Friday Fun with musical geeks

As I shared yesterday, I’m in the midst of a few weeks of fabulous musical fun, at the cheesy end of the spectrum. Tomorrow will see me enjoying an entire day of musical theatre geekiness, beginning with free excerpts from shows in Trafalgar Square courtesy of West End Live and ending with Alex Gaumond’s final performance as Emmett in Legally Blonde. [Yes, we’ve seen the show before; yes, we may have developed a teeny-tiny crush on the hot Canadian; yes, we waited after the show to meet him; yes, we’re losers for having bought tickets for this specific performance; but do we care? Not a jot!]

Anyway, it therefore seemed particularly apt for The Hairpin to choose this run to run an article in which you could judge your personality type based upon classic musicals from the 1980s. There may have been a small squeak of excitement when an e-mail from Annabelle about it arrived in my inbox…

There was a limited (and predominantly West End originated – whoop!) list of four musicals: Les Miserables, Phantom, Annie and Cats, with a description of personality type embodied by those that love them. It’s a fun read, but had me torn between two – Les Mis and Phantom.

Les Mis’ attributes included:
“Your Liberal Arts major ensured that you ended up working in some kind of publishing/non-profit/teaching job, so you live in a bit of squalor.” – How very true. Though only my mother would perhaps describe my flat as ‘squalid’.

“Oddly enough, you are now the type of person who would be extremely reluctant to publicly admit that you spent many a night singing along, word for word, with the entire Original London Cast recording while wearing your worn-in Les Miz [err, with a ‘z’ – what’s that about??] t-shirt.” – Not so true. How could I ever be ashamed of a singalong? But yes to the owning a complete OLC recording and t-shirt from c.1996 (though sadly it got lost in a move). 
As for Phantom…

“You were Christine. Even if you didn’t pursue a life in the theater, you still have a drama queen inside of you.” – I definitely have the potential for Drama Queening.

“You had at least one boyfriend in high school that turned out to be gay.” – If crushes count, I’m there.

“You like candles and have a not-so-secret obsession with Celine Dion.” – I love candles and I own, let me see…at least three Celine Dion albums? (In my defence, I own nothing she’s released this millennium.)

As I’ve not actually seen Phantom properly (i.e. on stage – I know, shocking!) I’d have to choose Les Mis – if only for the fact that I seem to forever identify with Eponine and appear to spend my life walking in the rain singing On My Own – I just need the beret & trench coat to complete the look.
Sorry, for those of you who aren’t musical theatre geeks that won’t have been particularly fun and for those that are, you’re probably at this point highlighting all the other classic 80s musicals that would suit your personality better – Little Shop of Horrors, Starlight ExpressFame, or even the world’s most disastrous Broadway musical – Carrie. [Yes, that’s a musical based on the Stephen King book/film and actually, the soundtrack’s awesome – it originated at the RSC in fact. Actually, if you want some additional fun, listen to some of the songs from the show.] 
Having written the above in advance of Friday, I hoped to find something non-musical to appease those of you who don’t consider several hours of dancing and prancing entertainment. Then I got caught up in work (shocking!) and was subjected to an insulting tweet complaining about Friday Fun’s absence – so gave up. 
Instead, I offer you this encouragement from Neil Patrick Harris’ opening number at the recent Tony Awards. You see, Broadway isn’t just for gays any more… 

Honestly, it’s worth watching and has cheered my afternoon up no end – not just the musical theatre satire but Brooke Shields making a complete hash of her ‘improvised’ interjection. And when was the last time you heard Angela Lansbury referred to as hot? Fabulous.


  1. Great video!

    I love Phantom but it really has to be seen properly on stage, it’s about so much more than the songs (which are admittedly nowhere near as good as the Les Mis songs). Randomly I watched an old film version of Phantom last night and I was very sad that all the specially written opera bits weren’t the “proper” songs. Must be the first time I’ve ever thought a film would be better with some Lloyd Webber songs in it!

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