Happy Hour #58: SQUIP - Super Quantum Unit Intel Podcast - ‘Be More Chill’

C-c-c-c’mon, c-c-c-c’mon, go, go! Get that Mountain Dew ready because it’s time to take your pill as we talk about the online musical sensation that has found its way out of its Tumblr existence and unprecedentedly burst into the mainstream - it’s Joe Iconis’ ‘Be More Chill!’ Join the guys as they work out exactly how this musical came to be the smash among the iGen, Jimi sends out a plea to 21st century audiences and Tommy makes a startling revelation about exactly how he feels about this show.

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Be More Chill (Original Cast Recording)

Amazon / iTunes / Spotify


Show Notes

For all you listeners under the age of 60 and living outside of the UK, here’s what Jimi meant by ‘Watch With Mother.’ It gave us ‘Muffin the Mule’ and ‘Andy Pandy.’ We’re eternally grateful.

Where my emos at? Do you agree with Jimi that there’s a certain Fall Out Boy flair to some of Iconis’ music? Just listen to ‘Pitiful Children!’ Also, all pictures of bad late noughties haircuts are welcome.

Would you want to listen to a podcast where Jimi reacts to Tommy reacting to Smash? Come and cast your vote over on Twitter!

How do you think this show deals with themes of teen anxiety compares to ‘Dear Evan Hansen’/’Mean Girls’/’Thirteen Reasons Why?’ Join the conversation over on Reddit!

The original novel that this musical is based on is pretty darn different in terms of plot. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth a read! Get it here!

Here’s a vlog from the team behind the Exit32 production of ‘Be More Chill.’ It doesn’t take much delving into the YouTube comments before you realise how fanatic these fans are!


There’s a pretty neat interview with Joe Iconis and George Salazar, who plays Michael, as they check out the cast album!  


A DREAMY QUIZ QUESTION

What show stars “actors” named Effie, Deena, and Lorrell but has nothing to do with Dreamgirls?


Hosted By

 Jimi

Jimi

 Tommy

Tommy

Happy Hour #57: Tragedy Tomorrow, Podcasting Tonight - ‘A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum’

It’s back to Ancient Rome we go for Stephen Sondheim’s first solo outing as a composer/lyricist with ‘A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum.’ This time around the block Jimi and Tommy discuss whether farce and musical theatre are good bedfellows or whether one negatively impacts the effects of the other, the boys reveal the impact that the McCarthy era had on this show and they get ready to premier their new collective drag persona - Shéva LaVey. 

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum (Original Broadway Cast)

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Show Notes

One of Jimi’s all-time favourite writers is Mr Larry Gelbart who wrote the very effective book for ‘Forum,’ but why not check out his own book - ‘Laughing Matters’ - filled with fascinating tidbits?

So whether it’s ‘The Mystery of Edwin Drood,’ ‘A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder,’ or ‘A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum’ (these shows don’t like short titles do they?) - what do you think? Does farce work on a musical theatre stage? Do the songs slow down the action? Come and tell us what you think!

Sondheim is quite open about the fact he’s down on his lyrics for this show. You can get all of them, including Hero’s fantastic cut Echo song, in Sondheim’s collection ‘Finishing the Hat’ - a staple for every musical theatre household.

Ruthie Henshall and Carol Burnett are among the groups who have taken Forum’s songs and put them to good use outwith the confines of the show itself. Here they are in Putting it Together with their rendition of ‘Lovely.’

Also check out one of the campest songs in all of musical theatre, ‘Everybody Ought to Have a Maid,’ at Sondheim’s birthday concert at the Proms!

If you’ve not seen the film, we’re not going to make you watch it. But we’d be interested to hear what you think about it if you have - let us know over on Twitter! If you’re curious anyway, here’s the link.

And finally for your viewing pleasure, enjoy this clip of Zero Mostel being awkward in a tuxedo-cum-toga at the 1971 Tony Awards.


AN EXCELLENT QUIZ QUESTION

Sadly, the musical adaptation of this Young Adult novel does NOT star Keanu Reeves as the antagonist. What could it be?


Hosted By

 Jimi

Jimi

 Tommy

Tommy

Happy Hour #56: We’re Still Podcasting - ‘The Last Five Years’

Get out the tissues to mop those eyes (or ball up and throw!) as the boys get deep with Jason Robert Brown’s classic ‘The Last Five Years.’ This week Jimi and Tommy weigh up who ‘wins’ in this show, if anyone, whether this piece is autobiographical or not - and whether autobiographical shows are appropriate, and debate the nature of creative jealousy, infidelity and Russell Crowe.

