Saint Aggie's '84

The history of a new musical as it comes to be…

The Chorus as a Character (or perhaps, the Flies on the Walls)

I’m still working on “the Silent Song”. It’s been five days of work now. It’s really proving to be quite a challenge…but I like a challenge. The song has just about got it’s structure, but still needs a whole lot of fleshing out…and probably several rewrites of lyrics before it is presentable. It’s just a really important scene, and the climax of the play. And it’s got to be funny! I have Tim Ryan’s voice in my head constantly right now, telling me over and over, “Make it funny, Chris!” (Thanks for that Tim, I mean it. Because you are so right…and always have been.) I’ve also just realized that this is kind of the finale of this version of Saint Aggie’s ’84, albeit a false one. (I think it might not play out quite the same way in the two act version of this show that will eventually come to be). It is the first of two false endings…and the second one might actually end up being a REPRISE of this song. So it’s a pretty heavy piece of music. No pressure.

The Chorus in this song is going to be very important, not just for the fact that hearing all 40 voices singing together will add to the celebratory height of where the girls are emotionally (not to mention that it will just sound pretty cool), but that the comedy in the song comes from the element of each of the girls being caught out. Having the whole school bare witness to their secrets will up the stakes in the scene. I’m thinking that the chorus in “St. Aggie’s” will be just that, the eyes and ears of the school…the flies on the walls, the gossip going round, the spirit of Saint Agatha herself. I want the Chorus to be present all the time, able to comment at any moment. The Chorus is going to be an important character.

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