Best Musical

Discussion in 'Films, Music and All Things Artsy' started by BADAJOZ, Apr 15, 2007.

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  1. I prefer the original non-musical version myself with the incomparable Zero Mostel.
    'Billy Elliott' was a top night out as opposed to the great heap of sh1te that was 'We Will Rock You.' Possibly the biggest waste of money ever.
    For film it has to be 'Singing in the Rain'.
  2. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    Ok...I love musicals...I loved that Maria programme and am currently watching and singing along with Joseph (Should I really be admitting this on ARRSE...INCOMING!!!!!). Love Les Miserables, love Hair (met some great friends at a staging of it), and was at the one of the opening nights of Rent (á la 'Team America') when it opened in London. Now combined with my like for women with short hair, even I am starting to doubt my sexuality ;)
  3. Blood Brothers
  4. I've perfomed in two(My Fair Lady, and South pacific) Imagine the stick I got! But it did not make me fancy men or doubt my sexuality (not surprising really as I ended up "Performing" on the leading lady from one of them!) Happy days, I really must do another one.
  5. Les Miserables and Phantom for me.. always the classics. But Miss Saigon is very close.. as is Napoleon the musical. Anthem from Chess is my favourite musical song and Jekyll and Hyde = just something else.
  6. IMO, Lionel Bart's "Oliver!" is the best British musical: done well, every song is a classic, and the show has a coherence that many others lack. If well staged - ideally using the original and brilliantly innovative stage design of Sean Kenny - properly lit, and tightly performed, it's incredibly "dark" & disturbing yet moves at a cracking pace.

    To my knowledge, the last professional productions using Sean Kenny's sets were the short-lived 1984 Broadway run (starring Patti Lupone - later to receive great acclaim for Fantene in the original "les Miserables"), and the very successful run at the Queen's Theatre, Hornchurch, 1986, featuring Victor Spinetti as Fagin. IMO, neither the 1968 film nor the 1994 Palladium revival came close to matching the spirit/ atmosphere of the original stage production: the film is a reasonably good example of the genre, but Mark Lester can't sing (rumour has it his voice was dubbed!), and the choreography is overblown and swamps many songs; plus, too many good songs (notably "That's Your Funeral" & "My Name") were omitted - pity because Leonard Rossiter & Oli Reed would have done them well, I feel. The Palladium revival was spectacular, for sure, and Miles Anderson (subsequently of "Soldier, Soldier" & "Ultimate Farce" fame) was a stand-out as Sikes, but the attempt to "renew" the musical for the '90s did away with too much of the original's "darkness", reinforcing the mistaken, but oft made, criticism that "Oliver!" is no more than a twee Cockney singalong bearing only a passing resemblance to Dickens' novel. Nothing could be further from the truth, and the time is ripe for a provincial company to mount a full revival of this brilliant musical as originally conceived by the combined genius of Bart & Kenny.

    The original 1960s' West End/ Broadway productions starred a number of "notables" of entertainment, including:
    Ron Moody (still the definitive Fagin, IMHO), and the much overlooked New Zealander Clive Revill (nearly as good as Moody);
    Georgia Brown (RIP 1992. She never got the full recognition deserved as one of the best female musical perfomers Britain has ever produced.);
    Tony Robinson (Baldrick; "Timeteam" etc);
    Davy Jones ("The Monkees");
    Steve Marriott (RIP) ("The Small Faces");
    Phil Collins, and, of course, Jack Wild (RIP 2006), who later starred in the film version to great acclaim.
    Danny Sewell (RIP 2001) - brother of actor George Sewell (RIP 2007), and former light heavyweight contender (20 pro bouts - no losses) until knackered by polio - played Sikes for much of the early '60s in Britain & America, and Barry Humphries (Dame Edna) was in the original productions (W End & B'way) playing a magnificently creepy Sowerberry; he was understudy for Ron Moody, but famously never got to play Fagin because Moody was/ is extremely fit & resilient. However, Humphries eventually got the lead role in the 1967 W End revival performing alongside Marti Webb (Nancy) and Phil Collins (Dodger).

