Musicals Thread (Making Change)

Welcome! The purpose of this thread is to talk about all things related to the wonderful world of musical theatre. Each week I will post a thread with a topic/question for everyone to respond to. This is also a great place to mention any new musicals you’ve discovered and/or general recommendations for other musical fans. Heard/seen any good shows lately? Have any theatre news to share? Tell us about it!

Did everyone watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade? I didn’t, but I did see the news:

I’ll admit that I was a little surprised they were able to do it. I don’t generally have much faith in, well, anything, but especially not NBC. As I read the news, and watched the video, I started to think about what musicals can do for the world. I know that’s a huge, vague idea to ponder, but I’m going to throw it back at you anyway. Do you think musicals can make positive changes? For example, can a musical about two girls going to prom together change people’s perspective? Can it change the way they vote? Can it change anything? What if the tickets to see the show are only available for super rich people? Does that matter? I’m torn. On the one hand, I believe that people can change and that art is an incredibly powerful tool that can evoke emotions and empathy and therefore change. On the other hand, I’m a pessimistic nerd who has read way too much Adorno and Horkheimer and therefore worry that the culture industry controls every aspect of our lives, making resistance almost impossible. Resistance requires realizing that you’re trapped in an open-air prison while also somehow critiquing that. That’s difficult enough, but then how do you make other people change? Can you? So, I want to believe, but I’m skeptical. What I do know is that musicals have always had a profound impact on me. They have comforted me, they have given me hope, and they have made me feel less alone. And so, I hope that they can do that for others as well. Maybe that’s enough.

But enough about me and the Frankfurt School, what do you think? Do you think musicals can make positive changes? Are there any musicals that you think do this?