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Sunset Boulevard Forum


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Tony Winner
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GlamorousGriz wrote:
Then again, as much as I love Andrew Lloyd Webber, he isn't exactly known for casting his female leads properly....


He might not cast people who can sing the songs 100% crystal, but he casts people who can portray that particular character, who can bring them alive and become that character. And I personally think that comes JUST before vocal ability.


Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:58 pm
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Post What?
Dear Sunset Boulevard Fans,

"Nipples to the wind?" Did Norma Desmond actually SAY that in the stage musical, or did that remark referr to Midler?

:oops:

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Mon Nov 08, 2004 12:11 am
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TR_Wolf wrote:
GlamorousGriz wrote:
Then again, as much as I love Andrew Lloyd Webber, he isn't exactly known for casting his female leads properly....


He might not cast people who can sing the songs 100% crystal, but he casts people who can portray that particular character, who can bring them alive and become that character. And I personally think that comes JUST before vocal ability.


Well yes, in this show particularly, the most important aspect of Norma is her acting ability, but it would make it easier on the audience to have a Norma who doesn't sing flat.....

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Sun Nov 14, 2004 7:29 pm
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Young Hoofer
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Post Re: What?
The Duchess of Mint wrote:
Dear Sunset Boulevard Fans,

"Nipples to the wind?" Did Norma Desmond actually SAY that in the stage musical, or did that remark referr to Midler?


It was merely a reference to Midler's stage act.


Mon Nov 15, 2004 11:46 am
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Fresh Face
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i'd really love it if there were a movie of SB!

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Mon Nov 15, 2004 5:29 pm
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GlamorousGriz wrote:
Glenn Close can't sing well...... she's a very strong actress and I respect her for that, but she shouldn't raise her voice in song...


But if Norma were a well trained singer with a good voice, why should the coming of talkies threaten her career in the first place?

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Sun Nov 21, 2004 7:29 am
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Dvarg wrote:
GlamorousGriz wrote:
Glenn Close can't sing well...... she's a very strong actress and I respect her for that, but she shouldn't raise her voice in song...


But if Norma were a well trained singer with a good voice, why should the coming of talkies threaten her career in the first place?


No no, not Norma.... the actress playing her..... after all, it's a musical.....

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Sun Nov 21, 2004 10:17 am
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GlamorousGriz wrote:
No no, not Norma.... the actress playing her..... after all, it's a musical.....


Huh? The actress is supposed to portray a character with a supposedly weak voice (it's actually a very important part of the character) - how does it make any difference whether the actress has a weak voice herself or use a weakened character voice?

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Sun Nov 21, 2004 1:45 pm
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Young Hoofer
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There is nothing in the script to suggest a weak voice in Norma, merely a faded beauty.


Fri Nov 26, 2004 10:46 am
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Dvarg wrote:
GlamorousGriz wrote:
No no, not Norma.... the actress playing her..... after all, it's a musical.....


Huh? The actress is supposed to portray a character with a supposedly weak voice (it's actually a very important part of the character) - how does it make any difference whether the actress has a weak voice herself or use a weakened character voice?


Here's the bottom line: whe you go see a musical, you expect the star to be able to sing well. I don't care what show you're seeing, the star is supposed to be able to sing well. (well, everybody, not just the star...)

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Fri Nov 26, 2004 3:59 pm
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Dustin wrote:
There is nothing in the script to suggest a weak voice in Norma, merely a faded beauty.


As I have understood it, her beauty wasn't faded yet when her acting career ended many years previous to the events in the show. Therefore that couldn't have been the reason for the end of her acting career either.

If she had a gorgeous voice, why wouldn't sound pictures benefit her career instead of destroying it? Her own explanation is that they "didn't need words, they had faces", which to me suggest that she didn't have a voice that suitet the sound pictures.

GlamorousGriz wrote:
Here's the bottom line: whe you go see a musical, you expect the star to be able to sing well. I don't care what show you're seeing, the star is supposed to be able to sing well. (well, everybody, not just the star...)


Not really. It depends on which musical it is. If it is Candide, absolutely. If it is Cabaret, not necessarily.

In musicals in general, acting skill is more important than trained voice. And I do in particular not see why SB should be an exception from the rule?

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Sat Nov 27, 2004 4:41 am
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Young Hoofer
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Dvarg wrote:

As I have understood it, her beauty wasn't faded yet when her acting career ended many years previous to the events in the show. Therefore that couldn't have been the reason for the end of her acting career either.

If she had a gorgeous voice, why wouldn't sound pictures benefit her career instead of destroying it? Her own explanation is that they "didn't need words, they had faces", which to me suggest that she didn't have a voice that suitet the sound pictures.


I would disagree with your theory. Her beauty wasn't faded when her career dwindled, however by the time the action picks up in the plot of the musical, she is a faded beauty. I think Norma didn't benefit from sound pictures because she wasn't willing to change with the times. She has no desire to change with the current state of movies with her Salome script, ie she doesn't want dialogue, I doubt she would have wanted to take dialogue when she was acting. Acting for her was in the mere expression of emotions, not in the endless words. The actress, her emotions, and her beauty were more important than the words, as she says ". . .we didn't need words, we had faces. . . .They threw away the gold of silence, when all they needed was this face of mine." Which is then exemplified by the song With One Look.

Adding to your discussion about the importance of voice and acting in a show, I must say that musical theatre it is necessary to have both, and the most ideal is to have an actor that can portray emotion through voice. In an art form that calls for the characters to break into song to express emotion, the voice is important. However, Broadway is commercialism, so if a name sells tickets, it doesn't really matter if he/she can sing as long as the character is plausible within the realms of suspended disbelief.


Sat Nov 27, 2004 12:13 pm
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