How do you Know you Love a Song in a Musical?

That question is tricky- how do you know you love a song in a musical? The songs are KEY to any musical. They form the backbones to the characters and plot. All the songs have to sound like they fit into the musical itself, but you STILL have to love the songs. You can’t love a musical without loving the songs first.

Well- a lot of time, for me, I usually JUST know. What do you mean, YOU JUST KNOW. That literally means you are into the songs automatically- BEFORE the lyrics and before the dance/spectacle element.

This is another section- did you form an emotional response? That can mean anything like feeling like you are hit like a pile of bricks (tears or choked up or feeling like you want to, but just can’t get it out- one of those does happen when “getting hit like a pile of bricks” feels like). That emotional response also drives you to stay at the edge of your seat. Your emotional response is not ALWAYS hit like a pile of bricks- the songs could make you want to root for the characters. Did the songs make you vulnerable? That list can go on- the emotional response is pretty much the same thing as emotional connection.

The emotional pull to the songs start to make us care about the characters and their storyline. I do not think there is a musical genre that is better at storyline than musical theatre. The closest that I can think of is Opera, which is also a genre of storytelling.

Some of my favorite Spectacle/Dance in Musicals

One of the strongest reasons why I love musicals belongs to spectacle and dance. I do not know why I never mentioned this on my blog- I never once mentioned what some of my favorite spectacle scenes or dance scenes were. I decided to list some of those below.

  1. Seize the Day
  2. Circle of Life
  3. Friend like Me
  4. Be our Guest
  5. Dancing Through Life
  6. Whole New World
  7. Magic to Do
  8. NYC
  9. Etc…I can add more

There are people who feel like spectacle and dance are in a musical “just be there”, but that isn’t true. They have a reason- it helps in believability, emotion, and the pure joy and spirit of musical theatre.

What are some of your favorite spectacle and dance numbers?

Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker Review

Yesterday, I FINALLY saw Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker. I have wanted to see the latest movie in the latest trilogy since Force Awakens came out. I actually became a fan of Star Wars in 2015. I love Star Wars due to the planets, the droids, the creatures, the Jedi, etc….. I even think Star Wars is better than Marvel- I am not joking here.

About the latest trilogy- I fell in love with Rey, the moment I saw her. I did love the fact that they added a female Jedi to the fix, and I think that is part of why I love her. She is the protagonist of this particular trilogy. She actually is my favorite character of Force Awakens, Last Jedi, and Rise of Skywalker. I loved seeing her development.

Now on to the movie: There might be SPOILERS:

The surviving members of the resistance face the First Order once again, and the legendary conflict between the Jedi and the Sith reaches its peak bringing the Skywalker saga to its end

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We are back to Poe, BB8, Finn, CC-30 (I always forget the time), Chewy and Rey. They are on this quest on to find this Wayfinder in order to find this hidden talent in order to defeat Palpatine once and for all. It actually was quite intense- filled with plot twist- as in “you can’t do that”- some of the characters you thought were DEAD, but in reality NOT (among other plot twists).

I knew there was going to be a battle between the Residence and the Sith- like usually happens. I literally thought it was going to be a LOST cause on point, but in no way that was going to happen. The Sith were way outnumbered and Rey used a lot of her powers on Palaptine and so did Kylo Ren (who by that point, redeemed himself and changed his name to Ben Solo).

This movie was actually an incredible end to the trilogy. Had no idea how they were going to include Leia in this movie- but the way they worked it out was impressive. What is interesting about the Star Wars movies is that you always seem to be introduced to brand new planets and creatures each time.

The trilogy was actually my first time seeing Star Wars in a movie theater so I loved being able to see the special effects and everything on the BIG SCREEN- not on the small screen like the others.

Examples of Characters who are both Brave and Strong

The past two days I explained what makes a musical character strong and what makes them brave. Today, I will make a list of characters who are both.

  1. Jean Valjean
  2. Eponine
  3. Fantine
  4. Nala
  5. Belle
  6. Elphaba
  7. Kim
  8. Etc…..that is my short list

It can be hard to think of characters who are both. I wonder why I tend to think of female characters. Can you think of others?

