Maybe you knew that Glee star Naya Rivera has a record deal with Sony/Columbia, and maybe you’ve seen her on the arm of Detroit’s own Big Sean in recent months. So what do you get when you put those two together? “Sorry.” (Not sorry!)
Shortly after Charlene Kaye took the stage as the opening act of StarKid‘s performance at Roseland Ballroom on Sunday evening —the final date of their “Apocalyptour”— she addressed her audience of 3,500. “It’s the end of the world,” she told them. “And you get to experience it with us.” The crowd erupted as Kaye continued playing her 45-minute set, a loud and buoyant assortment of songs that showcased her powerful voice and magnetic stage presence. Apart from a poorly conceived request for her audience to kneel down and jump in unison (an act that seemed to cause more disgruntlement than enjoyment), she held a tight grip on the crowd. Her set ended with “Animal Love I,” an electrifying anthem (and the best song of the entire evening) that seemed fitting for a theater of people who had been told to expect end of the world.
But was it really the apocalypse? As someone who knew almost nothing about StarKid upon entering the venue that evening, I couldn’t be too sure. The thousands of screaming children, parents who weren’t sure how to deal with the noise, and stage filled with good-looking performers in complimentary costumes featuring varying levels of thigh exposure felt like some kind of terrifying trifecta that could only mean certain death.
Fortunately for the crowd (and to a lesser extent, me), the world did not end after Charlene left the stage, and the Apocalyptour continued as the remaining performers of StarKid began their show. The minimal and vaguely Incan set design was, like every other element of the show’s construction, merely a method of threading disconnected StarKid songs together. The show’s framing device featured them as archeologists who encounter an ancient god of “chaos, death and musical theater” hell-bent on destroying the world. To dissuade him, they perform selections from their repertoire, including pieces from A Very Potter Musical, Me and My Dick, and Starship. A set list that moves from songs about penises to ones about Hermione Granger is objectively weird, but the StarKids (all former students of the University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theater & Dance) have an impressive grip on writing and, though lyrically all over the place, that persistent musical theater tone helped tie every dick and Potter song together.
Hell hath no fury like a Gleek scorned! After Australian artist Gotye, whose song “Somebody That I Used To Know” is currently sitting atop the Billboard Hot 100, told the Australian Sunday Mail newspaper that the Glee cover of his song was “dinky” and “ultra-dry”, he encountered a swift backlash from enraged musical theater enthusiasts. For a show that talks so much about the evils of bullying, Glee fans can turn quite nasty themselves. Here are just two of the hundreds examples we saw on Twitter:
After realizing that he had put his foot in his mouth and angered one of the few groups of people who still buy music, Gotye retracted his diss at an concert in Los Angeles last night. The Hollywood Reporter notes that Gotye told the audience during the show that “the nature of using reverb and space in a recording can change your perception of how a sound appeals to you … I thought it was really clever to transpose the song to two guys … It was a great idea.” While it’s always essential to maintain one’s integrity, in a case like this, there’s more to be won from a strategic backpedal than there is to be lost. Gotye may have lost the fight, but his decision to play nice in the sandbox with Gleeks shows that he’s got every intention of winning the war.
[Photo: Colin Gray/VH1, Fox]
Already announcing that she’s working on two new albums for 2013, there’s no stopping Beyoncé, even after the recent birth of her first baby, Blue Ivy Carter. She really is the woman who can do it all, and we’re starting to wonder if she doesn’t have a secret twin, or if maybe she’s a robot, or some kind of lovely alien from a planet where everyone has eternal stamina. Arousing our suspicions about the lovely alien theory even further, now Mamma B has signed on for a new musical comedy called One Hit Wonders, that will be directed by Glee creator Ryan Murphy. The film will tell the story of several “one hit wonders” who all had but one hit song in the 90s, and the cast is reported to include Cameron Diaz, Reese Witherspoon, Andy Samberg and Gwyneth Paltrow (who will also act as a producer). While Bey’s role in the film is unclear, we’re looking forward to her return to the big screen, and hope that it involves some awesome costumes and plenty of booty shaking.
Beyonce Signs On for Ryan Murphy Musical [Rolling Stone]
[Photo: Getty Images]
“We Are Young,” the anthemic single from New York indie pop outfit fun., was released in September without a great deal of fanfare, but quickly exploded in popularity when the song appeared on a December episode of Glee. The Gleeks consequently stormed the iTunes store en masse, rocketing the song straight to #1 in the Alternative category. And now, with the group’s second LP, Some Nights, due for release in February, there’s an official music video to whet your appetite.
Directed by A-list music video helmer Marc Klasfeld (Katy Perry‘s “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)”, Red Hot Chili Peppers‘ “The Adventures Of Rain Dance Maggie”), the video combines flash mobs, food fights, Inception-style slo-mo explosions, a Janelle Monae cameo and a katana-wielding teen who has clearly played one too many games of Fruit Ninja. In short, it’s pretty much exactly like the New Year’s Eve party we went to a few nights ago.