“In a world of wondering, suddenly you know”

inside-the-cave-pinoltepec

About two years ago, long before I converted, a student was working on his performance of "How Glory Goes" in a musical theatre masterclass that I was sitting in.  The song is from the musical Floyd Collins, based on the life of Floyd Collins, a cave explorer from Kentucky who was trapped in a cave and starved to death alone.  (An obvious topic for a musical).  Before the rocks shifted and cut Floyd off from the surface completely, there was a narrow shaft open.  A very slight reporter could shim … [Read more...]

If you can’t take the heat… once more with feeling

singin

Can I interest you in a musical theatre illustration of my point from earlier today?I'm quite fond of the song "I'm Not Afraid of Anything" from Jason Robert Brown's Songs for a New World, and I've embedded a nice performance of it below.Here, as in most cases when I've seen the song performed, the actress ends the song in a place of vulnerability.  The last line "Cause, after all, I'm not afraid" is pretty clearly a lie, and the character is at least a little aware it's a lie.  It's … [Read more...]

“Nobody human can stand all that everlasting affection!”

The quote is from Company, the subject is Passion, as the Sondheim Symposium goes on. This installment includes spoilers for 1984.At the climax of 1984, Winston is broken by the tortures in room 101. The moment that anihilates him and represents victory for Big Brother is the moment where he cries out: Do it to her! Do it to Julia! I don’t care what you do to her, but do it to her! Tear her face off! Do it to Julia, not to me! Do it to Julia! Not me! If this is betrayal, we might assume tha … [Read more...]

“What do you wanna [stay single] for?”

Bobby and his three girlfriends (the image links to the song)

I'm delighted to say that Christian H of The Thinking Grounds has sent in a guest post for the Sondheim Symposium.  Christian H is an English Lit grad student in Canada, and his blog is one of the reasons you should use RSS readers: it updates irregularly, but is always interesting.  Take it away, Christian!Sondheim’s musical Company might strike many as being strangely silent on the subject of what marriage is, and what it is for, considering that it is a musical about marriage. Or, rat … [Read more...]

“It’s not so hard to be married. I’ve done it three or four times.”

"Everything's different..."

Inspired by the Sondheim Symposium, my college friend Katharine Pitt offered a guest post based on her own experiences acting marriages in Shakespeare (She's pretty awesome, so I'm sure she won't mind me inserting a plug for Slings and Arrows in the intro to her post).  I think all the rest you need to know is she's awesome (bears repeating), the photos below were taken by William Sacco (captions courtesy of Katharine), and everything that follows is hers.  Take it away, Kate, the prettiest Kate … [Read more...]

Ending with a clinch, not a child [Sondheim]

This post is part of a symposium on Stephen Sondheim's Company.I really enjoyed Gilbert's post on the absence of children in a musical about marriage.  This isn't a problem unique to Company, but I think it's more noticable these because Company seems like it's intended to say more about marriage.In most romances, the catharsis comes with a clinch, not a child.  The couple run at each other in slow motion, the music swells, and the pair lock lips.  Sometimes the camera will swoop out, … [Read more...]

“Maybe we just weren’t meant to have children” [Sondheim]

I want to kick off the Sondheim Symposium this week with a guest post by Gilbert of The Last Conformer.  He originally wrote it as a comment on the original post, but I like starting off the conversation by discussing something omitted, plus I want to reply to it tomorrow.  I'm in italics, everything that follows is his.  Oh, and I'm to blame for the stealing the post title from a different musical, I couldn't let Eve Tushnet have all the fun.  Take it away, Gilbert!As an entry point … [Read more...]


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