"Welcome To The 60's" with our Gif Review of HAIRSPRAY!
This is the cast album that is as sweet and effervescent as an iced cold glass of soda pop with a three scoop ice cream sundae on the side.
In the summer of 2002, Broadway was BLESSED with a high energy musical with the biggest heart on West 52nd Street at the Neil Simon Theatre. Hairspray hit Broadway like a lightning bolt with thanks to the definition of a cast and creative dream team. Starring Marissa Jaret Winokur, Harvey Fierstein, Matthew Morrison, Kerry Butler, Mary Bond Davis, Corey Reynolds, Linda Hart, Dick Latessa and Jackie Hoffman, the creative team comprised of the incredible director Jack O'Brien, FULL-OUT choreographer Jerry Mitchell, book by Mark O'Donnell and Thomas Meehan plus dynamo musical theatre writing team Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman providing the score. The ensemble included superstars like Jenn Gambatese, Leslie Kritzer, Shoshana Bean and Josh Bergasse. As Lizzie McGuire sang, "this is what dreams are made of."
Sunshiningly optimistic teen Tracy Turnblad - though taunted by classmates at school for her weight - dreams of dancing on TV with her main crush Link Larkin, integration in her community and The Corny Collins Show and all the while, welcoming us all to 1962 Baltimore.
Have a listen to the cast album and follow us track by track expressing ourselves not just with text but with some GIF reactions! "You Can't Stop The Beat!"
1. Good Morning Baltimore
Start your morning everyday this week with this one, kids. If that downbeat right at the top of the song doesn't inspire you to take on the world, then rewind and play again.
2. The Nicest Kids in Town
This is the portion of the gif review where you can pause and immediately dance along. Do the pony, do the twist, a couple double pirouettes - you're going to be inspired.
3. Mama, I'm a Big Girl Now
Yes this song is Tracy, Penny, Amber and their moms but the star here is Amber belting to the heavens on "watch me fly!" and the sassy interjections about Gidget and Barbie dolls.
4. I Can Hear the Bells
We have all been there. We've heard the bells. We've fast-forwarded eight steps. We hear you Tracy. Dream that dream.
5. (The Legend of) Miss Baltimore Crabs
It's mean lady storytime with the show's villain Miss Velma Von Tussle played wickedly by Linda Hart. How about those last few bars?
6. It Takes Two
Don't mind us. We're just swooning in the corner. Matthew Morrison as Link Larkin is an absolute dreamboat in this number and we understand why Tracy is head over heels.
7. Welcome to the 60's
Please take a moment, pause, and absolutely marvel at the riffing by The Dynamites: Judine Richárd, Kamilah Martin and Shayna Steele.
8. Run and Tell That!
Oh my goodness, this song! This is a groove. The ensemble sounds unbelievable, Corey sounds incredible, this is a bop and a half. We are also dancing in our chair.
9. Big, Blonde and Beautiful
"You gotta love yourself from inside out!" "Bring on. That Pecan Pie." I mean we could write a separate story about how fabulous this track is. How we adore Mary Bond Davis.
10. The Big Dollhouse
Here's what we didn't expect on this cast album - a tap dance break. You know, why not? We love this jazzy minor key production number. Plus we get a Jackie Hoffman book scene!
11. Good Morning Baltmore (Reprise)
Oh Tracy, don't be glum! We have a great feeling you are going to change the world!
12. (You're) Timeless to Me
One of the most adorable tracks on the record. Harvey and Dick are so sweet to each other and the lyrics are so rich.
13. Without Love
The track that gave us Kerry Butler high belting to the North Pole on "No, I don't want to live without love, love, love!" Honestly, this might be our favorite track on the whole album. The ensemble's harmonies are an absolute dream and our leads are superstars.
14. I Know Where I've Been
Okay we need a moment. We love "Big, Blonde and Beautiful" but then we are bestowed an Act 2 anthem. I bet you and/or some of your friends can sing along to Shayna Steele's background vocal by memory at 0:49 - 1:03. "Yeah, yeah, yeah..." Also again - the ensemble on this track are INCREDIBLE.
15. (It's) Hairspray
Clarke Thorell is serving you 1960's pop, all suave and charming. Thank you Jenn Gambatese for the fabulous, swinging soprano riff at the very end of the song.
Laura Bell Bundy really shines on this whole album and this is another great example. She shows a brilliant country sass on the lyrics you'll hear throughout. We LIVE for her "Grew up in a cootie zoo / I bet her two-ton mama's got 'em too!" at the end.
17. You Can't Stop the Beat
This is one of those Broadway finales where you feel like you're taking off into outer space from happiness, joy, and high belted harmonies while dancing Jerry Mitchell choreography. What more can we say? Everyone gets a chance to be a showstopper on the song.
Thanks for listening with us!