What makes a character Strong

When I look at musical theatre character, one of the key characteristics I want is strength. What do those characters have in common?


It seems that a lot of them are actual brave characters. They are fighters. They have something to fight for- it can be their country, a loved one, etc. Some of them have tough and difficult lives. Some are them are actually tragic characters.


They are for sure vulnerable. It has to do with the life and what they are dealing with at the moment. They have someone or someones up against them that made them vulnerable in the first place. If they fall in love, vulnerability gets added up, in particular if it will NOT end well (tragic love stories and unrequited love).


Strong characters tend to be complex. What does complex mean exactly in a character? It means they have layers. That means there is a lot to them. They have a lot of depth meaning there are many ways to portray them.That is one of the reasons why I love combining actors/actresses portrayals in order to create one character. Backstory can play a huge role in complexity. Complex characters are the most likely to express both positive and negative emotions due to what they have experienced. The complex characters have the highest chance of being relatable and to form an emotional connection with.


You might be asking, how can someone who is strong be flawed. Well, part of being vulnerable is being human and part of being human is being flawed. They are more likely to be hurt emotionally if they did have a horrible past- true, not all strong characters have a horrible past, but a good number did. The strong characters know how to thrive even in the most unfortunate of circumstances. Vulnerable and flawed really do go hand in hand if you think about it.


This kind of goes back to the bravery concept. Those strong characters know how to thrive even when things KEEP on throwing them back. Like I said, they are fighters. They try so hard to keep going even when someone is taking advantage of them. Their fates do vary- yes, I said they know how to thrive and keep on climbing back up, but sometimes some of them get killed off while others are the survivors.

Analysis of “Seasons of Love”

“Seasons of Love” is the title song from the musical, Rent. To me, this song is about how to measure life. It taught me the preciousness of life. There are only 525,600 minutes in a year as the song says and it talks about how do we measure that amount of time. It talks about living your life in love. There isn’t enough time in your life to live your life in hate. It is more important to live your life in love, not hate. Rent is all about what do we do with the time that we have. In Rent, it is dealing with the HIV/AIDS epidemic and if you ended up with it, it was literally a death sentence and life is really fragile for them and there is a lot of fear, but they still live their lives in love. “Seasons of Love” still reminds me of how much time we have in life and how short it is. Look at half of the main characters (Roger, Mimi, Collins, Angel): they all have HIV and they don’t know how much longer they have to live. Even in real life, you don’t know how short your life will be and life can be taken from you so quickly. I love Rent for the message that it has and true it is a sad musical, but it has an inspiring message of living in the moment and in love: No Day But Today. Remember love is important in life and it is important to love others.

Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Moments so dear
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure – measure a year?
In daylights – in sunsets
In midnights – in cups of coffee
In inches – in miles
In laughter – in strife

In – five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure
A year in the life

How about love?
How about love?
How about love?
Measure in love

Seasons of love
Seasons of love

Soloist number one
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Journeys to plan

Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure the life
Of a woman or a man?

Soloist number two
In truths that she learned
Or in times that he cried
In bridges he burned
Or the way that she died

It’s time now – to sing out
Tho’ the story never ends
Let’s celebrate
Remember a year in the life of friends

Remember the love
Remember the love
Remember the love
Measure in love

Soloist number one
Measure, measure your life in love

Seasons of love
Seasons of love

Heartbreaking Love Musical Songs

The musical emotions of love and heartbreak work nicely together. Both translate beautifully. There are musical songs that are heartbreaking love songs. Below I will talk about some heartbreaking love songs.

Possible Spoilers:

I’m Not That Girl- this song started out as sad. I was only in middle school when I first realized the song was sad. By high school, I definitely understood this song was part of a love triangle. I was 100% blind to heartbreak growing up. I honesty did not understand unrequited love in those days. The song, “On My Own”, is a huge reason why I discovered this song was heartbreaking and memorizing the lyrics helped as well. This song doesn’t have room to be fully heartbreaking because literally just moments before Elphaba sang this song, she just found out she loves Fiyero so in many ways this song is moderately heartbreaking.


On My Own- this song is even more heartbreaking than I’m Not That Girl. While both are unrequited love songs, there are obvious differences due to how different Elphaba and Eponine are as characters. Eponine’s story revolves around unrequited love so you know how it affects her unlike Elphaba. Marius is the only person who treats her kindly and that is why she loves him. This song shows just how strong Eponine is and this song is even more powerful and more heartbreaking than “I’m Not That Girl”


This Nearly Was Mine- while this song is not dealing with unrequited love, there are still some similarities. This is sung in South Pacific by Emelie. Nellie has left him due to the race of his children’s mother. So this sung is dealing with a breakup, which has similar emotions in my opinion with unrequited love.


Somewhere- this is the last love song in West Side Story. As the love songs go on in this musical, the songs just get sadder and sadder. This song happens right after the rumble takes place and that is when the first traces of tragedy show up. It is so close to the tragic end of this modern Romeo and Juliet tale.


If I Can’t Love Her/Evermore-I put these two songs together because they are both sung by beast. They both are similar to each other in emotion. Beast has realized that he loves Belle, but doesn’t know if she will ever love him. He cannot be turned back into his human form until he loves someone and he is loved back.


As Long As He Needs Me- I actually did see Oliver in middle school, but do not remember seeing it. The only knowledge I really have belong to the book and the 2005 movie. So it is interesting how I seem to know that this song is a heartbreaking love song, but the same could be said for “If I Can’t Love Her”. But by knowing who Nancy is in the book and that movie, I know this song is heartbreaking. Nancy loves Bill Sikes even though he is abusive towards her, but she will always love him as long as he needs her even though the situation is dangerous


In many ways heartbreak and love really fit nicely together. Even though I heard “If I Can’t Love Her” before “I’m Not That Girl”, “I’m Not That Girl” was really the start to sad love songs. That was because Wicked was the musical where I began to understand the negative emotions and Wicked is the best way I can even remember what the negative emotions were like in my younger years.

