"Candide"Your recollections please
Posted 15 November 2003 - 10:00 PM
I love listening to my original broadway cast recording CD of "Candide".
Have any of you ever seen a production of this devastatingly beautiful Leonard Bernstein musical?
Posted 15 November 2003 - 10:54 PM
I was with a very special companion , and it felt like the best of all possible worlds.
Posted 16 November 2003 - 07:10 AM
Posted 16 November 2003 - 07:31 AM
Better recollection: A choir singing "Make Our Garden Grow" at the wedding of two friends who had met while singing in the choir.
glebb, your query sent me running for my CD (to which I am listening this minute). I was surprised to see that the book was by Lillian Hellman. THE Lillian Hellman?
Posted 16 November 2003 - 07:40 AM
And also dialogue by Betty Comden and Adolph Green!
Posted 16 November 2003 - 08:28 AM
Eventually, Bersnstein's enthusiasm translated into one of the strongest scores he ever composed for the stage -- something that did not escape the attention of music-theater fans, who have long known that Candide is a brilliant show that was only the victim of its book and that deserved better than the 73-performance run it achieved on its first go-round.
The question of the book has often been a sore point in the musical theater and the reason behind many failures on the Broadway stage. The creators of Candide seemed to be plagued by an almost insurmountable task, that of translating the satiric tones and the apparently nonsensical plot of the original work into terms that would be acceptable within the context of a Broadway show. Try as they might, the many talented people who worked on that aspect of the show (Lillian Hellman, of course, but also the lyricists Richard Wilbur, John Latouche and Dorothy Parker (Dorothy Parker!!! -- T.F.) only rarely struck the right note.
Posted 16 November 2003 - 08:37 AM
Voltaire, famously agnostic and genuinely skeptical, but still a humanist, believing in the perfectability of the human situation, was incensed and wrote a little book about an innocent set loose in the world with the teachings of the Enlightenment from his teacher, Dr. Pangloss, that all's for the best...&c. In covering the world, Candide, our hero, finds good and evil all over the place, and by the end of the story he has reached one conclusion: All we can do is live out our lives, and take one thing at a time, doing the best we know, and controlling our own little part of the world. Do the best you can and if there is an all-good God, he won't hold it against you if you fail. "Nous cultiver notre jardin", as a Hessian general slightly misquoted Voltaire in a journal entry during a spell as a POW of the Continental Army during the American War for Independence.
Posted 16 November 2003 - 09:01 AM
Bernstein reworked the show once more before he died, and the production by the Chicago Lyric Opera was a model of how good this version could be. I still prefer the original version.
Posted 16 November 2003 - 08:31 PM
I have enjoyed reading your posts on "Candide".
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