Hi! I’m Rachel and I have been reading Kailana’s blog for about three years now. I confess to being an irregular blogger at my book blog site: a fair substitue for heaven but I try to keep my other book site www.thinkinggirlsguide.blogspot.com updated.
I wanted to take this Music Monday moment to speak to you about a subject near and dear to mine heart: BROADWAY!
I am lucky enough to live in Toronto---where I see Broadway shows regularly. But, I have been luckier still to have seen shows on the Great White Way in New York and even in the West End in London--- You can never go too far for a great show--- and a great voice!
As much as I like to sing and study Broadway, I mostly like to watch and savour it; especially when it is performed by some of the leading Broadway female vocalists:
For your viewing ( and mostly hearing ) enjoyment:
This first video is a little different as it portrays the part of a journey which happens before the lights and glamour: the audition.
Here, a very young ( and purely talented ) Lea Salonga is auditioning for the show which will catapult her into stardom: Miss Saigon.
Seen here with Claude Michel Schonberg ( of Les Miserables fame), Lea Salonga is being taught a song cold ( but not before she sneaks in an autograph request)
After auditions and call-backs and all the messy paperwork and the rehearsals, come the bright lights.
My favourite Broadway shows are based on books! ( of course)
Here is Marin Mazzie in fabulous voice as Guinevere in the classic Camelot
I was lucky enough to see Marin Mazzie star alongside Audra McDonald in the first production of Ragtime (another classic book told in musical form). Audra McDonald’s performance remains the best I have ever seen ( or heard) from a female live. The video here proves just why the Julliard- trained McDonald is said to be the brightest talent on Broadway since Judy Garland ( make sure you watch to the end--- where she belts it …. )
Audra shows a melange of classical and gospel roots--- which I love. She puts an indelible stamp on every song she performs!
Remember the Rosie O’ Donnell Show? I loved how it always featured B’Way performances! I found this song performed from one of my favourite literary musicals The Scarlet Pimpernel. Here, Christine Andreas is trying her best to caress each word in the pitch perfect French accent of the tempting lead character, Marguerite St. Juste. Marguerite and her brother Armand are awaiting execution at the guillotine: unaware that the Pimernel will rescue them. (Note: Broadway fans will recognize a very young Sutton Foster in a chorus role--- before she went on to win a Tony for Thoroughly Modern Millie)
I was fortunate enough to be in a production of Jekyll and Hyde and to play Emma, Henry Jekyll’s long-suffering love. Though I loved most of the challenging soprano part, my favourite song to sing in the show was this duet. Here, performed to perfection by the astounding Christiane Noll.
I want that song at my wedding!…and I want her dress.