Titanic: The Musical

Jim Kalafus

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>I'd have never bought the ticket.

If you are in a theatre criticism course, you don't have a choice. The tickets are free, but you have to attend and write a review.

Back to Titanic the Musical...it is not a big, garish, production like...say The Lion King. Structurally,it is like Evita. It treats the subject matter with reverence. But, to me, the music was serviceable but unmemorable. It is far less insulting to the audience than Cameron's Titanic (but then, so too is Million Dollar Duck) but....darn it... I just never bonded with the score.
 
Feb 4, 2007
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I once sang "In Every Age/How Did They Build Titanic" for an audition.......and got the part.

These two songs, since they flow into each other, can be sung together - literally without missing a beat. Why sing these two songs? They show off both the lower and higher registers of the singer, and allow for a good range of dynamics and vocal expression which a traditional art song does not always allow.

I would not audition for an opera with these songs, but they make for interesting musical theater audition pieces. They are uniquely different ~ most men often audition with "Maria" (West Side Story), "Oh What A Beautiful Morning" (Oklahoma), "If I Were A Rich Man" (Fiddler), or something from "Les Miserables". Sing something from "Titanic The Musical" and, at the very least, you will be memorable.
 

Jim Kalafus

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Yo! I auditioned for a dinner theatre production of The Sound of Music (hoping for the part of 'Kurt') with a pairing of "Poltergeists" and "The Testing, parts 1 and 2" from Into the Light. After a snide remark about "A pair of songs which lovingly highlight each and every one of your vocal limitations" the producers gave my part to a teenager!
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>Sing something from "Titanic The Musical" and, at the very least, you will be memorable.

True! But, my friend, had you heeded my advice and auditioned for the part with "Pick A Little Talk a Little" from The Music Man, you would have been 100 times more memorable. In fact, no doubt you'd STILL be the subject of much discussion...
 
May 27, 2007
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I hate Musicals ever since I was in Anything Goes in High School as a stupid snotty Bishop \Missionary who gets what's coming to him.Action Adventure synopsis move to Ballyhoo Jazz
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>I hate Musicals...<<

I rather like them if they're well done, and the actors actually know how to sing. I enjoyed Les Miserables at the Curren Theatre in San Francisco back in 1990. Webber's Phantom of the Opera was pretty good too if you have the right cast, and then there's Fiddler On The Roof.

The problem with a lot of Hollywood type musicals nowadays is that they tend to be pretty lame.
 

Jim Kalafus

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>The problem with a lot of Hollywood type musicals nowadays is that they tend to be pretty lame.

The most infamous failure in Broadway history was Carrie: The Musical....an adaptation of Steven King's Carrie; a book and movie that not a soul EVER read or watched and thought "What this needs top bring it to life are some big production numbers."

Donnie Osmond in Little Johnnie Johnson had the distinction of seeing the plug pulled by the producers during INTERMISSION. Can you imagine that scene playing out? "You're closed as of tonight! Now, go knock 'em dead in the second half!"

>Fiddler On The Roof

A friend of mine had her first ever massive panic attack during Fiddler. She told me about how it felts as if the walls were closing in on her, and how she wanted to start screaming and could only concentrate on an almost primal compulsion to dash frantically out of the room. Not knowing that she wasn't joking, I asked "Isn't that just the normal reaction to that play?"
 

Jim Kalafus

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>.........yes. They might still say: "Remember that stupid kid who didn't even have the propriety to wear a feather boa whilst singing that audition number?

True enough! And...I'll admit my own error in judgement. When I told you, repeatedly, that auditioning for the lead in 12 Angry Men with a pair of songs from Titanic might not be a sound approach, how very wrong I was. Who knew?
 
May 27, 2007
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My Sister did West Side Story in High School in 1984 or '85 and I fell asleep. That was probably the first Musical I'd ever seen. It was down hill ever since. Her class also did Clue that year and it was the funniest thing I'd ever seen. It wasn't a Musical.

Hairspray is an excellent case study. They took a funny film and made a dumb Musical out of it. Reefer Madness is another case in point.
 

Dave Gittins

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Apr 11, 2001
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Titanic: The Musical bombed utterly in Australia. I've only read the libretto, which is no great shakes, so I can't comment on the music.

