Today's musical theatre world rocks. Now that rock 'n' roll music and its offshoots, including pop, hard rock, rap, r&b, funk, folk, and world-pop music, are the standard language of musical theatre, theatre singers need a source of information on these styles, their origins, and their performance practices. Rock in the Musical Theatre: A Guide for Singers fills this need. Today's musical theatre training programs are now including rock music in their coursework and rock songs and musicals in their repertoires. This is a text for those trainees, courses, and productions. It will also be of great value to working professionals, teachers, music directors, and coaches less familiar with rock styles, or who want to improve their rock-related skills. The author, an experienced music director, vocal coach, and university professor, and an acknowledged expert on rock music in the theatre, examines the many aspects of performing rock music in the theatre and offers practical advice through a combination of aesthetic and theoretical study, extensive discussions of musical, vocal, and acting techniques, and chronicles of coaching sessions. The book also includes advice from working actors, casting directors, and music directors who specialize in rock music for the stage.
More than an indispensable how-to manual for young performers, Joe Church defines in this book the important ways rock music has transformed today's musical theatre. When it comes to rocking out onstage, Mr. Church is the most authoritative voice of our time, with an uncanny way of explaining exactly what makes rock powerful, and precisely how to achieve that power theatrically. A must-read for anyone working in musical theatre today. * Dan Riddle, Music Director of the School of Theatre, The Pennsylvania State University * An enjoyable book, both academically precise, yet practical and approachable. Joe Church covers all the bases here! You've probably never analyzed rock songs the way he does, but he also gives real hard core advice about taking care of your voice; about how to approach a rock song for an audition or maintain it for a long running musical. His knowledge of the history of musicals is impressive, yet completely up to date. I can't wait to have my own copy with me on tour. * Suzanne Vega * Joe Church's wide-ranging analysis of what songs and music actually do in modern music theatre is essential reading for anyone setting out to write or perform in a modern musical. Reading this book also reminded me that the way we sing on stage in a musical is very different to the way we might sing in other settings. That might seem obvious, but the differences are not so much subtle as mysterious. Joe has shared his long experience of intensive coaching of solo singers and chorus ensembles in music theatre projects. In so doing he unlocks a cask of information that has otherwise been hard to find. * Pete Townshend *