What if I had the talent in musical theatre. What if I developed the passion in elementary school? What if I thought about training earlier to have the talent? What would my dream musical roles be? What would the ultimate musical role be? Those are interesting questions. I know I don’t have the talent to be on stage. I decided to have a post, and play and say what they would have been. SPOILERS
Of all musical theatre characters, Elphaba would have been the ultimate dream role. She is my all-time favorite character in musical theatre. The two of us have things in common while at the same time, the two of us are extremely different. Playing Elphaba would have meant singing a song I am not the biggest fan of- “No Good Deed”. That is the only solo that Elphaba sings that I don’t like that much. I love “I’m Not That Girl”, “Wizard and I”, and “Defying Gravity”. It would have been fun to get her better by being her. She would have been the ultimate dream role.
I think of any lead character in Les Mis, it would have been Eponine. The thought of wanting to be Eponine sounds scary. It sounds scarier than Elphaba. I would have been feeling heartbreak night after night after night. I don’t know if I would have liked to die- that thought sounds daunting. I know you are acting. She is a strong, courageous, and young girl- she goes through so much- she doesn’t deserve the life she had. She had to deal with a family who wouldn’t love her, extreme poverty, and unrequited love, but at least in the end, she was with Marius. Still, if it was any lead character in Les Mis, it still would be Eponine. My parents believe that Eponine is my favorite character in Les Mis, but just afraid to admit it.
Ensemble of Les Mis
I don’t mind being a lead or an ensemble member of Les Mis. If it was a dream role, it wouldn’t matter how I end up in Les Mis.
I know Frozen only came out a year ago, but being Anna would be awesome. I relate to Anna a lot. I relate to her outgoing personality. In addition, I am also the youngest sibling. Frozen is one of my favorite contemporary Disney musicals. I believe part of why I connected to Frozen so much is due to the parallels it has to Wicked. It is coming to my hometown October 2020.
It is hard to think of dream roles when you are not going to be on stage. Thought it would be a fun thing to do.
One scene in particular in Wicked is fun to look at. The interesting part about this scene is that it isn’t a song. I love exploring the Lion Cub Scene- it actually is the beginning of the love triangle. It helps you understand the plot twist in act II. What I am going to say it based off the most recent Lion Cub scene- It is the one between Mary Kate Morrissey’s Elphaba and Ashley Parker Angel’s Fiyero.
Major or Minor Spoilers:
To put into context- previously in class, Elphaba saw a scared Lion Cub in a cage. As a result she got angry and accidentally put a spell on the class, which didn’t affect Fiyero. The two of them run them into the woods (I believe) to let the Lion Cub go. You have to closely examine the scene to understand Fiyero- it is one of his biggest moments in the show. Based upon the scene, he begins to soften up- prior he was a bit of a jerk. These two appear to playfully talk with each other- it seems as if Fiyero has a crush on Elphaba, but doesn’t seem aware of it- foreshadowing act II. Fiyero eventually asks Elphaba why the spell didn’t affect him.
In that moment when he asks her, Elphaba realizes something- she is starting to fall in him- that actually helps you understand how heartbreaking “I’m Not That Girl” is. This scene is very helpful when it comes to Fiyero- he is very hard to understand as a character- he really starts to develop in his scene. I came to the conclusion based upon Ashley Parker Angel’s Fiyero that Fiyero did have a crush on Elphaba in his days at Shiz, but did not seems aware of it and based upon Mary Kate Morrissey’s Elphaba, she did not seem to realize that Fiyero had feelings for her. This scene helps explain a lot. Yes, it is the beginning of the love triangle, but it does help foreshadow the plot twist- the moment when the unrequited love shifts to Glinda.
Love triangles exist in musical theatre. There are three that come straight to mind when I think of them. They are the Phantom of the Opera, Les Mis, and Wicked one. All three them add texture to those musicals. Which one of those is my favorite musical theatre love triangle?
Wicked’s love triangle is my favorite from that group. Wicked’s love triangle is the first love triangle I ever emotionally bonded with. It is actually the one where I discovered the concept of love triangle. It is between Glinda x Fiyero x Elphaba. A lot of my love for the Wicked love triangle does come from it being the first one I bonded with.
