Sunday, January 3, 2010

Top 5 Musicals

If you're familiar with this blog or with me in general, you're probably very aware of my love for musical theatre. This list is not ranked from 5th favourite to 1st favourite as most of my other lists have been, but rather in the order they "happened" to me.

5. Les Misérables - Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schonberg
Ah, my first love. I associate Les Mis with a lot of "firsts". It was the first stage musical I was introduced to, the first ticket I bought with my own money... I sung "On My Own" in my first singing lesson, "I Dreamed a Dream" in my first public performance, and later got to play Fantine in my first lead role. It might be a little populist, but I think every musical theatre fan still loves Les Mis deep down, often because they've enjoyed performing it so much!

4. Sweeney Todd - Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler
Sweeney kind of goes here, and kind of goes in the number 1 position. It was the first Sondheim show I got into, largely thanks to the Tim Burton film (my opinion of which as an adaptation I will keep to myself...) and got me interested in Sondheim's other works (see the rest of this list), but right now Sweeney is also at the top of my list: I'm producing a performance of it for March this year. It's such a wonderful, funny, dark, romantic show that it's perfect for a student production.

3. Into the Woods - Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine
One of the next Sondheim shows I discovered, and my all-time favourite book of a musical. In my opinion, Into the Woods is about the most perfect story, or collection of stories, ever set to stage. It all looks as though it's going to be horribly childish and moralistic, and then... act two happens. Into the Woods is right at the top of the list of musicals I need to perform in before I die.

2. West Side Story - Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim
I've never seen West Side performed live, I've only seen the film and heard a couple of cast recordings, but the reason this hits so high on the list is because it is completely badass. The incredible, complex score, the innovative use of movement and dance, and the beautiful, tragic story at it's core has made West Side Story a classic, a pivotal point in the history of musical theatre, and the platform on which the world was delivered a very young Stephen Sondheim.

1. Sunday in the Park With George - Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine
This is my favourite musical. This is my favourite work of art. The team from Into the Woods perfect the artform with Sunday. It's so perfectly romantic and sad, it makes me cry and cry and cry every time I listen or watch it. I've never seen it performed, but I am on my toes waiting for a production to hit Sydney or Melbourne so I can go see it. And oh my goodness, I would die to play Dot. Or direct it. Or just listen to the original Broadway recording every day until I die.

So... that's a snippet of my musical theatre journey. A journey which, thanks to Sweeney and all the things that I'm sure will come after it, is far from over.

1 comment:

Maroussia said...

It will be great to watch Les Miserables, i have bought tickets from looking forward to it.