Why write a musical?
In my opinion – there is no better way to be moved, changed, gain understanding , or empathize with others around us than to become a part of another world beyond our own and watch a story unfold within it – especially using music which reaches our emotional memories much deeper than words. I have always been passionate about theatre – especially musical theatre. I think it is a beautiful way for people to connect through story and song… the audience, the characters, the cast members playing the characters, the producing team, and the writers/creators all experience something meaningful through a production that is done well. We all need each other and theatre gives us the opportunity to be present with one another. What could youth in this generation benefit from more than the experience of creating something by connecting with others and exploring humanity in the real live moment of now?
How did I come to start writing musicals?
When I think of it – I have been preparing myself to write musicals my whole life. Since I was little I was obsessed with dancing, performing, acting, and singing. I naturally fell in love with musicals (my parents had to remove me from a West End show at age 6 because I was singing along!) I performed in some local productions growing up in the valley – though there was not much youth theatre in the Phoenix area so I mostly played kid parts in adult plays or musicals (such as “Annie Get your Gun” and “Thea” in Pippin, instead of Theo, and even several plays including New Works). I was also a talented young writer – especially loved writing poems and short stories. My favorite form was a short story in poem form, which is really a song without music put to it yet. I have also been experimenting with and creating my own music since Jr High. The combination of all my experiences: my love for theatre, my love for writing poems, and stories combined with my love for creating music accumulated into creating stories through song!
In my first musical, the process and recordings were quite amatuer. As I have progressed – I created better system where my songs go through stages: lead sheet and chords, first recording, better recording, then full piano and vocal score. I have collected some older recording equipment to make a basic recording studio and made connections with others to help me achieve all of this.Each song goes through a long, detailed, and expensive process. I still could have better quality and better equipment, but I have been able to get several songs to an acceptable level to send off places. I feel a great responsibility to honor my songs and my gifts.
Since then I continue to involve myself in all kinds of experiences, classes, and workshops that inspire story-building and character development such as performing, acting classes, music classes, and any part of the theatre process. Although I had to give some other jobs and hobbies up to make room for this venture, I still teach early childhood music in two preschools and I enjoy the Music Together program with families and their young children. I still love it and it helps fund my songwriting until it can fund itself. I invite you to read the previous post about my latest: “The Bachelor Prince Musical”!