Why the World Needs a Beyoncé Musical—and 18 Other Pop Stars Who Should Get One Too
The jukebox musical is a bonafide Broadway staple. Everyone from ABBA to Elvis and Billy Joel to The Beach Boys has been given the Great White Way treatment, and shows with Alanis Morissette's and Michael Jackson's hits are on their way. The big question on our minds is, What current artists' songs might we hear on Broadway in the future?
Listen up producers: We think these pop stars' songs have full-house potential.
Proposed title: Never Ever Getting Back Together
Why: Her exes definitely deserve (to be blasted with) the Broadway treatment. Just picture the montage possibilities.
Potential twist: A combined T. Swift and Kanye West musical called Imma Let You Finish
Fall Out Boy
Proposed title: Thnks fr th Mmrs
Why: If Green Day could do it with American Idiot, we think Fall Out Boy could make a musical too. Plus, teenage angst à la Be More Chill is selling well on Broadway these days.
Proposed title: The Monster Ball
Why: Can you imagine the costumes? We need an ensemble of Little Monsters (aka dancers) in raw meat dresses.
Proposed title: Last Friday Night
Why: The world needs an expanded version of the narrative from Perry's "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" video, starring her alter ego: nerdy teenager Kathy Beth Terry. Bonus points if Kenny G reprises his cameo from the video.
Proposed title: 8 Mile the Musical
Why: Movies turned musicals are often a lucrative formula, and an Eminem show could ride on the coattails of Hamilton's success with rap on Broadway.
Proposed title: Enter Sandman the Musical
Why: It's about time we put more heavy metal on the Great White Way. Metallica's discography is perfectly suited for a Brothers Grimm–style narrative. We're picturing a dark cautionary tale, helmed by the Sandman himself.
Proposed title: Babs the Musical
Why: She's already a certified Broadway and film star, so why not immortalize the Funny Girl's life onstage?
Proposed title: Who Run the World?
Why: Why not?! From Destiny's Child to her solo megastardom to her life with Jay-Z, there's so much ground to cover. And there'd be lots of dancing.
Proposed title: Heard It in a Past Life
Why: Though Rogers is just beginning her career, we have a feeling she'll leave an indelible mark on music. Her style lends itself to the quirky contemporary dance we'd like to see more of in musicals. Since Emma Portner already choreographed her "Fallingwater" video, it's not a shot in the dark.
Proposed title: Get the Party Started
Why: This one's got grit and spunk written all over it. And we'd love to see P!nk's acrobatic concert work incorporated into a stage show.
Proposed title: Living for the City
Why: His 1973 song "Living for the City," about a young black man faced with unjust incarceration, is just as relevant today. Sure, Wonder's songs are catchy, but this musical would go beyond the surface.
Proposed title: Go Your Own Way
Why: Simply put, it would be our guilty-pleasure-dream-come-true to hear songs like "The Chain," "Rhiannon" and "Dreams" on Broadway. In a 2013 interview with NPR, Mick Fleetwood even hinted that a play might be in the works.
Proposed title: Friends in Low Places
Why: As the best-selling solo albums artist in the U.S., Brooks has enough hits to generate multiple musicals. The synopsis of this one? A hodge-podge group of retired friends meets at their local watering hole to share their struggles and recount their glory days.
Proposed title: Hello, It's Adele
Why: Who doesn't need a cleansing cry? We envision minimal dancing but maximum soulful belting. Be prepared to break out the tissues.
Proposed title: Funkified
Why: No one makes you wanna get up and dance more than James Brown, and his signature slide-split move is stage-ready. Could this be a job for Sergio Trujillo?
Proposed title: Every Woman, the Whitney Houston Story
Why: Houston's complex life and long list of hits provide more than enough fodder for a musical that's more substantive than fluff.
Proposed titles: Still the One or Man, I Feel Like a Woman
Why: The singalong potential is oh-so-strong. So is the line dancing. Any Man of Miiiine...
Proposed titles: I Will Always Love You or Jolene
Why: Big hair. Sequins. Southern twang. The show could walk us through Parton's life or be a fictional narrative based on the song "Jolene."
Proposed title: Material Girl
Why: A show about this multi-decade star could go in so many directions, but an '80s throwback would be en vogue.
Whose music do you want to see in a Broadway show? Let us know in the comments.
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There's a rare moment in Broadway's Hadestown where the audience is able to breathe a sigh of relief. The smash-hit success is not well-known for being light-hearted or easy-going; Hadestown is a show full of workers and walls and, well, the second act largely takes place in a slightly modernized version of hell.
But deep into the second act, the show reaches a brief homeostasis of peace, one of those bright, shining moments that allows the audience to think "maybe it will turn out this time," as the character Hermes keeps suggesting.
After songs and songs of conflict and resentment, Hades, the king of the underground, and his wife, the goddess Persephone, rekindle their love. And, unexpectedly, they dance. It's one of the most compelling moments in the show.
Back in 2011 when Joe Lanteri first approached Katie Langan, chair of Marymount Manhattan College's dance department, about getting involved with New York City Dance Alliance, she was skeptical about the convention/competition world.
"But I was pleasantly surprised by the enormity of talent that was there," she says. "His goal was to start scholarship opportunities, and I said okay, I'm in."
Today, it's fair to say that Lanteri has far surpassed his goal of creating scholarship opportunities. But NYCDA has done so much more, bridging the gap between the convention world and the professional world by forging a wealth of partnerships with dance institutions from Marymount to The Ailey School to Complexions Contemporary Ballet and many more. There's a reason these companies and schools—some of whom otherwise may not see themselves as aligned with the convention/competition world—keep deepening their relationships with NYCDA.
Now, college scholarships are just one of many ways NYCDA has gone beyond the typical weekend-long convention experience and created life-changing opportunities for students. We rounded up some of the most notable ones:
There's always been something larger than life about choreographer Mark Morris. Of course, there are the more than 150 works he's made and that incisive musicality that makes dance critics drool. But there's also his idiosyncratic, no-apologies-offered personality, and his biting, no-holds-barred wit. And, well, his plan to keep debuting new dances even after he's dead.
So it should come as little surprise that his latest distinction is also a bit larger than life: The New York Landmarks Conservancy is adding Morris to its list of "Living Landmarks."
"The show must go on" may be a platitude we use to get through everything from costume malfunctions to stormy moods. But when it came to overcoming a literal hurricane, Houston Ballet was buoyed by this mantra to go from devastated to dancing in a matter of weeks—with the help of Harlequin Floors, Houston Ballet's longstanding partner who sprang into action to build new floors in record time.