Musicals I do Cry during

Musicals are assumed to be happy and comic. Non-musical fans don’t seem to know about the emotional side of musicals. There are emotional songs in musicals. There are heartbreaking, sad, bittersweet, and love songs in musicals. In addition, there are tragic musicals- tragic musicals are something that I didn’t know about until Les Mis entered my life. Emotional songs can lead you to cry- to even be an emotional wreck (as in multiple songs in the musicals). What are the musicals I have cried during? I decided to make a list of those here- it has changed since the last time I made a post about the same thing.

Sound of Music

  • In November 2015, I had never cried during a song in the musical. I was assuming there was no way Sound of Music could cause me to have the reaction. Enter Edelweiss- it is my favorite song from the musical; the moment Ben Davis, who played the Captain, stopped singing and before the children joined in, I picked up on a nonverbal that made sadness enter that picture. Sad was NEVER a part of Sound of Music in the songs- I was raised on Sound of Music- the movie. I started crying right when the children joined in. Ben Davis’ nonverbal was enough for me to get that reaction. I think it was a combo of the nostalgia, the bittersweetness of the song (which was new that day), and his nonverbal (a pause does hold a lot of power). Sound of Music was my 4th and final musical I saw in 2015, which was still the best year of musical.
"Edelweiss"
Edelweiss

Oliver

  • It was the first time I saw the movie. I didn’t cry for most of the movie. Then came “As Long As He Needs Me”- knowing how heartbreaking that song was- I was in tears listening to that song. Any song that has the words sad and love attached to it are always heartbreaking.
"As Long as He Needs Me" from the movie
As Long As He Needs Me

Wicked

  • Last time I saw Wicked, “For Good” hit me hard. That song is supposed to be more emotional than the heartbreaking “I’m Not That Girl”. I saw an excellent Elphaba (standby Mary Kate Morrissey) and an excellent Glinda (Amanda Jane Copper). Their “For Good” left be in tears- their Elphaba and Glinda mixed with how meaningful Wicked is to me mixed with seeing it with Gardner Webb are huge reasons why “For Good” affected me the way it did. “For Good” represents the center core of Wicked- it is after all about the relationship between Elphaba and Glinda.
"For Good"

Miss Saigon

  • I did a fresh list of this because of Miss Saigon. It is the newest musical to make me cry. Coming in, I knew it would because of Les Mis. The music was written by the same people. If Les Mis affected me so strongly- Miss Saigon would hit me too. When a musical is a tragic love story-you automatically know two of the emotions: love and heartbreak; you can’t escape and you can’t escape the ending either. In a tragic love story, things aren’t going to end well- you don’t want that to happen if you become attached to the two lovers. As for Miss Saigon, I almost cried in “Movie in the Mind”, but the real tears started in “Sun and Moon”, which is when I became attached to Kim and Chris. “Sun and Moon” is when they have fallen in love- Emily Bautista and Anthony Festa made me want those two to stay together, and as a result, did not want it to end tragically. There were other moments I did cry- “Sun and Moon” was the one I remembered the most. They are still a very very new couple I fell in love with- I only saw Miss Saigon in Feb.
"Last Night of the World" during the Miss Saigon North American Tour
“Last Night of the World”

Rent

  • Talk about emotional wreck- Rent is one of those musicals. In 2017, I saw Rent in person for the first time. I knew there were songs, like “Will I?”, and “Your Eyes” that will emotionally affect me, but there were songs that never emotionally affected until I saw Rent. I was a bigger emotional wreck in person than I am with the final Broadway cast film. The power of live theatre- songs like “Rent”, for instance, had an emotional impact on me. I was crying in songs I always cry during- “One Song Glory” was more emotional than it typically is- and so on. I was an emotional wreck watching Rent. I would be an emotional wreck more than once in 2017.

