The art of musicals that endures over time

Lhe union between music and acting does not have a defined date, however it is known that opera was a precedent for the emergence of this genre that would quickly reach the entire world. The musicals arose far from the elites of the opera and closer to other realities, they have reflected “light” themes as well as cultural and social themes, adapting to each stage and time in which they were developed.

Around the 20s of the 20th century, musicals took a risk by addressing themes that were not typical, they changed their language to one that was adapted to each social group. Since then, not only the interpreters were important, but also the narration and the story that was told. Raising issues that no one dared to mention and in a creative way on stage.

Currently there are musicals for adults, youth and children. These address socio-cultural issues, dramas, literary classics and film adaptations. Between singing, dancing, music and acting, performers of this genre bring to life well-known stories perhaps through books or movies. The musical is the art that expresses everything from French literature to the best-known Disney fantasies. There are millions of musicals that exist today, here we highlight some of them.

Based on a novel, The Phantom of the Opera deals with a sentimental struggle between love, hope and hate. It is one of the highest grossing musicals of all time. On the other hand, there is Mamma Mia, a musical inspired by ABBA songs and which debuted in 1999 in London. In addition, it is necessary to mention Chicago, a play that premiered on Broadway in 1975, although it was presented for 15 years in London.

Mary Poppins has also been a successful musical. Premiered in 2004 and recognized by Oliver and Tony awards, it was represented in more than 25 countries. Among the most famous is the musical Les Miserables, considered one of the most important works of the 19th century and presented in more than 40 countries. Finally, one of the most remembered musicals is Jesus Christ Superstar, released in 1971 and presented in more than 40 countries, also nominated for five Tony Awards.

Musicals, over the years, have been adapting to the new generations without losing the essence of what they transmit par excellence in each musical note, in each scene, in each detail. The musical is art that transmits dreams, fantasies, denunciations, mysteries, romance and longings.

Over the years, a relationship was also forged between musicals and the seventh art. The result was great stories brought to the big screen. What’s more, some of these pieces won Oscars and the recognition of experts.

This is the case of La la land, city of dreams. This 2016 film narrates the love story between Mia Dolan (Emma Stone) and Sebastian Wilder (Ryan Gosling). She plays an aspiring Hollywood star and he’s a jazz musician with artistic yearnings for him. Set in Los Angeles, La la land makes a reference to other historical film productions. It was one of the 2016 Oscar-winning films; it had 14 nominations and won six gold statuettes.

In 2001 there was another tape that received a lot of applause. This is Moulin Rouge (Love in Red). The film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and brought the genre back to the fore, as it was the first musical nominated for an Oscar for best film in 10 years. Set in the French capital of 1900, the one who stole most of the attention was the actress Nicole Kidman when she played Satine, the woman whose feelings were conflicted by the love of two men. This story won two Oscars.

Another of the musical tapes that managed to make the movie audience fall in love was Evita, in 1996. The film features a stellar performance by actress Madonna. The film was written and directed by the British Alan Parker and was shot in both Argentina and Hungary. At first, the work in Buenos Aires met with resistance, but in the end it managed to consolidate a first-rate piece.

One of the most emblematic interpretations of this tape is Don’t cry for me Argentina (Don’t cry for me Argentina). The piece became a hymn that left the stage and took over different historical moments in the neighboring country.

Madonna was in the starring role of Evita, the “standard bearer of the humble” and wife of former Argentine president Juan Domingo Perón. Along with her acted the Spanish Antonio Banderas. Later on and in order not to interpose ideologies, it was decided that this character, that of Che, would become the narrator of the story. He is like an ally of the public that is reeling off the story.

Evita, by Alan Parker, was carried out in great detail, for example the actress made 85 costume changes during filming. In addition, she wore 39 hats, 45 pairs of shoes, 56 earrings, and 42 different hairstyles. With these figures, she entered the Guinness Book of Records as the actress with the most costume changes.

That acting display and the musical itself was well received by critics and Evita won three Golden Globes: best musical film, actress (Madonna) and song (You Must Love Me).

The story of Eva Duarte de Perón captivates from the artistic point of view and over the years she became a world musical benchmark that captivated great stars of the art world. For example, on Broadway where the Puerto Rican singer Ricky Martin shone.

Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s work of walking the world will come to La Paz. The national production company FeniX Music. Evita, the musical will be presented on the 24th, 25th and 26th of this month at the Alberto Saavedra Pérez Municipal Theater.

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