Posted by: bligy | December 17, 2007

Musical Theatre

Over the many years that is the performance of music on the stage, everything from operas to dance, musical theatre was something that was hidden just beneath the surface, needing only the little nudge to send it flying into the world around it.  This little nudge came with a new style of music, a new something to thrill the senses and offer a stellar example of the lower levels of life.  This new music was ragtime, jazz, and the nineteen twenty’s contribution to the world around it.Musical theatre itself originated in ragtime, and a few ragtime musicals were, in fact, written, but were dismal failures that didn’t do much to stir a crowd.  Fortunately for the musical lovers of the world, the combination of acting, singing and dancing was not to be destroyed by ragtime’s inability to thrill the world with its favours.  Taking the popular idea of Operettas, musical writers used popular music, whether they be jazz, pop, rock or something entirely different, to create a story written to music that people can relate to.

The most popular forms of musical theatre combine music with speech, but there are a few terribly popular rock operas out in the world, or at least productions that originated in the idea of rock operas, or a production that uses ‘rock’ music lyric to tell the story instead of speech, such as Rent by Jonathan Larson, or Cats by Andrew Lloyd Webber.  There are adaptations of most of the more popular rock operas, however, into more traditional musical form.

RENT Logo  Cats Logo 

When stating ‘popular musical form’, this is meant to refer to using musicals in place of the generic monologue, to get into the character’s mind, or occasionally to show the essence of a situation, but there are literally thousands of musicals, and all of them use music to explore different parts of the human cause and to show different parts of the character’s personalities that would never be able to be shown in purely acting or purely operatic form.Musical theatre is a type of theatre that combines classical techniques with the new types of music that have spread throughout the world.  There are musicals for every culture, every language, and every dance type.  The musical world is tight, but wide-spread, so that there are generally few musical lovers in a crowd, but all of them will be able to chatter for hours on end about nothing but their favourites and comparing them to others and their thoughts on those.Truly, musicals are meant for all types of people, it’s more that people don’t take the plays serious, or merely don’t have the patients to listen to people sing about their feelings rather than express them in Shakespeare-style monologues.  But if one were to look hard enough, they would almost unquestionably find something that they like.  Musicals are quite varied with standards for all shapes and sizes.


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