However “On My Own” started telling me more about sad love songs. I began to understand that sad love songs are actually heartbreaking. If it wasn’t for “On My Own”, I still would be interpreting sad love songs the same way as  I used to call “I’m Not That Girl”. Calling a song heartbreaking is even more devastating than calling a song sad. Due to that, a heartbreaking love song has more fragility and vulnerability. I cannot think of a single sad love song that is not heartbreaking.


Young Musical Love

Romance is quite a beautiful part of musicals. No theme has been greater than that. But what is so special about the young love that is presented? As a matter of fact, most romances in musicals are young lovers. That makes sense because most musical characters are young.

I feel like with young musical characters, there is this kind of innocence built into them. There even is a wonderful sense of youth built into the romances as well. There even is a sense of maturity. At times, love has fragility and vulnerability built into the mix especially during unrequited love songs.

Possible Spoilers:

I feel like the love triangles fare very well with young musical characters. Whether that is the love triangle either in Wicked or Les Mis, it still works really well. The love triangles are incredibly complicated especially the Wicked one. No matter what, you can’t make all of the characters involved happy at all. I still don’t fully understand a love triangle, but it makes more sense than ever.

There is always the unrequited lover and that can be confusing. In the Wicked one, that is really challenging because the unrequited love shifts gears on you because it starts with Elphaba having unrequited love for Fiyero, but in act II it shifts to Glinda feeling unrequited love for Fiyero. Elphaba and Fiyero are my favorite musical couple because you wouldn’t expect them to get together at all. They may be young, but their song is so mature and quite mystical.

In the case of Les Mis, the unrequited love never shifts gears on you because it is always Eponine. This love triangle fares very well. There are two times where you see all three together and you end up feeling for all of them.

Eponine’s unrequited love for Marius is quite a special one because she constantly is showing true love towards him even if he won’t do the same for her. Eponine’s unrequited love is very heartbreaking and painful for her especially because Marius is the only good in her life and is the only person to show her kindness. That is why she loves Marius so much and why she keeps on loving him. She continues to love him until the very end of her story.

When it comes to Disney, young musical characters give the show a kind of magic, which is perfect for Disney. One such couple is Katherine and Jack, the newest Disney couple of my life. Below are pictures of young romances including my favorite couple. I feel like young musical romances are incredible because of their songs.


Elphaba and Fiyero


Cosette, Marius, Eponine


Raoul, Christine


Jack, Katherine


Tony, Maria

What is special about young musical couples?



Why Do the Best Musicals Tend to Have Negative Emotions in Their Songs?

Why is that almost always the best musicals tend to have negative emotions within their songs? When I was younger, I discovered that I preferred the musicals that have the negative emotions within the songs. It was at a time where all musicals were happy. I understood the negative emotions differently than I do now. Heartbreak was an emotion that I wasn’t even aware of. I don’t have much recollection of the negative emotions so long ago. The best way to trace how far the negative emotions have come is to use the musical, Wicked.

I started to understand the emotional nature of musicals through Wicked. I actually knew that “I’m Not That Girl” was a sad song since middle school. By high school I was definitely knew that the song was a song dealing with a love triangle. That was how I viewed it for most of my Wicked journey. When I first discovered heartbreak through “Les Mis”, the emotions of other musicals changed drastically. Just like “On My Own” from Les Mis, “I’m Not That Girl” is also an unrequited love song. Through that shocking realization, “I’m Not That Girl” started to become a heartbreaking song and I saw the insight of it through memorizing the lyrics.


Another drastic change of the negative emotions in Wicked happened with the song “No Good Deed”. For the longest time ever, I always hated that song and never got anything out of it. I never could pick up on any of its emotions. But when I actually saw Wicked the fourth time, I finally got something out of the song and was finally able to pick up on its emotions of anger and frustration. Through the changes of “I’m Not That Girl” and “No Good Deed”, I felt the most vulnerable the fourth time around.


For me, I feel like the negative emotions are in the musicals I prefer are due to the fact that those emotions help make a musical more well-rounded and even more complex. When a show has a good deal of conflict, the negative emotions are usually in the songs themselves. Having the negative emotions makes it easier to emotionally connect to the characters. Those shows feel a lot more real and help make the experience even more worth it. The negative emotions have strengthened a lot since I first encountered them through the happy musicals.


Having sad musicals in my life actually gave me a bigger appreciation of the negative musical emotions. By seeing musicals through the perspectives of Rent and Les Mis, I was able to understand the negative emotions so much better.


It is very important to keep an eye on the negative emotions in the happy musicals. I am aware that the negative emotions have a few limitations when it comes to them. Some musicals are not home to them like “Music Man” and you need musicals like those to exist for balance.

The newest musical of my life that happened to have negative emotions in the songs is “Newsies”, which happened during “Santa Fe”.  Sometimes you are conflicted as to whether or not you actually felt the negative emotions the first time you see a new musical. The negative emotions in musicals tend to develop steady over time. The happy musicals are the shows where the mildest layers of sad do exist. The happy musicals can even consist of negative emotions being powerful.


There is an amazing strength when it comes to the negative emotions. There is an incredible fragility when it comes to them as well. Sometimes it has either an innocence or an incredible vulnerability or an epic quality or a powerful nature. The heartbreaking songs tend to be filled with such beauty. A song can be sad without being heartbreaking. True the negative emotions do hurt when it comes to musicals, but are so worth it especially if you have the emotional connection to the characters, songs, and plot lines.