By Dave Donnelly

Friday, January 23, 1998

Eclectic delights in 'Excentricus'

IT'S called "Excentricus," and we're not talking about White House goings-on at the . This is the name of the Cirque Eloize's 90-minute garden of delights on view tonight, tomorrow and Sunday at the Hawaii Theatre. The fast-moving program is a free-flowing display of beauty, strength, comedy, musicianship, timing and inventiveness. It completely charmed me and had the entire audience screaming with laughter. As contortionist Nadine Serrano did one of her almost impossible body twists, the woman behind me fairly screamed, "Omigod!" It was a show with something for everybody, kids and adults alike, and especially for adults who want to feel like kids again. Artistic director Jeannot Painchaud resembles a kind of young Charlie Chaplin and he's put together a remarkable company of the most disparate individuals you'll ever see on one stage, ranging from the bandleader, who looks like a refugee from "The Addams Family" to trapeze artist Shana Carroll, a feast for the eyes. And I'll never be able to see a megaphone again without laughing over the running antics of the mute bass player ...

Bush pilot takes lead

WHEN George Bush was in the White House, a big concern was whether he called Maine or Texas home. He lived in Maine, but kept a hotel room in Houston for voting purposes. Now he's becoming more and more involved in Hawaii as well. This week he's been on the Big Island to speak at the Pepsi 100th anniversary celebration, vying for attention with the Rolling Stones, Ray Charles, etc., while sandwiching in as much golf as possible. And just last week, the 41st president agreed to be Honorary Chairman of the USS Missouri Memorial Association, a decision that bought ear-to-ear grins from Association leaders like Ed Carter and Roy Yee. Bush and the Mighty Mo have much in common. In World War II, he was a combat pilot in the Pacific, and the war ended on the decks of the Missouri. And during the Gulf War, which Bush oversaw as president, the Missouri provided important cover for the ground troop invasion. Seems a natural affiliation ...

SPEAKING of the Stones, local groupies went to great lengths to win front row tickets to the Aloha Stadium concert, courtesy of KSSK, by performing zany stunts live at Ala Moana CenterStage. John Fielding was so hot to attend that he wolfed down a three-course lunch that included whole jalapeno pepper appetizers, a ham sandwich seasoned with a bottle of Tabasco, followed by a heaping tablespoon of wasabi for dessert. My other favorite winner: Richard Reyes shaved his arms and legs and then shaved "KSSK" on the back of his head. Bizarre ...

R.I.P. Jack Lord

MY personal involvement with Jack Lord began before the first "Hawaii Five-O" episode was filmed. I played a role in it, and was in several other episodes before an article in TV Guide identified me as one of the authors of "Jack Lord, Superstar," a sketch about the star and his ego that was a hit in a Press Club Gridiron Show. My name was suddenly verboten on the set. It stayed that way for years until Lord, more at ease with his stardom, dropped me a Christmas card with the words, "Let's bury the hatchet." From that day forth, he was most cordial when we'd meet and even generously invited my son and me to join him and wife Marie backstage at "Camelot," where the four of us visited for an hour with star Richard Harris in his dressing room. It'll be my lasting memory of Jack Lord, a true star, one to make Hawaii proud ...

Dave Donnelly has been writing on happenings
in Hawaii for the Star-Bulletin since 1968.
His columns run Monday through Friday.

Contact Dave by e-mail: donnelly@kestrok.com.

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