Les Mis

  • Do I have to say more? A lot of Les Mis fans are emotional wrecks watching it. Before Les Mis, I knew about the emotional side of musicals. I knew about the complex side of musicals as well. There were four core emotions I discovered: excitement, love, joy, and sad. I thought I knew musicals- I thought the knew the entire emotional nature, but boy was I so wrong. Les Mis went “are you sure you know musicals, are you sure you know how intense emotions can get in them.” A new core emotion entered the picture: heartbreak. I have been a fan of Les Mis of six years-a love that began with the film (which I had to give a 2nd chance). I never knew emotions get affect me like that-Les Mis sure taught me a lot. It disproved a lot. I still am an emotional wreck- it can be songs alone, can be the stage show, can be the film, and can be the 25th anniversary concert- all cause me to an emotional wreck. Les Mis is the musical I am the biggest emotional wreck during.
"One Day More" during the US Tour of Les Mis
“One Day More”
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Heartbreaking Songs

To continue on yesterday’s heartbreaking love songs, today I thought I would talk about ALL heartbreaking songs. I was 100% blind to heartbreak before my first year of college, but I did know about the emotion of sad. So at least I knew about sad- one of the emotions part of heartbreak. Heartbreak is basically a more devastating form of sad. What are the other emotions associated with heartbreak? The ones I have found are anger, guilt, and loneliness among others. Heartbreak can hit you like a pile of breaks and can reduce you to tears. So now here is a list of the heartbreaking musical theatre songs.

  1. I’m Not That Girl 
  2. On My Own 
  3. I Dreamed a Dream 
  4. Come to Me 
  5. Empty Chairs at Empty Tables 
  6. Drink With Me 
  7. A Little Fall of Rain 
  8. Bring Him Home
  9. All I Ask Of You (Reprise)
  10. Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again 
  11. If I Can’t Love Her 
  12. If I Can’t Love Her (Reprise) 
  13. Evermore 
  14. Endless Night 
  15. Letter From the Refuge
  16. This Nearly Was Mine 
  17. Somewhere
  18. Will I
  19. Your Eyes 
  20. Without You 
  21. Memory
  22. As Long As He Needs Me

These heartbreaking songs come from a number of musicals- Wicked, Newsies, Les Mis, Lion King, West Side Story, Beauty and the Beast, Rent, and Cats. Some of these songs are more devastating than others. Some of them hit me harder than others. Some hit me like a pile of bricks, and some don’t. Some of them make me tear up while others don’t.  Heartbreak is one of the most beautiful emotions in musical theatre and one of the strongest. 

Heartbreaking Love Songs

If a musical theatre song is both a love and sad song, it will ALWAYS be heartbreaking. That is always the truth- that’s for sure. These songs can be ironic or non-ironic. Those songs fall under unrequited love songs, breakup songs, or if the plot is a tragic love story. What are examples of these songs? Below I will list some of those songs. 

  1. I’m Not That Girl/ I’m Not That Girl (Reprise)
  2. On My Own 
  3. Somewhere 
  4. As Long As He Needs Me 
  5. This Nearly Was Mine 
  6. If I Can’t Love Her/ If I Can’t Love Her (Reprise) 
  7. Evermore
  8. All I Ask Of You (Reprise) 

I’m Not That Girl was the FIRST heartbreaking love song I was emotionally connected to, but was sad in the beginning. I never called I’m Not That Girl a sad love song- I never combined emotions together- I called it sad. On My Own, just like I’m Not That Girl, began as a sad song, but after a year I realized it was heartbreaking- On My Own was key to realizing I’m Not That Girl was heartbreaking. As a matter of fact, On My Own made me realize all sad love songs were heartbreaking. The heartbreaking love songs have a combination of emotions- they can be home to sad, anger, and loneliness: it depends on the song and the actor and actress who is playing the character. Some of those heartbreaking love songs are much more heartbreaking than others: for instance, On My Own is more heartbreaking than I’m Not That Girl. 

Spoilers: 

It sounds crazy how some of them are ironic- that means the love situation improves in the end or you don’t expect the character to sing it. I’m Not That Girl is the best example- after all the unrequited love shifts from Elphaba to Glinda, which is why the song is sung twice. In addition, the spell gets broken in Beauty and the Beast, which makes If I Can’t Love Her/ If I Can’t Love Her (Reprise), and Evermore ironic. The same situation happens with This Nearly Was Mine because Nellie goes back to Emelie in the end. 

Non ironic- that means the situation NEVER improves in the end. That would mean that character might have unrequited love the entire time. In Les Mis, Eponine has unrequited love for Marius till the end of her journey in Les Mis- she does have a tragic ending, but at the same time, her fate is touching and moving and is home to joy. Eponine’s fate is death, but she gets to die in the arms of Marius after getting shot- that is where the joy comes from. So On My Own is not ironic at all. So the heartbreaking love songs are both ironic and non-ironic. 

The heartbreaking love songs are some of the most beautiful songs in musical theatre. They are fragile, vulnerable, and some of them are home to innocence. It just depends on the character and how much they love the person they are in love with at that point in the story. 

