The Color Purple

Sunday, September 10, 2006

I had three books glued to my cap when I graduated from Wheaton College (I majored in English) and Alice Walker's The Color Purple was one of them. I also remember being sick in elementary school and watching the film when I was home and became enthralled. I've seen it at least a dozen times now. Tonight though I saw the musical version of The Color Purple on Broadway backed by Oprah and loved it just as much as the the former two mediums.

The songs were great, the costumes timely and colorful, the story as inspirational and dramatic as ever and the cast was great. I was impressed with how the music really fit along with the narrative and wasn't forced or out of step at all considering it's the first time the story was adapted into a musical form. The leading actress, LaChanze, who played Celie, Whoopi's character from the film, won a Tony Award for best actress in a musical this year and I can now see why. Her singing gave me chills when it hit the high notes and oozed her passion. The musical followed closer to the book especially the relationships between Shug Avery, Mister and Celie. At times I was laughing and at others my eyes were glistening. Not once did I look at my watch or wonder when intermission was coming. The audience was cheering on the characters and rised to their feet at the end. So, yeah, I'd recommend seeing it. My friend Karen got us both rush tickets in the second row for $26, it felt like we were practically on the stage with the cast.

The film meanwhile just made AFI's 100 Years 100 Cheers list of inspiratonal films.

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