#MusicMonday: Favorite Musicals and Operas

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Get your tickets, don your masks, and twirl your capes, it’s time to go to the opera! Or Broadway or the West End . . . basically anywhere there’s singing and dancing and  *DRAMA*. We are living for musicals and operas this month on #MusicMonday and we want to take you on this journey with us. So join us, won’t you, as the lights dim, and a hush falls when the orchestra takes its place. Here are our favorite musical numbers – let us know what yours are in the comments!

 

All I Ask of You – The Phantom of the Opera

I mean, of course this made the list. I first watched The Phantom of the Opera (that 2004 movie staring a 17-year-old Emmy Rossum, Gerard Butler and Patrick Wilson) when I was 17, and was entirely enraptured by the story, the music, the cinematic visuals, Patrick Wilson’s voice…

(Ahem.)

It’s just such a timeless and compelling story, so romantic yet so heartbreaking. At its heart, it’s a story about what beauty really means, and how we can never face the world if we cannot even face ourselves.

(My Phantom obsession was rekindled lately when the musical it came to town recently.) -JC

 

My Favorite Things – The Sound of Music

My dad introduced this movie to me when I was about Brigitta’s age. (She was also the one I related to the most, not just because we were of the same age, but because her first entry to the scene saw her wandering in with her face buried in a book.)

I remember playing this over and over every day and singing and dancing along to every number (yes, even the ones sung by the nuns, because how do you keep a wave upon the sand?).

And this song, My Favorite Things, is the tune I go back to every time I’m feeling frightened or upset. It’s such a simple but effective philosophy – just think about the things that make you happy and grateful, and then I don’t feel so bad. -JC

 

There But For You Go I – Brigadoon

 

 

 

Thanks to The Phantom of the Opera, I discovered the beauty of Patrick Wilson’s voice – strong and masculine yet gentle, like a Disney prince’s. I’ve never actually watched Brigadoon, but he’s making a very strong case for me to. -JC

 

Masquerade – The Phantom of the Opera

I think the spectacle of the Phantom of the Opera is part of what makes it so magical. Every number is big, with sweeping dance moves and some serious vocal acrobatics. This scene – set at the incredible Palais Garnier in Paris – brings together the intrigue of a masked ball and the grandeur of a huge ensemble dance number, and it provides the perfect cover for the Phantom himself to make a very dashing and gasp-worthy entrance at the end of the song. For aren’t we all, in some way or another, hiding our faces from the world? -MC

 

Bella Figlia dell’Amore – Rigoletto by Giuseppe Verdi

 

This quartet is an incredible feat of music – the four voices and characters all get their own moment to shine, while the harmonies flow together with a huge sound. This performance features big stars like Pavarotti and Joan Sutherland, but I think the standout is the mezzo-soprano, Isola Jones, whose mischevous expressions and powerful voice steal the show. (Also, how she’s able to sing in that corset I have NO IDEA. Damn girl…) -MC

 

Pur ti miro – L’incoronazione di Poppaea by Claudio Monteverdi

 

 

Ok this one goes wayy back to the earliest opera composer, Claudio Monteverdi, who worked in Venice (where the first opera was performed in 1637!). This opera focuses on the Roman emperor Nero and his lover Poppaea who he then makes his empress. It’s essentially a topsy-turvy story where greed and lust win the day, but hey the music is gorgeous ok? This song is Nero and Poppaea’s final duet, and I love the way the voices dance and weave together. -MC

 

Satisfied – Hamilton

Ahh Hamilton – I became obsessed with this show as soon as I heard the soundtrack. I still really want to see it here in London, but for now I’ll just sing and rap along to the amazing original recording. So many songs are incredible, either poignant and sad, or fierce and inspiring. This song is one of my favorites, it stars Angelica Schuyler, the eldest Schuyler sister, who first falls in love with Alexander Hamilton, but sets him up with her younger sister Eliza, who he then marries. We’re seeing it all from Angelica’s perspective, and the way the scene is evoked through flashbacks and then a flashforward to the wedding itself, is so brilliant. And Renée Elise Goldberry’s voice is just *chef’s kiss*. -MC


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