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Le Bal des vampires (musical) - Wikiwand
As someone who lives and breathes film, mostly without really meaning to, I hardly ever go to the theatre because I find it too theatrical. From Billson Film Database: But I was curious about Le bal des vampires, which had premiered in Vienna in as Tanz der Vampire , directed by Polanski. The troubled Broadway production, which added extra dialogue and campy Mel Brooks-style humour to the almost operatic original, was deemed as catastrophic a flop as Carrie.
But Polanski unwilling for legal reasons to go to the U. A pre-curtain announcement in a Count Von Krolock voice informed the audience that vampires were allergic to cameras, cameraphones and flash photography, which put to rest one of my main fears — that this experience would be spoiled by audience behaviour as much as Ghost Stories had been a couple of years earlier.
Plus I would have done it for free. So yes, I could have done without hearing Total Eclipse of the Heart renamed Totale Finsternis reprised at regular intervals during the show. The biggest difference between the film of Dance of the Vampires and the musical is the fleshing out of the characters — in particular Sarah. In the movie, lovely and funny as Sharon Tate is, the character is pretty much a cypher who exists only to get kidnapped by the vampire, to provide a reason for the Professor and Albert to go the castle, and to get bitten by Count Von Krolock prior to her one non-passive moment right at the end — providing the film with its ironic punchline.
In the musical, however, Sarah takes a more active role. Each vampire is clad in rotting attire from a different era; each, even while singing and dancing, is distracted by recalcitrant limbs, or a wayward jaw. When I wore a dental brace I found it almost impossible to whistle, and if ever I try to talk with my retainer in, I end up lisping and spraying spittle.
Also, some of the fangs appeared to be retractable since they appeared midway through a scene. The set, and the way it changed and unfurled, was in itself the most impressive special effect.
Though perhaps this is simply a sign of the times. Eager to get another taste, I peered at photographs and dipped into YouTube clips of the musical numbers — only to find myself cringing at the naffness, wincing at the awfulness of the songs, and flinching at the appalling editing in the videos. It occurs to me that I have belatedly stumbled upon a Grand Truth of the Theatre, one that theatre-lovers have no doubt known since time immemorial — trying to get a taste of the experience via other media is doomed from the outset.
Photos, recordings and videos will never, ever do it justice. Even the fabulous sets seem diminished. You have to be there. You have to feel the energy coming from the performers in real time. You have to see it live. I would love to do a piece on tooth make-up, but no-one seems very interested, and it would probably require too much work to make it worth doing as a non-paid labour of love.
Also, of course, Ludwig Von Krankheit. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. That country where the hills are fog and the rivers are mist; where noons go quickly, dusks and twilights linger, and midnights stay.
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