Folk Musicals (?)

edited January 2015 in Theater
I've just been thinking about the choices of music to be used as the basis for theatrical scores.

As surely many people know, one of the most popular choices has been rock music, which has been used in QUITE a number of shows. I would like to point out, however, that in the late 1960s and early '70s, when the careers of many musical theatre legends (Howard Ashman, Alan Menken, and Stephen Schwartz among them) were just starting to take off, American folk music was enjoying extreme popularity (a period known as the American folk music revival), contributing to the meteoric rise of a great number of performers. Among the best-known, as well as being the ones with whom I, personally, am most familiar, are the Kingston Trio, Peter, Paul and Mary, Joan Baez (My mom is a fan of hers from WAY back), Harry Belafonte, Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger (may he rest in peace), Woody and Arlo Guthrie, Burl Ives, Judy Collins, Gordon Lightfoot, and Glenn Yarborough.

This makes me wonder: Why have there never been any folk musicals? I think that such a genre of musical theatre would be just great.


  • On a tangentially related note, I have heard recordings of Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz performing songs that they had written, and I am of the opinion that, with such god-tier songwriting skills and beautiful voices as they have, they would have made simply DIVINE folk singers.
  • edited January 2015
    Forgive me if it sounds like I'm rambling, but if Howard and Alan had ever written a folk musical (key word being "if"), who out of the following do you think they would most likely have chosen to work with: Joan Baez, Pete Seeger, Peter, Paul and Mary, or the Kingston Trio?

    (I'm open to EVERYBODY's opinions, just so you know, though I'm leaning towards Joan and Pete, myself.)
Sign In or Register to comment.

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Login with Facebook Sign In with OpenID Sign In with Twitter

Chat, photos and videos of your Ashman productions