Local critics thought the problem with the show is that it is filled with so many characters that the audience never gets to know any individuals and identify with them.
 

Jim Kalafus

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It had a fair run in New York City, lasting a hair under two years:

http://www.ibdb.com/production.php?id=4746

and, as I recall, the reviews were lukewarm and, again as I recall, rather paralleled those in Australia mentioned by Dave Gittens.

It was good for a pleasant night out, and did not offend.

If it is ever revived in NYC, good taste or bad taste to stage in in the now-restored Hudson Theatre of Henry B. Harris fame?

http://cinematreasures.org/theater/2971/

>My Sister did West Side Story in High School in 1984 or '85 and I fell asleep.

A pox upon it. The only thing I like about the play is pondering Maria on death row and Anita serving 20 years for aiding and abetting. The set up: that stupid scene in which Maria and Anita talk about going to Doc's candy store for the "Special Medicine" in front of Officer Krupke with all the subtlety and finesse of a speeding truck. Ten minutes later, Krupke arrives at the playground to find Maria holding a gun and standing over the body of the boy "who killed her brother." The ensuing trial would have been fun.
 

Jim Kalafus

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LUSITANIA: THE FAILURE:

http://www.ibdb.com/production.php?id=8175

One of the more ferocious bombs of the 1915 season; this play...apparently a plea for tolerance...got fair reviews and awful word of mouth upon opening. The message of the play, not well received BEFORE May 7th, seemed rather tasteless after both the playwright and the producer died aboard the Lusitania. It closed, never to be seen again, anywhere.
 
May 27, 2007
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The Hyphen by Justus Forman perhaps? I remember reading about Mr Forman being on the Lusitania serving Charles Frohman in some manner from Last Voyage Of The Lusitania. Maybe it was the name Justus which kept this tidbit in my memory or the play's name The Hyphen.

Boarding the ship Mr. Forman when being questioned by reporters about the German threat said "Do not bother me with Trifles." Or something to that effect. He basically gave them the brush off and proceeded on his way.

Sis played neither Maria or Anita she played a tomboy character I think. It's been more then 20 years.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>The most infamous failure in Broadway history was Carrie: The Musical....an adaptation of Steven King's Carrie;<<

Now why am I not surprised by that? I'm amazed anybody had the guts to try it.

>>Donnie Osmond in Little Johnnie Johnson had the distinction of seeing the plug pulled by the producers during INTERMISSION.<<

I wonder if an audience leaving en masse had something to do with it?

>>A friend of mine had her first ever massive panic attack during Fiddler.<<

Was the performance really that bad or was it just her?
 

Ryan Thompson

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Her class also did Clue that year and it was the funniest thing I'd ever seen. It wasn't a Musical.

I've seen the movie, which is funny. Was the play a rehash of the movie script?
 

Jim Kalafus

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>Was the performance really that bad or was it just her?

Yes and yes.

The Hyphen by Justus Forman perhaps?

Yes and yes.
 
May 27, 2007
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Howdy Ryan,

I've seen the movie, which is funny. Was the play a rehash of the movie script?
Actually I think the play came out before the Movie. This was 1984 to 85 when Sis's Drama Class did Clue. So maybe the movie was based on the play?

Jim
The Hyphen by Justus Forman perhaps?

Yes and yes.
Forman was the only playwright I remembered being on the Lusitania with Frohman. Plus their surnames are similar another clue to prod my memory. I remember more then I thought I did.
Yes I did not use the link. Did Forman also do Perlmutter In Society? Or was that another
playwright aboard the Lusitania as well.
 
May 27, 2007
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I remember reading about Mr Forman being on the Lusitania serving Charles Frohman in some manner from Last Voyage Of The Lusitania.
I just remembered why Forman was aboard. Forman read scripts for Plays the Maestro (Frohman). My Memory awakens.
 

Ryan Thompson

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George: The movie was released in '85, for what its worth. I ought to queue it on Netflix. I have a grainy VHS tape at home, taped off HBO or some other premium a few years after the release. The recording also features all the different endings.
 
May 27, 2007
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Howdy Ryan,

Yep that's the Movie. I had forgotten about the different ending til you reminded me. The version of Clue my Sister was in had one ending. So It might of been a different script or they might of cut it down. She was an alcoholic Mrs. Peacock.