“Listen, I’m a little pressed for time, so do you mind if I just pay for my stuff real quick and be on my way? Thanks… Hey, what the hell are you doing?”
“Sorry, I’m a little pressed for time too. I have cancer. So do you mind getting your shit off the counter so I can buy my Irises and plant them before I die? Thanks.”
A comedy about cancer? Okay, so it’s more of a dramedy, but don’t let that dissuade you from watching this expertly written series about a suburban housewife diagnosed with terminal melanoma. This is not a sad show about a depressing illness. It is a fun show about being happy even when everything sucks. See how Cathy tackles her new circumstances with humor, passion, and an eagerness to experience all that life has to offer.
“Does this look like a kid’s story to you?”
This thrilling sci-fi/fantasy miniseries based on Lewis Carroll’s classic story originally aired on television in 2009. Highly recommended for an enormously entertaining adventure through the looking glass.
“Black and White World” – The It Girl
Music: Paul McKibbins Lyrics: B.T. McNicholl
In this opening number, a cinema operator is sucked into the black and white world of the classic silent movie It where she becomes the new leading lady and girl with it all: style, sex appeal, and eventually, the man of her dreams. It’s musical fluff that is not very memorable but pleasant nonetheless, much like the first color TV program broadcast on this day in 1951. While pleasant, the program was not very memorable since black and white televisions prevented the majority of people from enjoying it.
“I Read” – Passion
Music and Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim
Premiering on this day in 1983, TV series Reading Rainbow inspired children by teaching them the value of books. In this number from Sondheim’s passionate and very adult musical about love and obsession, the ailing Fosca explains why she reads so much. The song may not be as encouraging as Reading Rainbow was, but it is a brooding meditation that hopefully inspires you to pick up a book and [re]discover for yourself the joys of reading.
“Cut, Print… Moving On” – Bombshell
Music: Marc Shaiman Lyrics: Scott Wittman
The development of a new musical based on the life of Marilyn Monroe was the focus of Broadway-themed television drama Smash which premiered in 2012. This number ends act one of Bombshell, the stage show-within-a-show. Unfortunately, the series was cancelled after the second season and ended on this day in 2013. Cut, print… Moving on.
“Off to the Races” – The Mystery of Edwin Drood
Music and Lyrics: Rupert Holmes
Television viewers went off to the races on this day in 1949 when the first televised coverage of the Kentucky Derby took place. As this high-spirited song gallops on, the audience is reminded to follow the clues in this musical whodunit based on Charles Dickens’ unfinished murder mystery. This is important because the outcome of the show depends on the audience members, who vote to determine the killer/ending.
“Round and Round” – A Tale of Two Cities
Music and Lyrics: Jill Santoriello
First it was a book. Then it was a film. Round and round it goes. Charles Dickens’ novel about the French Revolution is so enduring, it has seen adaptations on film, television, and the stage, including an opera which premiered on this day in 1953. Several of the characters celebrate in this song from one of many musical adaptations which shows the pattern of seeing popular works adapted into Broadway musicals. While this trend may not offer original stories, the new music is certainly something to celebrate.