What makes a character Brave?

As I recently said, a strong character is brave. What exactly makes a character brave (I think that is obvious)?

Standing up for What they Believe in:

This was the most obvious for brave character. They truly are fighters. They have something they truly believe in. The cause they believe in makes them never makes them give up. It can be well a strike or a uprising or someone or something they love (their country or family).

Sacrifice:

They are willing to risk their lives for the sake of another. They take great sacrifices no matter what happens. Even if their sacrifice means death- it still made them brave. They are willing to sacrifice their happiness for the happiness of someone else. Some of these characters really do have tragic lives, but do literally give ultimate sacrifices in the end. It is amazing the sacrifices I have seen in some of those characters.

What makes a character Strong

When I look at musical theatre character, one of the key characteristics I want is strength. What do those characters have in common?

Bravery:

It seems that a lot of them are actual brave characters. They are fighters. They have something to fight for- it can be their country, a loved one, etc. Some of them have tough and difficult lives. Some are them are actually tragic characters.

Vulnerability:

They are for sure vulnerable. It has to do with the life and what they are dealing with at the moment. They have someone or someones up against them that made them vulnerable in the first place. If they fall in love, vulnerability gets added up, in particular if it will NOT end well (tragic love stories and unrequited love).

Complex:

Strong characters tend to be complex. What does complex mean exactly in a character? It means they have layers. That means there is a lot to them. They have a lot of depth meaning there are many ways to portray them.That is one of the reasons why I love combining actors/actresses portrayals in order to create one character. Backstory can play a huge role in complexity. Complex characters are the most likely to express both positive and negative emotions due to what they have experienced. The complex characters have the highest chance of being relatable and to form an emotional connection with.

Flawed:

You might be asking, how can someone who is strong be flawed. Well, part of being vulnerable is being human and part of being human is being flawed. They are more likely to be hurt emotionally if they did have a horrible past- true, not all strong characters have a horrible past, but a good number did. The strong characters know how to thrive even in the most unfortunate of circumstances. Vulnerable and flawed really do go hand in hand if you think about it.

Thriving:

This kind of goes back to the bravery concept. Those strong characters know how to thrive even when things KEEP on throwing them back. Like I said, they are fighters. They try so hard to keep going even when someone is taking advantage of them. Their fates do vary- yes, I said they know how to thrive and keep on climbing back up, but sometimes some of them get killed off while others are the survivors.

My love for Frozen

I have had a love for Frozen since I saw the movie in 2013. I could easily see why so many people were loving the film. I never once thought Frozen was overrated and YES, still not tired of the song, “Let it Go”. Why do I love Frozen? THERE MIGHT BE SPOILERS:

Songs- well, obviously to love a musical, you have to love the songs. I love the songs in Frozen. From “For the First Time in Forever” to “Let it Go” to “Love is an Open Door”- it defiantly has a catchy soundtrack. While the movie only has exciting songs; still good enough for me to love Frozen. Here’s what I can add- when they created the stage show- new songs were added, and some of them were able to create a more emotional feel.

Characters- I totally love these characters, in particular Elsa and Anna. They BOTH are relatable. One born with powers that is misunderstood and another who is optimistic and outgoing: the two sisters do love each other even though things are complicated. While many people call Olaf annoying, I think he is such a lovable snowman.

True Love: Well, in many previous Disney films the idea of true love steams from romance. In Frozen, on the other hand, it is about the love between the sisters: another reason why I love Anna and Elsa. You truly saw this when Anna had to find true love to save herself- she actually sacrificed herself to save her sister from being killed by Hans. So the real true love was from the sisters; not the romance.

Part of my bond (I think I know): I really think a good part of my love for Frozen comes from Wicked. That is due to the parallel elements. Think about it: Elsa/Elphaba; Anna/Glinda; Sisterhood/Friendship; and “Let it Go”/”Defying Gravity”- those all have parallel elements. Considering how meaningful Wicked is to me- it actually makes sense.

This year: I am actually seeing the stage show of Frozen for the first time.