Sunday, June 15, 2008

Took the words right out of my mouth

“I love the Tony Awards. Love love the Tony Awards.

“Let me be clear: I don't care who wins; I'm not even certain who's nominated. What I look forward to are the performances--those high-kicking dance numbers, the soprano busting out with a high C, the finger snaps (oh, the finger snaps!), the painted set pieces rolled out on pulleys, the key changes, the four-part harmony blasts that give my heart a wedgie. It's like getting the greatest hits of Broadway without the midtown traffic, the annoying tourists or the whopping entrance fee. Is 'Cry-Baby' as cringe-inducing as I suspect it must be? Can Patti Lupone still shred the stage in her turn as 'Gypsy's' Mama Rose? These answers, and more to come on Sunday! The Tonys are the pu-pu platter of American musical theater, a genre that I still love, and will always love, regardless of how many Adam Sandler or Reese Witherspoon comedies have been set to music and plopped onstage. Look, people have been saying for ages that Broadway is dead; all I know is that the funeral sure is expensive...

“Like I said, most kids aren't interested in the broadcast, and I was no exception. None of it made sense to me. What were these shows? Who were these people? (Where the hell was 'Annie'?) But there was something interesting happening. I'd been taught by Hollywood that leading ladies had to be purring bombshells like Kathleen Turner and Sigourney Weaver--I wasn't quite sure what to make of dynamos like Liza Minnelli and Patti Lupone. (And I certainly didn't know what to make of Harvey Fierstein.) It didn't matter if they were blond or beautiful or had legs that went for miles; what mattered was that they could squeeze a note that reached into the rafters. I remember seeing Jennifer Holliday perform her famous barnburner, 'I Am Telling You I'm Not Going' from 'Dreamgirls,' at the 1982 Tonys. Good lord, she scared the shit out of me...”

-- By Sarah Hepola, “Everyone Hates the Tonys”

3 comments:

drei said...

gibbs! listening to "in the heights" soundtrack, galeng!! :)

gibbs cadiz said...

DREI, oo nga, wonderfully exotic sounds! hay, thank god for free downloads, since these albums will never reach manila. lol! :)

stevie said...

How will we ever get to see these great first performances unless they were on broadcast at the Tonys. In a tribute to women in the theater, there was a musical number featuring consecutive best musical winners and a short performance from its female lead, in order: Andrea M from Annie, Nell Carter from Ain't Misbehavin, Angela Lansbury from Sweeney Todd and, finally, Patti Lupone from Evita. It was a smash with the audience getting to see once again these great performances. By the way, all won best actress tony except Andrea M.

My other memorable performance, not to match Dreamgirls by any stretch though, is Wicked with Idina Menzel screaming Defying Gravity. Whooo!

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