THE MAGIC OF THE MUSICALS was the 2012 production of the annual “Showcase” series, produced by Stage School Hamburg. Jacqueline Dunnley-Wendt and Hauke Wendt for Musical Creations Entertainment (MCE) were commissioned to develop the 2012 production of the college’s graduates at the K2 Theatre at Kampnagel Hamburg. A fairly ambitious production schedule allowed very little time for the creatives to come up with the concept for the show. The college had a tradition of producing shows in previous years, that showcased a lot of the students’ work.
We set ourselves the task, not use numbers that the students prepared during their studies, but to teach the numbers from scratch, allowing the students to learn the pace of learning a new show. We also added a storyline in order to make the show more compelling for its audience.
Quickly, we made the decision to focus on the turning points in the history of musical theatre. Easier said than done. Where do we start and what turning points do we choose? At the end of the day, we decided to keep the show reasonably short, one reason, in order to have the finished product slick and well rehearsed in the time we were given and secondly, to avoid the show itself becoming too long and losing the audience’s interest.
We ended up starting the show with Gilbert & Sullivan’s HMS PINAFORE, taking it through landmark shows in chronological order via THREE PENNY OPERA, the FOLLIES, WEST SIDE STORY and CATS up to the current age of GLEE and ROCK OF AGES. Some sections got their own scenes, others were linked by segue. Of course, it’s impossible to cover everything that’s exciting and possibly historically relevant. We also pursued to showcase the performers’ talents….
It is probably safe to say, THE MAGIC OF THE MUSICALS provided an exciting learning curve for everyone involved. We were glad to see that THE MAGIC OF THE MUSICALS was very well received by its audience and are also chuffed to bits to see that many of the show’s cast (the college’s 2012 graduates) find themselves working on the professional stage already. If they took something from working on this show that helped them along their paths, that’s great news for us!
The magic of the musicals
Direction & Choreography: Jacqueline Dunnley-Wendt
Music Director: Hauke Wendt
Additional Choreography: Marco Krämer