Friday, February 4, 2005

And this is why I love Terry Teachout’s theater criticism columns in the Wall Street Journal:

Even if the constituent parts of “Good Vibrations” were better, though, I doubt it would be worth seeing, for it is a disastrous example of a fundmanetally flawed genre, the “jukebox musical,” in which pre-existing songs are loosely strung together to tell a new story. The problem with building such a show out of rock songs is that they’re not theatrical. A musical-comedy score is a conveyor belt designed to carry the onstage action from point A to point Z, whereas rock songs are three-minute structures that tell their own self-contained stories. The best of the Beach Boys’ songs are lovely examples of what Phil Spector called “little symphonies for the kids,” but they don’t add up to a show….

— Terry Teachout, The Wall Street Journal, 4 February 2005

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