The Last Five Years (Original Broadway Cast)

Amazon / iTunes / Spotify

 


Show Notes

We got quite deep this week and we imagine there will be some hefty discussion on this one. So, Jamie or Cathy? Or neither? Or both? What do you think? Get on over to Reddit and tell us your thoughts!

The origins of this show were shaky to say the least. This Playbill article shines a light on how it all started.

Here’s a great interview with the man himself talking about the origins of the show and the musical theatre business in general.

If you’ve not seen the trailer, it’s definitely worth watching. Here’s the trailer for your perusal, and here’s the link to the movie!

Jimi gets down and dirty with his thoughts about critics constantly citing a lack of ‘hummable melodies’ and he wants to know your thoughts! Let him know over on Twitter!


AN AWARD WINNING QUIZ QUESTION

Every actor who opened as the leading role from our next musical has won the Tony Award for Best Acting - even when the role wasn’t in this musical. What is it?


Hosted By

 Jimi

Jimi

 Tommy

Tommy

Happy Hour #55: Way Down Podcastown - ‘Hadestown’

All aboard the Hades express as we travel the Road to Hell to explore Anais Mitchell’s underground hit ‘Hadestown.’ Jimi finally gets a chance to bring out his inner Ancient Greek Geek and delve into the myth behind the musical, the boys weigh up the state of Broadway as it currently is and discuss the importance of new blood in an art form like musical theatre.

Hadestown: The Myth. The Musical. (Original Cast Recording) [Live]

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Show Notes

Just a brief note: we recorded this podcast before the huge announcement that Hadestown is in fact coming to London in November. We can predict the future, who knew!

There aren’t many musicals that have come straight from a concept album, but this one certainly has! Get to know the history of Hadestown by checking out Anais Mitchell’s original album.

Want to swat up on your Greek mythology but can’t be bothered wading through textbooks, well pick up a copy of the book that started Jimi’s obsession a quarter of a century ago. It’s cute, there are pictures!

What are your thoughts about the idea that Broadway shows have to feel pressured to ‘think big’ Does it always work? Is it at detriment to the story? Is there a way to compete with the budgets of shows like Frozen? Get on over to Reddit and tell us your thoughts!

There are some great little videos made around the release of the cast album where Anais and Rachel take you through the meaning behind each number. It really helps show that this musical is a force to be reckoned with!

Are there any cast recordings or shows that you think are made infinitely better due to their Original Cast and the others just don’t cut the mustard? Let us know over on Twitter!

Have a look at the trailer for Edmonton’s production (and soon to be the West End production!) of Hadestown and compare it to the stripped down version from the NYTW. What has your vote?


A LITIGATING QUIZ QUESTION

This is perhaps one of the only musicals with key lyrical changes driven by a post-divorce legal agreement. What is it?


Hosted By

 Jimi

Jimi

 Tommy

Tommy

Happy Hour #54: How to Podcast - ‘How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying’

The boys are back in town and they're diving straight into the self-help musical ‘How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying!’ This time around Jimi and Tommy try and fit ‘How to Succeed’ in a contemporary setting in spite of its blatant misogyny, Jimi muses on whether Bob Fosse is the real reason this show is so successful with the critics and together they work out how to get a Pulitzer prize.

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Original Broadway Cast Recording)

Amazon / iTunes / Spotify


Show Notes

We’ve missed you all so much! Come and let us know what you’ve been up to for the past 6 months over on Twitter!

Our 21st century ‘How To Succeed’ is easily the TV show ‘Mad Men’ which takes the extant misogyny of the 1960s and puts it in the driving seat. Here’s the show’s creator sitting down with Larry King to talk all about it.

For all you law aficionados out there, check out employment law Professor Miriam Cherry’s paper comparing the content of ‘How to Succeed’ with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 - who said musical theatre wasn’t relevant in the real world?

When you think ‘How to Succeed’ the last thing you think about is Bob Fosse - but he was there! However, if you watch ‘A Secretary is Not a Toy’ you can he his flexed-footed stamp is well and truly there!


Why do you think ‘How to Succeed’ won the Pulitzer prize for drama? Come over to Reddit and tell us!


A BROOKLYNITE QUIZ QUESTION

The folk-singer-author of our next musical has shared studio space with friend-of-the-podcast Dave Malloy. And her artistic connections clearly reflect this. What show?


Hosted By

 Jimi

Jimi

 Tommy

Tommy