Music is one of the purest forms of art there is, so it should come as no surprise that it often goes hand-in-hand with other kinds of creative expression. Whether it's a live band accompanying an art gallery opening, a compelling soundtrack pushing a good movie to greatness, or even a musician drawing inspiration from a painting or sculpture, all types of art share a common thread. This has been the case throughout history, and some musicians are testament to that.
There are a number of bands that incorporate art into their music, but one group that does it extremely well is The Decemberists. Fronted by Colin Meloy, the Oregon-based band is no stranger to drawing inspiration across a wide spectrum of art forms. For instance, in their 2010 album The King Is Dead, they offered up a musical interpretation of the David Foster Wallace novel Infinite Jest in the form of the track "Calamity Song." The tune condenses a 1000-page book into a four-minute song, and it does so perfectly.
The Decemberists are certainly not the only band to draw inspiration from literature. Everyone from Iron Maiden ("Rime of the Ancient Mariner") to Dire Straits ("Romeo and Juliet") have done so. What's a little less common is having songs reflect a particular painting, sculpture or other similar works of art, but singer-songwriter icon Don McLean did just that.
McLean is probably most known for his eight-minute epic "American Pie," but he also paid tribute to Vincent Van Gogh with the equally emotive "Vincent." An shorter acoustic track, the song mentions several of Van Gogh's most famous paintings, such as "Starry Night" and "Sunflowers." It also clearly demonstrates a deep appreciation for his impressionist style as a whole.
While music can draw inspiration from both books and fin art, perhaps nowhere else is the artistic relationship more evident than it is on stage. Whether you're more of a purist and prefer classic works such as The Nutcracker, Swan Lake or Aida, or are more drawn to the modern performance art, such as Wicked or The Book of Mormon, it's hard to deny that being on the stage goes hand in hand with music.
If you're looking to explore the exquisite artistic relationship between music and its counterparts, TicketsNow has a bevy of wonderful opportunities for you, from to Beyoncé to Broadway. Just click here to get started!
Even though it's Monday, we here at TicketsNow are always looking forward (who really wants to look at Monday anyway?). While we cannot predict the future, we can let you in on some of the hottest events that seem to be shaping up for Tuesday.
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Summer is often associated as being the best time for concerts, and while that's certainly the case for many people, others head to the theater. There are many big-name productions hitting the stage this summer that even the most casual thespian can appreciate. Here's a look at some of the best.
The Book of Mormon
This popular musical comes from the minds of South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, and while it may seem like their humor wouldn't translate well from cartoons to the stage, nothing could be further from the truth.
This spot-on satire of organized religion came to fruition after years of development and it was certainly worth the wait. Thanks to a catchy score written by Avenue Q composer Robert Lopez, The Book of Mormon won nine Tony Awards including Best Musical and also captured a Grammy award.
Based on 2006 film of the same name, Once has quickly become one of the most successful musicals in recent memory. The story centers around two down and out musicians who form a close relationship while deciding what direction their lives should go - all while creating some beautiful music of their own.
Once, which captured the 2012 Tony for Best Musical, is aided by the great soundtrack from the movie. Most notably, the production features the tune "Falling Slowly," which became a moderate hit for Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová, who played the two protagonists in the film. Check out a taste of the soundtrack that made this musical a hit.
The Best Man
Penned by literary legend Gore Vidal, The Best Man returned to Broadway this summer and stars Will and Grace actor Eric McCormack. The story, which centers around the 1960 presidential election, seems especially topical in the runup to the 2012 election. In its original production, it went on to earn six Tony nominations, and this revival marks the first time its hit Broadway in more than 10 years.
The 1945 Pulitzer Prize winner remains one of the most unique plays around more than 65 years after its release. The story of Harvey follows Elwood P. Dowd, who seems like an ordinary man except for one thing: he claims to be friends with an enormous white rabbit nobody else can see. The latest production, which is running at New York's Studio 54, stars The Big Bang Theory's Jim Parsons in the lead role.
Whatever your favorite flavor of theater may be; Broadway, plays, opera or dance, hustle on over to TicketsNow to grab tickets for the best seats in the house.
Trey Parker and Matt Stone may be best known as the creators of comedies such as South Park and Team America: World Police, but the duo have also brought their comedic talents to the stage. Stone and Parker broke new ground when they debuted The Book of Mormon, a musical religious satire, in 2011. Since then, The Book of Mormon tour has been one of the most popular stage shows in the United States.
The Book of Mormon had been causing a stir long before it ever hit the stage for the first time. Parker and Stone have been comedic icons since the late '90s thanks to South Park, and when word of their making a musical got out, people were both excited and a little bit shocked. Could the people behind a crass cartoon really be tasked with a production this big? Turns out the answer was a resounding yes.
The duo first got the idea for The Book of Mormon in 2003, after watching the hit Broadway musical Avenue Q. By 2006, Parker and Stone, along with composer Robert Lopez, penned a story and came up with some tunes. Over the next several years, they worked sporadically on the musical until in 2011, it was finally ready to debut for the first time.
The story follows the plight of two soon-to-be Mormon missionaries, Elder Kevin Price and Elder Arnold Cunningham. Polar opposites, the two become friends when they are paired off and sent to Uganda as part of their missionary work. However, they quickly find out that the Ugandan citizens aren't interested in being converted and are more concerned with the daily struggles they face, such as poverty, AIDS and famine.
Although comedic in tone, The Book of Mormon has been lauded by critics for the serious themes it examines. Not surprisingly, one of the most significant issues it touches on is the teaching of religious institutions, Mormonism in this case. While it does not criticize religion as a belief system, it's larger theme is that the teachings may be out of touch with the modern world.
The surprising depth of the musical has not gone unnoticed. It won the Tony Award for Best Musical in 2011, and also brought home trophies for Best Original Score and Best Book of a Musical. Additionally, after being limited to Broadway, the production will make its first North American Tour later this summer. Get your Book of Mormon tickets now.