Anything Goes when it comes to a musical

West End, theatre, musical, culture, London, Gemma Hirst, Kettle Mag
Written by GemmHirst

“Anything Goes” – That is how I feel when it comes to musicals, since the big green ogre Shrek came to stage it appears that anything goes when it comes to a new musical.

I am a great fan and have much respect for the art of musical and have seen many productions such as Wicked. It is productions like this that are great and have been created for the stage. 

So when we a film turns is adapted to a stage version I am some what curious as to what it is going to be like. I question what it is going to be like and how it translates to the stage. There has been some questionable shows made, but when I see a musical adaption of a film, I am not so sure it is going to work, for a bad musical that has been purposely made for the stage is better than a musical that has originally been made for the big screen.

Lets start with Shrek, or Shrek The Musical should I say, that was based on the 2001 DreamWorks film Shrek and the 1990 book. In 2008 it launched on Broadway in New York and only lasted for 12 months.

In 2011 they changed the musical by reducing the whole razzle and dazzle, changing and removing characters and cutting certain musical numbers. to appeal to the British audience and the show managed to extend the show dates because of it. It also won a Olivier Award. I had heard mixed reviews about it some were not sure it had the same atmosphere and energy as the film did and others said it brought the characters to life.

In London Shrek The Musical did many performances and ended in 2013. Fear not though, for there is going to be a 2015 UK tour. 

Yet a performance like Legally Blonde which was a film made  by Robert Luketic in 2001 was a real hit with Reese Witherspoon staring as the main role. Winning her a Best Actress in a Motion Picture Award.  The film was a great success after making it to a sequel in 2003. Leading to more success the film turned into a musical and was a real hit. Legally Blonde The Musical premiered in 2007 and led to 5 star reviews in London West End. 

Perhaps it is the story and how it is translated out onto the stage, or the way it was created as different directors have different visions as to how they would like the film to portray onto stage for it to lack luster. Or perhaps it could be due to the fact that the audience simply do not understand the way the movie is portrayed onto the musical for it not to work. 

Often seeing your favourite film characters on stage can make them relatable thus enjoying the musical better. Sometimes it can work because it represents the film to a point where the musical is better than the film and develops the story more than the film did. 

What do you think? Have your say in the comments section below.