Then there’s the complex side to Wicked’s love triangle. In act I, Glinda and Fiyero are a couple with Elphaba dealing with unrequited love. Elphaba responds to her unrequited love by not pursuing Fiyero because it is her best friend who is in a relationship with him. You think the setup is going to stay this way.
Enter act II, Fiyero hears all of these rumors spread about Elphaba, and he knows they are not true. He all of a sudden realizes he is in love with Elphaba. Actually in his days at Shiz, I believe he had a crush on Elphaba without realizing it. It took until hearing those rumors to know his true feelings for Elphaba- so the unrequited love jumps from Elphaba to Glinda. Glinda, like Elphaba, does not try to steal Fiyero away. This love triangle does show the two girls’ loyalty towards each other. They do not let a boy get in the way of their relationship- the love triangle actually strengthens their friendship.
One of the interesting things about Wicked’s love triangle is that it develops in the same way the characters do. It fully matures when the characters do. It is at the end of act I when Elphaba truly matures and at the beginning of act II when Fiyero truly matures. “As Long as Your’e Mine” is a very mature and mystical song- it also is very ironic- you thought Elphaba would ALWAYS have unrequited love- but it does not happen. Elphaba and Fiyero truly shows bravery towards each other and wants to protect each other. What other love triangle has two characters ending up with unrequited love at some point? Saying that Elphaba and Fiyero are a couple is a spoiler in itself.
I can’t believe I never talked about this on my blog: the importance of musical theatre characters’ backstories. Why do they matter?
The backstories shape the characters into who they are. It is one of the aspects that musical theatre characters complex. I prefer complex characters over simple characters. That is because they are more “real” than the simple ones.
What would Eponine be if she wasn’t raised by the Thenardiers? Yes, it is a horrible upbringing. If she wasn’t raised to be a thief and criminal, and ended up being unloved and neglected, Marius wouldn’t have meant anything to her. See what I mean- her upbringing is a huge reason why she is the Eponine we know her to be.
What would Elphaba be if she wasn’t born green? What would she be if her father didn’t love her growing up? Part of her complexity comes from how she was raised.
Who would the Phantom be if he wasn’t born without a deformed face? Due to how to he was treated because of it, it lead him to become ashamed of it. See what I mean.
The pattern continues with a number of characters. What happens to anyone growing up makes them who they are. Backstories are important to anyone. Backstories can be tragic- but the results are different: their actions show that- look how Phantom dealt with it versus Eponine. Phantom dealt with his pain in a negative way while Eponine dealt with her pain in a more positive way. Some backstories are not tragic at all- it still made those characters who they are.
Do you agree? Do backstories help shape a story into who they become? Does it believe it makes a character complex?
Two days ago, I analyzed “For Good” and a few days before that, I analyzed “A Little Fall of Rain”. There is something in common between both of those songs- they fall under the category of bittersweet songs. There is something touching and moving about those types of songs. What exactly makes a musical theatre song bittersweet?
A bittersweet song is usually one of those “goodbye” type of songs. They tend to have a combination of joy and sad. Some are much sadder than other- some fall under the category of devastating. All bittersweet songs have joy and happiness in them. It can be very hard to describe why those songs have joy and happiness in them due to the sad part of them. The more devastating bittersweet songs are the hardest songs to describe the joy. You have to understand the characters to understand why the songs are bittersweet in the first place. I will use “For Good” and “A Little Fall of Rain” to bring up what I am talking about.
“For Good” is a song that happens towards the end of Wicked. This is the song where Elphaba and Glinda realize that they have to part ways. Elphaba is the only friend that has truly mattered to Glinda, and Glinda was Elphaba’s only friend. It is sad in the fact that they will never see each other again, but joyful in the fact that they are able to tell each other what they meant to each other. It is the most emotional moment in Wicked. It hits you harder than the heartbreaking “I’m Not That Girl”.
Now, “A Little Fall of Rain” is more devastating. It is Eponine’s death scene- you might be thinking, how can a death scene be bittersweet. Eponine is dying in Marius’ arms. You have to understand Eponine’s life, and why Marius means something to her to understand why. Marius was the only person in her life who treated her kindly. Her parents, the Thenardiers, didn’t care about her and raised her to be a thief and criminal. Her life was dark- her only light was Marius- the only good thing in her life. She fell in love with him due to the kindness he showed her.
