March 14, 2004

Lord of the Rings is set to become a "lavish stage musical" next year. Dozens of actors will perform complex battle scenes! Obviously you'll want to see the official site. It apparently has the support of the Tolkien Society, since they've issued a press release on behalf of the production.
  • why a musical... that seems insane, and i'm a big musical fan, my first gig was a musical. why not just a regular theatre production... i feel the need to shake someone by the shoulders right now. altho' i'm reminded of an amazingly good production of the hobbit that was done with gigantic blacklight puppets way back in the early 80's, so i guess anything can be good if it's done right. still, the whole idea leaves me feeling queasy.
  • I remember that one, it was fantastic! Cirque du Soleil, I believe. Was still a kid then, and begged my parents for weeks to let me go see it. They agreed to buy one ticket. And yes, I do feel rather uneasy about this whole musical idea. Somehow I I have the feeling that it will get Disneyfied.
  • So let me get this straight: CHristopher Tolkoien thinks the movie was an abomination against his father's works, and has cut off a whole branch of the family because some of them visited the set and one appeared as an extra, but he feels a musical is just dandy?
  • All-dancing, all-singing elf armies of Lothlorien. The mind boggles.
  • yah rodgerd i was thinking the same thing... that chris tolkien seems a bit off his beam. the popularity of the movies should have been a point of pride for the whole family, but instead it created a huge rift. Alnedra - i'm pretty sure it wasn't cirque, which didn't exist until '84 as i recall. this puppet troupe performed in '80 or '81 for an 8 week run at the young people's theatre in toronto where i worked and i've been kicking myself for years for not having kept the program. i should just call the theatre and see if they have records from that far back.
  • Just think, Gollum singing a ballad. This will be the best thing since Satan sang in South Park.
  • t r a c y - oops. My bad, then. I remember looking at the programme of the person next to me (I couldn't afford one, or I couldn't get one from the usher, can't recall now), and the name of the troupe was French. Maybe that's why I was thinking Cirque du Soleil. If I were into altgroups, I would start up one called Chris.Tolkien.die.die.DIE.
  • Alnedra - the moment i find out what that troupe's name was and any other info on them, i will let you know :-) i remember them smoking gitane cigarettes during rehearsals so they must have been from quebec or france.
  • No rush, t r a c y, and thanks :) I remember how tickled I was when the Nazghuls appeared on stage with what looked like motorcycle headlights for eyes. Kids were screaming their lungs out. Great times.
  • Just think, Gollum singing a ballad. In the summer of 2001, in our Edinburgh Festival show, one of the characters I played was a charming little fellow called "The AIDS Goblin" (I know, I know...). I was quite proud of what I did with him - the strange, guttural voice, the hunched posture - although it was quite hard on my throat, and I often ended up lying by the side of the stage retching quietly to myself. I was fairly sure the audience had liked my work, and I hoped that the Goblin might become a regular character. I wondered if perhaps he could carry a sitcom on his own. A year and a bit later, The Two Towers was released, and I discovered that Andy Serkis had done exactly the same character, only somewhat better. All my dreams crumbled. The only thing I could hold onto - the one small sliver of pride - was that at no point did Gollum perch on a stool, in a spotlight, and sing a powerful and moving rendition of 'Total Eclipse of the Heart'. I did, and man, I slayed 'em. Now even this tiny bit of one-upmanship may be taken from me. Damn you, Chris Tolkien, damn you all the way to hell! /a diversion
  • a powerful and moving rendition of 'Total Eclipse of the Heart' Peeeenis! Nothing but a peeenis! /revenge
  • in a spotlight, and sing a powerful and moving rendition of 'Total Eclipse of the Heart Flashboy, it takes a strong man to admit that. Wasn't that song in Footloose? I know it came out in the 80s.
  • Wasn't that song in Footloose? Not according to IMDb - 'twas a different Bonnie Tyler song, Holding Out For A Hero. Total Eclipse of the Heart remains one of the all time great over-produced songs; I'm particularly fond of the bit where somebody in the studio seems to have requested the noise of two galaxies colliding to fill out the instrumental segment a little. "You know the noise made by the Antarctic ice-sheets when they crumble in springtime?" I imagine them saying, "That'd be a perfect counterpoint to Bonnie's voice." Little did they know that the definitive rendition would be an a cappella version performed by a Gollum soundalike dressed in a shirt covered in AIDS ribbons. But then, very few would have predicted that. Once upon a time I was falling in love But now I'm only falling apart There's nothing I can do A total eclipse of the heart Once upon a time there was light in my life But now there's only love in the dark Nothing I can say A total eclipse of the heart... Would there be a market, do you think, for an album of classic romantic ballads, as sung by Gollum? I'm thinking Songs For My Precious is a good title...