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What's your opinion?

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BroadwayBoy2005
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What's your opinion?#0
Posted: 3/1/04 at 7:16pm
Ok, our choir is doing 'Little Shop of Horrors' for our spring musical. But I don't want your opinions on that, surprisingly. Our director is editing it so that there are no curse words in it completely. He said he could lose his job over it if he didn't. Now, I understand his reasoning. But, am I wrong in thinking that it should be performed the way the writer intended. I am thinking about taking this matter to the school board. Any thoughts or suggestions?
-bb2005
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re: What's your opinion?#1
Posted: 3/1/04 at 8:37pm
I HATE when they change the words. We did FAME at my school, goodness only knows why you would do that show if you don't want curse words, but they changed a bunch of stuff. Pretty much Tyrone's whole character was softened cause he didn't cuss. And Joe didn't have the same words to his infimate song "Can't Keep It Down". They were also thinking of taking out Carmen's death because it was related to drugs, but we convinced them not to. There is a reason the words are what they are, and if the director can't deal with it, do Annie, no cussing in it!! Keep the shows the way they are!! High school kids unite!!
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re: re: What's your opinion?#2
Posted: 3/1/04 at 8:47pm
It's true that it does have to be softened for school viewing. It's just something that has to be, whether it's right or not.
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re: re: What's your opinion?#3
Posted: 3/1/04 at 8:51pm
As speaking as someone who has both directed and been in hs productions its not the director. It is usually the bord of ed or principal/superintendant. In my experiences the script had to be approved by the vp of school activities who in then would say yes or no or censor it. We couldnt do "Do black patten leather shoes really reflect up," cause it delt with catholic school, but two years later did a show that had songs that delt with condoms, erections, periods(SP). Certain cuss words were censored and others not. DOnt blame your director, his job can be on the line. One stupid community member complain and who knows. But i tell you this id rather see sensored shows then the same old "ANNIE", bye bye birdie, and music man done over and over again... suck it up you can swear in college...
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re: re: re: What's your opinion?#4
Posted: 3/1/04 at 10:27pm
I love "Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?". We did that show my senior yeah of high school. I played Louie and I have to say it was one of the best roles I've played....so much fun! I got to sing Doo Wah Doo Wee:)

Anyway, sorry to ramble. If you feel strongly enough about it then take some action and say something. You never know....
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re: re: re: re: what's your opinion?#5
Posted: 3/1/04 at 10:51pm
the censors are as stop! said, usually the school administration and or the board of ed. now before you condemn those folks for their bastardization of the writer's words, consider some of the alternatives.

a school does a show full of cursing and the ensuing uproar in the community results in

1) the school cancelling the drama program completely (happened at a school near my home town after a few kids got carried away at a production of "hair")

2) the director being fired from the school

3) the school board setting draconian speech rules for the school and any activities school related

now it would be nice to think that young adults can be counted on to handle mature subject matter in a mature and responsible way, but that's not always the case. communities quite often will crack down hard when they feel that they are losing control of their kids. heck, look at what bush did when he thought that folks were going to be getting married when he didn't want 'em to. he called for a constitutional amendment.

accept that as high school students you're subject to the rules and regulations as set down by the board and the school administration. if you feel strongly about it, do by all means take your argument to the board, but bear in mind that it might backfire. they might just say, "cursing? sex? what the hell is that damn teacher trying to teach our kids??" parents can get bent outta shape quickly, so be wary of how you frame your argument.
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re: re: re: re: re: what's your opinion?#6
Posted: 3/1/04 at 11:18pm
Sometimes you just have to learn to pick your battles. Would you rather he chucks it and does something else?
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Well, at the end of LSOH, Seymour says something to the effect of: "Every household in America....thousands of you eating- That's what you had in mind all along, isn't it?"

Audrey II says: "No sh*t, Sherlock."

How can you possibly edit something like that with it still sounding funny?
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LSOH shouldnt be any different.. they might need to change a total of three words.. why they would do fame at a high school, ill never know lol.. cant keep it down is awful!
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When I was in high school-which now seems ages ago, we did all kinds of shows with bad language. We never sensored anything. In some plays it is against the law to change the script in any way. I know that anyhting by Arthur Miller cannot legally be performed eccept in it's FULL and original text. Changeing words in one of his plays is not legal and is punishable by law. I doubt this is the case with many musicals, but you could look into it.
You are young, life has been kind to you. You will learn.
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This is just my thinking here, but here goes:

Ok, I live in Arkansas. In my town, and like most towns in my state, there is a church on practically every street corner. Arkansas is, along with many other states, in the 'Bible Belt'. I've been thinking this could have a lot to do with the censorship that is going on with this musical. However, this brings to mind all the convicts from prisons we've had come to our school as guest speakers and curse up a storm. It's ok for them to do that, but for a choir to perform a musical, where the words are used SPARINGLY, is wrong- I just don't understand the reasoning. But if the thing about the Bible Belt is true, then my civil rights have been violated by the hipocracy of seperation of church and state in my school.

Sorry- just had to get that off my chest.

Anywho,if I was to present the script of LSOH to the school board and let them read it, while presenting my case about all the guest speaker crap, do you think I'd have a fighting chance?
Updated On: 3/2/04 at 06:15 PM
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Sorry for taking your time! (I'm not quoting Billy Flynn!)

You're right, cause it's Amos that says that, not Billy re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: what's your opinion?

Ummm I did Little Shop in HS and we didn't change anything.... if anything, it was a LOT more risque than it should have been -- we added in quite a bit of tongue in cheek humor and had quite revealing costumes.

Then again, I think my HS was pretty liberal, especially considering that the year after I graduated they were going to do Chicago.... but the jazz band wasn't advanced enough to accurately play the music.
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My middle school chorus is doing some songs from 'Hairspray' for our Spring concert and our teacher changed around a lot of words for really no reason. He pretty much butchered "You Can't Stop the Beat" and I'm not completely sure why. x_x;

Anyway, schools are pretty strict about that kind of stuff. There's not much anyone can do about it, but you can give it a try. Good luck.
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