Monday, September 23, 2013

Celebrate Musicals Week Tag

Well, here it is, Monday night.  I should be working on my art lesson for the kiddos tomorrow, or packing for Ladies Retreat on Thursday, or making the girls' lunches...

But hey, I've always been great at shrugging aside responsibility for more fun activities. :}  I'd read the announcement about "Celebrate Musicals Week" over at Yet Another Period Drama Blog (hosted by Miss Dashwood) and was super excited.  I'm a HUGE fan of musicals.  In fact, as I've mentioned before, I think that life would be a lot better if we all broke into spontaneous song and dance every once in a while. ;)

So of course, when I saw there was a tag in celebration of the week, I just had to participate. :)

Yet Another Period Drama Blog

To see the original tag on Miss Dashwood's blog, you can click HERE.  And to see all the details of "Celebrate Musicals Week", you can click HERE.  

Our assignment was to choose one musical to focus on for the entire week.  I had a pretty tough time choosing which one to do, but after much deliberation, I finally chose "Beauty and the Beast".  Heh heh.  Are you really that surprised? ;)  I actually was leaning more towards "The Phantom of the Opera" at first, but I thought this one would be more in keeping with my blog theme. :)

So, on to the tag!

1.  What musical did you pick to "spotlight" this week and why?
          I chose "Beauty and the Beast" because it's one of my favorite movies AND my favorite musicals. :)

Susan Egan and Terrance Mann in the title roles.

2.  How did you discover the musical you picked (hereinafter referred to as "your musical")?
          Well, I saw the movie when it came out in theaters in 1991 (I was ten at the time).  I can't remember when I first heard about the Broadway production...probably from a Disney preview or something.

3.  If you had to pick three favorite songs from your musical, which ones would they be?
          I really like "Human Again", especially because of the adorable dialogue in the middle of it. :)  I enjoy "A Change in Me" for the most's great that Belle gets a couple of nice solos in the Broadway version.  I also love "If I Can't Love Her".  Just like Belle, the Beast gets a few extra solo numbers, which I think is fantastic.  But honestly, I love pretty much all the songs in this one. :)   

4.  What's your least favorite song from your musical?
          Probably "Maison de Lunes", but it's not like I hate it or anything. :)         

5.  Who are your favorite characters (choose up to three)?
           1. The Beast because you really get to see even more into his character in this production.  I love the story element they added where throughout the entire play he's trying to get up the nerve to tell Belle he loves her.
           2. Belle for the brave, sweet woman she is and the loving relationship she has with her father.
           3.  Wardrobe because she makes me laugh. :)

6.  Which versions of your musical have you seen/listened to, and which is your favorite?
          For the movie, I've seen the original theatrical release, the 10th anniversary release (in the IMAX theater), the 20th anniversary theatrical release (basically so I could see "Tangled Ever After").  I've seen the play done professionally at two different theaters and I've also seen a local high school version.  And I saw the made-for-TV production of "Beauty and the Beast:  A Concert on Ice".  It featured songs and script from the play with famous ice skaters skating to the music. 
          There was also a rather random non-Disney musical version that I remember seeing at our local Civic center when I was in about the 5th or 6th grade.  I have a few brief memories of that production. :}   

7.  Is this your favorite musical of all time?  If not, what is?
          It's one of my favorite musicals of all time.  I'm also a big fan of "The Sound of Music", "Fiddler on the Roof", Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Cinderella", "Singin' in the Rain", and "The Phantom of the Opera".  Oh, and I like most of the musical version of "The Scarlet Pimpernel", too. :}

8.  Which cast album/musical soundtrack in your collection do you listen to the most?
          Recently, I've been quite hooked on the new Broadway production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Cinderella".  I already had the original songs memorized, and now I've almost got the new additions down. ;)
          I use for most of my music now, so rather than listening to an entire soundtrack, I have a playlist with my favorite musical theatre songs on it.  There are songs from "Oklahoma", "South Pacific", the Broadway production of "The Little Mermaid", "Phantom", and more! :)

