Watching Musicals from 1950's to 1990's
I enjoy watching musicals both from the screen and on stage. As a younger person and going to the movies in Singapore 50's, catching these shows was an exciting part of my life. I was in my early teens and it was easy to take a straight bus from St. Andrew's School to the cinema near Prinsep Street.
Happy talk, keep talking happy talk
Then came the 60's and The King and I, West Side Story, My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music, Camelot and a host of other musicals came along. With a little bit more money I had nasi padang (local Malay dishes eaten with rice) at the Rendezvous Restaurant near Bencoolen Street. It was a small coffee shop then fronted by the Malay rice stall.
In with the 70's and its disco musical like Grease and Saturday Night Fever. I was too busy with studies, work and left Singapore for New Zealand where I managed to catch our university production of rock musical, Hair and the Australian production of, Jesus Christ Superstar in Sydney.
St Martins Theatre showing The Mousetrap
It was only in the 80's and 90's when I started visiting London to actually patronize the theatres at the West End that made loving musicals all the more thrilling. My first stage performance wasn't a musical but a long-running play called, The Mousetrap.
If I remember correctly, I had stayed at a hotel near the St. Martin's Theatre and was invited by the smiling and persuasive concierge to buy a 20 pound ticket to watch the show. Twenty English Pounds was a lot of money in the 80's, about $160.
My return to the hotel to look for the concierge cheat that night proved fruitless because he was off duty. When I left the next morning, I found out he was on leave. There was no point making a complaint because I was leaving for Aberdeen, Scotland and wasn't returning to the capital. A bad experience indeed. Bottom line, never trust a hotel concierge too much!
These were enjoyable trips and we had always managed to catch musicals on stage like Cats, Phantom of The Opera, Miss Saigon, Song and Dance, Les Miserables and the truly fab Starlight Express. We also learnt that theatre tickets were cheap at Leicester Square if we queued up for them much earlier in the day. We wanted to but never did.
Are you blind when you're born? Can you see in the dark?
Dare you look at a king? Would you sit on his throne?
Can you say of your bite that it's worse than your bark?
Are you cock of the walk when you're walking alone?**
Those were fun years. But that's another story.
Do you love musicals? Pray tell.
(This post is dedicated to Jan Cheong and CYLin who both love musicals.)
Not in any order:
Stranger In Paradise
Baubles, Bangles And Beads
Paint Your Wagon:
I Talk To The Trees
Almost Like Being In Love
Seven Brides for Seven Brothers:
Bless Your Beautiful Hide
Oh What A Beautiful Morning
The Surrey With A Fringe On Top
Some Enchanted Evening
There Is Nothing Like A Dame