Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Jason Robert Brown

I suppose I will make this week theatre week because, well, theatre is consuming my life this week.

I will start out by saying that Jason Robert Brown is one of my idols. His ability to write music is incomparably brilliant. His songs are emotional, energetic, and exquisite. I am talking about him today because, for the second time, I saw him preform live tonight (last night now) at the Glen Gould Studio. A little about Jason Robert Brown: he is a broadway composer. He has written music for The Last Five Years (coming to London, Ontario in January), Parade, Songs for a New World, Urban Cowboy, and the recent tween broadway musical 13. The above song is from Songs for a New World- A song cycle about the stuggles of love, life, chances and choices. The thing that is so spectacular about his songs is each and every one of them tells a story- a beautiful story- most of the time a tragic story- about human nature.

Anyway, watching him preform live is like watching Usain Bolt doing the 100 metre dash, or watching Martha Stewart bake a cake (crappy metaphor, but still). The piano literally comes to life when he plays it. As Richard Ozunian, a Toronto Star reporter says: "People don't like Jason Robert Brown, they love him."

When Jason Robert Brown walks onto a stage the people in the audience that know what they are in for are wailing, clapping, and whistling. When Jason Robert Brown walks off of the stage the ENTIRE audience is STANDING, wailing, clapping and whistling-- until and even after he comes out minutes later telling people to go home!

His patter, his voice, his lyrics, his humour, his energy, everything- sheer perfection.

He is a master of smuff.

Even if you don't like musical theatre-- If you have ever Loved then just listen to the words. And be taken to a new world...

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