LauraLeZunzu wrote:And, why does every musical theatre fan hate Crowe?
Cuneas wrote:I got just far enough to realize he was serious with the 'fanfic' comparison. Then I couldn't watch any further. I'm sorry, Paw. I think you're a really smart guy and I have a secret dream of one day actually being personal friends with you, but that was a pretty reductive and juvenile view of a work that is much more sophisticated than you seem to realize.
As someone who actually made it through Ethan Mordden's insane but fascinating seven-volume set on the American musical, I'm armed with a more mature insight that never occurred to Paw, presumably because his primary source of experience is Film Musicals. "1776" doesn't seem all that odd if you're approaching it from that perspective, because Film Musicals, as an overall genre, don't really have an archetypical format. But if you view it from the perspective of the Broadway musical it started out as, it is a complete break from almost anything resembling the normal Broadway format. Frankly, it seems more influenced by the _plays_ popular on Broadway at the time, and it's often been observed that its ultra-literate script could have supported it without the songs. As Ethan Morrden put it, regarding a similarly reductive Pauline Kael review, "Only someone who had never seen a stage musical would sniff out formula in "1776", a show without precursor or successor."
This is why I've always thought you guys need a _real_ Broadway nerd to cover this stuff. I mean someone who's really immersed in the culture...someone who has a large collection of cult flop cast albums; someone who reads Mordden and Mandelbaum; someone who can namedrop people like Elizabeth Swados and Michael John LaChiusa and actually know what they're talking about. A kind of younger, hipper Peter Filichia type, basically. The best we've got is Paw, and as smart and talented as he is, there are times...like now...when he doesn't seem to get the culture.
Hell, _I'd_ volunteer for the job I just described, but I don't have the performing charisma to succeed in front of a camera. That's why I've pretty much stuck to the written stuff on my own site. But seriously, you need a genuine, hardcore Broadway nerd on your site, as a consultant if nothing else, just to make sure this kind of thing doesn't keep happening.
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