Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Random Top Ten

Random Top Ten!!

Top Ten Adam Guettel Songs

10. “The Beauty Is” – A delicate song about being on the threshold of adulthood, about being ready for responsibility and for consequences.

9. “The Riddle Song” – A great scene/song that closes out Act II of Floyd Collins. Floyd is trapped underground in a cave and his brother refuses to let him lose hope by getting him to relive childhood fun. Stephen Sondheim has called this one of the songs he “wishes [he] wrote,” so there you go.

8. “The Light in the Piazza” – A gorgeous ballad, with Guettel’s trademark understatement shining through.

7. “Let’s Walk” - More from The Light in the Piazza. The ingenue's parents discuss the difficulties inherent in letting their children grow up.

6. “Fable” – The finale to The Light in the Piazza. Note the Sondheim allusion at the opening, with a very Into the Woods-esque vamp introducing the lyrics about "looking in the forest" for a "prince to appear."

5. “The Carnival” - A basically instrumental piece from Floyd Collins that plays as the media circus overtakes the town (think Baby Jessica eighty years earlier with a young man instead of a toddler).

4. “The Ballad of Floyd Collins” - A dead-on pastiche of a folk ballad, used to introduce the show in lieu of an overture and in a eerie, angry reprise later.

3. “Dividing Day” - Light in the Piazza again. Clara (the mother) ponders when her marriage went from one of love one of convenience, ponders when that "dividing day" was. An achingly melancholy and pensive melody.

2. “Migratory V” - Guettel gets a lot of the beauty and power in his music through harmonic language and effects and odd rhythms. But here a pure, pristine melody drives the song, a beautiful hymn to the power of what people can accomplish in communion with one another.

1. “How Glory Goes”- The finale to Floyd Collins, with a dying Floyd asking God what heaven will be like. Heartbreaking.

Until Whenever

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