Monday, May 18, 2009

Don't stop believing

My high school band director, Jack Wade, once cited some study that said gymastics, ballet and playing music were the three toughest disciplines that combined the physical and the mental. Sadly, only two of these three are offered at public schools in this country and those two (gymnastics and instrumental music) are seemingly constantly under the siege of the budgeting axe. As a musical non-athlete, I'll be the first to admit my bias when I complain about how this country wears a jockstrap on its head and grossly over-celebrates athletics and often at the expense of the fine arts.

Sadly, I think this can also be reflected even in our art. Note how many generationally transcendent sports movies there are (The Natural, Field of Dreams, Miracle, Rocky, Karate Kid, Major League, Remember the Titans) and how many are constantly getting released, while movies about the arts, musicians and singers (non pop-star variety) are far more rare (Mr. Holland's Opus, Camp). That's one of the things that appealed to me about the first High School Musical movie; it was a musical about high school musicals! And the musical theater geeks weren't geeks either! Hooray Disney on that one.

But now we're getting what I hope will be a far edgier and more realistic portrayal, Glee. Well, given that Glee, which debuts on Fox after American Idol tomorrow, is created by Ryan Murphy or Nip/Tuck fame perhaps "realistic" wasn't the best word. But at least in this show the female characters might have belly buttons.

Sadly, though I was a band geek, I didn't have a good relationship with the throats at school and never once went to see the school musical. I think I saw the throats and bandies more as rivals for what seemed like our school's very limited fine arts budget. Honestly, looking back we supported the arts a lot compared to some schools. We had band rehearsal every day, two bands and a jazz band plus several choirs all of which met every day. Unfortunately, it wasn't until I moved to Los Angeles that I really figured out who I am and found my inner fine arts camp geek; the kid who realizes that all the marginalized arts kids whose creativity threatens some narrow-minded, insecure asshole's sexuality need to band together.

Anyway, honestly superexcited by it. I'd kinda half-ignored the ads until Amy (who actually attended the band camp in American Pie 2) sent me the extended trailer. I'm sooooo glad that she did.

NOTE: Yes, I now after just posting this remember Fame (which was great) and am fully aware that there's going to be a new Fame movie due out this fall. I love that performing arts are getting a shout. Hooray, but something tells me that Fame isn't going to have the apparent humor and hopefully cleverness of Glee. I wanna be so wrong though.

1 comment:

Katie said...

I can't wait! Matt Morrison, Lea Michele AND Jane Lynch! Awesome. :)