The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, January 22, 1999, Page 7, Image 7
.xNlcx. Entertainment Wccketlu Preview The following is a brief guide to weekend events. Please call venues for more information. CONCERTS: Duffy 's Tavern, 1412 0 St Sunday: Picknee, Black Dahlias, The Formula Duggan's Pub, 440 S. 11th St Friday and Saturday: Blue House Kimball Recital Hall, 12th andR streets Sunday: faculty recital featuring Donna Harler-Smith, soprano and Michael Cotton, piano Knickerbocker's, 9010. St Friday: Bo Diddley Saturday: Nation of Fear, N.O.S. Mo Java Cafe, Suite D, 2649 TV 48th St Friday: Kyle Knapp Mueller Planetarium laser shows, Friday and Saturday: Aerosmith, Pink Floyd: “Dark Side of the Moon.” Orpheum Theatre, 1605 Howard St, Omaha Friday and Saturday: Omaha Symphony with Skitch Henderson Pla-Mor Ballroom, 6600 West OSt Friday: The Rumbles Saturday: Full Choke Sunday: Bordertown and Sandy Creek Zoo Bar, 136 N. 14th St Friday and Saturday: The Bel-Airs THEATER: Mary Riepma Ross Film Theater, 12"1 and R streets All weekend: “Pecker” Star City Dinner Theatre, 803 QSt Friday and Saturday: “Improv Antics” starring local celebri ties Museum of Nebraska History, 15th and P streets. Sunday: “Top Hat” starring Fred Astaire and GingerRogers Lincoln Community; Playhouse, 2500 S. 56th St All Weekend: “Light Up the Sky” Lied Center for Performing Arts, 12th andR streets Friday: “The Kingston Tno” ART: Noyes Art Gallery’, 119 S. 9th St Friday and Saturday: Faridun Negmat-Zoda, oil paintings; Max Cox, pottery; Tom Borg, blown glass Center for Great Plains Studies, Love Library All weekend: The North Platte Project: Photographing Nature’s Works and Their Transformations by Michael Farrell venin at the Play features local politician, TV anchors By Diane Broderick Staff writer Theater owner Bob Rook says there's nothing worse than watching actors stumble through bad improvisations. So for this weekend’s “Improv Antics,” Rook wrote around the problem by providing a script. Rook is the writer, director and an actor in “Improv Antics,” a play that puts local celebrities in roles they don’t traditionally play - stage roles. Its performers include former state senator and current mayoral candidate Don Wesely and news anchors Rod Fowler and Gina Greco. They are vol unteering their time to raise money for the Star City Dinner Theatre, 803 Q St. Suite 100. ' I ve watched bad improv,” said Rook. “It’s terrible. It’s agonizing. But these scripts allow it to stay fresh and new but still allow some sort of scripted direction.” Preparation for performances has been kept to a mini mum, because of the performers’ time constraints. “These people are really busy,” Rook said. “They only get three rehearsals. They can’t get the normal four weeks.” The show is set at a fictional broad cast station, W.I.M.P.R.O. V. Radio, and consists of a series of vaude ... Well, most of them are.” Mayoral hopeful Wesely has had some experience onstage and working with Rook. Wesely appeared in both “Letters” and “Oz.” He was first paired onstage with then-Lt. Gov. Kim Robak in “Letters.” “The first rehearsal with her, I though it was going to be easy,” Wesely said. “You know, it doesn’t look that hard. I found out it’s very difficult, and I really needed to work at it.” But the challenge was frightening and exhilarating at the same time, Wesely said. “I loved it. The thrill of being up there and having the lights on and having people laugh and people cry. I was hooked.” The element of a live audi ence is what KLKN-TV (Channel 8) news anchor Fowler finds disquieting, despite his television exposure. “People think because we do this every night that we’re just as comfortable as can be in front of crowds and audiences,” Fowler said. “But other than a couple of camera people, we don’t have people standing in front of us in the studio.” “So it’s different to have eyes looking, staring at you. It’s a different challenge.” It’s also a refreshing change from life behind the news desk, Fowler said. “In ‘The Wizard of Oz,’ I was the Tin Man. We can totally get out of the character element that most people recognize us as,” he said. And while a variety of “Improv” skits provide that component of escapism, one sketch brings some performers pretty close to real life. A news conference spoof stars real-life news personalities, including KOLN-TV (Channel 10/11) anchor Greco portraying a reporter and Wesely playing a politician.