITR radio said
"The federal government told us
that because we are a non-profit
organization, we'd get more funding
by applying directly to the Challenge
program rather than through the
university. We did, and they ignored
our job proposals," said CITR station manager Nancy Smith.
The employment program, jointly
funded by the federal and provincial
government that was to create 18,000
jobs for students and youth in B.C.,
provided only two jobs for AMS
student service organizations this
summer at UBC.
Smith said CITR sent over 50 protest letters to Liberal opposition
leader John Turner's office in protest of the government action.
Neil Risebrough, associate vice-
president of student services, said his
only explanation for the change in
government priorities was that more
jobs can be created in the industrial
than in the non-profit sector.
"The government only has to pay
$2.50 per hour to subsidize wages in
the private sector, but must pay
$3.65 per hour in the public sector,"
said Risebrough. "It's a numbers
game. The government's main priority is to create jobs. Politicians are
always being quoted on the number
of jobs they have created," he added.
UBC received $1.7 million from
the Challenge program, approximately the same as last year. The funds
created 840 jobs on campus this
Speakeasy was the only AMS service organization to receive funds,
subsidizing two jobs.
Jamie Collins, AMS director of
finance, said he is "distressed" that
most service organizations did not
receive grants, but did nothing to
protest the government action.
"By the time the information was
available, it was too late to protest.
The organizations who were really
concerned protested. I had no information as to why our jobs were
turned down compared to other jobs,
and I still don't know why," he said.
Collins said the sudden switch in
challenge funds reflects the small
business views of the Tory government.
"The Convervative party doesn't
get any political support by funding
the non-profit sector. No matter
how much money they give to these
organizations, they're still not going
to get any votes," he said.
A spokesperson from John Turner's
office said the distinction the government made between private and nonprofit jobs is "ridiculous."
"The non-profit sector provides
an important service to people. These
kinds of jobs are just as legitimate as
private jobs," said Mike McNeil,
John Turner's constituency assistant.
McNeil said the employment program, created by the Liberal government, originally had an element of
community value.
"Before, almost 90 per cent of the
funds were allocated to public projects. It is clear the Tory government
sees the private sector as the enzyme
of growth for the economy," he said.
Only one in seven non-profit organizations received funding from the
Challenge program in B.C. this
The rest of the money went to
Expo and the military, according to
Marg Fartaczek, Canadian Federation of Students Pacific Region Chair.
"The government said the program emphasized career-oriented
jobs. But I don't see how flipping
hamburgers will help students build
careers," she said.
Smith said many students will
suffer from the Conservative government's new jobs agenda.
"Youth are so politically weak.
It's an easy place to take funds from.
1 think the whole thing stinks," she
earn       : Homosexual professors refused benefits
Then come and
spend a little of it at
Located at the back of the Village
on Campus
professors are launching a grievance
against Acadia University because
the Board of Governors has refused
to pay the lovers' medical bills.
Matt Hughes and Bert Verstrate
say it is bewildering to fight for
benefits that have already been won.
"Our collective agreement states
there shall be no discrimination based
on an individual's sexual orientation
&tudiO0 Ctfi.
Phone now tor your complimentary sitting, tree 4"x5" color photo,
choose Irorn   18 previews (proofs)
Resume photos as low as 75c in
and/or discrimination of benefits,"
said Hughes, a music professor.
"We have fought to have benefits
in our collective agreement (and)
now we have to fight for them again,"
he said.
Hughes and Verstrate, a classics
professor, received tuition benefits
in November after a year of informal
negotiations, but medical benefits
are not yet resolved. The decision to
grant those benefits has been delayed
because of a third party, Maritime
Medical Care, which provides insurance to the university.
J.M. Tillotson, chair of the committee that reviews the university's
medical plan, has told his group
'both verbally and in writing that it is
company policy not to cover the
partners of gays."
The committee recommended that
the university look for another insurance company, and split the cost of
a new insurance policy.
But Hughes and Verstrate said
they see paying a higher premium as
a form of discrimination. They also
say the university knew of the company's policies before it renewed its
Vice president academic Ron MacDonald said the Board has not
reached a decision, and the recommendation from the review committee was informally suggested. He
said he will not make a statement
until the issue is settled.
Ralph Stewart, Acadia's faculty
association president, said the university's lack of enthusiasm for the
committee's recommendation was
economic, and not ignorance of a
social issue.
"It is possible (the Board) and
Maritime Medical Care have acted
out of homophobia, but I'm not sure
that is the case," Stewart said.
But Hughes and Verstrate said the
extra costs are minimal, and it is
unfair for them to pay higher premiums than other faculty.
I used to write
coherently in full
sentences, with no
grammatical errors,
and I never
misquoted anyone.
Then I joined
The Ubyssey. My life
will never be
the same.