Back to the song. Leading up to “A Little Fall of Rain”, seeing that Marius was about to get shot, Eponine sacrifice herself to save Marius. She would do anything for him no matter the cost. The joy of the song comes from the fact that Marius was there with her, the only good thing her life. You do feel heartbroken for both of them- the fact that Eponine was dying and the fact that Marius was devastated, but at least he was there. Eponine got to die in the arms of the man she loved- there’s the joy right there. If you did not understand Eponine- you would not understand why this scene is bittersweet.
There is something touching, moving, and special about the bittersweet songs. I don’t know why the first songs that come to mind when I think of the bittersweet songs belong to “For Good” and “A Little Fall of Rain”. The bittersweet are some of the most emotional songs in musical theatre.
What are some your favorite musical theatre bittersweet song?
“For Good” is one of my favorite duets. “For Good” is unique in for one way: 1) that it is sung by two women, and 2): that it is not dealing with romance, but instead about friendship. “For Good” is the most emotional song in Wicked. Yes, even more emotional than the heartbreaking “I’m Not That Girl”. Friendship is center core in Wicked. The musical is truly about the friendship found between Elphaba and Glinda. You never expect them to become the best of friends and change each others lives for the better. In the beginning, these two young women hated each other, and later became the best of friends. They do both fall in love with Fiyero, but they do not let a boy get in the way of their friendship, and that is why they do pursue him when each of them deal with unrequited love (yes, each of the girls at some point have unrequited love for Fiyero). I believe the love triangle in Wicked helps strengthen their friendship.
“For Good” helps show how much they meant to each other. It is so emotional. These two realize that they will never see each other again. Glinda is pretty much the only friend Elphaba has never had, and Elphaba is the only friend that truly mattered to Glinda. They helped make each other better people. My most recent Glinda (Amanda Jane Copper) and Elphaba (Mary Kate Morrissey) were so excellent that I was crying at “For Good”- in my opinion, you NEVER can have an excellent Elphaba without an excellent Glinda and you never can have an excellent Glinda without an excellent Elphaba. That sounds crazy, but “For Good” is the moment that is supposed to hit you the hardest. It is more emotional than “I’m Not That Girl”, and will always be.
What are your feelings on this song? Do you agree that it is the most emotional moment in the musical?
This might sound nuts, but I always fall into sort of a Wicked trap each time I watch it. I am emotionally connected to Elphaba, Fiyero, and Glinda- NOT to the other characters. I know there are storylines OTHER than the friendship and the love triangle. I am quite aware of the discrimination, and that the romantic subplot is more of a LOVE PENTAGON. I know there is more in the storyline than the friendship and the love triangle- but I always overlook things.
Each time, I ALWAYS closely examine the love triangle and friendship. I tend to not WANT to explore the other storylines as well. It does sound crazy. After all, the main storyline is the friendship between Glinda and Elphaba, and they are 2/3 of the love triangle. Fiyero completes the love triangle. There is a LOT to be explored in the love triangle- especially in regards to Fiyero. You question things about him: you wonder why the unrequited love jumps from Elphaba to Glinda. You have to closely look at Fiyero to understand that part better- I personally believe he had some kind of crush on Elphaba in Shiz, but wasn’t exactly fully aware of it- that explains part of that puzzle.
I am like if Elphaba is my all-time favorite character- why do I always OVERLOOK her sister? That does sound odd in a way. But then again, Nessa’s song, “The Wicked Witch of the East”, isn’t on the soundtrack, and she is a supporting character. Boq is overlooked too- after all he has no song of his own. I know of their unrequited love storylines- but keep on overlooking them so I basically forget about them each time.
I OVERLOOK the two main antagonists as well: Madame Morrible and the Wizard as well. That’s odd as well. I know what happens to them, and it is part of Elphaba’s storyline, and why she is the way she is. Still.
See how crazy that is: I get so invested in the friendship and the main love triangle that I want to explore both more deeply each time I see the musical. That is why I fall into this Wicked trap each time. It is not like I am unaware of the other characters and storylines- I am aware of what happens to them- just overlook them. I am not just that emotionally connected to the other characters. I am only emotionally connected to Elphaba, Glinda, and Fiyero especially towards Elphaba.
Has this ever happened to you in a musical? You see a musical again- closely examine the same storylines, but ALWAYS overlook the other ones you know are in there.