I grew up with adults always asking me to sing for them. This was great for my self-confidence, but not so much for my cool factor. My husband and I went out, briefly, in 9th grade. I was really excited about this because he was popular and thought it could help me out. I invited him over one day after school while my parents were gone. Like any normal teenage boy, he thought this could be a promising moment to fool around. Like any focused, future artist, I thought it would be a great moment to sing for him. He sat down in my tv room and I put on my Andrew Lloyd Webber cd and sang ALONG with Sarah Brightman to “Phantom of the Opera.” I thought it went pretty well. We broke up a couple weeks after that. After we reconnected 10 years later, he told me it was one of the most uncomfortable moments of his life. Apparently my son shares his view point because he started crying when I sang the high note of “I Had Myself a True Love” recently. What do they know?
My favorite entertainment in life is musical theater. It brings people closer. One of my dearest friends became so after we bonded over our love for “Rent.” It is not only a little luxury, but a necessity in my life. Here are “musts” for any newbies to the art form. I’m only listing shows that are on dvd, but support live art over a recording when possible. There is always a deal to be found for the ticket. Most of you reading this have children. Little kids love musical theater. Skip the weird new kid shows and pop one of these in. You can even consider it educational and feel good about your parenting.
Adult Fairy Tales: “Into the Woods” (my very favorite)
Feel Good and an upgrade from Grease: “Bye Bye Birdie”. Ann Margaret is to die for in the movie.
Swagger: “Guys and Dolls”. Come on, Frank Sinatra is in this.
True American Nostalgia: “Oklahoma”. I met Shirley Jones through my husband’s uncle and it was one of the best moments of my life and I had nothing remarkable to say. I’ve seen her again and in true fan form, I avoid her but stare intensely from afar.
This is the New York I know: “Rent”. The movie version is a far cry from the stage, but the music is still inspiring.
Probably the Most Beautiful Musical Score: “Camelot”.
Always a Winner with Kids: “The Sound of Music” and “Oliver”. Oliver was the first musical I ever saw (at Scottsbluff High School) and it was so moving that I begged my mom for days to adopt an orphan. I was 4.
Sexy and a Motivational Tool to Start Working Out: “Chicago”.
Great Dance and My Dad’s Favorite: ”Westside Story”