This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Broadway Musical "Camelot" Essay

1147 words - 5 pages

CamelotCamelot first came to life on the Broadway stage in 1960, where it was an immediate success. Penned by the celebrated team of Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe, who had previously collaborated on the likes of Brigadoon, Gigi, and My Fair Lady. Camelot didn't go before the cameras until 1965, and, by the time filming was underway, none of the original Broadway trio was involved in the production. Richard Harris had replaced Richard Burton as King Arthur. Vanessa Redgrave had shouldered aside Julie Andrews as Guenevere. And, as Lancelot, the incomprehensible choice was made to supplant Robert Goulet with Franco Nero. Two years later, Camelot opened to much fanfare and mixed reviews.Story-wise, the movie does not tackle the entire Vulgate Cycle - an impossible feat for any film of reasonable length to attempt. Based on T.H. White's The Once and Future King, Camelot opens with the meeting of King Arthur and Guenevere, and ends with their parting and the sundering of the Round Table. In between, the film covers many of the details that aficionados have come to cherish: Arthur's grand and noble ambitions for a better England, Lancelot and Guenevere's tragic affair, and Mordred's attempts to destroy Camelot. Merlin makes a few cameos in visions and memories and Excalibur can be glimpsed on more than one occasion, but there are no signs of Morgana, Sir Galahad, or the Holy Grail.In bringing his play to the screen, Lerner opted to make some changes. He opened up the story, allowing more action than would be permitted in a theater-bound production. He also altered the overall tone. On stage, Camelot was a lighthearted affair, but the movie has a more somber tenor. In fact, the most overtly comical scene in the motion picture is the slapstick first encounter between Arthur and Lancelot. The film retains many, although not all, of the musical numbers. There are a dozen in all, including rousing versions of "Camelot", "The Lusty Month of May", and "What Do The Simple Folk Do?" as well as a beautiful rendition of the ballad "If Ever I Should Leave You".There are times when musical/comedy elements and the darker, serious drama of the love triangle war with each other. This is one of the great romantic tragedies of all time, and the film falls short of doing it justice. The chemistry is there between Arthur and Guenevere. In fact, their first meeting, when Guenevere is unaware of Arthur's identity, is one of Camelot's most successful sequences, featuring the full rendition of "Camelot" and some sparkling dialogue. The Lancelot/Guenevere romance, however, lacks any semblance of heat or fire. At best, it can be characterized as having a few feeble wisps of smoke.Replacing Richard Burton, who was supposedly unavailable, is Richard Harris. Despite being too young to play Arthur, in my opinion Harris does a pretty good job, and his voice is strong enough that he didn't require any dubbing. His performance italicizes the tragedy of the Guenevere/Lancelot...

Find Another Essay On The Broadway musical "Camelot"

Slavery and Christian Values in Uncle Tom´s Cavin by Harriet Beecher Stowe

1685 words - 7 pages influences of mass communication growth that has caused the influences of Broadway musical to grow. There are many characters that have had profound influences on the development and growth, some more than others in terms of the direction their careers took them. A lot has happen for the American woman around this time and what more was the change for women on the Broadway stage. Audience fell in love with the Cinderella type stories, where the main

What was different about Stephen Sondheim musicals

2511 words - 10 pages What was so different about Sondheims musicals?Over the course of Sondheim's career he has experimented with all sorts of different kinds of musicals. Each one he was involved with was unique and different to others at the time. Right through from West Side Story to Passione, Sondheim taken something weather it be art, life, horror or comedy and put it to music.His first Broadway musical was West Side Story. He worked as a lyricist and it was

The "Godfather of Broadway"

1089 words - 5 pages works. He managed to hold the title of “play-doctor” because “of his ability to invigorate a sagging show, with no hesitation to cut complete parts of the script, if necessary” (Stoner-Hawkins, 1). According to Stoner-Hawkins, “Abbott’s shows may have steered musical theater away from its potential emotional power. Because he emphasized entertainment values, Abbott tended to cut sections away from a book or music that could challenge the Broadway


1162 words - 5 pages didn't know anyone who had the same name has me, so I was so excited.Julie's madden name is Julia Elizabeth Wells was born October 1, 1935, in Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, United Kingdom. She came from a very musical family, her mom was a pianist and her stepfather was a singer. In the late 1940s she had already made a name for herself on the English stage ever before she came over here to do Broadway. She moved to America in the 1950s, where she

