Sunday, January 20, 2008

And He Wouldn't Want Us To Give it Away

...Not Sweeney. Not Sweeney Todd.

Okay. I confess. I'm a huge huge music geek. Tommy laughs at me often for what I come up with sometimes. My poor son will be subjected to car rides with mom blasting Sondheim, Jason Robert Brown and the like. I laugh heartily at the musical-related jokes on Will and Grace. I laugh even harder at the jokes on Frasier that are musically-related.
I've seen Sweeney Todd in many incantations:

1. My first experience with the show was seeing Hofstra University's Gray Wig theatre company do a production of it. My friends were all playing in the pit and I absolutely fell in love with the show and learned as much as I could about it.
2. The original Broadway production - not in person, but via video. The one most people think of when they think of Sweeney. Angela Landsbury really shatters the whole "Jessica Fletcher" persona there. (Yes, yes, I know she played Mrs. Lovett before the 'Murder She Wrote' lady.)
3. My next encounter with the demon barber was playing in the pit for Calhoun High School's production of the show. It was fun, and the music is great and the kids really did a bang-up job. It's an incredibly hard show to sing and coordinate, but they really pulled it together.

4. The in-concert version done by the San Francisco opera. It featured Patti LuPone, George Hearn and of all folks, Neil Patrick Harris (yup, Doogie himself). It was so well-done, creatively staged for an in-concert production and everyone seriously sang their asses off.

5. The brilliant revival that showcased the actors playing the instruments. Brilliant. Loved every minute of it. I sat there just saying, "That's Evita." "I'm actually watching Evita right in front of me." Patti LuPone and Michael Ceveris - Tony winners. I was glued. And like the good music geek I am, had my picture taken with Patti LuPone and got her autograph.

But the most recent is:

6. The unbelievable film version that Tim Burton brought to life. It was absolutely breathtaking from beginning to end. I loved every minute of it. And of course it was heightened by the fact that it was my first post-baby outing that didn't have an errand attached to it. It was just Diane, Mom and I having a girls' evening out. I even smuggled in Taco Bell to really live it up. The entire cast was perfectly...well...cast. The scenery was the uber-drab London done so dismal, but not to the point of being a cliche. The songs seemed like they belonged perfectly, not like "Hey, let's all break into song right now". I'd be super happy and have renewed admiration for the Oscars if this won Best Picture.

So go see it. Now. It's the kind of film that screams to be seen on a big screen with huge, surrounding sound that really gives you every note of the lush score.

Side note: As much as I like the fact that movie musicals are making a comeback (Chicago, Hairspray, etc.) I don't understand why there was a need to movie-cise the musical "Mamma Mia". This was one of the trailers before Sweeney. I mean, I love ABBA as much as the next gal, but really.....


Diane said...

I agree. The movie was fantastic. Go see it. Don't drink a huge (the theater called it "medium?!?") soda like I did, or if you do, sit on the aisle. :o)

Tiff, I'm glad I could be part of your first non-errand outing. Let me know when you want to have your second one. I'm good to go.

buddha_girl said...

Ok. You've got me. I'll go see it if only because you're recommending it.

I snorted out loud when you admitted to getting and LOVING the music jokes on Will and Grace and Frazier. You crack me up, woman!

A package will be mailed on Tuesday after I get done at work! I'm slow!

Maureen said...

OH... I want to see this so bad... especially since Johnny is in it. Glad to hear you liked it!

Curly Glamour Girlie said...

Di - I was so glad to hang with you and Mom!

BG - It was well worth it - definitely the kind of movie you go see in the theatre! And I'm flattered I could make you snort!

Maureen - It was fabulous!