|Posted by: Chromolume 04:23 pm EST 12/14/18|
|In reply to: re: Musical Revivals - EvFoDr 03:09 pm EST 12/14/18|
|Also, dance is often performed to pre-recorded music.
Yes. In that respect, Contact was just a little like going to see your child's dance recital, except there were no kids, and you had to pay a helluva lot for tickets. ;-) (I'm half kidding, but I am only HALF kidding.)
To be fair, the point about the different musical needs is valid. And at least no one was trying to lipsynch to the vocals - I've been though school "dance" shows that have done that, and it's awful. Especially, say, when it's a bunch of middle school girls dancing/lipsynching to "Big Spender" (yes, that happened). But yes, when used in the right way, "canned" music can be very effective. I think of the "Swan Lake" scene in Billy Elliot, where I think we literally can think of the orchestral track (rather oddly cut, btw, but no one seems to care lol) as being part of the fantasy in Billy's mind. And the grandeur of the music complements the emotion of the scene perfectly. In that case, it's not so much a substitution for the pit orchestra, but a true theatrical gesture. I can't say that the music in Contact has the same effect. It was just the only practical way to do it.
I did enjoy the dancing/movement work. I didn't much like the attempts at storytelling outside of the dancing. (I love Mr. Weidman's work, but an entire scene based on permutations of "don't you f-ing move" is a huge letdown. There could have been so many other reasons for the woman to want to escape into the dance.) And the non-connection between the various scenes did make it seem much more like a dance recital than a cohesive theatre piece. But, so be it.
I will also add that "canned" is industry slang, like it or not. Along, coincidentally, with "cans" being a slang term for headphones, as in the ones worn by the band in a show where click tracks are used either to keep strict tempo, or to do so in order to keep synchronized with the "canned" music also playing.
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