I was reading a post about the AMA on Reddit where the person who played Big Bird and Oscar The Grouch told this very heartfelt story that is making almost everyone cry. It is an incredible one where he called a boy who has cancer and was the last person the boy spoke too. After they hung up, the boy smiled and told his Dad Big Bird was his friend, closed his eyes and died.
The Dad said the boy hadn’t smiled in months and to watch his son finally be happy and at peace was the biggest blessing. There aren’t many people that can bring that much love and happiness into the world. That’s why people like Jim Henson will always be icons.
Not only did he create characters like Big Bird that everyone knows and loves, but he also created The Muppets. The Muppets have had tons of incredible talents on their show over the years and one that I hadn’t seen before was the tribute song to Jim Henson when he died. They sang a song called Just One Person.
When I went to YouTube to get the video for the tribute to Jim Henson, I found a different version. Apparently one of their guest stars had also performed Just One Person with Robin and Kermit the Frog on the program. Oddly enough, that person is famous for playing make believe characters as well. It’s Bernadette Peters.
If there is one song that is absolutely gorgeous and amazing and not many people remember until they hear it, it has to be Unexpected Song from the Andrew Lloyd Webber’s show Song & Dance. Not only is this one of my favorite Andrew Lloyd Webber songs, but when you have someone like Bernadette Peters singing it you have an amazing team. Bernadatte Peters offers her voice which is a mix of musical theatre and opera to a gorgeous love song from an Andrew Lloyd Webber show and you have one of the most amazing combinations in theatre history. This is also the song that I couldn’t remember the name of that Julie James sang when I went to see Live on Broadway in NYC.
I miss Andrew Lloyd Webber shows because he has always created the best music with some of the best singers. The music is memorable and gorgeous and almost any of his love ballads are the perfect songs for first dances at weddings. Unexpected Song from Song & Dance is one of those songs that I love and is definitely one that will be on the play list for my wedding day, if I ever get married.
It won’t be played while we are eating dinner or walking down the isle, but it is perfect for pre-wedding drinks and conversation as well as when people are sitting in the chapel or synagogue and waiting for the wedding party to start entering the building. Unexpected Song from Song and Dance is one of my favorite broadway showtunes by Andrew Lloyd Webber and one that I hope you will love as well. If you love this song or any of the other songs from Song & Dance, feel free to leave a comment below and maybe we’ll post it as one of our next showtunes posts.
So fall is here and everyone is getting the urge to find a boyfriend or a girlfriend to cuddle up with when the nights get chilly and winter starts to set in. I can see in chat rooms people wanting dates instead of hookups or one night stands and everyone is back into romance and not caring as much about their diets since summer is over. The fun thing about fall is that since you have Summer behind you and everyone wants someone to spend the winter with you can bring out the popcorn and pop in a movie instead of having cocktails on the beach and snuggle up with someone you hope to fall in love with.
You have halloween and horror movies that give you the excuse to not only wear extremely fun halloween pajamas, but also to spend that first night cuddled up together because you are scared from the movie…or at least can use that as the excuse. After you have those first couple nights together you begin to fall in love and soon enough Thanksgiving is here and it is time to start dating seriously and meet the other person’s family. Soon after you have your first Christmas together as a couple and may even get to say your very first I love you. A week later you are toasting your new relationship with a glass of champagne and welcoming in the new years and it all began because people want to fall in love in the fall. With everyone looking for love and falling in love with the fall it made me remember one of my favorite songs from one of my favorite broadway stars Bernadette Peters. Bernadette Peters sang a song from the show Cinderella called Falling in love with love.
The song is a satire of people falling in love because they are in love. Instead they should fall in love with the idea of marriage and moving forward in society. Back when Cinderella would have been alive arranged marriages were common and just like in Fiddler on the Roof people would marry based on wealth and how they can move forward in society. Although that is not very common in the USA now a days, people actually thought and believed it was the right thing to do and Bernadette Peters makes an excellent person to sing this satirical song. I was asked to go on a date and am not sure if I am going to because for me, I don’t think I will be falling in love anytime soon, then again you never know when love will find you.
Here is Falling in Love with Love from Cinderella and sung by Bernadette Peters.
Ok, so a huge giant gasp of air just left my lungs when I saw a headline in the Washington Post about the talented and one of my personal favorites, Ms. Bernadette Peters coming to Washington DC to star in a revival show of one of Stephen Sondheim‘s greatest musicals, Follies. Not only did I almost go to see Bernadette Peters star in another Stephen Sondheim show, A Little Night Music with Elaine Stritch (who I love from Stephen Sondheim’s show Company with the song Ladies Who Lunch), but I have had an insane obsession with Bernadette’s Voice ever since I saw Into The Woods (another Stephen Sondheim show) when I was younger.
