CUE & A REVISITED: "Favorite Showtunes of All Time"; Over 70 Actors Respond
By Playbill Staff
November 22, 2013
From the title song of Ragtime to Floyd Collins' "Riddle Song," to "Rose's Turn," "Sunday" and "The Next Ten Minutes" from The Last Five Years, these are some of New York City actors' favorite showtunes of all time.
"If Ever I Would Leave You"
"Somewhere" from West Side Story
Well, as kid I fantasized about being part of The Sound of Music. I wanted to have my own special imaginary singing family - swinging in trees in costumes made out of curtains, doing puppet shows with goats and singing lullabies every evening at big dinner parties. I wanted Christopher Plummer to sing "Edelweiss" to me... (although I find it so interesting that he apparently hated doing this. What does that say about good acting?)
"Somewhere" from West Side Story. Nothing can top that, frankly.
"Don't Cry For Me Argentina." Or "I Loves You, Porgy." Or "My Man’s Gone Now." Or anything else from Porgy and Bess...
Krystal Joy Brown
"And the World Goes 'Round"
That song just pretty much sums it up for me… "Sometimes you're happy, sometimes you're sad, but the world goes 'round." Yeah that pretty much says it all.
"In This Wide, Wide World" from Gigi
"Pretty Women" from Sweeney Todd
I love "The Riddle Song" from Floyd Collins
"Damned For All Time/Blood Money"
"Change" from A New Brain. I’ve never met Mary Testa, but I wouldn’t mind being her best friend.
"Coloring Book." It's so haunting, I love it.
Easy - "Make Someone Happy" by Jule Styne. It will be my wedding song.
Bryan Terrell Clark
It's between "On Broadway" and "Sophisticated Ladies"
"The Ballad of Sweeney Todd," "Cool" from West Side Story, "Sunday" from Sunday in the Park with George
"Heaven on Their Minds" (Jesus Christ Superstar), "Corner of the Sky" (Pippin), "A New World" (Songs for a New World), "Comfort and Joy" (Bat Boy), "Lily's Eyes" (The Secret Garden).
If I said "The Life I Never Led," would you slap me across the face?
Not sure I can choose even a handful. A plethora of songs from Les Miz. I think that score is beautiful. "Bring Him Home," "Who Am I?," "I Dreamed a Dream," "On My Own" etc. I also really love Sweeney Todd. "Not While I'm Around" is one of my favorites for sure.
“Someone In a Tree”
“Finishing the Hat”
“Now” – “Soon” – “Later”
I’ll stop there before I just list every Sondheim song in some order.
"Pretty Women" and "The Nearness of You"
"The Riddle Song" from Floyd Collins, “Make Someone Happy” from Do Re Mi, “Our Time” from Merrily We Roll Along, “96,000” from In the Heights, “Paris Through the Window” from A Class Act
"Dance of the Robe" from Aida
"A Quiet Thing" by Kander and Ebb. I'm a softie, what can I say?
"I Am What I Am"
"The Impossible Dream"
"Lonely House" from Street Scene
"As If We Never Said Goodbye" from Sunset Boulevard
"Rose's Turn" from Gypsy
... that's today's list. It's always changing. That's the beauty of a showtune - you can always find a perfect song to fit any mood at any given time.
“From this Moment On” from Cole Porter's Out of this World
“Anyone Can Whistle,” “Who Are You Now,” “Rose’s Turn,” “Move On”
"If I Loved You" from Carousel
"Finishing the Hat" from Sunday in the Park with George
"Soliloquy" from Carousel
"Gethsemane" from Jesus Christ Superstar
“I Could Have Danced All Night” from My Fair Lady
“Hello Dolly” from Hello, Dolly!
“Maybe this Time” from Cabaret
“Edelweiss” from The Sound of Music
"Soliloquy" from Carousel
"Tonight" and "Somewhere" from West Side Story
"Rose's Turn" from Gypsy
"A Wonderful Guy" from South Pacific
"Old Man River" and "Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man of Mine" from Show Boat
"Maybe This Time" from Cabaret
All of Porgy and Bess
"Everything's Coming Up Roses"
"I'm All I've Got"
"Superboy and the Invisible Girl"
The entire score of A Chorus Line
"Singin' in the Rain"
"Nobody's Fool" from "The Court Jester"
"The Old Red Hills of Home" from Parade
I always love "Sit Down, You're Rockin' the Boat" from Guys and Dolls.
"Unexpected Song" from Song and Dance
Anything from West Side Story and "Who Can I Turn To?" from Roar of the Greasepaint...
