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American Idol: The neon lights are bright on Broadway
by
 Mollee_Francisco
Apr 22, 2008 | 846 views | 18 18 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink



If you are a fan of musical theater, this was an exciting night for you. Andrew Lloyd Webber is one of the kings of Broadway and has created some of the most memorable, and longest running, musicals of all time, so it was nice to hear some of those tonight.



Big voices reigned supreme and danced all over the singer-songwriter-style competition. If you could read and comprehend a lyric, you excelled tonight- even moreso, if you actually saw the production the song came from.  



I gave credit where credit was due here. You can't just sing these songs - you do have to inhabit them - that's what makes people come back to the shows again and again. Syesha did it. Carly did it. And most surprisingly, David C. did it showing extraordinary versitility and a genuine love of music that could just win him this competition.



What did you think? Who did you love? Who did you hate? Who surprised you the most?



Here are my thoughts:


Singer: Syesha Mercado

Song: One Rock N Roll Too Many

Rants & Raves: Syesha hits her stride at last. From the moment she stepped on the stage, it was pretty clear that she needs to sing in character instead of as herself. This was far and beyond her best performance to date. She sounded great and pleased me with her choice of an upbeat tune at last!


Jason Castro

Memory



Ok, I love Jason Castro, but this didn't work so well. It pains me to say but the biggest problem with some of these songs is that they have to be understood to be sung well. Cats was my first musical and nothing has ever eclipsed it for me. By the time that old cat comes out and sings "Memory", you feel swept away with emotion. I didn't get that here. Jason got the aching down in his voice, but not the haunting feel that the song should have. He needed a crash course in Cats to make this work. Too bad. Oddly enough though, he kind of looked like one of the scraggly cats while he sang. Must be the dreads.


Brooke White

You Must Love Me



Brooke had one do-over already. Should we give her another? I'm not so sure - especially because as Simon said, it did nothing to calm her nerves. I'd like to think that Brooke rented Evita before she sang so she could understand how the song fit into the story, but I don't think that happened. She had some good notes, showed some nice vulnerability, but overall, it wasn't up to par. This could spell disaster for her.


David Archuleta

Think of Me



David A. turns Phantom of the Opera into a boyband concert and it works! Tweens all over the country must have had to be resuscitated after that performance. It was a pretty brilliant thing to do on ALW night.


Carly Smithson

Jesus Christ Superstar



Is that a smile on Carly's face? Is she having fun? I gotta say, I like this. She rocked it out and it was a great fit for her. Everything worked from her strut to her dress. I think it was one of her best performances and the "Simon Loves Me" t-shirt was hilarious. Where can I get one of those?


David Cook

Music of the Night



Oh what a difference a gradual makeover makes. David C. is starting to look hot and when he's singing from Phantom - one of the sexiest Broadway musicals ever - whoa. This was a stunning performance. He sounded amazing and best of all, he got it. He's great at interpretation and this was no exception. Plus, he still sounded like a rocker at times. Bravo!


Top performances: David Cook, Carly Smithson, Syesha Mercado

Most likely to go home: Brooke White


TELL US: Do you have a favorite performance from last night? Who's going home?

JOIN UP: Chat about American Idol in our Idol Watch group.

Comments
(18)
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marta
|
December 17, 2009
Idol hit Broadway again. Syesha Mercado has been cast as "Deena Jones" in the international tour "Dreamgirls".

Marta, broadway saddest songs.
Ruth Anne Maddox
|
April 29, 2008
I've been singing "Sweet Caroline" since last week -- bom-bom-bomp -- and scaring the dogs, I must say. I'm also still belting out "Music of the Night," though, so I'm not sure I'm ready for tonight.

Here's a novel idea for next week -- just in case they haven't got another suckfest planned: Maybe the contestants can sing a song from the genre that they would be singing if they actually were to record a CD. Then, maybe, people could vote for them on the merits of their talents based upon what would sell?!

Mollee Francisco
|
April 29, 2008
And will anyone dare tackle the karaoke queen "Sweet Caroline" or what about the ET-inspired "Heartlight"?

(Mollee Francisco is a staff writer for the Chaska Herald. She can be reached at mfrancisco@swpub.com.)
Mollee Francisco
|
April 29, 2008
Ten songs tonight (two a piece). I don't know about you but I'm crossing my fingers for a little "I Am, I Said" and "September Morn." I'll pass on the "Crunchy Granola Suite" though. Who do you think will excel with Neil Diamond?