    Other musicals? Well, I like "Cabaret", and Gershwin's "Porgy & Bess" is exceptional: can't be much wrong with a show that opens with a number like "Summertime"! "Les Miserables" is quite good, but it does go on a bit, and being "sung through" doesn't help with plot clarity for the uninitiated. In some respects, the shortened School Edition is better. "Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang" & "Mary Poppins" are great for kids: taking mine to see CCBB at the Mayflower, Soton, this Summer: don't doubt that they'll love it, but expect yours truly will have to grin and bear it!
  7. went to the west-end and saw we will rock you and guys and dolls they were both excellent
  8. Fugly

    Fugly LE DirtyBAT

    Sat in the disabled section, obviously?

    Who actually explained to you what was going on? Your nephew?

  9. He was too busy licking her clack out.

    Sorry for busting into your Arty thread but the troll has escaped from the arrsehole.
  10. Well, well ,well, talking dressing-up and mincing about on a macho - grrrr..don’t just stand there, step on ants – site? Quite right too, I love musicals, especially the choreography though I can’t do a step myself.

    Appreciate the point of ram on the Producers. Casting of the original film was impeccable (IMHO), meaning sadly anything thereafter is limited. As we now seem to be in a phase where money-spinners are old films reproduced as stage musicals, I think there is much to come though probably a while before something beats the record Spamalot is going to establish?

    Undoubtedly we’ve had some great musicals, many because of particular casts which in some cases cannot be repeated. To pick one out is hard, but I’ll declare my philistine side and plug for the original Rocky Horror, Kings Road.

    Like Wessex says about Oliver, the subsequent Rocky film was OK if you hadn’t seen, sorry, experienced the original, but unfortunately pale by comparison. Re Oliver, agree it oozed class, and just like Riff-Raff and Rocky must be O’Brien and Curry, Fagin and Artful must be Moody and Wild. Great tragedy over Jack Wild, I knew him and his mate Billy Barton for a time as young men and they were really great people.

  11. Yep, Goldfishfart -

    Did a lot of acting, and associated stuff (stage management etc) in my youth, and why? Well, partly it was a laugh; great camaraderie etc, but also because it was a sure fire way to impress the girls/ get their attention.

    Wish now that I'd had the guts to give it a proper go: singing voice nowhere near good enough for lead roles in musicals (Sikes being the exception because a menacing, rough bass is just what's needed), but I was dead good at the silent/ sinister or ranting psycho type male roles, and there's definitely a market for those in theatre in general. Plus, have a bit of a knack for set design & stage management - plenty of scope there, as a couple of ex pupils of mine have demonstrated: one makes shedloads of money (and travels the world gratis) doing just that in the West End/ London & on tour.

    Although it can lack long-term security, there's a lot to be said for a theatrical career: generally, the people are great, and acting aside, there's plenty of scope for technical, creative and entrepreneurial talent - the West End/ Broadway etc is, after all, BIG BUSINESS - as Cameron MacIntosh & Co will testify!

    Yes, there are quite a lot of gays in theatre - so what? If you're that way inclined, it's a friendly environment; if not, then there's less competition, and the heterosexual male has plentiful opportunities to satisfy his lust.
  12. Our House, the Madness musical. Went to see it twice, second time Suggswas playing the Dad. Toes were tapping and heads were bobbing from the get go.

    A quick clip and the DVD
  13. The Rat Pack at the Opera House in Manchester, excellente'
  14. Recently saw "Oliver!" again - Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.

    Wasn't too keen - having rather overdosed on it in my youth. The kids, however, were desperate to see Jodie Prenger, & having promised them a West End show in lieu of birthday parties (which I've also had more than an overdose of!) got trapped when they voted for "Oliver!".

    So, middle of August, off we went - consoled myself that it'd be a day out in London if nothing else.

    Well, contrary to my expectations, it was excellent: Omid Djalili was a superb Fagin; Jodie P. a lot better than I'd anticipated, & Burn Gorman was a splendid Sikes - cold, menacing, gloriously dangerous. The real stand out, however, was Julian Bleach - a monstrously creepy Sowerberry; a real Dickensian horrorshow in one.

    Whole cast was extremely well drilled, slick, brilliantly choreographed, & the sets were stunning - much has been made of how this production takes full advantage of the exceptional stage depth at Drury Lane... and it's true! Even if you don't like musicals (and this one in particular), IMO, this production is worth seeing for the stage design/ engineering & choreography alone.

    Gryf Rhys Jones is currently playing Fagin - imagine he's pretty damned good too.