Ranking Characters who Deal with Unrequited Love

For this post, I am going to take a small break from favorite couples. This time I will be grading characters based upon unrequited love situations. These unrequited love situations come from Phantom of the Opera, Les Mis, and Wicked. Criteria has to do with response, acceptance and their unrequited love song if they have one.

Major and Minor Spoilers:

Phantom- F

Acceptance: He never accepts the unrequited love at all, which is part of why he gets that F.

Response: He deals with it in both anger and revenge. He does not show true love towards Christine. After realizing that both Christine and Raoul love each other, he seeks revenge. He plans to kill Raoul so his response is very poor. In the end, he makes Christine choose between staying with him or killing Raoul. But does let Christine and Raoul go, but letting them leave does not excuse the rest of actions when he responds to unrequited love. So due with how extreme he poorly deals with unrequited love gives him a F.

Unrequited Love Song: All I Ask of You (reprise). Yes, you can feel bad for the Phantom in this song, but not enough to get him higher than a F ranking.

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Nessa- D

Acceptance: does not accept it either

Response: her response is a bit better than Phantom’s, but is still poor. She falls in love with Boq during “Dancing Through Life”, but doesn’t realize Boq’s feelings for Glinda. So it isn’t until act II when she figures that out. Responds by imprisoning all the Munchkins so Boq is not allowed to leave. But right after realizing his feelings for Glinda, she tries to use the Grimmarie to cast a spell on him to get to him to stay, but things go wrong. That scene happens when Elphaba is there. Her spell caused his heart to shrink so all Elphaba could do is turn him into tin. Her response is poor, but more on a D level.

Unrequited Love Song: doesn’t have one

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Boq- B

Acceptance: yes, he accepts that Glinda doesn’t love him

Response: the problem is it is hard to know how he responds. He appears to stay faithful towards Glinda. For whatever reason it is harder to tell how he responds compared to Nessa. But he responds in a better way. He just gets a B due to it being hard to figure out how he responds in the first place.

Unrequited Love Song: doesn’t have one

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Glinda- A-

Acceptance: yes she does, but unexpected

Response: she responds by not stealing him back. I don’t blame her since Elphaba is her best friend. That goes to show how far Elphaba and Glinda will go to keep friendship alive. Yes, she originally responds by telling the Wizard and others that to arrest Elphaba the best way is to use Elphaba’s sister, but to me that is not a factor into how she responds. She still doesn’t steal Fiyero away from Elphaba.

Unrequited Love Song: “I’m Not That Girl (Reprise)”, well this song is quite unexpected. It is so short so it is hard to feel for her situation. But it allows you to realize that she does accept the situation, but is hard to feel the unrequited love song since it only is four or so lines.

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Elphaba- A

Acceptance: yes she does rather quickly

Response: responds very similar to Glinda. She chooses to not pursue Fiyero since Glinda is in a relationship with him. So with Elphaba, it shows just how far the two girls will go to keep friendship. Due to that level of loyalty, it makes since that Elphaba gets an A in the first place.

Unrequited Love Song: “I’m Not That Girl”. Elphaba gets the full “I’m Not That Girl” so you feel Elphaba’s unrequited love stronger than Glinda’s. She even accepts the situation right after realizing she is falling in love with Fiyero. She even admits she is not good enough for Fiyero since she is green.

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Eponine- A+

Acceptance: yes she does

Response: she stays loyal towards Marius and loves him so strongly that she responds by true love. She makes sure that Marius stays safe and happy. So she helps him find Cosette. She risks her life several times to do everything she does for Marius. At one point, she screams to protect Marius when her father and his gang try to rob Valjean’s house. At the time, Marius and Cosette were with each other. Even though it is her family she goes against, she cannot bear to see Marius hurt.

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She decides to go the barricade to make sure Marius stays safe. She does another favor for him when Marius sends her away with a letter to Cosette, but Marius does it to protect her. But she goes back and when Marius is about to get shot, Eponine takes the bullet herself. So up until her death, she makes sure Marius is safe and happy. She is able to die in the arms of Marius. Despite being a Thenardier and living in extreme poverty and dealing with unrequited love, she shows true love towards Marius.