(Mollee Francisco is a staff writer for the Chaska Herald. She can be reached at mfrancisco@swpub.com.)
Ruth Anne Maddox
|
April 28, 2008
I just got an e-mail from the Xcel Energy Center regarding Neil Diamond's appearance in July -- they've added a second show! I'm guessing it's not because you've ordered a large block of seats?
Mollee Francisco
|
April 25, 2008
Not yet. Until they form a tribute band (a la Saving Silverman) I think you're safe :)

(Mollee Francisco is a staff writer for the Chaska Herald. She can be reached at mfrancisco@swpub.com.)
Ruth Anne Maddox
|
April 25, 2008
My husband and three of his buddies went to see Neil Diamond together a couple years ago. Should I be writing to Dr. Phil?
jennyjean4
|
April 25, 2008
I LOVE Neil Diamond. He's the thing my mother-in-law and I first bonded over. We both enjoy his music. It'll be interesting to see some of the Idols perform Neil Diamond songs. The songs are great, when Neil sings them, I hope no one tries to sing like him. Although, that would be very amusing.
steinie
|
April 24, 2008
"Cracklin' Rosie," "Sweet Caroline" or "September Morn" - hmmm, which is the least irritating Neil Diamond song?

I pick "September Morn" - the song my friend Sue and I wanted for the Prom theme. We had it ALL figured out back in the way early 80s!
Ruth Anne Maddox
|
April 24, 2008
I read somewhere that Carly's facially tattooed husband might have scared some folks and contributed to her demise.

I cannot believe that Brooke did not make the bottom two (I'm pretty sure she couldn't believe it either). And, as much as Syesha has given me that fingernails-on-a-chalkboard irritation all season, I didn't think she deserved to be at the bottom based on this week's performance.

My sister predicted this morning that it would be a David duo at the finale and that David A. will win (that's not her choice, just her prediction).
Mark Olson
|
April 24, 2008
Nothing could get me ready for Neil Diamond ... "not even the chair!" (Sorry. I had to get in that lyric reference in one more time.)
Mollee Francisco
|
April 23, 2008
Get ready for Neil Diamond tunage next week. Woop woop!

(Mollee Francisco is a staff writer for the Chaska Herald. She can be reached at mfrancisco@swpub.com.)
Mollee Francisco
|
April 23, 2008
Too little, too late? Carly Smithson heads home this week. I'm sad to see her go after such a wow performance last night. I guess maybe we are marching toward a David-squared finale. What do you think?

(Mollee Francisco is a staff writer for the Chaska Herald. She can be reached at mfrancisco@swpub.com.)
Mollee Francisco
|
April 23, 2008
Agreed. Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber was actually one of the best mentors they've had. He gave constructive criticism! Imagine that. I suspect that his experience in working with young people helped - as did the fact that he's a lord - what does he care if people like him or not?

(Mollee Francisco is a staff writer for the Chaska Herald. She can be reached at mfrancisco@swpub.com.)
Ruth Anne Maddox
|
April 23, 2008
I agree about the disasters and I hope those are the bottom three. I also was jumping out of my chair when Brooke said this was her first screw up!? I am so done with her.

My husband thought David A. was painful to listen to but is sure that he'll be voted through regardless whether he's in the bottom three. He also thinks that there is some finagling going on somewhere with the choices of those still standing and isn't entirely convinced that the voting has everything to do with who's remaining. Hmmm...

I love, love, loved David C. -- and not just because "Phantom" is my very favorite of the Andrew Lloyd Webber shows. And wasn't Sir Andrew a hoot to listen to with the contestants?
ChicChick
|
April 23, 2008
Upon review, I remember thinking last night that it sounding a little too muffled at that point to be the proper line. But he recovered much better than his first flub earlier this season, so it was hardly noticeable. And didn't Brooke, just before him, make sure to point out that last night was the *first* time she flubbed her words this season. Foreshadowing? Hmm...
Mollee Francisco
|
April 23, 2008
Did I imagine it or did David A. flub his lines on the second verse? Check it out at 1:21 here:

(Mollee Francisco is a staff writer for the Chaska Herald. She can be reached at mfrancisco@swpub.com.)
ChicChick
|
April 22, 2008
By my count, there were three disasters and three highly entertaining performances tonight.

Disasters--Jason, Brooke, and David A. I think we can all agree on Jason and Brooke (although Jason's performance made me pop in the ol' Cats CD to remember how that song is really sung and how it simply gives you goosebumps). I know I'm probably in the minority with David A., and I'm OK with that. I thought it was an awful arrangement. Really, you're going to mess with "The Dude's" arrangement? Bleh. (And I must have missed something...he's the heartthrob this season? I just don't see it.)

Knockouts--Syesha, Carly, and David C. Syesha surprised me and completely won me over with that performance. I'd go see her on Broadway any day! Carly finally had an awesome performance, and she truly looked like she was enjoying herself. David C. surprised the heck out of me! When I found out the song he was singing and that he was actually going to sing it straight, I had to cover my eyes in horror. Good thing I didn't cover my ears! He has such a lovely non-rock singing voice, and I totally bought him as the Phantom!

And, I must agree...the thought, "I think I'm becoming a little smitten with that David Cook" crossed my mind this evening. From Hobbit to hot! Love it!

My bottom three predictions are Brooke, Jason, and Carly (I know it won't be David A.), although I think Carly will be safe. I'm pretty sure Brooke is going home, and it's going to be painfully awkward to listen to her sing "You Must Love Me" again. :(
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