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Friday, October 4, 2013

Books to Music: Daddy Long Legs

Posted by Charlene // Tags: , ,
It's been nearly two months now
Since I wrote you last
You can't imagine my regrets
Still it wasn't very nice not to write.

I so regret not seeing this musical when it was near me a few years ago because I love the music!  It is based on the novel by Jean Webster and written by Paul Gordon who wrote the music and lyrics for Jane Eyre the Musical which I also love.  Because the book is a series of letters, the songs are basically the letters sung through, and to keep that intimate setting, the show features only two actors, Megan McGinnis as Jerusha and Robert Adelman Hancock as Jervis.  Jerusha leads the musical of course as she sings her story and either acts it out or sings in harmony with Jervis.  It's a great balance between the two in revealing character and story through the letters, and of a necessity the songs have to bear much of the storytelling.

While in "Jane Eyre" Paul Gordon's music is much darker and romantic, "Daddy Long Legs" has a lighter feel with gorgeous melodies that emphasize the emotion of the characters.  And the singers each capture their parts expertly, especially Megan McGinnis' clear, youthful soprano voice.  The music in this show brings out the charm and whimsy of the original novel while also showing the progressive growth of Jerusha from teenager to a young woman.  It's a gorgeous little show, which I hope to see someday!

Song Spotlight: I Couldn't Know Someone Less
This is my favorite song from the show!  Jerusha is angry because her benefactor won't let her leave the farm to vacation with her friends, and while she is almost apologetically angry and tries to temper her hurt in the beginning, the lyrics get progressively despairing and reproachful.  The emotion comes through so well in the lyrics and in the soft slow beginning of the music and the emotional surge halfway through.  Another thing I love about this song is how the lyrics show so much about Jerusha's character, her hopes and dreams, and her current, stagnant life on the farm.  This song packs a lot into it, in my opinion, and is a great character piece.

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2 comments:

  1. I LOVE this book and this musical! It just melts my heart everytime. Great choice!

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    1. Yes, heart melting is a great way to describe it! It's so beautifully done!

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