What do Celine Dion, Lionel Richie, and The Muppets all have in common? No, they don’t share a lawyer. They all have hit songs in movies!
Some of the most iconic songs of the last hundred years have made us laugh, cry, and tap our toes, thanks to the silver screen. This season, FST is celebrating that artistry with Reel Music.
Featuring music from films like The Wizard of Oz, Casablanca, Dirty Dancing, and many more, we’ll travel through a century of cinema and the unforgettable music that made those movies complete.
“This show spans the history of Hollywood,” said Sarah Durham, one of the show’s developers. “Early Hollywood was glitz and glamour – an escape from the troubles of the early 20th century. But as movies evolved, we started to see real people and real stories. We started to see ourselves on the silver screen.”
Long-time FST fans may remember a Cabaret of the same name, Reel Music, which was produced here at FST in 2012. Like the first iteration, this year’s revue features cinematic classics like “Hooray for Hollywood,” “Puttin’ on the Ritz,” and “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” But this year, FST’s artistic team dug deeper into the history to tell a more well-rounded story, highlighting changes in America, Americans, and the movie industry, itself.
“I love how the show reveals the history of America,” said Richard Hopkins, who also served on the development team for the revue. “This incarnation of Reel Music was an exciting opportunity for us to revisit that history through a different lens. The biggest difference in this season’s version is that we have paid more attention to the contributions that Black and Latino artists have made to movies over the last century.”
This production of Reel Music also highlights songs from movies that have come along since FST’s 2012 production like “Remember Me” from Disney and Pixar’s Coco, which won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 2018.
Artist Liz Power made her FST Cabaret debut in the 2012 production of Reel Music. Now, Power is excited to return to take on the latest iteration of the music revue this season.
“I’m so excited to be back at FST,” said Power. “Of the three Cabarets I’ve performed in here, Reel Music has been my favorite.”
“Old or new, movies have always had a universality,” said show director Catherine Randazzo. “And music makes that universal appeal always feel current by taking us back to that special time and place where we first experienced those stories.”
For Richard Hopkins, that’s what it’s all about.
“My favorite song in the show has to be ‘When You Wish Upon a Star,’” said Hopkins. “It takes me back to my childhood. It reminds me of the sheer beauty of art, the magic of first encountering it, and the child-like imagination that we return to in the world of theatre.”
Reel Music is now playing in FST’s Court Cabaret through June 25, 2023.