By Anna Indelli, online A&E editor
Favorite Song: “Give Up Your Dreams”
Vibe: A fun mix of guitar reliant rock, and lighter, operatic numbers
Before mega-hit “School of Rock” was announced as this year’s spring musical, I knew almost nothing about it. Thanks to my dad, I knew that the movie the musical is based on was a well-loved flick starring Jack Black. If you asked me anything else, I would’ve been as oblivious to the plot as Black’s character Dewey was to understanding that he had overstayed his welcome with his friend Ned and Ned’s girlfriend Patty — and I can only make that reference based on snippets I’ve heard from friends.
That being said, I was eager to be brought into the loop. I pride myself on being partial to rock and show tunes, so the songs in this show seemed right up my alley. And no time seemed as perfect to acquaint myself with it as now, considering I’m one of the student directors working on the show.
If I’m being honest, I had no idea what to expect going into this. “School of Rock” follows Dewey Finn, a washed up, wannabe rockstar as he poses as his friend Ned in order to substitute teach at Horace Green Elementary, a prestigious prep school. After getting kicked out of his own band, Dewey uses the kids in this class to start a new group and compete in the Battle of the Bands.
Although the movie came out in 2003, the show has only been on Broadway for a few months, and I hadn’t heard much about what people thought of the music. However, I must admit that I was pleasantly surprised by the Broadway cast recording. The show’s opening number, “When I Climb To The Top of Mount Rock,” begins the show with a punch-in-the-gut rock diddy infused with humorous lyrics like “with a legion of groupies all duking it out/for my chiseled rock god physique.” It really shows you what main character Dewey, and the show, are all about.
Songs like “If Only You Would Listen” perfectly touch on the struggle kids can feel dealing with parents, while still maintaining the lighthearted tone the show is known for. My favorite song, “Give Up Your Dreams,” is a hilarious number sang by Patty to Dewey as she not so subtlety tells him to stop relying on them and “give up [his] dreams and get a freaking job.”
Though the humor wasn’t always my cup of tea, I genuinely liked the soundtrack. The variety of songs — from loud rock numbers to the opera inspired “Queen of The Night” — has something for everyone, and the fun, almost childlike overtones make them an easy listen. I can’t wait to see how my fellow Prospect students bring these numbers to life in April, and I can only hope the actors do the characters justice.