Cellofun Repertoire Library: Shows and Musicals

Don’t think that composers who write for shows are inferior in any way to those who write “serious” operas. Here below are some quotes by Stephen Sondheim:

….. “I just wanted to study composition, theory, and harmony without the attendant musicology. And I knew I wanted to write for the theatre, so I wanted a teacher who did not disdain theatre music.”

… “Everybody hated my college composition teacher because he was very dry, and I thought he was wonderful because he was very dry. And he made me realize that all my romantic views of art were nonsense. I had always thought an angel came down and sat on your shoulder and whispered the music in your ear. It never occurred to me that art was something worked out. And suddenly it was the skies opening up. As soon as you find out what a leading tone is, you think, Oh my God. What a diatonic scale is – Oh my God! The logic of it. And, of course, what that meant to me was: Well, I can do that. Because you just don’t know. You think it’s a talent, you think you’re born with this thing. What I’ve found out and what I believe is that everybody is talented. It’s just that some people get it developed and some don’t.[20]

  1.  Bernstein: “Somewhere”, “Tonight” and “Maria” from “Westside Story” (1957)
  2.  Stephen Sondheim: “Send In The Clowns” from “A Little Night Music” (1973)
  3.  Lloyd-Webber: “Memory” from “Cats” (1980)