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Why do ppl dislike ALW, call him a hack, etc, etc, etc 
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Webber's problem is..he isnt tlaented enough to write music for characters. his melodies are generic..they can fit in Phantom or Sunset Blvd , or Cats..he doesnt have that extra gift to write strong character themes.

some of hi stuff is pleasant but he is quite medicorce.

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Fri Jul 06, 2007 10:13 am
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Fresh Face
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To me, all of his melodies sound EXACTLY the same. And that's why I don't like him as a composer.

And come on, POTO 2? Why?


Sun Sep 23, 2007 4:08 pm
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i just don't really like his shows. *shrug*

i don't go around saying i hate him though. i think phantom is decent....a little boring in some parts, but decent.

however, POTO 2= #-o

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Sun Sep 23, 2007 5:17 pm
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Salome wrote:
Webber's problem is..he isnt talented enough to write music for characters. his melodies are generic..they can fit in Phantom or Sunset Blvd , or Cats..he doesnt have that extra gift to write strong character themes.


I'd definitely agree with that. I've never been his biggest fan because IMO he tends to come up with one maybe half-decent tune per show and then uses, re-uses and re-re-uses it over and over again; it dawned on me just how generic his music is when I heard an arrangement which consisted of "Unexpected Song", "Tell Me On A Sunday" and one other of his big female solos (I can't remember which) sung all together. Now, it may just have been a clever arrangement, but the ease with which they fitted together made me think that he really hasn't come up with anything truly original for quite a while.[/u]

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Mon Sep 24, 2007 11:00 pm
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There are those that hate ALW because it's trendy to do so. He represents a page in Theatrical History where spectacle became more important than content.

Yet they forget that ALW started off writing very revolutionary pieces. People that love Superstar hate Phantom. Like me....I cant stand Phantom. But I adore Superstar and Evita. Because he was different back then...

I think the first response to this forum explains it well.

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Fri Aug 08, 2008 10:13 am
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Young Hoofer
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Post Re: Why do ppl dislike ALW, call him a hack, etc, etc, etc
Dvarg wrote:
Patter um er wrote:
i dont get it


Scott Miller, the author of From Assassins To West Side Story, wrote:

"Today many people don't like Lloyd Webber's work, but the composer of Superstar is a different Lloyd Webber from the one who wrote Phantom Of The Opera. When he began his career thirty years ago, he wrote in the rock and roll idiom, a musical language he knew and loved. No one can deny that he can still write a breathtaking melody, but his musical vocabulary is limited. Consequently, he excelled in in the relatively simple repetitive language of rock and roll with Superstar, but when he tries today to write in a more classical, more sophisticated style, his limitations show through. What seems driving and primal in Superstar sounds merely repetitious in the classical Eutopean sound of Phantom or the pseudo-jazz ztyle of Sunset Boulevard. His writing ability hasn't diminished, but when he changed styles our expectations changed as well, and he couldn't meet them. His critics believe that, unlike other theatre writers, Lloyd Webber has not grown as a composer over time. Luckily, we can still enjoy Jesus Christ Superstar and Evita, both set on the cynical, literate, and provocative lyrics of Tim Rice."


Are we supposed to accept all of this on face value because it's written in a book?


Fri Aug 15, 2008 4:54 am
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Young Hoofer
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BenjaminBarker wrote:
I think ALW is at his most effective when he's not trying to be the "great composer". For example, "Joseph" and "Starlight Express" are unpretentious, fun shows which work and are entertaining for most types of audience. As soon as he tries something more ambitious musically his lack of technique as a composer almost becomes embarrassing. A good example can be found in "Woman in White". There's a particular song (can't remember the title but it's set in London) which has an irregular 5/8 metre throughout. It just sounds clumsy and awkward, and, instead of giving the effect of clumsiness and awkwardness for valid dramatic reasons, the sub text is really "Here I am being the 'great composer' because I can write music in 5/8 - aren't I clever?"


