Maureen Piercy June 9 1980


Maureen Piercy June 9 1980


She still can’t live up to her mother’s expectations—“She would prefer I become a cross between Dina Merrill and Dinah Shore”—but it was an abstemious Grace Slick who visited Toronto last week to promote her solo album Dreams, talk about her recently published biography and feed her head with nothing more psychedelic than chocolate M&M’s and Perrier. The ex-acid queen of Jefferson Airplane and Starship looks hale at 40 and, with husband/manager Skip Johnson at her side, described the book by Barbara Rowes as high on accuracy but low on insight. “She didn’t like rock’n’roll music and was somewhat appalled by any sort of drug-taking,” says the woman whose voice has been described as one that “launched a thousand trips.” “I wanted to jam a cap down her throat and say, ‘Okay, you want to write about acid. Here honey, you sit with this for 12 hours and then tell me what you think about it.’ ”

((UP'S a cynical little bastard,” Paul nwilliams chortles, referring to his upcoming celluloid persona as the diminutive but despotic king in The Wizard of Id. Much-in-demand composer Williams will have to sandwich songwriting in between producing movies— besides Id, he has another six features planned for the next few years, including Glenn of Peru which, he says emphatically, “is not a Tarzan story” despite the inevitable comparisons that will be drawn. The film is a comedy scenario in which a boy (Williams) is dropped into the rain forest only to be joined by an older woman, Elaine. She’s 20 years older. “The chances of two people dropped into the jungle being two perfect human specimens of the z same age,” explains Williams, withï apologies to Edgar Rice Burroughs, “are < slim.” £

{fit sounds like something out of a | Inovel,” wails McGill University | philosophy head Alastair McKinnon. Far “ from a paperback thrill, he is recalling the murky Copenhagen night when he and a colleague visited Gregor Malantschuk—all three being avid fans of the 19th-century father of contemporary Christian existentialism, Sdren Kierkegaard. Malantschuk shoved McKinnon’s companion out the door and hissed at McKinnon: “Come back as soon as you can—come alone.” McKinnon was unable to obey the unusual summons until a year later, when he wrote Malantschuk that he was coming. But before McKinnon arrived, Malantschuk dropped dead. Evidently, however, he took a shine to the Montreal scribe,

since he left McKinnon and McGill 1,000 Kierkegaard tomes and enough papers to make the university one of the best arenas for Kierkegaard study in the world. A Kierkegaard study conference is being held in Montreal this week, but McKinnon hopes Kierkegaard won’t become too trendy a philosopher. There doesn’t seem to be a big danger because, as he points out: “They’ll have to learn Danish first.”

the point, the politburo news organ concludes: “Nixon is evidently expecting others to finger him for the job . .-. the man is mad.”

ii|’ve never worked under conditions I like that,” says terror-titan Christopher Lee with a shiver, recalling the —50°C weather during the filming of Bear Island, an $11.5-million Canadian co-production shot at Stewart,B.C., and

íí^^ne can hardly believe one’s eyes \#when reading this mad raving,” says Pravda reviewer Tomas Kolesnichenko. The surprise is that he isn’t referring to a dissident’s writings, but the latest scribblings from Richard M. Nixon—The Real War. In the book, Tricky Dickie argues that United States power and prestige have deteriorated to the point of risking Soviet domination. Kremlin cogitators think they have a finger on the pulse of Nixon’s political leitmotiv: “The former president says that the United States needs a strong new personality to lead the country.” Less in the spirit of détente but more to

Glacier Bay, Alaska. After making more than 145 movies, he is sensitive about his strong identification with the ghastly genre and insists it was a “small part” of his career. Lee says he is delighted by the “whole new world” opened up to him after his 1978 appearance on Saturday Night Live— he has had comedic roles since then in 191+1 and Serial, in the latter playing a weekend gay bike gang leader. The countertype casting will continue when Lee plays a “lunatic psychiatrist with a bunch of roller-skating children” in a future project tentatively titled Save the Last Dance for Me. “I’ve played a few heavies

in my time,” says the understating Lee, who seems satisfied that, finally, “they’ve found there’s an actor who can make them laugh as well as shudder.”

