Bleh with Barry

Random with a cynical twist of lime.

Posts Tagged ‘sad

Somethings that Make Me Tear Up Everytime

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So, I’ll be honest with you. I’m a person who is pretty dead when it comes to being emotional in front of people. Part of this may be due to my raising because in the south boys aren’t supposed to cry. Part of it may also because I am just a person who understands that there is a time and a place for emotions. For example, I don’t think that everyone should share the dirty laundry of their break up with people that they might at best consider acquaintances. It’s just a thing. Perhaps, I suffer alone without rhyme or reason. I don’t know. However, I will continue to do such because it’s ingrained in my nature now.

There are a couple of things that get me every time though. Both of them are musicals. Like I mentioned in an earlier post, music is the great emotional manipulator in my mind. Why? It mixes the strong emotions of the world with music.

 I am a sucker for music. It is a great love of mine. I love music from classical to contemporary because it hits on so many levels within my psyche. It manipulates me like no person will ever be able to. I am a wimp when it comes to musical manipulation or surprises (don’t get me started on this…the end of Atonement , a movie, and Next to Normal, a musical).

The main things that get me are musicals. It’s because of the music. It’s the one thing that will get me time after time. It breaks down all the barriers and makes me feel at ease before it shatters the barriers that I put up to contain my emotional baggage.

Recently, there have been two musicals that have done this to me. Next to Normal and Les Miserables cause me much grief as I listen to the beautiful heartache that is contained within the melodies and harmonies of each. They each have a great overarching story that makes me sad (what with a bipolar mother and the effects on the family and the French Revolution). However, each of them presents their sad tale in the form of a musical drama. This is the worst/best part for me. I love the music of each musical (matter-of-factly, N2N is brilliant across the board musically).

They set me at ease and then take me into the depths of despair. They each leave me with hope and allow me to face emotions that I would never think about pouring myself into. They make me think which is pretty phenomenal for anything that is supposed to be as superficial and candied as a musical. I find myself starting to get into the action and feel with the characters every time with these two musicals. Quite frankly, I suggest that if you haven’t heard/seen them that you do so as soon as possible because they are an experience not to be trifled with.

Next to Normal

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Next to Normal is a stunning, fairly new musical on Broadway in New York City. I had the privilege recently of going to NYC and seeing it for myself. Now, I’m not one to divulge a lot about a musical just in case people reading this plan to see it. I don’t want to ruin any beautiful moment of it. However, I will say that I give it 5 stars (out of 5) because it intrigues me and because its story made me cry.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TPfxUGMKgLA

In the show, you are introduced to a seemingly average family. Yet, this facade is not long lived as we find out that the mother Diana (played by Alice Ripley) has a history of mental illness. The show gives insight into how families deal with psychological disease and how they cope. N2N is grounded in amazing visuals and tight harmonies with the cast of six providing all the vocals for every song that is sung from “Just Another Day” till the finale “Light”. All the actors I saw played their parts wonderfully. Alice Ripley played the part of Diana superbly, belting out the “You Don’t Know” and bringing it down for more intimate numbers like ” I Miss the Mountains”.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qZQM7ELKrRA

J. Robert Spencer (playing Dan, the Dad), Adam Chanler-Berat (Henry), and Louis Hobson (Dr. Madden/Dr. Fine) performed to top-notch standard. They all left me feeling connected to their characters at various times during the show. However, the two standouts of the cast I saw were Kyle Dean Massey (Gabe) and Meghann Fahy (Natalie). These two play the children of Dan and Diana. I didn’t know if I was going to like Massey because I had heard him from recordings on youtube. I didn’t know if he was going to stand up to Aaron Tveit’s original performance; however, he blew me away because I thought him to have more poise and better pitch than Tveit (in live recording’s Tveit sometimes has sketchy pitch). Massey was wonderful. Fahy, who is in fact the understudy for the part of Natalie, did a better job in my opinion than Jennifer Damiano because she was less screechy and whiny on the top notes than Damiano is. This fact speaks wonders to me because I like to have a smoother sound in the tight harmonies. Sometimes, Damiano’s voice just seems to clash with the others (although the notes are there).

If you haven’t seen Next to Normal and you live in NYC or are visiting, I would suggest going to see this gem. Staged in the Booth Theater between 45th and Broadway, it boasts amazing sets and spectacle to keep anyone on their toes. The music and story will thrill you, chill you, and leave you sobbing yet hopeful.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wN6KXFeMK8A&feature=fvw

Real Life Musicals: They Do Exist

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Today, as I was riding on a chartered bus between point A and B. I found myself listening to music which is nothing new to me. If you ask people who have been around me for awhile, they will tell you of the likelihood of me bursting out in song. It’s just how I am…I like music, so whenever I’m in a good or bad mood and everything in between I am likely to be singing something that either compliments my mood or that is seeking to lift my mood. I am also a music whore…I listen to most things fairly equally (except rap and country) with my favorites being classic rock, musicals, and some pop music.

The other day a friend of mine said that someone in one of her classes said that they didn’t like musicals because there is no way that anyone gets up and just starts singing…it’s unrealistic…that’s what they said…and while I can understand the points they make that musicals seem to be “staged” (but isn’t everything now a days), I also know that my friends and I are very likely to randomly burst out into song…there are usually some harmonies and the choreography is us moving around with our daily lives…all of us know the words because let’s face it, you’re not going to sing something if you don’t know the words. We have our own little musical world…I don’t think that anything beats it. It’s better than living in the nihilistic world with some of the idiots that are out there.

“Music melts all the separate parts of our bodies together.” -Anais Nin. It’s so true…music is the ultimate in connecting us together. Think of the last time you heard of some tragedy in your community. If you went to a service about it, wasn’t there singing….wasn’t everyone singing. When we’re wee things, our parents sang lullabies to lull us to sleep. When we marry, there is usually song to help the two begin their life together. And when we die, there is music to celebrate our lives.

Music is unique. Nothing else out there in the world does exactly what it does. So, I will continue to have my musical life. I will think of people having theme songs. I will burst out randomly into showtunes when I’m teaching. And I will do so with my head held high, my high note unwavering, and Jazz hands wobbling at my sides.

Written by uncannynerdyguy

February 21, 2010 at 9:59 pm