Unrequited Love Song: “On My Own”. Of all the unrequited love songs on this list, “On My Own” is the strongest. That goes to show how deep and strong Eponine love for Marius is. It gives you an idea of what her life is like outside of Marius. Through lyrics like “without a home, without a friend, without a face to say hello to” and “a world thats full of happiness that I have never known”, you know her life is quite dark. It goes to show that she gets through the day by imagining that Marius loves her. She is constantly beaten at home and is forced to participate in her family’s schemes. It shows that she will always love Marius no matter what. Due to this song, it helped me realize “I’m Not That Girl” is a heartbreaking song.

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Eponine’s Strong Love for Marius

It is quite fitting that for the series, I would go straight to a character from Les Mis. That is because Wicked and Les Mis are my top two favorite musicals. For today, I decided to talk about why I love Eponine. It actually took me almost an entire year to know why I love Eponine.

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Major Spoilers:

Eponine is the eldest child of the Thenardiers. She started out as being a spoiled child, but also appeared to be loved by her parents. But soon after Cosette was taken away, Eponine’s life becomes even worse. She becomes horribly abused and unloved by her parents and falls into extreme poverty. She eventually falls in love with Marius so deeply because of the kindness he shows her, but that love falls unrequited. So where does my love of Eponine fall into all of this?

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She has to take part in her parent’s schemes because she was forced into them at times. But the interesting thing about Eponine is that she is not as despicable or as selfish as her parents. Her loyalty towards Marius shows just how different she is when it comes to her parents. She would rather be loyal towards Marius than towards her parents. That is an interesting part about Eponine. She shows how you can raise above her upbringing.

She is strong and brave and complex. A lot of my love for her comes from how she responds to her unrequited love for Marius. She will do anything for him even if it means losing him forever. She is the girl who helps him find Cosette. She risks everything for Marius. That shows her bravery and strength. Her love for Marius is quite strong. She continues to hold on because he is the light of her life. You might think her love for Marius is a weakness, but it actually is her greatest strength even though it leads to “A Little Fall of Rain”.

Her love for Marius does lead her to the barricade. At the barricade, in order to try to protect Eponine, he sends her away to deliver a letter to Cosette. As she sings “On My Own”, she accepts that Marius will never love her and you can feel the level of depth her love for Marius goes and the song is very powerful. She will continue to love him no matter what. Without Marius, her life would be much darker.

She eventually gets killed at the barricade after sacrificing her life for him. She gets to die happy due to being in the arms of Marius. Marius shows compassion to her by holding and comforting her while she dies. If you understand how dark her life was and how strong she loves Marius, it makes you understand why dying in the arms of Marius makes her happy for once.

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So a lot of my love for Eponine comes from she responds to her love for Marius. You see her level of strength and bravery through her love for him. At least she gets to die in the arms of Marius due to how dark her life was. Her death does make Marius feel devastated, but despite that he still stays with her till the end.

Eponine and her Unrequited Love

This is my last unrequited love poem I am writing. I wasn’t going to not do a poem about Eponine due to her unrequited love. Whenever I think of unrequited love, I tend to think of Eponine.

Eponine:

A girl unloved and abused

A girl whose world is dark

A girl living in poverty

Will there ever be hope?

A glimmering light eventually comes

It comes in the form of a boy

The only boy and person who treats her kindly

Who is so sweet with her

So she fall in love with him so deeply

But that love falls unrequited

The girl who will do anything for him

Even if it breaks her

Just to see him happy

Will risk her life for him

Even if it means losing him forever

Even though she loves him

Protects him no matter what

Even when she has to face her father’s gang

Love full of such depth and strength

That leads her to the barricade

She will sacrifice her life for him

When he is in danger there

She will take her life for him

Dying in his arms is the happiest moment of her life

A scene full of such compassion and comfort

Who is this boy?

He is Marius

Unrequited Love of Elphaba and Glinda

This is my second poem with characters who deal with unrequited love. This time we are venturing into Wicked

Elphaba and Glinda:

A very odd situation

One involving two best friends

Very complex and tricky

A test of friendship

Where there is a loyalty of friendship

Both respond in a similar way

One who doesn’t think she’s good enough

Due to being green

Who starts out not with him

But quickly accepts

Who doesn’t pursue the boy

To keep friendship alive

But she doesn’t know the truth about Fiyero

She doesn’t know he already has a crush on her

Through a twist of fate

The green girl gets the boy

After he hears rumors spread about her

And the popular girl responded in a similar way

By not stealing him back

So this tests and strengthens their friendship

Due to the loyalty these two best friends show to each other

Which shows that they care more about their friendship than the romance