Join Michael Fling and Anika Chapin of the Goodspeed Artistic Staff as they explore and examine your favorite shows, from contemporary hits to classic Broadway. They’ll share fascinating tidbits about each show’s creation and history, then analyze a song or scene to illustrate how the dramaturgy of the show works. Whether you're "Getting to Know" a show for the first time or learning more about an "Old Friend", you're guaranteed to fall in love with musical theatre all over again. New episodes every other Wednesday.
A Very Merry Christmas Special
As the second season of IN THE SPOTLIGHT comes to a close, Anika and Michael share some of their favorite musical theatre-adjacent Christmas things and let spill some very exciting news...
West Side Story
In the first ever LIVE episode of the show, Michael & Anika JETÉ (see what we did there) into the American classic WEST SIDE STORY, which first premiered over 60 years ago. From its origins as Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet to the upcoming remake that is about to be released, this episode will absolutely get you ready for The Rumble.
Next to Normal
While exploring mental health isn't completely foreign to Broadway musicals, when NEXT TO NORMAL premiered it was a game changer of how musical theatre could explore complex emotional topics. Join Anika and Michael as they analyze this Pulitzer Prize winning show and it's wild journey to legendary status.
At 78 years old, Oklahoma!, is lookin fine. Rodgers and Hammerstein's first musical together blew onto the scene in 1943 and redefined American Musical Theater forever. The deceptively simple story hides layers of complexity that have yielded rich interpretations ever since (and terrible high school productions, much to the chagrin of many a musical theater lover.) Michael and Anika dive into the darkness in the sunny text, the question of insiders and outsiders in American communities (and who is missing from the text), the direct connection from 'Lonely Room' to the work of Stephen Sondheim, and the very different experience watching the show in the state of Oklahoma. Give this episode and Oklahoma Hello and press play!
Midnight... not a sound from the pavement... except a pack of unitard-clad dancing felines in yak-hair wigs. Yes, for this episode we are taking a look at the most famous show ever written about a pack of cats who are auditioning to die: the Jellicle musical itself, CATS. Every part of this show, from its source material by a titanic poet known mostly for his dark musings on the futility of life, to its fraught development process, to its eventual mega-hit status, is unlikely. We'll discuss its now and forever allure, its truly odd plot and complex created mythology and yes, even the movie.
Someone tell the story... of the brilliant, dark, fascinating ASSASSINS. Join Michael and Anika for this mega-episode about the one-of-a-kind Sondheim and Weidman musical that has divided critics and audiences, exposed the dark loopholes of the American dream, and only become more "shmelevant" (don't worry, we'll explain) since its 1990 debut. From the addition of 'Something Just Broke', to the odd and interesting roles of the Proprietor and Balladeer, to how the show might have pleased Brecht, there's so much to discuss we couldn't fit it into the length of a normal episode! So tune in for this jumbo dive into a show that is one of our absolute favorites
I feel like I’ve been waiting for this podcast all my life! It explores musicals in a really collegiate way, yet it’s still fun! I’m learning so much about an art form that I didn’t think there was anything left to learn. I’m sad that I hadn’t discovered it sooner, but I’m glad I did! THANKS!!!
Delightful Deep Dives into the World of Musical Theatre
Let’s say you know A LOT about musical theatre, you’ve studied it, you’re a huge fan of certain cast albums, have seen multiple productions of tons of shows... Or, let’s say you enjoy musicals - the music, the characters, how they make you feel, maybe you played Eulalie Shinn in high school and love to see Les Miz when it comes through town... Or perhaps you don’t know much about musicals but you got a subscription to your local theater and their version of Cabaret really made you laugh and think... For all of you and in between, this podcast is for YOU.
Chaplin & Fling have done their research, posses a winning, supportive rapport and spew musical theatre facts (and opinions) faster than Oklahoma!ns at an auction. Particularly exciting is Chapin’s deconstruction of a song from each show - clarifying the writers’ use of each phrase and lyric, taking us on a personal tour of the song from the inside.
Like Show Music Magazine (the long defunct premier publication for musical theatre) Goodspeed has come through with this podcast. and solidifies its place as “The Home of American Musical Theatre”.
This podcast is everything a mega musical nerd is looking for, and I have just two things to say...
2. thank GOODNESS.
The Goodspeed has always provided a haven for good art and great education, and during this pandemic/quarantine they have somehow found a way to reach us in the comfort of our own homes and give us our feel good fix of musical theatre--and they could not have chosen two individuals better suited for the task. Anika Chapin is a classy and intelligent universe of information and her insight can cut to the heart of a piece by peeling back the layers of a show, sometimes even down to a single musical phrase. Her dramaturgical skills are nothing short of incredible and I can't believe we are able to hear her work for free. Not to mention, she pairs absolutely beautifully with Michael Fling; an experienced director and hilarious firecracker who is revealing his true talents as both a storyteller and entertainer with his razor wit and encycolpoedic knowledge about all things Broadway. Whether you are a casual showtunes lover or you're preparing for a production, this is an invaluable resource to show people everywhere. Pro-tip: put your feet up, imbibe in your favorite beverage and pretend like you are chatting post show with Fling and Chapin--they're about to be your new favorite dates to the theatre.