I like to think that the musical genres that I like to listen to are pretty diverse, pulling from all sorts of musical styles. Today, I thought that it would be interesting to analyze some of my favorite musicals and see what type of musical genre I like well… more than the rest.
To me, “Classical Broadway” is practically anything from 1920-1960 or anything that follows this musical style (there have been a few of these in more recent years). Musicals that I immediately think of when I think of “Classical Broadway” are ANNIE GET YOUR GUN, SOMETHING ROTTEN!, ANNIE, CAROUSEL, OKLAHOMA!, and SHE LOVES ME (and maybe STARLIGHT EXPRESS). I don’t think that this is, by any means, my favorite musical genre but it is a good one and I do enjoy listening to music from these musicals from time-to-time. I think that the greatest thing about these more classical era musicals is their strength in dance choreography and overall ensemble involvement.
CLASSIC ORCHESTRA MUSICALS
What I mean by “Classic Orchestra Musicals” is along the lines of musicals like LES MISÉRABLES, THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, ROGERS AND HAMMERSTEIN’S CINDERELLA, OLIVER!, SCROOGE, THE SOUND OF MUSIC, JEKYLL & HYDE, etc. I’d say that this is one of my favorite musical genres. I was brought up listening to very classical music such as the music of Johann Sebastian Bach and Mozart and I think that that has had an influence on my taste in musicals as well. I thoroughly enjoy listening to musicals being performed in other languages (especially in German, Dutch, French, and Spanish). I think that these are the most interesting when it comes to differences in orchestral quality and orchestral choices from country to country.
CLASSICAL… WITH A TWIST
These are the musicals that follow most of the rules of the “Classic Orchestra Musicals” that I just talked about but they add a little bit of a more modern twist to them. Musicals that fit under this category are ELISABETH, TANZ DER VAMPIRE, MARIE ANTOINETTE: DAS MUSICAL, JEKYLL & HYDE, RENT, WICKED, and THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA. I feel like STARLIGHT EXPRESS could also fit under this category. I do not know enough about REBECCA to know whether or not it would fit here or not but from what I have heard, it does. Oddly enough, the musicals that I have listed here (with the exceptions of THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, WICKED, RENT, and JEKYLL & HYDE) have either been created in Germany or Austria or have been immensely successful in those countries. I must say that some of my favorite musicals do make it onto this list as well.
MODERN AND ALMOST FUTURISTIC
Some of the musicals that I like to put into this category are WICKED, NEXT TO NORMAL, THE LAST FIVE YEARS, and STARLIGHT EXPRESS. These musicals are musicals that are modern in style (though WICKED, I feel, fits more under the genre above and is listed there as well). NEXT TO NORMAL is, for the most part, a pop/rock-style musical. STARLIGHT EXPRESS could fit under so many of the other categories but I feel like the music style is very modern and that the costumes, set design, and concept are also modern and almost futuristic in a sense. THE LAST FIVE YEARS has an interesting, modern story concept and story-telling style. The music is also fairly modern.
After looking through these lists, I think that my favorite musical genres probably have to be the “Classical Orchestra Musicals” and “Classical… With a Twist” musicals. What do you think is your favorite musical genre if you had to choose one or two?