- Bert Smegg
Fashion Editor Page 4
The Summer Ubyssey
July 9—15, 1986
Weill's Berlin to Broadway a big bore
Berlin to Broadway is neither a
play, nor a musical. It is simply 39
songs, performed by four singers
and a narrator. And it's a bore.
Berlin To Broadway
By Kurt Weill
Directed by Elizabeth Ball
Waterfront Theatre
until July 19
The production chronicles German composer Kurt Weill's career
writing scores for musicals, first in
his native Germany and then in the
United States. The 39 songs are
presented chronologically and grouped in the plays from which they
come. Best known of these plays are
Threepenny Opera and Happy End.
Berlin to Broadway is strung together by a witty and charismatic guide,
Bruce Dinsmore, who gives the production most of its vitality, but whole
role is too small to save the ship. He,
like the orchestra on the Titanic,
plays well and bravely, as the ship
goes down.
Three of the four main singers are
weak and boring: Margaret Ball,
Joanne Hounsell, and Blaine Hends-
bee. Baritone Jim Schiebler is just
boring. None of the four can act at
all. The performance creates no sense
of drama. The audience is sung at for
39 songs by singers who do not
appear to be having a very good time
at all.
The guide comes out to relieve us
every four or five songs, singing
beautifully with strength, confidence.
His enchanting presence teases the
audience, for too soon does he cruelly
depart, leaving his audience in the
clutches of the bland four.
Visually, there is nothing to look
at but horribly tasteless costumes
(prostitutes and yuppies), and a
shameful, barely adequate set. Douglas Welch bravely accepts credit for
the sets while Kim Brown takes the
fall for costumes.
Where was director Elizabeth Ball
while all this was happening? Why
did she choose such dramatic songs
and not get actors to sing them? Why
did she try to glitz up such political,
socially-conscious songs? Is she trying to compete with Oklahoma in
Stanley Park this summer?
When 1 leave a discotheque I
crave the sound of a guitar. When 1
left these 39 songs, I craved theatre.
Dinsmore, Schiebler, Hounsell, Hendsbee...Bruce and the Bland family
Racism runs rampant in Vancouver harbour (1914>-
Based on an actual incident which
occured in Vancouver harbour in
1914, Sharon Pollock's The Koma-
gata Maru Incident reveals how racism functions in a so-called democratic society. This is the third of
Freddy Wood's four-play summer-
Stock season.
The Komagata Maru Incident
By Sharon Pollock
Directed by Catharine Caines
Dorothy Somerset Studio
until July 12
The play deals with the arrival of a
ship in Vancouver harbour, the Komagata Maru, carrying over three
hundred East Indians, British subjects, many of them veterans, who
desire to live in Canada. Canadian
law at the time allowed them immediate entry, but the racism of white
Canadians  and  their government
managed to starve the ship out of the
harbour and send it back to India.
Bruce Harwood is brilliant as the
personification   of  the   mysterious
source of open and state-sanctioned
discrimination. As one watches him,
one cannot help but be reminded of
A Clockwork Oranges' psychopathic Alex. His every move is in complete, graceful control, while his facial
expressions exude evil.
Harwood plays T.S., an omnipotent ringmaster who can stop time
with a movement of his cane, and
who directly or indirectly controls
the lives of all other characters on
stage. He delivers constant misery to
Vancouver immigrants through William Hopkinson, the local head of
Immigration, whome he manipulates
through quiet threats and promises
of career advancement.
As Hopkinson, Michael Fera is a
wonderful toadie. His speech, stance
dress and mannerisms give an excellent portrayal of an ineffectual man
possessed with power he holds over
other people's lives. The flaws of
Hopkinson's personality are apparent in Fera's every motion as he
grasps for the respect of his peers,
and, unable to achieve it, settles
for their <ear
The interplay between Harwood
and Fera is well staged by director
Catharine Caines. Harwood, the ringmaster, repeatedly stops the action
and pulls Hopkinson from the scene,
only to cut him down and demonstrate his full control over the entire
situation. Meanwhile, Fera cowers
and crawls wonderfully, and then
returns to the scene to take out his
frustration on the other characters.
In general, the rest of the cast does
a very good job. Tanja Dixon-Warren
is particularity delightful in the rol*"
of a hedonistic prostitute who is contemptuous of the starving East Indi- J
ans out in the harbour.
Sharon Pollock's The Komagata
Maru Incident is an important play
both for residents of British Columbia, and for anyone interested in the
mechanics of applied racism.
Bard  measures  up
Nancy Drew discovers deadly double
"Gasp! Are you Roy Surette, artistic director of Touchstone Theatre?" Nancy asked, slightly startled
at the imposing figure with which
she nearly collided rounding the
corner outside the Firehall Theatre
at 280 East Cordova.
