A big family, a reading addiction, and the occasional celebrity scandal are the ingredients of life that create one woman's opinion on just about everything.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

John Adams & 1776

Many years ago I was flipping through TV stations and my attention was caught by a musical playing. I unashamedly love musicals. Yes, it's sometimes a little hokey to have characters break into song in the middle of telling a story, but all in all, I don't much care. I love 'em.

This particular song was something I'd never seen before because my tastes tend to run to the MGM type musicals and this movie was "newer". The movie was
1776. For inquiring minds, it was made in 1972 and I caught it on TV around our bicentennial in 1976. Anyway, because of the big holiday I was able to catch the whole movie later in the weekend. It was a hoot. It was funny, campy, and enlightening.

Who knew that someone (Sherman Edwards and Peter Stone) would be able to write a musical play about the writing of the Declaration of Independence? It's a great little movie. History not your cuppa? I ask that you see the movie (or at least YouTube it) before you make a judgment. It's got music, wit, history, a sprinkle of romance and a whole new way to look at the Founding Fathers.


While the movie is really an ensemble cast, for me the star of 1776 is none other than our second President, John Adams who is played with devilsh delight by William Daniels. Daniels is probably better known to you youngsters as Mr. Feeny in 90's sitcom, Boy Meets World.

Staying on topic is so hard sometimes.

Anyway it turns out that John Adams is a person, who upon further study, was a driving force, if not THE driving force behind our push for independence. Did you know how important John Adams was? I didn't until I saw that musical. Don't laugh.


It so happens that many years later (like about 25) in 2001 I'm watching this interview on Charlie Rose with Pulitzer Prize winning historian David McCullough. Mr. McCullough was there to talk about his (then) new book about John Adams . Since that interview a few things have happened. Mr. McCullough won his second Pulitzer for John Adams and HBO decided to do a mini-series based on the book.

Are you still with me?

Flash forward to March 16, 2008 and the first installment of the HBO mini-series about John Adams is airing tonight at 8 p.m. Personally, I can't wait. I'm infinitely curious about this period in our nation's history. I'm intrigued. I'm interested. I'll be watching.

And now, because it all started with the musical 1776, here's one of my favorite songs... It's corny, over the top and if the words, "he plays the violin" don't become today's Blue Plate special
ear worm I'll eat my socks.







Last, but not least, because this IS supposed to be about the incomparable John Adams, here's one more.


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2 Comments:

OpenID scooper said...

I enjoy a good musical too. I haven't watched one in a long time, but you make me want to pull out RENT and sing along. I might have to pick up your musical too.

7:19 PM PDT  
Blogger lisabea said...

My hubbie took my 12 year old to see this in December. I still haven't seen it (me. the ex theatre major!). It's interesting that it made my very patriotic father in law weep in the theatre.


:)

5:50 AM PDT  

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