9.  What is your favorite costume from your musical?
          Definitely Belle's ballgown. :)

Terrance Mann and Susan Egan

10.  If you could change anything about your musical, what would you change?
          Honestly, nothing.  Maybe a few less innuendos between Lumiere and Babette, but other than that, nothing at all. :)

11.  Which role(s) would you most like to play in any musical, if you had the opportunity to do so on stage?
          Well, I'm getting past the age to play Belle or Christine Daae (and I don't have the range for Christine anyway).  I'd love to play Maria in "The Sound of Music".  Except I still can't dance, so even that role wouldn't really work for me. ;)

Susan Egan and Terrance Mann

12.  If you could choose one performer to play any part in your musical, who would you choose and which part would you have them play?
          While he hasn't always made good choices in his personal life, my favorite Beast has always been James Barbour.  He's got this amazing richness and depth to his voice that I love.  I loved his portrayal in "Beauty and the Beast:  A Concert on Ice".

James Barbour as the Beast

13.  Do you consider yourself a musical theatre fan in general or do you just like a few musicals?
          I really enjoy musical theatre, but I'm pretty selective about which plays I watch or soundtracks I listen to, especially since I'm particular about content.  A lot of musicals have at least one song or one part that I don't care for.  I totally love stories with random song and dance numbers in them, though.  So I guess I'm a selective musical theatre fan. ;)          

14.  Are you tired of the word "musical" yet?
          Not possible. ;)

15.  Turn your music playing device on shuffle (or utilize Pandora if you don't have one) and tell us the names of the first three show tunes that come up-no cheating!  How do these rank on your favorites/most-listened-to list?
          I don't really have the time or capability to do this, so I'm just going to skip this question. :} 

Terrance Mann and Susan Egan

Well, that was way more fun than what I was supposed to be doing! ;)  Thank you to Miss Dashwood for hosting this fun tag.  I'm not sure I'll be able to participate in the other expected posts (I'll be out of town and without WiFi for half of the week), but I enjoyed doing this part! :)  

If I can, I'll try to do at least one more BatB post, but I can't promise anything. :)

Be sure you all head over and check out the "Celebrate Musicals Week" for yourselves! :)

As for me, I'm off to make sure I know what I'm drawing for art tomorrow! :}


Juliet XD said...

I don't love musicals, and I think High School Musical (all three of 'em) ruined the fun. Happy musical week to all!

(Check you AGPT messages!)

Nina said...

It's musical week? YAY! I LOVE musicals! Actually, our school is doing Beauty and the Beast, and I'm in it! I play a villager and a piece of flatware! (We all start small:))

beastsbelle said...

Hi Juliet. While I love musicals, the High School Musicals are not movies I enjoy. :}

Thanks for letting me know about my message...I don't always get over to AGPT. I used to be a much better member. :}

Congrats, Nina! :) Every part is important, no matter how small. ;) Hope you have fun!

Alexandra said...

Loved the answers...Belle's ballgown is so amazing! I might be seeing the show in December. :)

Sereina said...

That was fun to read! Although I've never really been a fan of the movie, I really, really like the Broadway soundtrack.

beastsbelle said...

Lucky you, Alexandra!! :) I haven't seen it in about 10 years. I'd love to see it again sometime. :)

Thanks, Sereina. I love both, but I especially enjoyed the depth they added to the characters in the show. :)

Ruby Danderfluff said...

That's the second time I've heard James Barbour's name in the past 24 hours... I need to do some googling, apparently. Never heard of him before. =)

I remember seeing a "Beauty and the Beast" Tony award performance from the 90's a few weeks ago, vera neat to see. Those costumes and makeup must take forever to get on and off!

Loved reading your tag!!

OurAGAdventures said...

Love musicals! I love "The King and I" "Auntie Mame" "My Fair Lady" and "Mama Mia". I've never seen the Beauty and the Beast play, but now I'm very intrigued by it!

beastsbelle said...