George Gershwin

507 words - 2 pages instantly famous, but it did begin to attract the attention of some of the Broadway composers of the day. During this time of professional growth, George kept his job as a rehearsal pianist and studied piano, theory and orchestration with the best of the best. George's first big hit was a song delivered by Al Jolson in the Broadway musical Sinbad. "Swanee" became an instant hit and propelled George's music before the Broadway audience

American Musicals

3690 words - 15 pages deprived of tune and were unmelodic and formless. With rare exceptions, audiences rarely left the theatre singing the show tunes. Rock and roll couldn’t be assimilated in a dramatic structure. The songs just didn’t tell a story. It was not until 1960 that Broadway faced up to the rising trend. Finally, musical theatre accepted rock music into its production. Never will audiences see new musicals in the style of Oklahoma!, Brigadoon and South

Musical Theatre: The Process of Putting Together, and Being in a Musical

1668 words - 7 pages . Originals – Don’t need to pay rights – therefore less expensive. More effort casting as stereotypes are already made. Different types of Musicals There are 4 main types of musicals: Book Shows – The most common type of musicals Broadway theatre Storylines continued throughout musical Revues – No storyline Different styles of music Characters inconsistent Musicals for children One act No longer than an hour Adaptions of

The Rebirth Of American Musical Theatre

3209 words - 13 pages in musical theatre: Oklahoma!. It was the first Rodgers and Hammerstein collaboration, starting the most successful creative partnership in the history of American musical theatre. According to Joseph Swain in his book The Broadway Musical: A Critical and Musical Survey, there are a number of reasons why a particular work of art might be considered a milestone in the history in its genre. It might introduce innovations of technique and style so

West Side Story The Musical

681 words - 3 pages West Side Story The Musical *No Works Cited West Side Story is one of the most influential musicals of all time. It's integration of dance and song into the plot was very innovative, because even though it had been done before, it had never been done this well. Jerome Robbins had thought of an adaptation of Romeo and Juliet to a Broadway musical in 1949. He began discussions with librettist Arthur Laurents and composer Leonard

Contemporary issues in the Musical Theatre

1163 words - 5 pages have less dialogue plus they use classical music. It is common for a musical to use more “popular” music. Altogether, a musical is a play that includes songs, but would be able to be dramatically complete if the music was removed. So how is the musical theatre doing nowadays? Is it expanding or in recession? There are two main centres for musical theatre in the world – it's London in the UK (West End) and New York in America (Broadway). Suddenly

Critical Analysis of what makes The Lion King a successful musical

1265 words - 5 pages Introduction The Lion King musical is a well-known musical that has taken the stages of Broadway, West End and the rest of the world by storm (The Lion King, 1997). Regarding the process of the musical, Artistic Director Julie Taymor’s first thoughts for choosing the Lion King as the next big thing on stage, was classed as ‘impossible’ due to the film’s lack of theatrical material (The Lion King, 1997). Therefore, staging this particular work

Similar Essays

Wizards And Villains And Playbills, Oh My!: The Niche Musical And The Internet

1704 words - 7 pages ’ like this may still manage to find a large national audience. [title of show], A Very Potter Musical and A Very Potter Sequel, and Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog are all ‘niche musicals’ that have been able to find greater audiences than they would have with simply a stage production through the connectivity of the Internet. Of these shows, [title of show] is the only show to have a premiere on Broadway, which it did in 2008 after a

Ethel Merman: Broadway´S Voice Essay

1542 words - 7 pages The Impact of Ethel Merman Ethel Merman is described by PBS as the most successful musical comedy performer of her generation. Merman is known for contributing her loud and clear vocals to the Broadway stage and changing the way that people observed women on Broadway as well (PBS). Appearing and starring in several Broadway blockbusters, her acting career appeared to go through somewhat transitional phases to where she could act less and less

The Life Of Tommy Tune Essay

1520 words - 6 pages alike.Early SuccessHe worked in the chorus' of A Joyful Noise" in 1967 and How Now Dow Jones in 1968. He garnered raves and his first Tony (Best Featured Actor in a Musical) in Michael Bennett's Seesaw in 1973. Branching out, he directed his first show, the off-Broadway production of The Club in 1976. The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas was his next venture followed by A Day in the Hollywood/ A Night in the Ukraine and his second Tony (Best

New York City Broadway Essay

967 words - 4 pages begin doing many shows in a vacant building that held, which led to the first documented professional performance on December 6th of that same year. 18 years later, the first formal performance space was opened on Nassau Street and on December 3rd, the first musical in Ney York was performed. Finally, Broadway had been born into New York City. After its establishment, Broadway was greatly affected by historical events that occurred in its lifetime