When I was growing up, my mother, my sister and I would go to the movies nearly every Saturday afternoon. As a special treat, such as a birthday or end of the semester or some drug rep handing out free concert/theater tickets along with a sales pitch (that’s how I got to see Frank Sinatra in concert!), we’d go to see a play. If it wasn’t the Derby Dinner Playhouse with its customers clattering forks and knives before the show, it was the Kentucky Center for the Arts with its patrons clinking champagne glasses and jewelry. It was at these performances that I learned to love musicals. Cats. West Side Story. Cats again (not the sequel, just a repeat performance because once was not enough). Hello, Dolly. South Pacific. Starlight Express, complete with fog machines and rollerskates. The King and I. Fiddler on the Roof. Dreamgirls. Rocky Horror Picture Show. You name it, and if it came to Louisville in the 80s, I saw it.
By the 90s, when I was on my own and not flush with my parents’ money and free tickets (well, to a lesser extent anyway), my theater-going experience dwindled and the few shows I attended were more of the traditional spoken word type rather than the song and dance. I filled the gap with cinematic versions of musicals. I know I am not alone in saying that the musical Buffy episode was the best ep of the, and arguably any, series. Alas, I don’t even remember what the last proper musical I saw was. This clip really makes me want to watch Les Misérables again. And with my Geoffrey Rush high off of The King’s Speech, I may just Netflix it even if I have nobody with whom I could watch it. In peace, anyway.
Note: despite my professed love of musicals, I just can’t get into Glee. Granted, I’ve only watched the pilot episode. I’m just not sure I’m ready to invest so much time into the show.