Nancy Drew, an attractive titian
blonde, smirked shyly at the dark
haired, bespectacled man who stood
in front of her.
"You're late for rehearsal, Nancy,"
Roy said. "Now get up those stairs to
rehearsal." He indicated the door to
his right.
Nancy gasped. She had never met
him before. Nancy Drew, girl detective, daughter of handsome lawyer
Carson Drew, had spent the last two
weeks visiting an elderly aunt out in
the country. While there, she met an
attractive young man, about her
own age, who had recognized her
from Vancouver. Nancy had never
been to Vancouver, so she decided to
visit and investigate. Now, clutching
her magnifying glass, she had stumbled on a major clue. Staying calm,
she pretended to be this other Nancy.
"Sorry, sir," she stuttered. "It won't
happen again."
Nancy Drew...or Bev?
Roy gave her a wry grin. "Alright
—" he began, but suddenly a large
stage light fell from the window
above them, and crashed two inches
to Nancy's left.
"Oh my goodness," exclaimed
Roy. "Someone tried to hurt you.
What's going on here?"
The girl sleuth immediately went
into action. Magnifying glass in hand,
she ran through the door beside her
and up the stairs. "Frank, Joe, what
are you doing here?" Frank and Joe
Hardy, sons of famous detective
Fenton Hardy, were standing in the
middle of the floor. Frank, with
dark hair, was taller than his blond
brother Joe, who was taller than
"Nancy," both boys chimed in
unison, "where have you been, you're
late. And wriat was that crash?"
Nancy looked up and saw the poster: Nancy Prew, Clue In The Fast
Lane, a mysterious comedy in three
parts with everyone's favourite teen
detective. July 9 to August 16, call
68.9-0926. Nancy looked at Frank
and Joe. "Someone just tried to hurt
me," she said, "and what's this play
Just then, Roy ran into the room.
"I just got a call from the police," he
panted, "and they said there are two
Nancys. One is really Beverly Cooper,
an unemployed actress." Nancy
Just then a young woman who
looked exactly like Nancy walked
into the room. "Frank! Joe!" she
yelled. "Grab her. She's the im-
Yes, Bill is back, and Kitsilano's
got him.
The Vancouver Conservatory of
Theatrical Arts Society has mounted
an involving and witty production of
Shakespeare's Measure for Measure.
For those of you who've forgotten
Engl. 365 already, the plot goes
something like (in fact, exactly like)
Isabella (Lee Van Paassen), about
to become a nun, discovers her
brother Claudio (Nicholas Tattersall)
faces execution for impregnating his
betrothed. Isabella pleads for his life
before the man who took this dim
view of pre-marital sex, the Duke of
Vienna's deputy, Angelo (Tracey
Olson). Angelo proposes that if Isabella surrenders her chastity to him
(which involves sex, by the way), he'll
let Claudio go. However, the supposedly absent Duke is actually
hovering about disguised as a monk,
and he gets to work on saving the
day and keeping everyone from dying
like they did in Hamlet.
Measure For Measure
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Greg Kramer
Kits House
until August
Don't let the lengthy explanation
fool you; this is one of Shakespeare's
least complicated plays, and one of
the few that does not feature women
dressing up as boys.
A production of Shakespeare has
to be relevant to modern times to
justify the effort. Happily, the Conservatory does a fine job. Doug Cle-
verley's minimalist lighting is outstanding. The dominating darkness
and sparse light, which last until the
final cathartic scene, suggest a darkey
immorality beyond sexual permis- <
siveness. This effect lends a greater J
resonance to the innuendoes of the
lines, and therefore to the performances.
All of the actors do very good jobs   ,
with difficult roles. Tracey Olson**")
plays Angelo properly, not as a vil- 't
lain, but as a complex man felled by *-
his hypocrisy. Stephen Courtenay
renders a Duker of the old school:
always in charge, and a little pompous — in a modern role Courtenay
might be accused of over-acting,     v-
Robert Wilson as the incompetent i
constable Elbow, Brad Gogh as the
clown Pompey, and especially Gordon Harvey (who also produced) as
the smart-ass bawd Lucio, all play
up the sexual jokes for marvelous j
comic effect. |
Van Passen as Isabella presents
the production's only serious flaw,
and the fault must be shared with
director Greg Kramer. Isabella follows a rigid code, and it would be
improper to have her as animated as <*
the bawds. However, Van Passen \
plays her too stiffly. '
By suggesting a greater darkness
beyond that immediately apparent,
the Conservatory production makes
the play relevant. There is more to ■**
this sucker than just sex; the play •
becomes an examination of keeping
to an ethical code — some can (Isabella), some can't (Angelo), and some
make sure everyone else does (the
Duke). In an age when hypocrisy
seems all the rage, Measure for Measure is rather topical.


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