Like I said in the previous posts, we all were raised on some Disney- it can be the Pixar films, the musical theatre films, or the typical Disney films. In the musical theatre ones, there is always that romantic male lead and we do know that they will fall in love–but they do more than just fall in love. Who are some of these romantic male leads.
Not only are they are the romantic male lead- they are the actual protagonist (except for the Beast) of the musical itself.
The Beast is a prince in disguise who lives at an enchanted castle, which is home to enchanted objects like Lumiere, Cogsworth, and Chip. He later takes Belle as prisoner when she takes her father’s place. A romance soon is going to happen Beast and Belle, which slowly develops.
Aladdin is the clever and caring street-rat who is looking for something more than life on the streets. It is Jasmine he falls in love with, Princess of Agrabah. A lot of people in his town see him as no more than a street-rat, but he is so much more.
Simba is the son of Mufasa and is destined to become King. It follows Simba from the days of him as a cub, but mostly after the death of his father- all the way to when he was a young adult. He and Nala were best friends as cubs and later the two of them fell in love- I think that is part of what makes their love incredible.
Jack Kelly is leader of the Newsies and best friends to Crutchie. The bond found between Jack and Crutchie is a special and intimate bond. He is a dreamer, who is an artist, and cares a lot about his brothers. He falls in love with Katherine, reporter of the strike.
Any other Disney romantic male leads you can think of?
We all know the iconic Disney love songs- “Can You Feel the Love Tonight”, “Beauty and the Beast”, and “A Whole New World”. They all have this sense of magic in them. There is something about the couples found in them. You just can’t help but love. What about the contemporary Disney love songs- can they fit the same nature?
Yes, they can. I learned this through “Something to Believe In”- the love song found between Jack and Katherine. You might be puzzled about where is this song and who is Jack and who is Katherine. Well, they come from Newsies, which is about the Newsboys Strike of 1899. Jack is the leader of the Newsies while Katherine ends up being the reporter of the strike.
While not taking place on a magic carpet or through a dance or two animals or something magic, the song defiantly has the same nature. It takes place on the rooftop Jack and Crutchie live. Jack is a dreamer and romantic—yes, he is more mature than the other Newsies, but still has innocence. The song does have an innocent nature packed into it- when you hear the song, you can say this does fit under Disney love songs. What I love about the addition of Katherine in Newsies is that it gives the musical a strong female voice-Katherine is a strong character herself.
As a continuation of yesterday’s post, I decided to make a list of musical theatre songs that are connected to friendship. Friendship is one of the types of love that seems to be overlooked. Even some of the friendships are underrated, in my opinion. Some of them may not seem like they are related to friendship, but in my eyes they are.
Surrounding yesterday’s post, I decided to write a post about the musical theatre friendships. They even can include songs before the characters become friends in the first place. SPOILER HEAVY.
What is this Feeling
Yes, in this song, Elphaba and Glinda literally hate each other in this number. You do not think they will become friends at all. This is where it all begins- as enemies.
This is Glinda’s solo. In “Dancing Through Life”, the song previously, Elphaba and Glinda finally bonded through each other. Elphaba literally went to the school dance, and did dance silly, and out of that, Glinda made something magical out of that. “Popular” is when Glinda and Elphaba finally have become friends in the first place.
One Short Day
This is when Glinda and Elphaba visit Emerald City for the day. They are finally best friends in this number. I still count this a best friend number- even though it mainly is a day out number- still Elphaba and Glinda are together in this number.
This song is truly about the importance of friendship. It is about what Elphaba and Glinda mean to each other and how they have changed each others lives for the better. It still is bittersweet because they know it is the last moment they will see each other.
Santa Fe (Prologue)
This song is a duet between Jack Kelly and Crutchie. It highlights the special and beautiful bond between both of them. They are best friend- out of all the Newsies, Crutchie is the most vulnerable. Jack looks out for him the most. I love the two of them the most out of all the Newsies.
Carrying the Banner: plus all of the group Newsies numbers
All of the group Newsies number highlight the brotherly love they have for each other. Carrying the Banner, in particular, shows that since it is the first number you see them together. The World Will Know is when they develop their union. Seize the Day is when they begin their strike. Those three are in act I. King of New York is when they are in the newspaper for the first time and Once and For All is when they print their own paper and makes it more public. All of them- shows their brotherly love for each other.
Red and Black
In many ways, the Friends of the ABC are like the Newsies. Yes, you first meet some of them in Look Down, but you first see them as a whole group in Red and Black. Red and Black is when they start planning the uprising- Enjolras is their leader. You begin to see their brotherly love and passion in this number.
Do You Hear the People Sing
Yes, back to Enjolras and the students. Now, you defiantly know their passion. It is strongly shown through this number.
Drink With Me
This shows a more vulnerable side to Enjolras and the students. By this point, they know they most likely will fail and will lose their lives. They wonder if those they love will miss them. It is their last intimate moment they have with each other- the result is all of them do die in the end except for Marius.