Bernadette Peters is not only an amazing actress and singer, but when you combine her talent with Stephen Sondheim’s music and shows and with the number of revival shows coming back (Promises Promises, La Cage Au Follies, A Little Night Music, etc….) this is one that may end up making its way back to NYC and broadway.
One of my very favorite songs from Stephen Sondheim’s Follies is definitely I’m Still Here. Its not only fun to sing but it is also a fun one to dance to and sing a long with at karaoke nights. It is one of those fabulous songs that everyone knows and loves but doesn’t always remember unless someone brings it up. Unfortunately I don’t think that Bernadette Peters has the right voice for this as I think the song should be sung by someone whose voice is more rough and deep, but then again with her ability to morph her voice from a gorgeous light and opera sounding voice and her ability to hold a solid note, she may be able to pull it off or turn it into her own version.
I cannot wait for Bernadette Peters and Follies to open up at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC and when tickets go on sale I will definitely be one of the first to get them. Watch out broadway, another $6 million revival show is coming to NYC.
One of the shows that I think really ended up making me fall in love with Broadway and always be a permanent fan has got to be a classic Stephen Sondheim show, Into the Woods. Into the woods is a story about life lessons, greed, envy, happiness, love, sharing, adultery and pretty much everything else the Church warns you about and adds in some music and dancing. There is murder and plotting and even love and shopping and while you’re watching the mass chaos of a show with a million twists and turns, you’re also watching it from the perspective of your favorite childhood characters acting it out from their own perspectives.
Into the woods is actually the story of storybook characters coming to life and how they interact with each other. You have Cinderella and her ugly stepsisters. You have Red Riding Hood and an anatomically correct Big Bad Wolf. A Rapunzel who is locked in a tower by a Wicked Witch. Jack who climbs a bean stock and disobeys his mother. You have kings and princes, you have mentions of Snow White and you have the Baker and his Wife and many more of your favorite storybook characters. The thing that you have to remember is that the actual storybook stories aren’t always the way that Disney likes to make you think they happened.
Disney is about making everything have a happy ending and removing all of the gore and bad parts of stories. Into the Woods on Broadway actually kept the original story lines and even though I love the Disney version I have to say that the original stories are much better. You have the stepsisters cutting off their feet to fit into glass slippers and you have Cinderella talking to a tree which represents her Mother instead of a Fairy Godmother (which Whitney Houston did an amazing job performing in the Movie version of Cinderella starring Brandy). You have all of the characters living their lives the way the stories were originally told and then slowly each of them find one way or another to interact with each other and eventually everyone ends up in one big fairy tale with all of their paths crossed and you finally get to see who the hero’s are and who is really a coward. I love that the Witch turns out to be the smart one, not necessarily the “nice” one but the practical one. You have the people who want to do only good but never really address that while saving one or two lives they still murder someone else. I hate that the show doesn’t ever bring that part up but then again it would end up being an extra half hour if they had to. I almost feel bad for the female Giant who ends up getting slaughtered because of decision of the Hero’s to protect themselves and the two kids they end up taking on as their own. The Witch in Into the Woods is who sold me on the show originally.
I was in my car and heard a rap about vegetables on a mixtape and thought it was the coolest thing. I still have no idea where it came from. When I asked everyone I knew who sang it it turned out to be none other than the fabulous Bernadette Peters playing the title role of the Witch. Not only did I become a fan of the show but I also became a fan of Bernadette Peters and quickly went to go find other shows she had been in. The thing is that even though you may fall in love with a cast or a certain voice playing a part, if it was before YouTube.com or they never recorded that cast then the talent and show is lost forever to the people who were not able to get to see the show in person. Luckily when it came to Into the Woods, the cast that starred Bernadette Peters was recorded and released on video so I not only got to see her perform the character of the Wicked Witch but I also got to watch it over and over again.
The songs from Into the Woods have been made famous not only because of the fact that they were in a Stephen Sondheim show and performed by Bernadette Peters, but other famous singers and Broadway Stars like Barbra Streisand have picked up the songs and made their own twists on them. The soundtrack to Into the Woods is one of the most beautiful soundtracks if you like classic musical theatre. They don’t have the ballads or ensemble of Andrew Lloyd Weber or the fun and exciting styles of Rent or Rock Operas but what they do have is the timeless and classic Stephen Sondheim touch and spirit that every broadway fan loves.
Into the Woods is an amazing show and perfect for almost all ages. The show would be boring and probably not one parents would want little kids to see but if you have teenagers and older kids and want a fun night out at the theatre, you cannot go wrong with Into the Woods if you want to watch your favorite childhood fairy tales come to life and all of them get mixed together. I give Into the Woods 3 out of 5 stars.