Break a Leg

Last night I saw a musical at a high school. I must admit that my experience was somewhat colored by the fact that, generally speaking, I don’t like musicals.
There are, of course, exceptions, but overall I think you’ll find that most musicals please women but not men. With a few minor changes, however, I think you could adapt most musicals to allow everyone to enjoy them. Here are a few suggestions:

Remove half of the songs.

Take the remaining songs and shorten them by half. In the case of the obligatory grand finale, reduce the length by two-thirds.

All French accents should be replaced by a Western drawl.

Replace each dance with a fistfight.

Each act must contain an on-stage car or wagon chase. The chase must be set to the theme from Benny Hill.

Whenever a character dies, he or she should be alive again in the next scene with the explanation “Just kidding!”

More talking animals

To provide motivation for the actors, the audience members should each be issued a piece of rotten fruit “just in case.”

Do you have any other suggestions?

9 comments:

nathan said...

You should win stuff for watching. The performers should routinely crowd surf. Maybe large amounts of fake Hollywood blood. Finally an M. Knight Shalamaan Twist at the end.

Jar said...

First off, I like musicals. I like a lot of your suggestions, but do see one problem. In terms of a high school musical, if we cut the music down, we'd have to endure more "acting". (Shudder) Having been one of these students my entire high school career, I believe we can all agree that this would not be a desirable outcome...

Kevin said...

You are such a stereotype Joel. Enjoyment of musicals (High school ones of both the Disney type and the regular type excluded) are a sign of cultural refinement. I'm going to see Jersey Boys in California over Thanksgiving and I am stoooooked. Or possibly I am just pretentious and/or 1/4 homosexual, you decide

Joel said...

Nate, that is an excellent idea. the more blood, fire, and free stuff you can cram in, the better.
Jer, I wasn't talking about increasing the amount of dialogue. I meant that by reducing the amount of music, you reduce the total run time, which is a win/win situation.
Kevin, I'm very proud of you for persevering and fathering a child.

Brooke said...

Joel, I think you need to stop hating musicals. They're the highest form of art out there.

Jen said...

aaah, brooke, that stings.

joel, i agree. i love music, i love quality good music. Take me to the opera, but i HATE musicals. I don't know why. but i can't handle them. Sean loves Fiddler On the Roof and has tried to get me to watch it and after the 15th HOUR (it feels like) i go crazy. "Aaah! I can't do it! i can't do it! it's so lame. it's sooo long and laaaame..."

also: if you want fistfights AND dancing, there is Westside Story. :) oh man.. that's the worst.

Jar said...

Score 1 point to Joel for his most controversial post ever.

Opera? Gross. As a musician, There is very little opera that fails to offend my ears. Especially the sopranos. (Refer to Joel's post about too much vibrato)

Musicals are just the modern man's opera. It really is the same thing, but in a language we understand and with updated music that the audience is more likely to relate to.

Kevin, I don't know you, but I'm jealous. Jersey Boys is awesome.

Jen said...

That is alright. Most people do not understand opera. I am on a quest to share and teach the beauty of it to everyone i know. I have a CD of the most beautiful arias; they will make you cry. Let me know if anyone would like a copy. :)

Joel said...

Good idea, Jen. I'm always looking for a new reason to cry.