Are you able to read his mind? Actually, I think that Starlight Express is his weakest show, but that's another matter. Trying to be a great composer is a very worthy ambition indeed. I wish more composers were like that. Aside from that, though, Andrew lloyd Webber comes across as a quiet and modest man and if he was really so bothered about what the critics think of him, he wouldn't be writing the music he writes at all. People will always try to discredit him whatever he does - I don't imagine that Lloyd Webber thinks that writing a particular song in 5/8 would change that.


Fri Aug 15, 2008 6:24 am
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Post Re: Why do ppl dislike ALW, call him a hack, etc, etc, etc
MusicFan wrote:
Dvarg wrote:
Patter um er wrote:
i dont get it


Scott Miller, the author of From Assassins To West Side Story, wrote:

"Today many people don't like Lloyd Webber's work, but the composer of Superstar is a different Lloyd Webber from the one who wrote Phantom Of The Opera. When he began his career thirty years ago, he wrote in the rock and roll idiom, a musical language he knew and loved. No one can deny that he can still write a breathtaking melody, but his musical vocabulary is limited. Consequently, he excelled in in the relatively simple repetitive language of rock and roll with Superstar, but when he tries today to write in a more classical, more sophisticated style, his limitations show through. What seems driving and primal in Superstar sounds merely repetitious in the classical Eutopean sound of Phantom or the pseudo-jazz ztyle of Sunset Boulevard. His writing ability hasn't diminished, but when he changed styles our expectations changed as well, and he couldn't meet them. His critics believe that, unlike other theatre writers, Lloyd Webber has not grown as a composer over time. Luckily, we can still enjoy Jesus Christ Superstar and Evita, both set on the cynical, literate, and provocative lyrics of Tim Rice."


Are we supposed to accept all of this on face value because it's written in a book?


What do you mean? I answered the question by quoting a text I agree with (because the author expressed these thoughts better than I). I don't agree because it was written in a book, I agree because this is more or less what I think of ALW anyway. It's fine if you disagree, but not if you disagree because it was written in a book.

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Fri Aug 15, 2008 6:42 am
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Young Hoofer
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Post Re: Why do ppl dislike ALW, call him a hack, etc, etc, etc
Dvarg wrote:
What do you mean? I answered the question by quoting a text I agree with (because the author expressed these thoughts better than I). I don't agree because it was written in a book, I agree because this is more or less what I think of ALW anyway. It's fine if you disagree, but not if you disagree because it was written in a book.


Sorry, my remark was a little offhanded. No offence was intended.


Fri Aug 15, 2008 6:59 am
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Young Hoofer
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I like some of the songs he's written. I can't say I completely dislike him, but I am just not a big fan. Out of all of his shows, I find Joseph, as a whole, less annoying than others. Cats to me, is my least favorite that I've heard. I enjoy some songs from Starlight Express. I couldn't get into Evita at all. Phantom is okay, I just really dislike Michael Crawford's voice (and Sarah Brightman's too).

I guess I can say I appreciate ALW because it gives something for Forbidden B'way to make fun of!


Fri Aug 15, 2008 7:31 am
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Young Hoofer
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kiwitechgirl wrote:
I'd definitely agree with that. I've never been his biggest fan because IMO he tends to come up with one maybe half-decent tune per show and then uses, re-uses and re-re-uses it over and over again


When people use this argument, they are usually basing it on one of two things, and both are inaccurate. The "one and a half decent tunes per show" is based on the idea that if, say, Don't Cry for Me Argentina or Memory are the most recognisable melodies in their respective shows, then all the others are no good. In actual fact, both musicals contain numerous other melodies which I would consider outstanding but they aren't the big show stoppers. The other is the notion that if material is reused then it must be due to a shortage of ideas. This is also nonsense. Andrew Lloyd Webber composes musicals, not cabaret shows. His themes make up a tapestry and are interwoven seamlessly with the drama. The reintroduction of certain musical themes is an integral part of the dramatic structure.


Fri Aug 15, 2008 8:38 am
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he doesnt use it for dramatic structure. if he did the melodies woulsrtnnt be used so arbitrarily as they are in his shows.


Sondheim uses repitition for dramatic theames properly as does JRB and Kander and Ebb.

Webber uses the same 4 melodies per show out of either laziness or the desire to beat those melodies into the publics head.

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