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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 13, No. 9. May 9th, 1950

Ham and corn

Ham and corn

It has been the, practice in past Extravs to give the audience some entertainment during the interval. But doubtless with regard to the general character of the show it was all for the best that this practice should have been abandoned. Instead we had an untopical and uninteresting parody of the National Orchestra. Corny posturing, and dubbed-in music which somehow managed to be at once very out of tune, and yet not all funny. And this year there was no liquor allowed in the Opera House. But the interval "entertainers" did their alcoholic best to turn the basement of the theatre into the anteroom of a bawdy-house; with wild drunken shouting and brandishing of bottles. Not the best way to ensure our being able to hire the Opera House for next year. . . .

It seems only fair to the stage crew to say that on at least two nights they did not sound like a herd of elephants in the throes of some immense conga-line. The technicians were remarkable only for a positive genius for misplaced explosions.

A few people were apprehensive over the appointment of Ken Avery as Musical Director. Perhaps they had heard "Paekakariki." But be this as it may, the fact is that Ken turned in one of the best Jobs in this line that has been seen for some time. His job was not made easier by the number of original tunes, many of which had to be completely orchestrated, not an easy task, but one which he discharged very well. At the cast rehearsals which he attended he helped clean up the endings of some of the choruses, and his conducting was an adequate substitute for that of the more experienced Cohen. The orchestra was if anything a little more polished than in times past, but the overall effect was at times marred by the same old unregenerate blurts from the trombone section.