“Hopefully people won’t see any resemblance between the character and me. I’m playing a pretty outlandish politician,” Wesely said. He focuses on losing what he would do in the sit Heather Glenboski/DN ACTRESS MARY Roadway plays a psy chic reader at rehearsal for “Improv Antics” Wednesday night. Theatre Preview The Facts What: Improv Antics" Where: Star City Dinner Theatre When: Friday and Saturday dinner is served at 6 p.m., curtain time is 7:30 p.m. Cost: $23 for dinner and show $13 for show only The Skinny: Local celebrities take to the stage for theater fund-raiser vine ana radio skits updated tor a modem audience. Rook has worked on projects involving Lincoln celebrities before, including “Love Letters” in 1996 and “Oz in Concert” in 1997.“One thing is you know they’re going to sell well because they’re pub lic figures,” Rook said. “And they’re used to being in front of the public. Heather Glenboski/DN MAYORAL CANDIDATE Don Wesely wears many faces as he performs for the Star City Dinner Theatre. The show, “Improv Antics,” runs Friday and Saturday at 7:30. uation, he said, to create a character that works. But beyond the technique, nerves play a big part in the actors’ performances. “It’s a scary experience,” Wesely said. “I dread the whole thing. ... Am I gonna flub a line? Am I gonna look stupid?” One classroom skit features Wesely and Greco as bratty students giving the teacher a hard time. “My problem is I want to laugh, I think it’s so funny,” Wesely said. “I’m still such an amateur at this.” But because the show is presented as a radio play, the actors don’t have to worry too much about forgetting their lines, Greco said.“We have our lines memorized, but we have our (script) books in front of us if we forget,” she said. Though no plans have been made for another local celebrity production, Rook said he’ll keep his eyes open for more opportunities - for as long as the performers are still willing. “I’ll sure do another one. We’ll see how many of them are left standing Saturday after their nerves kick in,” Rook said. Diddley brings beat to Knickerbockers By Jeff Randall Senior staff writer In the world of music, countless artists make names for themselves by selling records, winning awards and drawing screaming fans to their con certs. But very few can lay claim to a musical style with their name. Richard Wagner inspired the term “Wagnerian.” And John Philip Sousa is so closely identified with marches that his name is practically synonymous with them. But Bo Diddley beats both of them. Because Bo Diddley has the Bo Diddley Beat. An early rhythm and blues shuffle mixed with the so-called “hambone,” the Bo Diddley Beat is an instantly rec ognizable sound. Diddley may not have sold a million records, and he may not be a perennial Grammy contender, but he has a beat named after him - and nobody else in the world can say that. Concert Preview The Facts What: Bo Diddley w/ Shithook Where: Knickerbockers, 901 0 St. When: Tonight at 9:30 p.m. Cost: $18 in advance The Skinny: Living legend Diddley struts with local legends Shithook Diddley will bring his guitar, his music and his beat to Knickerbockers, 901 O St., tonight. Diddley, born Elias McDaniel, made a name for himself in the mid 1950s with self-referential songs such as “Bo Diddley,” “Diddley Daddy” and “Hey Bo Diddley.” But he is probably best known for his bar band classic “Who Do You Love?” and the cocky fast-cars-and-tough-guys tune “Road Runner.” But despite his artistic innovations, memorable songs and flamboyant style, Diddley never met with great commercial success. Early rock 'n’ rollers such as Elvis Presley, the Beatles and the Rolling Stones cited him as a major influence and covered his songs almost faster than he could write them. Nowadays, the 70-year-old Diddley tours the country as a true solo artist, recruiting local bands for backup. Tonight’s show will be backed by local favorites Shithook, a band with a particular fondness for Diddley's work. And they are not alone. More than 50 years after he began performing on the streets for spare change, Diddley still has his style and he still has his endearing arrogance. And, of course, B D i d d 1 e y still has his beat.