Friday, September 11, 2015

Five Fandom Friday: 5 Broadway Shows I'd Love to Be In

Image courtesy Katelyn Jade
This week's 5 Fandom Friday was originally "5 Broadway Roles I'd Love to Play," but when it comes to theater I am much more qualified for and much more interested in the pit orchestra than actually being on stage. I mean, I'm definitely not Broadway good, but still.

1. Fiddler on the Roof




So I actually played violin in pit for this one (in high school) and it was probably my favorite show that we ever did. My left hand still remembers the opening bars of "Tradition" and probably always will.

My Korean BFF was also in this show (though he played flute, not violin) and sometimes when we got particularly stinking drunk together we'd start singing "To Life." Much to the dismay of other bar patrons, I'm sure.


2. The Producers



I didn't exactly grow up on show tunes and standards, but I'm way more familiar with them than most contemporary theater. What can I say? I like my 32-bar form and I-IV-V chord changes. The Producers soundtrack is definitely a callback to the Tinpan Alley era of musicals (probably because those are the ones that Mel Brooks grew up with himself) so it's no surprise that I love literally every single song in the show.

Fun fact: the original movie's Swedish title was (somewhat appropriately) Springtime for Hitler (Det våras för Hitler) and for years after that, every Mel Brooks movie title was localized in a Springtime For _____ pattern. This continued up until Robin Hood: Men in Tights, though the DVD release of Dracula: Dead and Loving It was titled Det våras för Dracula.


3. Girl Crazy/Crazy For You


Image courtesy Wikimedia and Ed Schipul
Speaking of Tinpan Alley, no Broadway list of mine would be complete without the Gershwins. There's any number of shows to choose from and I would be happy in just about any of them, but "Crazy For You" holds a special place in my heart (even if it is a sort of weirdo compilation/remix) as a memorable elementary school field trip performance.


4. Porgy and Bess


Image courtesy Ealmagro, Wikimedia

It might be cheating to choose another Gershwin show (opera in this case) but whatever, it's my list and I do what I want! I know that Porgy and Bess is not a choice without controversy, but I admire George and Ira's stipulation that the show only ever be produced with a black cast. While their intentions may have been more rooted in their idea of musical integrity (and thus perhaps based a bit in racial stereotypes as well), it did have the unintended consequence of giving numerous black singers and performers a chance at the spotlight, especially during an era when blackface was more common than not. So, I don't know. I do like the music, though.


5. Avenue Q



I think I know almost all of the songs from this show, even if I haven't seen it. This is actually one of my few exceptions of the "I don't follow contemporary" theater rule (though again, does it still count as contemporary by now?). Avenue Q seems like a really fun show and like it would be a really fun show to be a part of.

21 comments:

  1. Great choices it's never cheating to pick 2 Gershwins!!

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    1. Never, ever cheating! Never too many Gerswins!

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  2. I looove Avenue Q! I convinced my mom to take me to see it for my 16th birthday which she kinda regretted afterwards lol. We also did it at the theatre I work at, which was interesting. When I was in college we did The Producers as well. I love the music, but working on it was the wooorst.

    I wish I'd realized what this weeks topic was sooner!!! I could talk about musicals for days. Maybe I'll write one up when I get up tomorrow, we'll see >_> Although everyone would just tease me for liking Starlight Express <_<

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    1. I wouldn't!!! I looooove Starlight Express and have seen it 4 times! A musical on rollerskates about trains. What's not to love!!

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    2. I mean, I might tease you a little bit but tbh as far as Andrew Lloyd Weber goes I'd rather sit through Starlight Express than another goddamn production of Phantom.

      (And with that comment I have let loose the fierce and batshit Phantom fandom....)

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  3. I like your choices. Avenue Q is one I've wanted to see for awhile now. Like you I've heard the music but have yet to see the show.

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    1. I had a chance to see it in college but I didn't go? For some reason? Kind of silly of me, in retrospect. =/

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  4. I remember doing Fiddler on the Roof in middle school. It was the only play I really enjoyed being a part of (in my small-town Catholic school, you HAD to be in the play. It was mandatory for grades 6, 7 and 8).

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    1. You didn't HAVE to be in the play in our middle school, but it was close: you either had to be in a music extracurricular OR take a mandatory music class. Most kids chose the extracurricular and most of THEM were in chorus (probably because you didn't have to spend extra money on an instrument).

      Fiddler was probably way beyond our talent pool, ahahah. We did You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown, Once on This Island, aaaaaaaand another I can't remember but it definitely wasn't Fiddler.

      It's a fun show, though!

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  5. Crazy for You! I was in the show in high school. Always gotta love Gershwins. :)

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    1. I wish our high school had done a Gershwin production while I was there! But our choir director didn't ever seem too enthused by him because I can't remember if she ever chose one of his EVER for the spring musical. (We always had a spring musical and a fall play.)

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    1. Puppets and profanity!

      The one thing is that it's become a bit dated now that Gary Coleman is dead. But I suppose that was going to happen eventually.

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  7. I played in the pit for a couple of my high school's musicals and it was so much fun! We actually didn't have any strings, so I had to transpose all of the violin parts for clarinet and enjoyed that way more than normal people probably would have:P We didn't do Fiddler on the Roof but that would have been awesome! And I used to know all of the Avenue Q songs too, but I've never watched it. It'd still be a fun one to go see though!

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    1. Pit is probably one of my fondest memories of high school, to be honest! I would love to play in one for like....idk, local community theater, I guess?...but I don't have any of my instruments here with me. I'm also waaaaay out of practice and was questionably talented on everything except piano to begin with, haha.

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  8. I got to see Avenue Q when it toured, it was fantastic! The Bad Idea Bears may be my favs : )

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    1. Lucky!

      I wonder if the Bad Idea Bears are familiar with Bad Decision Dinosaur....

      http://catandgirl.com/?p=529

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