Hi Ruby! :) James Barbour has an amazing voice. He also played Sydney Carton in the musical version of "A Tale of Two Cities" and Rochester in the musical version of "Jane Eyre", among other things.

If you go to my Beauty and the Beast Pinterest board and scroll down a bit, I've included a few links to videos of the concert on ice I mentioned. It has footage of James Barbour and Susan Egan performing the title roles (not in costume, sadly, but still amazing). I also have a few YouTube vids of Susan and James performing in the actual play. :) You can see my board here:

OurAGAdventures, it's a really great play. I hope you get a chance to check it out! :)

Ruby Danderfluff said...

Oh that's awesome! I'll have to check that out. Thanks for the tip! =)

beastsbelle said...

You're welcome! :)

Jen said...

I'm sad to say that I don't have the best memories of seeing Beauty and the Beast on Broadway - I was 17, on a school trip, and it killed my overly melodramatic teenage soul to be in New York City, across the street from where Les Miserables was playing, and watching something else. :D

But now I want to spend the rest of the evening listening to all my theater soundtracks!

beastsbelle said...

I can understand that, Jen. I'd feel the same way if I were across the street from one of my very favorites and forced to watch something else. ;)

I've been in a musical theatre soundtrack mood myself! ;)

Emmaline Grace said...

I must ask you, Beast'sBelle, have you ever seen Les Miserables?

beastsbelle said...

Hi Emmaline Grace. :) I've seen the 10th Anniversary Concert, most of the 25th Anniversary Concert, and the movie. I've never seen the play live. I have mixed feelings about the play. On the one hand, the story and its themes are so moving, and the music is AMAZING. However, there are some content issues that make me wonder if I'd be comfortable seeing it live.

My favorite version that I've seen is the 10th Anniversary Concert. Whichever Jonas brother played Marius pretty much ruined the 25th version for me...even though Ramin, Hadley, and some of the others were splendid. And while I enjoyed most of the movie, the "Lovely Ladies" and "Master of the House" segments were not parts I enjoyed. Also, to be honest, even though it was great that they got to sing live, I feel that some of the vocal talent was not quite up to par with some of the theatre versions I've heard (I felt the same way about the Phantom of the Opera movie, too).

When it comes right down to it, I keep going back to Lea Salonga's "On My Own" or Lea and Michael's rendition of "A Little Fall of Rain" from the 10th Anniversary concert. Incredible. :}

I hope that long, rather rambly comment answers your question. ;)

Anonymous said...

Dear Beastsbelle,
About the non-Disney musical version of Beauty and the Beast that you saw, judging from the general time frame it sounds like it may be the version that starred Rebecca De Mornay and John Savage. If this is the case, I thought you might like to know that it was released on dvd in the early 2000s. My sister owns a copy.

beastsbelle said...

Hi Anonymous, thanks for the tip. I actually have a copy of that DVD. The one I was talking about would have been at about the same time. However, it was a live production put on for kids at a local theatre. I don't think it has ever come out on DVD (I wish it had!). ;)

I don't remember much about it except that there was a song where Beauty was singing "just another step and I'll see his face" (when she was about to see the Beast), while at the same time, the Beast was singing about "another blasted day and another blasted year". They were on a set piece that had a room and stairs and could turn, so you during different parts of the song, the piece would turn to highlight whoever was singing.

I also remember that the Beast taught Beauty to fence, and at one point she accidentally poked him in the behind. As kids, we found this part quite hilarious. :} Also, in this version, the reason her mother was gone was because she had been turned into a statue and was in the Beast's garden...I don't think he was the one that did it, but I'm not sure.

The same company put on a production of "Gulliver's Travels" the year before, using a giant mechanized statue for Gulliver. They would probably seem corny now, but I really loved both productions as a child. :) Those plays were my first exposure to musical theatre, and I loved every minute. ;)