A Little Fall of Rain
I wanted to somehow express the friendship between Eponine and Marius. It is “A Little Fall of Rain” that came to mind. It takes place at the barricade. Eponine sacrificed her life for Marius. She is in the arms of Marius- that is why this scene is bittersweet. She may be dying, but at least she is in the arms of the young man she loves. This in so many ways is the happiest moment of her life. Marius is devastated during this scene, but I am glad he is there. All that mattered to Eponine in this moment is that he was with her.
I have talked about my favorite friendships in musicals and my favorite friendships in literature. I thought about doing a post where I combined all of those different friendships. Musicals in so many ways are like literature- they have character, plot, and setting: they just add dance and song to all of that to make something more powerful and emotional. MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD.
Frodo and Sam
Would Frodo have made it without Sam? Frodo wanted to do the quest alone after the end of Fellowship, but Sam wouldn’t allow it. He stayed loyal to Frodo to the end. He was always there- whether that meant rescuing Frodo or carrying him. He was that loyal companion. The Ring easily corrupts and weakens the ring bearer, which gets heavier as you get closer to Mordor- that is why Frodo wouldn’t have made it without Sam.
Merry and Pippin
They are best friends, and at the same time troublemakers. You might be thinking what on earth are they doing on this quest? Why are they there if they always are causing the group trouble? You eventually find out- they have a reason. Of everyone in the books, it is the four hobbits- Frodo, Sam, Merry, and Pippin that I am attached to the most.
Harry, Ron, and Hermione
Would Harry have defeated Voldemort without his two best friends, and would the series be the same if the trio never existed? Just like Sam, Ron and Hermione are loyal to Harry. In the last book, Harry wanted to look for those Horcouxes alone, but his two best friends wouldn’t allow it. In all of the books- they ended up having to go on some mission, which meant breaking a lot of school rules. He needed the two of them to defeat Voldemort. Those Horcoucxes are a lot like that one ring- the difference is there is no way of knowing where they are and they would be anything. Harry couldn’t have found them alone- it would be impossible.
Nicholas and Smike
One of the things I about the most about Nicholas Nickleby is all of the compassion he has. He especially showed it towards Smike. Smike is someone who wasn’t shown much compassion. At the school he was working, he did defend Smike, which later caused Smike to follow Nicholas after Nicholas quit that awful school. For the rest of the book, the two of them stayed together- Nicholas was there even at Smike’s death. These two are my favorite characters from Nicholas Nickleby.
Friends of the ABC
This is an overlapping literature and musical theatre friendship I love. That means it is in both versions of Les Misérables- the book and the musical. The difference between both versions is that in the book you get to know them as individuals, and in the musical, you only get to Enjolras as an individual and the rest as a group. The other difference is that in the musical, Marius is close to the students (which doesn’t exist in the book).
This group is a political group led by Enjolras, the most passionate member. They are like a group of brothers, and in so many ways a family. They are planning an uprising due to the weak government. They have high hopes for the cause they believe in. I do love how they take in Gavroche, who is Eponine’s brother.
Eponine and Marius
This friendship in Les Mis in only in the musical, not the book. Eponine is in love with Marius, the only person who showed her kindness and the only good thing in her life. However, Marius is unaware that she loves him. They are close friends and Marius is aware that her life isn’t easy. He does treat her fairly. I love that he is in her life- she needed that.
In “A Little Fall of Rain”, you can see how much he valued her friendship. Marius was worried about Eponine- that was why at the beginning of act II, he sent her away from the barricade because he was hoping it would protect her from getting hurt or worse killed from the uprising. However, she did return and got shot, which would turn out to be fatal. There was a reason why he asked: why she came back: he was worried about her safety, and when she collapsed, he released she was shot, and that she was dying. He was devastated, but despite how he felt, he decided to be there for her by holding and comforting during that moment. This scene in particular says a lot: it shows how compassionate Marius is, that he did value their friendship (after all, he was devastated), and he did realize that she did love him. It is a bittersweet scene: all that mattered to her was that he was there: more than the physical pain she was in: she was happy for once. The words he said after she died were “her name was Eponine, her life was cold and dark, yet she was unafraid”- those words were how I knew that Marius knew that she lived a tough life, but at least he was part of it.
The Newsies remind me so much of Enjolras and the students in Les Mis. They have a brotherly love for each other, and they are like family. They have a cause (the strike) they truly believe in, and never give up no matter what. Jack Kelly is their leader.
On a side note: I love the beautiful bond found between Jack and Crutchie. Cruthcie is the most vulnerable Newsie due to his bum leg, and Jack is his best friend. There is something amazing about their bond.
Lumiere and Cogsworth
Is it weird that I love a friendship between a talking candle and talking clock? There is just something about them that I find appealing in terms of their friendship.
Elphaba and Glinda
The ultimate friendship, as in my favorite friendship in musical theatre, is the one found between Elphaba and Glinda. It is a beautiful, powerful, and special bond found between two complex and strong young women- they did start out as enemies and later became best friends. They don’t let a boy get in the way of their friendship- they do both fall in love with Fiyero. Both of them do end up with unrequited love for him at some point: but they end up not stealing him away from each other. The song, “For Good”, is the most emotional song in Wicked and talks about how they have changed each others lives for the better and how they have made each other better people.