I'm half watching this reality tv program about casting the next Danny and Sandy for the Broadway revival of Grease. I'd seen lots of advertisements for it and heard two guys talking about it on the bus, last week. I thought, "Gee, that could be interesting. Watching auditons for Grease. Scenes from the show, some choreography and some singing... sounds fun." Well, it's not. Or, tonight it's not. They just sing. It's like watching American Idol--of which I've seen about 15 minutes, once--except they're singing pop songs sans the vocal gymnastics. Well, it's not what I expected. I was talking with my friend, Maia, who called after it had been on long enough for me to watch two contestants, and I mentioned the American Idol comparison. We came up with the idea that for the public, the singing aspect is the most accesible. It's viceral and can be emotive and hits us on those levels in a way that watching a scene, out of the context of the whole play, probably would not. o. and it's being cast out of LA, not New York. Call me old fashioned. Call me naive. Broadway is to New York as Film is to LA. (Yes, I know they are not mutually exclusive. I'm just sayin'...it's for a BROADWAY SHOW!!! Why can't the auditions be in New York? If they'll fly to LA LA land, they'll fly to NYC. They have television stuios and stuido audiences there, too, don't they?) I really don't need to get all worked up over this. I doubt that I am going to watch it again.
The inspiration for this entry came not from the actual television program, but from my conversation with Maia. From the notion that music can be so tactile, emotionally. So, I'm going to share a little secret with you. About me and singing. When I am alone.
I love to play solitaire on my computer and listen to/sing along with sappy, silly, sad and happy love songs. For hours. In a row. At a fairly full volume. I have an ever expanding playlist that is added to and subtracted from, depending on my mood, of songs that I sing, aloud, with feeling while playing single player card games. The criteria is that the songs be very melodic, I have to know the words pretty well, melancholy themes are a plus and that it clicks in some way for me emotionally. Heartache, loveache, longing, earnestnest and sometimes even bliss--those are big winners. And isn't that the fun of music, anyway? You hear a song and somehow it precisely conjures up feelings you, yourself, have experienced and singing that song or even just hearing it puts you exactly in that place again. That connection is strong, it is immediate and it is full. I do like the singing. In the pseudo privacy of my apartment. I wonder what, if anything, my neighbors hear? In my version of reality experienced in my apartment, I have a good, solid singing voice. Not magnificent, but in tune and even interesting. Outside my apartment, I don't know. I'm too self concsious if I think someone can actually hear me sing which leads to not so good singing. I only want to be a pop star in my living room. And sometimes a broadway singing sensation, when i'm cleaning. Then it's Chess, City of Angels, Into the Woods and Les Mis all the way. Just for me. Audra MacDonald, watch out! Linnet's got the broom and she means to sweep.