I know that some of them can be pretty silly (like Legally Blonde the Musical, as if the movie wasn’t bad enough). However, there are some that are a really good combination of comedy, drama and action (like the Scarlet Pimpernel, Wicked and Les Miserables). If you think about it, musicals are nothing but movies that you get to see live. Furthermore, for those that are drawn to the more dramatic–or dark and sad–cinema, there are musicals and plays that pander to that exact category as wll. Any Tennessee Williams play would play right to that interest.
Granted with television shows like Glee out there, people automatically assume that those who like musicals and such are lumped in that category. I whole-heartedly disagree with that sentiment. I realize that some musicals and plays can be very frivolous and light, but they never stoop to the level of Glee (trust me).
When I was in high school, I didn’t care much for sports (besides volleyball). So, I decided to try my hand at the theater. I never prescribed to attitudes and craziness that most of the ‘drama kids’ did, but being in musicals and plays is fun!
In sports, you only get cheered-on so much. If you were to score the game winning touchdown in the last second, you would get thunderous applause. If you were to hit the walk-off home-run in your postseason series, people would go crazy. However, there is no applause greater than after a well-performed song and dance (especially when it’s a group of guys). My freshman year (in high school), I was in a musical called ‘How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” it is the show that Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) is reviving right now in New York. Toward the end of the show, there is a show-stopping guys number called ‘The Brotherhood of Man.’
When my school performed it, we had the benefit of a professional choreographer planning out the dance steps. So, we did lots of really cool, complicated steps, flips and jumps. When we finally finished, it brought the house down. I had never been a part of something before that generated so much audience approval. It was an awesome feeling!
The next big thing I did was, my sophomore year, we did the musical Footloose (they are reviving that movie this month). My character was Ren’s (the main character) best friend, Willard. Willard is a hick cowboy who can’t dance–he is the show’s comic relief. I can’t tell you how much fun I had performing that role. Getting the audience to laugh was such a great feeling, but the absolute best part came after my song.
Right before Ren goes to appeal the town council’s ruling on dancing, Willard sings Ren a song to give him courage. The song is called ‘Mama Says,” and it is about all the inane things that Willard’s mother tells him (like don’t use a toaster while standing in the shower). At the end of the song, it was so neat to have the entire audience whooping and hollering just for me. There is a reprise to that song, so I had to wait for the audience to finish before I could sing the last little bit. So, it was wonderful to be able to stand there and feel like I had scored the game winner every night the show ran.
The purpose of this article isn’t to talk about the glory days, but to give seeing, and performing in, musicals and plays their due. The common belief among males is that theater is for sissies. I am just trying to disprove that by saying how much fun you can have by going to, and being in, a play, because trust me it isn’t anything like watching Glee. Plus, the ladies love a man with culture.
Jordan Freis is a freelance writer for MyCollegesandCareers.com. My Colleges and Careers helps people determine if an online education is right for them and helps them understand which online courses they can choose from to reach their goals. The site even helps students find online mba programs to fit their needs.