After rehearsing as both a poised Polish aviatrix in Bernard Shaw’s Misalliance and an aging aristocrat in Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard for her third appearance at the Shaw Festival, Tony Award winner Carole Shelley is

íí|’m a very independent, very positive ■ person,” says 57-year-old gallivanting granny Therese Tessier. After her husband died five years ago, she sold the family home in Terrace, B.C., bought a camper and visited every corner of North America. Next week, she will lead a 15-unit (campers, vans and trucks) gaggle of grannies on a threemonth trek up the Dempster Highway to Tuktoyaktuk on the Beaufort Sea.

president-for-life, Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier, married divorced mother of two, Michelle Bennett, last week. Under the watchful eyes of 1,000 armed troops and 2,000 of his nearest and dearest friends, the tab for the “modest” nuptial celebration was $3 million in a country where the average wage is $150 per year. Despite assurances by voodoo priests that signs were good for a long and happy union, mother-of-the-groom Madame Simone Duvalier bitterly opposed the marriage and greeted the festivities with an icy stare. Long thought to be Haiti’s real power, she and a clique of her friends from Papa Doc’s ancien régime have violently opposed any attempts at liberalization. While she will retain her title as First Lady of Haiti, she will likely lose her sphere of influence to her daughter-in-law. As one observer noted, “Michelle is everything they hate—young, smart, liberal and educated abroad.”

Bruce Howe started diving a decade ago out of sheer necessity—gourmands at his favorite camping spot in British Columbia’s gulf islands were making off with so many abalone that he had to don scuba gear to harvest enough of the mollusk-munchies for his own tastes. Since then, the 44-year-old Howe, who was named president and chief operating officer of forest industry giant MacMillan Bloedel last month, has plunged wholeheartedly into the sport around the world—especially in the South Pacific. Howe says he finds “a mental escape” from his everyday corporate cares in the “almost complete tranquillity” beneath the waves, and with an over-all income hovering around the $200,000 mark still plans to salvage some of his own seafood.

Keeping step with the latest recordsetting trend for Turners ($7.3 million, Canadian), Van Goghs ($6 million) and Picassos ($3.4 million), last week a severe-looking collection of art buffs winked, nodded and tugged its way to a series of auction records in Canadian art. Toronto dealer Blair Laing coolly placed the top bid of the evening— $170,000 for a 1939 Arctic canvas from the brush of Group of Seven member Frederick Varley. The high-bidding fever must have been contagious—a Cornelius Krêfghoff brought $140,000, while a Lauren Harris icescape went for $72,000. Despite the high-rolling figures involved, Laing insists, “It isn’t a matter of money at all,” yet he claims Varley, who was destitute most of his life, would “roll over in his grave” if he knew the sums his work is fetching.

Edited by Maureen Piercy

feeling a little “schizophrenic.” Between her run in The Elephant Man and her arrival at Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont., she tried something completely different—a four-week stint on the soap Another World. It was exhausting but lucrative, she says: “I made a bundle of money.” Despite the Broadway plaudits she has earned and her current Chekhov-Shaw duet, sob-sister Iris from Another World is the role people recognize her for. “A lot of people don’t know from Tonys, a lot don’t know from Carole Shelley, but a lot know from Iris.” Sighs Shelley: “God, the power of television.”

The sprightly adventurers (average age 60) will pan for gold, ride in bush planes and paddle canoes 800 miles up the Mackenzie River. Publicity after her first trip up the Dempster last summer brought inquiries from 200 women who wanted to join Tessier this year, despite warnings about the inevitable clouds of blackflies, mosquitoes and dust. Tessier says “When they come back, they’ll never go back to the four walls of monotony, I promise you.”

In a ceremony billed as the social event of the decade, but looking more like a shotgun wedding, Haiti’s corpulent