Well, eight weeks have come to an end, and it’s time for the curtain to fall on my series for Bitch. I have very much enjoyed my time here, both with the more analytic posts and the more casual ones, and people’s comments have, in the overwhelming majority, been thought-provoking and civil. Thank you for having me!
As I said in the first post of this series, one of my goals was to leave people with a greater appreciation for musical theater. Hopefully I’ve succeeded. For this last post I just want to share with you some of my favorite performers and composers, to give you—in the event that you’d like to know more about musicals—a place to start.
Here, Audra McDonald sings Jason Robert Brown’s “Stars and the Moon” in concert. McDonald has won multiple awards for her performances, and has four solo albums, as well as appearing on many cast recordings. Jason Robert Brown is a relatively recent musical theater composer—his first major New York show was in 1996—but is very talented. Four of his shows have cast albums, and he also has two solo CDs.
Patti LuPone singing Stephen Sondheim’s “Being Alive” at a 1992 concert celebrating his work. This concert is available on both CD and DVD, and there are many, many recordings featuring LuPone, Sondheim, or some combination of the two.
Kate Baldwin has been performing in musical theater for years, but only really started drawing major attention when cast in 2009’s revival of Finian’s Rainbow, by Burton Lane and Yip Harburg. Here is a slide show of images of Baldwin, accompanied by her singing “Look to the Rainbow” from that show. Baldwin now has two solo albums, and Lane and Harburg’s music has been celebrated for decades—you’ve probably heard of their most well-known work, a little movie known as The Wizard of Oz.
These three are a relatively tiny sampling of what’s out there, but they are a starting point. Combined with the other shows talked about in this series, all of which I do enjoy to some extent, regardless of how much I criticize them, I hope I have provided some glimpse into why I love musicals as much as I do, and left you with something you can carry into your own lives.
It’s been something sort of grandish, alright.