Monday, July 11, 2011

We Built This Show on Rock and Roll

I ushered for the Broadway musical Rock of Ages last week. This is relevant to your interest (possibly) not just because it’s a musical but also because it’s a show that takes popular 80s rock songs and plots a story around them. Because of this, I found the songs to be really good but the story to be really ridiculous. For those of you who have seen Mamma Mia or Movin’ Out, you know how silly a story can get when it’s cobbled together from existing music.
Overall, the show was pretty entertaining. The lead role was played by Constantine Maroulis, a finalist from season four of “American Idol”, and he was fabulous. I’m not really an “American Idol” fan, but this guy had both talent and stage presence, making him very fun to watch. The actress who played his romantic counterpart was also good. Apparently she previously won one of those casting reality shows in Canada based on The Sound of Music called “How Do You Solve a Problem like Maria?”. Haha. I wish they would air that here.
The show was not so good, however, that producers should rush a screen version into immediate production to be released in 2012, which is exactly what happened. It seems like they’re just trying to cash in on the current trend of musical-type shows based on already familiar music, e.g. “Glee”. Also, while a movie version could be really cool, the current casting outlook looks like a bunch of big names not necessarily appropriate for the roles. For example, Tom Cruise is slated to be the wildly sexy lead singer of an 80s hair band. I cannot think of someone less appropriate. The rest of the casting news is here. My favorite comment is: “It's like [Director] Adam Shankman hasn't even seen the Broadway show!” Yes. Yes, it is like that.

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