VIDEO: Joshua and Amanda Dela Cruz Record Cover of 'Come Up For Air' From the New Musical RANKED

"Come Up for Air" is about pushing through the moment, finding some new appreciation, and ultimately, new ways of valuing ourselves.

By: Nov. 25, 2020
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Joshua Dela Cruz (Aladdin and host of "Nickelodeon's Blue's Clues") and Amanda Dela Cruz ("The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel") have recorded a cover of the song "Come Up for Air" (along with a video) from the new musical Ranked with book by Kyle Holmes and music and lyrics by David Taylor Gomes. Ranked is set in a dystopian world where your class rank, determined by grades and test scores, governs everything from where you sit to what your future holds.


Originally set for a New York workshop in March, those plans were put on hold because of the pandemic.

"Come Up for Air" is about pushing through the moment, finding some new appreciation, and ultimately, new ways of valuing ourselves. Despite the school year being turned upside down by a pandemic, many students are feeling even more pressure to be academically successful; this song is a metaphor for what we are all going through right now.

A portion of the proceeds from the streaming of the song and video on Spotify, Apple Music, and YouTube will benefit Covenant House, which provides shelter, food, immediate crisis care, and an array of other services to homeless and runaway youth.

Lily is above the average, barely. Soon the giant, and very public, academic leaderboards will update everyone's class rank, and for another day, everyone will know their place. If you fall Below the Average - say goodbye to college, and pretty much everything else. Below the Average students are nothing more than social outcasts, not worth anyone's time. In the face of an intense and perverse culture of performance, Lily must find her place in the status quo as she watches friends and enemies alike destroy themselves and each other to score their way to the top.

When an impossible lie is discovered, the fate of these students' futures hangs in the balance. Ranked asks - what are you worth? Who decides? And what do you do when it all comes crashing down.

"Through music, people find fellowship," said Joshua and Amanda Dela Cruz in a joint statement. "We can't possibly imagine being a kid in this world right now, but Ranked gives them a powerful voice. We are thrilled to partner with Ranked and Covenant House, an organization that has been teaching the world what it means to be human since 1972. We can't think of a better organization to support during these times of crisis."

"This pandemic didn't erase the educational crisis Ranked explores, it made it worse. Now more than ever, we need to listen to what our students have to say, and see them as more than their test scores and class ranks,"said Kyle Holmes and David Taylor Gomes. "We are thrilled and humbled that Joshua and Amanda have recorded "Come Up for Air" and we hope that it provides comfort and a sense of relief to anyone currently struggling.

Both Holmes and Gomes work in the Sacramento school system. Their musical premiered in California weeks after the college admissions scandal that saw several high-profile celebrities indicted after lying or paying bribes to universities to gain entrance for their children. Ranked moves the story to a dystopian world where publicized academic excellence defines each student's worth, resulting in extreme competition.

The concept album of Ranked is available through Spotify and Apple Music.

Break Thru Films is also filming a documentary about the making of the musical Ranked in association with HBO that will be completed in 2021 for a festival premiere followed by a broadcast date in 2022.


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