Dreamgirls is a show about a time in American musical history when rhythm and blues blended with other styles of popular music creating a new American sound. Act One is set in the fabulous sixties — a time when we were still screaming at Elvis and listening to the Beatles, but were dancing to the new beat of countless girl and boy groups like The Supremes, The Marvelettes, The Temptations and The Shirelles. The play is also about the behind-the-scenes reality of the entertainment industry — the business part of show business that made possible this cultural phenomenon. Act Two shows the creation and the arrival of disco — though the word is never used in the script. The subject matter of this play deals with a musical contribution to America of such importance that only now — decades later — are we beginning to understand. Early M.
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December 23, Directed and choreographed by Michael Bennett. If the lights along the Great White Way are burning brighter this week, it's not just the holiday season.
This town has a glamorous, glittering new musical. Broadway in italics. Director-choreographer Michael Bennett and his collaborators have created a work of brilliant theatricality and emotional impact. Conceptually and artistically, ''Dreamgirls'' extends the limits of the American musical, that unique integration of all the playmaking arts.
At the Imperial, however, the concern is with the world of singing stars and groups - from rhythm and blues to rock-and-roll, from soul to pop. The ''Dreamgirls'' group recalls the Supremes. Eyen's libretto, tightly interwoven with his and Mr. Krieger's score, centers on the collective and individual careers of three Chicago girls Jennifer Holliday, Loretta Devine, and Sheryl Lee Ralph who come to New York to launch their singing careers as the Dreamettes.
They lose the fixed Apollo Theater talent contest but acquire as manager a former car salesman, Curtis Taylor Jr. Ben Harney. The wheeler-dealer impresario signs the trio as backup singers for soul star James Thunder Early Cleavant Derricks.
Soon rechristened the Dreams, the three Chicagoans and their ''Dreamgirls'' theme song are climbing the charts and making their mark in the glitzy world of ballrooms and nightclubs. Eyen has devised a plot twist for almost every fantastic costume change a Theoni V. Aldredge feast for the eye. The conniving Taylor tries to thwart her solo comeback with a payola broadside that backfires. It occasionally becomes a question whether Bennett and his collaborators are going to be able to sort out all the breathless plots and subplots in time for the final curtain.
But sort them out they do, in part because song and even recitative carry the action from scene-song to song-scene. Four light towers and two hydraulic light bridges - the combined work of Robin Wagner and Tharon Musser - are choreographed into the constant movement of the eye-filling spectacle. Yet with all its mechanical artifice, ''Dreamgirls'' is more than a piece of prodigious showmanship. The ups and downs of show biz, its heady success, its heartbreak and humiliation, are made appealing and moving.
Indispensable to the appeal, of course, are the ingeniously incorporated musical numbers and the marvelous performance by a superb company of singing actors and backup dancers. The excellent cast of ''Dreamgirls'' includes Obba Babatunde as Effie's songwriting brother, Deborah Burrell as her replacement in the trio, and Vondie Curtis-Hall as Early's discarded manager.
In addition to his portrayal of the soul singer, Mr. Derricks arranged the vocals. Harold Wheeler was musical supervisor and orchestrator.
The pulsing performance is conducted by Yolanda Segovia. Otts Munderloh was the sound designer and Ted Azar hair-styled what must be the most lavishly bewigged show on Broadway. Cheers to them all. Already a subscriber? Your subscription to The Christian Science Monitor has expired. You can renew your subscription or continue to use the site without a subscription. If you have questions about your account, please contact customer service or call us at This message will appear once per week unless you renew or log out.
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dreamgirls - script
December 23, Directed and choreographed by Michael Bennett. If the lights along the Great White Way are burning brighter this week, it's not just the holiday season. This town has a glamorous, glittering new musical. Broadway in italics. Director-choreographer Michael Bennett and his collaborators have created a work of brilliant theatricality and emotional impact. Conceptually and artistically, ''Dreamgirls'' extends the limits of the American musical, that unique integration of all the playmaking arts.
Broadway's stunning new musical about music - and life
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I would love to read the original, but I can't seem to find it anywhere. My instinct tells me that it never was released as a script. I know they are releasing the movie version, but does anyone know where I could find the original??? However - I don't know how much you would get out of it as it's a libretto rather than a script. The stage production is mostly sung - not much dialogue in it. One time, Patti LuPone punched me in the face It was awesome.
Dreamgirls is a American musical drama film written and directed by Bill Condon and jointly produced and released by DreamWorks Pictures and Paramount Pictures. Produced by Laurence Mark , the film's screenplay was adapted by director Condon from the original Broadway book by Tom Eyen. The film debuted in four special road show engagements starting on December 15, , before its nationwide release on December 25, Curtis soon starts his own record label, Rainbow Records, out of his Detroit car dealership, and appoints Effie's brother C. C as his head songwriter. When their first single fails after a white pop group releases a cover version , Curtis, C. Offstage, Effie becomes infatuated with Curtis while the married Jimmy begins an affair with Lorrell.