Musical theater has produced countless classic songs over the years, but one that stands out is “Suddenly Seymour” from the beloved show “Little Shop of Horrors”. This song, written by the musical theater legends Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, is widely considered to be one of the best that the genre has to offer.
At its core, “Suddenly Seymour” is a duet between the characters Seymour and Audrey as they profess their love for one another. But the song is much more than just a love ballad. It is a soaring, emotional tribute to the power of human connection and the transformative effects of love.
The song begins with Seymour, played by Rick Moranis, expressing his newfound confidence and belief in himself thanks to his relationship with Audrey. He sings about how he used to be “scared and petrified” but now he feels like he can face anything thanks to her love.
Audrey, played by Ellen Greene, responds with her own verse that shows how much she has come to rely on Seymour. “Suddenly Seymour” then builds to a powerful crescendo as the two characters join together to sing the chorus. The lyrics proclaim that “Suddenly Seymour is standing beside me. He doesn’t give me orders, he doesn’t condescend.”
The beauty of this song lies in the way it perfectly captures the joys and fears of falling in love. The characters are both flawed and damaged, but they find strength in each other’s love. The music, with its lush orchestra and soaring vocals, perfectly conveys the sweeping emotions of the moment.
But “Suddenly Seymour” isn’t just an emotional powerhouse. It is also a technically impressive piece of songwriting. The melody and lyrics are intricately crafted to convey the depth and complexity of the characters’ emotions, and the harmonies between the two singers are exquisitely balanced.
All of these elements add up to make “Suddenly Seymour” one of the most memorable and beloved songs in all of musical theater. Its enduring popularity is a testament to the songwriting genius of Menken and Ashman, and to the power of love to transform lives.
Howard Ashman was not only a remarkable lyricist, but also a visionary director, producer and playwright. He was a co-producer of the 1986 Broadway production of Little Shop of Horrors, and was instrumental in bringing the show to the big screen in 1986, where it gained a cult following and introduced this musical masterpiece to a new generation of fans. To this day, Ashman’s influence on the world of musical theater continues to inspire and excite audiences, and his legacy as a creator and innovator is firmly established.
At the top of this post, you will find a music video featuring the movie version of “Suddenly Seymour”. In this rendition, Rick Moranis and Ellen Greene chemistry and heartfelt performances make this song even more unforgettable. The music video also showcases the incredible talent of Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, whose creative partnership left an indelible mark on the world of musical theater. So sit back, relax and enjoy this stunning tribute to the power of love and human connection, set to one of the most beloved songs of all time.
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