Knoxville’s Variety Playhouse
He Makes, She Makes
People who immigrated to the United States, and have since become American citizens, have nothing to worry about if we put the military on our border. They are going there to stop the ridiculous flow of drugs, smugglers, and illegal aliens. Even Schwarzenegger has decided to put the National Guard on the border to help stop the burden on our nation’s social services.
I think all American citizens, including those who immigrated here, are excited that finally something is being done about the problems on our southern border. It’s gone on far too long.
Knoxville’s Variety Playhouse
I’ve always loved the Bijou, and I have performed and produced work there several times with Circle Modern Dance. Interestingly, the last show that happened at the Bijou before the Friday June 2nd reopening was actually the Circle spring concert in April 2005, and we look forward to returning there in the future. We dancers need the Bijou and the Bijou needs us. The performing arts are essential to downtown revitalization and vice versa. Local arts groups—music, theatre, and dance—are a vital part of a vibrant community, and we must recognize that part of being a “cultural hub” is having our own cultural offerings. We should bring in the big acts and patronize them as well, but we absolutely have to support local groups, which can still, as Jack Neely put it, “keep the joint lively between all the high-profile acts.” Anyone who saw the Pilobolus show at the Tennessee last year can tell you that it was fabulous but should have been better attended. By producing local performing groups downtown you create interest and habit, so that when the big acts come to the Bijou or the Tennessee there is an audience there to support them.
We are depending on the Bijou to continue her role as the good lady who will book and rent to, at an affordable rate, local gems that fit into its beautiful setting. The Tennessee is spectacular and not to be missed, but this town can support two beautiful theatres, and we need one that is within reach of smaller groups. As Greg Foster Ridley, member of Sunshine Industries and performer with Circle Modern Dance on the Bijou stage, is quick to mention, the Bijou is a Vaudeville stage. Unlikely events and people come together here. To designate the Bijou as an Americana music venue is limiting and doesn’t honor its vaudevillian past, which was synonymous with variety (and helped give birth to modern dance back in the ’30s). I applaud Mayor Haslam’s efforts and AC’s renovations, and I am grateful to see the theatre get the care and respect it deserves, but I think that those efforts should be put to some good mixed use. After all, the Bijou was built for Knoxville, and this town has a lot to offer. Sunday’s incredible Yard Dogs show with local opener Gypsy Hands Belly Dance Troupe is a perfect example of what this latest incarnation of the Bijou should bring to downtown.
He Makes, She Makes
Pearl has done a great job, but if Basilio wants one coach to battle the other for pay, fine. Summitt is clearly the senior employee at UT. If we look at national accolades, winning records and titles, Summitt wins again. Why contest her salary?
The typical response is that men’s programs generate more revenue than women’s. Due to opinions of the general populous, this is true anywhere, so we’ll set this discrepancy as a baseline. From there, a school must increase its profit, which requires a great coach. If Summitt were to feel mistreated and leave UT, would the program lose money? Quite likely. Does the program owe her gratitude for Hall of Fame success? Absolutely.
Intercollegiate basketball is not an organization of salary caps. Every coach negotiates, and it would be ludicrous to go to the table and say, “I’m one of the most decorated coaches in NCAA history, but I coach a women’s team, so I think it’s valid for you to give others more money.”
Instead, one cites the growth of women’s programs and points to further financial potential. One reminds the public that the measure of an athlete is the degree of physical and mental performance under pressure—such performances, and the ability to bring them out in one’s players, are wholly unrelated to gender. Then one states that a coach who is a leader in this market deserves a nationally, let alone locally, competitive salary.
It’s important to note that those who support the amendment aren’t trying to deprive homosexuals of any of the legal protections they currently enjoy; gay marriage has never been a constitutional right in America. It is not “discriminatory” to want the law to continue to provide for reasonable limitations on who can marry.
If the Marriage Protection Amendment were to be voted down again, as it was two years ago, we may very quickly see as many as 50 different state definitions of marriage—not just homosexual marriage, which has already been legalized in Massachusetts, but marriages among multiple partners or even among siblings or other blood relatives.
Efforts to pass such an amendment stalled in Congress two years ago, but we have another chance before Senators vote in early June to convince them to do the right thing this time around. Contact your Senators and ask your friends and relatives to do the same thing. We must act responsibly for the benefit of our children’s children.
Dr. Charles Delaine
Guidelines for Incoming Mail