2013-01-04 15:08:50 UTC
Actually, it was a hell of a lot more entertaining than I expected. Usually,
they talk endlessly and you barely get to hear the performance, but the
stories were interesting and they included excerpts of interviews with
some of the composers late in life.
They started audaciously with that you got to put Jews in your musical
lyric from Spamalot, hahahaha.
I learned that Jerome Kern didn't have the guts to keep the "She doesn't
look Jewish at all" lyric that ends "If You Could See Her With My Eyes"
in Cabaret on stage as Jewish audiences missed the bitter sarcasm. It's
in the movie adaptation, but that came five years later.
Wish they spent a lot more time on Yiddish theater, entirely unfamiliar
to television audiences.
"There's nothing quite like the power and the passion of Broadway music.
Musicals carry us to a different time and place, but in the end, they
also teach us a little bit of something about ourselves. In many ways,
the story of Broadway is also intertwined with the story of America.
Some of the greatest singers and songwriters Broadway has ever known
came to this country on a boat with nothing more than an idea in their
head and a song in their heart. And they succeeded the same way that so
many immigrants have succeeded through talent and hard work and sheer
determination. Over the years, musicals have also been at the forefront
of our social consciousness, challenging stereotypes, shaping our
opinions about race and religion, death and disease, power and politics.
But perhaps the most American part of this truly American art form is
its optimism. Broadway music calls us to see the best in ourselves and
in the world around us."-- President Obama
"Musicals blow the dust off your soul."-- Mel Brooks