"Never Never Land"
"I Have Dreamed"
"Anyone Can Whistle"
Ohhh, the list goes on....
"Out Here On My Own" from Fame
Anything from Gypsy, Annie or Into the Woods
"Soliloquy" from Carousel. As a father to a little girl (and new baby boy), that song carries a lot of weight. I also love "Gethsemane" from Jesus Christ Superstar. Just epic.
It changes but currently... "The Next Ten Minutes" from The Last Five Years is one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard.
It's common to hear, but anything from Rent is very hard for me not to start singing along to.
"The Music and the Mirror"
"All the Things You Are"
"Ballad of Sweeney Todd"
"Free At Last" from Big River
My cheeseball favorite: "Bring Him Home" as sung by Colm Wilkinson
My quotable favorite: "Epiphany" from Sweeney Todd
"Breeze Off the River"
"I Am What I Am"
"Tonight" (come on... this whole score!)
"Stars and the Moon" by Jason Robert Brown
"Sailing" by William Finn. I did a workshop of New Brain and loved singing it.
Impossible to name just one. Ummm... "Maria," "Midnight Radio," the entire bench scene from Carousel, "Sunday," the overture from Merrily We Roll Along, "A Quiet Thing," to name a few.
"Some People" from Gypsy. I get really cheesy and sing it at the top of my lungs when I'm feeling really strongly in one direction emotionally. Happy, angry, excited... doesn't matter which "direction" as long as it's strong. Belting Ethel-style is a complete release!
Really now... it's like trying to pick your favorite child. All right, I'll play your game, Mr. Playbill.
For my more mainstream choice I'll go with "At the Ballet" from A Chorus Line. For the "road less traveled" choice, I'll pick "Is Anybody There?" from 1776.
Is this a questionnaire for gay people?
My favourite song is "Gethsemane" from Jesus Christ Superstar. It’s an incredibly powerful, huge song (written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice) and I absolutely love singing it onstage when I’m on tour.
"Dancing Through Life" from Wicked. Did I mention...? If you ever heard Orfeh sing anything it would be your freakin' favorite. When I saw her sing "If I Can't Have You" in Saturday Night Fever, it took the show to a new level. Same thing for "Make Like a Nail" in Trailer Park... just awesome.
There are a few songs that I don't click past when I'm in shuffle mode. "Heart & Soul" from Bright Lights, Big City, "Class" from Sondheim's Saturday Night, "The Calling" from Altar Boyz.
"Some Enchanted Evening." Always has been.
OMG! Impossible to pick one as there are so many amazing songs out there. But because it was the very first showtune I EVER sang (when I was 12), and since there are so many memories attached to it, and I still agree with the sentiment of it, I'm gonna say “Tomorrow.”
Tie between "What Would I Do If I Could Feel" from The Wiz, "New Music" from Ragtime and "Dividing Day" from Light in the Piazza. They all get me every time.
If truth be told, "Schadenfreude" from Avenue Q speaks to my very core.
"And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" from Dreamgirls
I don’t know if it’s my favorite, but when I think of my son, a Sondheim song comes to mind - "Loving You." The first line of that song makes me fall apart: "Loving you is not a choice, it’s who I am."
Robin De Jesús
"Buddy's Eyes," "I'm Here," "Soliloquy" or "96,000." Depending on the day.
Sweeny Todd "Johanna" Act II
"Suddenly Seymour" (is that the title...you know from Little Shop...)
Rebecca Naomi Jones
love the song "Barcelona" from Company. And the entire West Side Story score is just so beautiful.
So many, but I do have a special fondness for "Good Morning, Starshine" from Hair, and "Muddy Water" from Big River. Hairspray also gets a lot of playtime on my iPod; it’s just so happy!
"Magic To Do"
I couldn't possibly pick just one. It changes daily. It was "Memory" for a long time. Maybe it hasn't changed. I'm not very committal. Can you tell?
There are so many..."Marry Me A Little"..."My Heart is So Full of You"..."Some Other Time"..."At the Ballet"..."Lonely Town"..."This Nearly Was Mine"..."Move On"...and just about anything from Gypsy and West Side Story.
"That's Enough for Me" from Romance in Hard Times by William Finn
Is the opening number of Ragtime cheating?
"Nobody's Side" (how many days did I drive around in my Bronco II in high school pretending I was Judy Kuhn or Elaine Page...who's a geek??)
"The Riddle Song" from Floyd Collins