Bob Fosse is rolling over in his grave right now...

MissSpectacular
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So...I saw the new Beyonce music video "Single Ladies" and everyone has been commenting on how great the choreography is. Well, sadly whoever was the choreographer stole most of "his" choreography from Bob Fosse's Mexican Breakfast and some from Sweet Charity.

Pop culture needs to leave Broadway alone

I am so upset.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mVEGfH4s5g
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This may come as a surprise, MissS, but Broadway IS pop culture.
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MissSpectacular
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Yeah...I know...I don't like it..but you have to accept it I guess.

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I like it when "pop culture" (by which I guess you mean pop music?) borrows from Broadway, actually... it makes new converts. I have a friend who said he hated musicals, but he loved Usher's version of "Singin' In The Rain." So I lent him the real film version with Gene Kelly, and he loved it.

And using Broadway choreography is a lot more pleasing to the eye than a lot of what passes for dancing...
In my pants, she has burst like the music of angels, the light of the sun! --Marius Pantsmercy
Updated On: 10/21/08 at 04:59 PM
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There's nothing wrong with Pop-Culture. It isn't like Broadway is in some alternate reality where there is no Pop-Culture. Speaking of Pop-Culture I'm taking a class on it it school, one of the only schools in NY state to offer it.
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I see and understand your frustration, but instead of leaving Broadway alone, I'd rather pop culture give credit to the geniuses that they swipe the choreography from.
MissSpectacular
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I totally agree! Good Point
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Think he's using jazz hands to turn?
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"Bob Fosse is pivot-turning in his grave..."
In my pants, she has burst like the music of angels, the light of the sun! --Marius Pantsmercy
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Jesus christ superstar! What is going on in the world of Hollywood!?!
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Fosse himself used to say that stealing was the best form of flattery. I think it's a wonderful homage to the brilliance of Bob Fosse, and it is incredibly fascinating to me that decades after he created this choreography, it still is affecting the work of the most popular mainstream performers working today. It's simply fantastic to see that Fosse's wonderful art is that relevant, entertaining, and great that to this day it is a part of popular culture.
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Maybe they admire Mr Fosse and want to honor him. Just be thankful it's not Miley Cyrus or whatever and it's Beyonce. At least she does it will respect and she has talent.
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Well, at least she has some taste,konwing to steal from the great.She could have stolen from Debbie Allen and most of her fans wouldn't notice any difference.
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Thank God Broadway never borrows ideas from pop-culture!!!

(and for some of those slow on the pick up, I'm being sarcastic here)
Updated On: 10/22/08 at 06:06 PM
Dumblove41
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call me crazy.. but I also see a whole lot of Michael Bennett (circa- Promises Promises) in it as well
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Seeing as how Bob Fosse stole half of his ideas from Jack Cole, I doubt he'd be spinning too fast.
Updated On: 10/21/08 at 07:03 PM
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Pop culture needs to leave Broadway alone

I am so upset.



Of all the things to get upset about, this seems like a pretty minor one. And it's not like Broadway never borrows some ideas from pop culture.
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Once again you young ones are showing your ages and naivete.

If you knew ANYTHING remotely close about Bob Fosse, you'd be fully aware that he LOVED seeing his choreographic influences in other choreographer's works. As mentioned above, he found imitation an enormous form of flattery.

The very first music video to pay homage to Bob Fosse was Paula Abdul's "Cold Hearted Snake" back in 1989. It paid enormous homage to Bob Fosse's "Airotica" sequence from his 1978 film ALL THAT JAZZ.

In PEOPLE Magazine Bob Fosse once commented on Paula's choreography.

"He said that he admired my style as a young choreographer, and how I have unpredictability in my choreography -- the ability to turn right when everyone expects me to turn left. It was the biggest compliment I ever received".


Paula Abdul's "Cold Hearted Snake" music video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XN-Qq2umKZo

*Marguerite Derrick's GAP Khaki A Go-Go TV Spot/Commercial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJQSfwe2Vv0

Fosse-esque 2007 VMA TV Spot/Commercial with Britney Spears: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRWVqBqK3Z4

*Marguerite Derrick infuses enormous amounts of Bob Fosse's work in her pieces. You can also see this in all of the Austin Powers films which she's choreographed.

Director/choreographer Vincent Patterson also payed heavy homage to Bob Fosse for Madonna's legendary 1990 Blonde Ambition World Tour (from the trio groupings to the "Vogue" and "Keep it Together" numbers -- black derbies and all). Beyonce' has mentioned countless times how much she admires Bob Fosse's work and has used enormous elements of his choreography and staging for not only her music videos but her tours as well.

Bob Fosse would be thrilled to see all this going on. It validates his genius talent that still inspires many. Its been over 20 years since his death in 1987 and there's no end to new generations discovering his work.

Bob Fosse may be gone but he is definitely NOT forgotten.

For what its worth -- Gwen Verdon was thrilled to see choreographers use elements of Bob Fosse's work, especially young choreographers. She died in 2000 so she was around to see most of this.
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You should see Beyonce's other video, "Get Me Bodied"

The whole video is an homage to Sweet Charity.
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I think it's a good thing, it helps keeps classic art alive. Plus, it's a lot better than seeing the standard choreography in music video.
Updated On: 10/21/08 at 09:13 PM
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Thank you, Michael Benneett. This was made even clearer (via film clips) at the Dancers Over 40 tribute to Cole last week.

Back to 'Single Ladies'...this warms my heart.
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Updated On: 10/21/08 at 09:46 PM
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I will say this: I think it's really impressive how fast they three execute this choreography. For rulll.
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