Musical Theatre Nerd Alert–Ep. 7

Hey, nerds!

Over the course of this past year, our class studied dozens of composers.  Some fell into specific categories:  we studied virtuosos like Gershwin and Hamlisch; we studied musicologists like Yeston and Tesori; and we studied tunesmiths like Berlin and Arlen.  The tunesmiths were a remarkable breed in that they were able to dip into a seemingly bottomless pool of melodies and continually draw forth something fresh.  King among them was Jule Styne.  Right now, my two-year-old roommate Rebekah is watching Peter Pan; did you know that Jule Styne wrote a great deal of that music?  And how about Gypsy, the pinnacle of the Golden Age book musical?  Yep, he wrote that too.

Serving as your host and guide through the life and music of Jule Styne:  yours truly, Bradley J.

Well, folks, that’s a wrap on this season of Musical Theatre Nerd Alert.  Does your inner nerd feel fortified?  We would love some feedback.  Comment below or on our YouTube page about what you thought of this series.  If we did a season two, what would you like to see?

PREVIOUSLY:  Episode 6–Kikau on Frank Loesser

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Musical Theatre Nerd Alert–Ep. 5

“Randall!”  Though the Nerd Alert series is littered with inside jokes, one that didn’t make it is the now iconic way our class pronounces the name “Randall.”  One day, our dearest Randall offered a snide remark at some situation, and Liv retorted with a look and a delivery of his name that was one half chastising, one half exasperated, and one pinch Danish.

When it comes to names in musical theatre, the layman might not recognize the name Harold Arlen, and yet his songs are among the most recognizable of the 20th Century.  Most notably, he wrote “Over the Rainbow” and other numbers for The Wizard of Oz.  His massive contributions to the Great American Songbook include “I’ve Got the World on a String,” “Get Happy,” and “Stormy Weather.”  Undoubtedly, most Americans know his songs even if they don’t know his name.

The ladies of #sdsumtmfa16 did a great job starting off the series, but now it’s the guys’ turn.  After Randall, Kikau will be sharing all the ways that Loesser is greater.  I’ll be wrapping up the series with the incomparable Jule Styne.  Then, season two?  We’ll see.

PREVIOUSLY:  Episode 4–Julia on Rodgers and Hart

UP NEXT:  Episode 6–Kikau on Frank Loesser

Musical Theatre Nerd Alert–Ep. 4

Hey, nerds!

Before there was Rodgers and Hammerstein, there was a different “R&H”:  Rodgers and Hart.  Today, we meet “Dick and Larry”, as well as yet another fabulous member of the MFA class, Julia Cuppy.  Aside from being a terrific carpool buddy and fellow former high school teacher, you also might be interested to know that she is the Executive Producer of Libretto Media, who produced our web series.  Musical Theatre Nerd Alert is the first project for this fledgling company, and it really wouldn’t have taken off had it not been for Julia.

Back to our duo du jour, Rodgers and Hart had a difficult partnership at times, but it was one that produced some remarkable songs.  Dick’s completely hummable melodies combined with Larry’s clever lyrics made them an impressive team.  Enjoy episode three!

PREVIOUSLY:  Episode 3–Courtney on Oscar Hammerstein II

UP NEXT:  Episode 5–Randall on Harold Arlen

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