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Anyone with experience of the 1980's?

Discussion in 'Drama and performing arts' started by nats_yates, Mar 2, 2017.

  1. Hi, I'm writing a YA novel set in the 80's and based around a drama production. Would anyone know what schools were using in the 80's (1986 specifically) for scripts. I thought of Grease, but think it's too soon after the film came out (1978) and licence probably not available then. I also thought of Romeo and Juliet, but wondered if there were any others, particularly with a romantic theme.

    Many thanks.
  2. IlMentore

    IlMentore New commenter

    Macbeth is a safe bet if you do go with Shakespeare; it requires a smaller cast than most Shakespeare, it's bloody while being restrained enough to seem respectable, plus there's none of that awkward romance for the kids (and their parents) to get funny about. My understanding of drama as a subject is that it didn't really get too fashionable until the late 90s, where it was still viewed with suspicion by many schools, so I can only imagine how popular drama teachers would have been in the 80s.

    You're right about Grease tough; even in the early years of the new millennium, I remember there being trouble getting the rights worked out for a college performance.
    stanyates likes this.
  3. Dredd0

    Dredd0 New commenter

    Mrs Dredd reports The Wizard of Oz was being done around 1988, if that's any help.
    stanyates likes this.
  4. Skyler

    Skyler New commenter

    Annie (1986)
    Sound of Music (1988)
    stanyates likes this.
  5. install

    install Star commenter

    Yes - Grease was the one in the 80s used by lots of schools.
    stanyates likes this.
  6. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    We did The Crucible
    stanyates likes this.
  7. 50sman

    50sman Lead commenter

    Grease the stage show came out a lng time before the film so it could be done in the 1980s but not with all the songs. The difference between the film and the stage show are the songs this has also caused rights issues because some of the songs in the film are not in the original stage show and not written by the sage show authors

    The thre songs written for the film are
    . GRease (written by the BEE GEES)

    Hopelessly devoted to your (written by ONJs best mates husband John Farrar wholeft the shadows to work with ONJ) - it won best song oscar

    You're the one that I want ( also written bt John faraar allegedly because the film was too short!!)

    For school plays performed in 1980s have a look at Kes - popular film in 1970s but done by many schools in the 1980s
    stanyates likes this.
  8. stanyates

    stanyates New commenter

    Thank you all for taking the time to respond. Some great ideas here. :)
  9. drannabean1

    drannabean1 New commenter

    Hello all,
    I'm new to this board. Since joining, I've noticed most of the posts are GB-based. Depending on the setting of your novel, two musicals that were hot stuff here in the States during the 1980s for high schools to produce were:

    Runaways by Elizabeth Swados
    The Samuel French blurb:
    Runaways is a collection of songs, dances, and spoken word pieces performed by children who have run away from their homes. Initially created from interviews with homeless children and those in orphanages, Liz Swados weaves songs about personal struggle and the world at large through the eyes of youth in New York City in the 70s. The show blends different musical styles from pop to hip-hop, jazz to reggae, while asking why children can't remain children.

    The Me Nobody Knows by Friedman, Schapiro, Livingston
    SF blurb:
    The Me Nobody Knows is a Tony-nominated and OBIE Award-winning, ground-breaking musical which has been inspiring and touching audiences throughout the world for generations. Within the envelope of a single day, the show poetically examines the aspirations and fears of a multi-racial cast of young people. Inspired by actual writings of students in the New York City Public Schools, the stories are universal, and can be shared by and with all races. The powerful and contemporary score carries and propels each individuals journey. The size of the cast may vary according to the needs of each production.

    These both were seen as "cutting-edge" musicals for high schools, so if you want to mine the drama production these are worth a look.


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