Everyone loves a Musical. Never the art form to do things by halves, musicals employ every artistic means at their disposal to conjure up a garish world of singing and dancing that employ a whole kaleidoscope of varying disciplines and forms. It is for this reason perhaps that they are so incredibly and enduringly popular: there will always be an aspect of musicals that will entice you into loving them. Whether you be attracted to theatre, song or dance, one of the many aspects happening on stage will be sure to enthral and delight. But it is the musical’s art of bring all differing aspects together in a beautiful and mutually enhancing blend that has projected it to such a huge level of continuing popularity.
Not only this, but the musical’s appeal can be traced to it’s populist approach that it superbly balances with often incredible artistic integrity. The main genius of the musical is that it manages to balance it’s form as a celebratory carnival of the arts whilst still maintaining it’s place at the very centre of popular culture. Think how important and wonderful a fact that is: every year millions flock to London to catch the latest new hits or interpretations of classics at the famous West End. Why don’t you join them? Here at Boxoffice.co.uk we have a wide range of tickets for the greatest shows that you simply cannot afford to miss. This means that there is even less excuse on not allowing yourself to enjoy this fantastic art form and let the magic of musicals into your life.
Musicals are not a new thing and have been an intrinsic part of human culture since the dawn of time: the plays of Sophocles, Euripides and Aeschylus would have been (in their original formats) not all that removed from our current musicals, as they featured moments of dialogue and pure theatre intercut with a chorus who sung, danced and acted in-between. This developed eventually into the high art form of opera, which, though beautiful and incredibly rewarding, does not share the musical’s widespread popular appeal. It was for this reason that the opera buffa became the operetta, lining itself with bawdy humour and catchy melody based arias that would be more safe and sympathetic to a greater amount of people. In this format the potential of the musical was realised: the effectiveness of the comedy from the music and the drama combined was show-stopping, and composers and audiences began to feel the art form’s innate pulling power.
But it was with the advent of the exciting world of jazz and blues that musicals really found their feet: they became electrified with these new sounds and the hedonistic age that the end of the great war had ushered in. In this giant blender of jazz, operetta, vaudeville and theatre, the modern musical emerged: a cohesive and realistic narrative populated by loveable and believable characters, all bolstered by an intense and exciting score of wonderful tunes.
The history of musicals has been populated by some of the greatest talents working in any musical format. The most famous of these would of course be Andrew Lloyd Webber, one of the successful musicians in any genre or time period. His musicals understand and arrest the very core of the art form’s appeal: he manages the genre’s definitive elements in a such an expert way as to create classic after classic. His hits are numerous, including those with collaborator Tim Rice such as the joyful and tuneful Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, the rock-opera that is Jesus Christ Superstar, the classically beautiful Evita; his other works contains such amazing hits as the TS Eliot inspired Cats, the show-stopping Phantom of the Opera and the hugely inventive Starlight Express.
Though not as famous as Lloyd Webber, the musicals of Stephen Sondheim are loved the world over for their daring originally as well as their wonderful music. Whilst Lloyd Webber tends to play to the crowd, Sondheim has been at the helm of some of the most wonderful dramatic innovations. He has an excellent oeuvre of well respected work, such as the hilarious A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, the childlike wonder of Into The Woods and the darkly-dramatic Sweeney Todd. Sondheim’s inventiveness is something to be seen in the flesh, and even the most jaded of musical-goers are sure gain a new lease of life in their doubtless appreciation of his work.
And you will most certainly be aware of the wonderful work of the hugely talented Rodgers and Hammerstein, a writing duo whose excellent work went to define what is known as the golden age of the musical, and are enjoyed as fervently today as they were in the heat of their moment. They excelled at blending drama with music in the genre’s earlier days, combining often darkly realistic backdrops with affecting and uplifting music. You will almost surely be aware of their many classic hits, such as the simple beauty of Oklahoma!, the exceptional Carousel, the monumentally important South Pacific, and the heartwarming The King and I.
With a huge variety of classic and modern musicals being performed around the country pretty much throughout the whole year, there is every reason to get yourself some tickets and get the musical experience first hand. Boxoffice.co.uk is an excellent resource for taking those first few steps into the glory of the West End, or getting in the performance of that all-important show that excites your passions no matter how many times you see it. Musicals are one of the defining art forms of the last century, but not only that, they’re a great deal of fun: so go on and get yourself some tickets, you’re sure to have a blast.