Today’s post will be dedicated to the meaningful musicals from 2012-2017. Those are the musical I refer to the college musicals. All of those musicals are still so fresh in my life. The meaningful musicals of that time period are Rent, Les Mis, Pippin, Phantom of the Opera, South Pacific and Newsies though there might be a few more.
I learned to love Phantom of the Opera, Les Mis, and Rent around the same time period. My journey with Rent begin in Fall of 2012 and it became meaningful before knowing what the musical is about. My journey with Les Mis began in December of 2012 though I didn’t became a true fan until Spring of 2013. I fell in love with Phantom of the Opera in Winter of 2013. I can easily explain why Les Mis and Rent are meaningful, but cannot fully explain why Phantom of the Opera is on the meaningful list.
Les Mis is a musical that literally changed musicals forever. Coming into the movie, I was a bit unsure if I would like the movie or not. Even after the movie ended, I still did not know if I liked it or not. But something must have hit a chord in me since I automatically started researching the musical afterwards. The first time I watched it being quite confused and shocked since I didn’t know it was going to be a tragedy. I labeled the musical as too depressing and did not see the true beauty of the musical.
I am so glad I saw that movie a second time. I was able to calm down and was able to realize that there is something special about Les Mis. I wanted to know why such a heartbreaking musical always uplifted me. I dug deeper until I found the answer. In spite of all the heartbreak, misery, and death, Les Mis is ultimately a tale of hope, compassion, love (existing in many forms), forgiveness, humanity, sacrifice, and redemption. With Les Mis, I was able to explore musical emotions in a fresh light.
Before I had no clue that heartbreak was a musical emotion. I was able to finally understand what it meant for a song to be heartbreaking. I learned that tragedy is not pure sad like I once believed. I realized musical emotions had more potential than I once believed. Before Les MIs, I was a fan of musicals, but no where close to being a musical fanatic. I could go on and on about why Les Mis is meaningful.
This sounds ironic, but Les Mis wasn’t the first sad musical I ever loved. It was Rent due to falling in love with it before seeing the Les Mis movie for the first time. But I didn’t know Rent was sad until months after I had already fallen in love with it. Rent is such a meaningful musical due to its message. Because of Rent, I learned the importance of living in the moment and living your lives in love and reminded me of how precious life is. Yes, the musical is very mature and adult and controversial, but it does show that this is what happens in life sometimes. Like Les Mis, Rent is also sad, but at the same time inspiring. Both have incredible messages and both are way more than the sadness that they present. I will finally be seeing the stage show
Pippin is another meaningful musical. I don’t know exactly why it is meaningful. Pippin had a kind of spectacle that I had never seen before. It made spectacle look fresh by turning the show into a circus. Pippin has a very universal message due to Pippin trying to discover his corner of the sky, which is where he belongs. But he kept on making wrong decisions, but never realized it until the end. I remember being so intrigued by the leading player’s protyral and though I didn’t like the character, I truly believed in her. At one moment in “No Time At All” the audience was able to sing along.
Newsies is the most recent musical that became meaningful to me. I experienced it for the first time in August of 2016. I was familiar with four of its songs and knew there was Tony Award winning choreography. Knowing that the choreography won a Tony Award, it made me look very forward to seeing the dance. My emotional connection with Newsies began in the very first scene and that is always a good sign. I automatically fell in love with Jack Kelly and Crutchie and I just love the close bond they have and it is quite intimate. I also love the relationship between all the Newsies and they are like this one big family.
The fact that this story is based off the actual Newsboy Strike is amazing to me. The fact that these Newsies stood up to Joseph Pulitizer after raising their price of papers is so inspiring. They went on strike to make a point and that took a lot of courage. One lyric that I have close to heart is from “Seize the Day”, which is “Courage cannot erase our fear. courage is when we face of fear”. This musical showed the importance of courage when facing your fears. The dancing was mind-blowing to be and to me was worth the price of the ticket alone.
Phantom of the Opera is a musical I fell in love with in a similar way that I fell in love with Rent. Just like Rent, I fell in love with it by listening to the songs through Pandora. That means I feel in love with Phantom of the Opera before knowing the show is about. I don’t know why this musical is meaningful. This musical is hauntingly beautiful. I feel like even the kind of score Phantom of the Opera has is rare. All of this songs are slow-paced and usually there is some fast-paced song in a musical or one with a high level of energy. But Phantom of the Opera doesn’t display a single one.
There is also South Pacific. It has become meaningful. I first saw the movie in 2014 when musical movies were learnt to my family when school was cancelled due to snow and South Pacific happened to be one of them. It has a very romantic feeling to it especially during “Some Enchanted Evening”. It focuses on two romances and one is tragic while the other is not, but easily could have been. The romance between Liat and Joe Cable doesn’t end too well and that plot is only a sub-plot. Than there is the main romance between Emelie and Nellie, which almost didn’t work out but in the end it does. Even I don’t know why this musical is meaningful.