Entertainment :: Music

Heathers - World Premiere Cast Recording

by Steven Bergman
Contributor
Thursday Jun 19, 2014
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The 1989 film, "Heathers" starring Winona Ryder and Christian Slater was a cult hit written by Daniel Waters, taking the teen angst of the 80’s and multiplying the various stereotypes that haunted the typical high school student bodies to their cinematic extreme. Now Kevin Murphy and Laurence O’Keefe ("Legally Blonde" and "Bat Boy") have brought the tragic happenings that befell Westerberg High to the stage with "Heathers, the Musical," and Yellow Sound Label has released the soundtrack recording of this very dark comedy.

Barrett Wilbert Weed ("Lysistrata Jones") takes on the Ryder role, as Veronica Sawyer, a senior whose penchant for forgery gets her into the school’s most popular clique, a trio of fakes whose same first names have christened them, "the Heathers." Enter the new kid, Jason Dean (Ryan McCartan, the rebel in a leather jacket and all), with a creepy home life to match his disturbing dressed-in-black persona. While Sawyer sings that everything will be "Beautiful" now that she is in with the cool kids, Dean encourages her to "Freeze Your Brain," as he sees through her vain attempt to fit in with a group not nearly as genuine as he knows she is.

The show takes a decidedly darker turn, and without providing any spoilers, the "Heathers" (Jessica Keenan Wynn, Elle McLemore, and Alice Lee) continue to struggle for school supremacy, while losing one of their members, two neanderthal jocks encounter a cruel fate (and each other), and all ends as it should in a dark musical.

The rock score jams under the musical direction of Dominic Amendum, and the recording is well mixed to bring out the important vocal lines within the score, especially when multiple characters are singing simultaneously. The show itself is targeted for those most familiar with the film, but the recording contains enough of the plot to make it intriguing to the uninitiated, and the performances, led by Weed’s unique and powerful belt, make "Heathers, the Musical," an appealing listen.

"Heathers: the Musical (OCR)"
Kevin Murphy / Laurence O’Keefe
CD and digital formats
Yellow Sound Label

Steven Bergman is a Composer / Playwright / Performing Arts Educator based outside of Boston, MA.

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