12 January 2009


Before I even saw Slumdog Millionaire I thought, "how long until this is made until a musical?" Mind you, at this point I only knew 3 facts about the movie:
  1. It takes place in India.
  2. It is about someone who overcomes odds and succeeds--and this process involves Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
  3. A. R. Rahman wrote the score.
A. R. Rahman has had an incredibly successful career as a Bollywood composer. He also wrote two large, lush, lavish scores for equally large, lush, lavish productions, which have cemented his reputation as...an incredibly successful Bollywood composer. The first was Bombay Dreams, the second was the musical version The Lord of the Rings.

Both of these shows are victims of their own excess, but there is a catharsis in the music that is, well, cinematic. In fact, it's his sheer inability to pull back that seems to prohobit Rahman from scoring a successful musical. A musical Slumdog--with or without Rahman--would need a firm director with vision and restraint. Stephen Daldry--who seems to be making people happy with Billy Elliot--might be a good choice. But I actually think James Lapine would be the go-to-guy to make the project work.

In any case, for your listening pleasure, here is some of the A. R. Rahman theatrical songbook.

The first is "Love's Never Easy", from Bombay Dreams, chosen because I kept hearing snatches of it throughout Slumdog Millionaire (and, as it turns out, Rahman's LOTR...perhaps variety is not his thing).

Discover Simple, Private Sharing at Drop.io

The second is "The Journey Home", also from Bombay Dreams, chosen because I think it's a great song. Your iPod will thank you.

Discover Simple, Private Sharing at Drop.io

You can download these--plus a 3rd from Bombay Dreams ("Like an Eagle") and a taste of what Irish Bollywood (Blarneywood?) would sound like ("Lothlorian", from LOTR)--here.

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