So you were working with singers from various backgrounds and … Alexandra Shipp talked a bit about not being a traditional musical theater voice and then there’s Andrew who hasn’t really sung before this project. But obviously they’re all amazing singers, so I’m curious how these different levels of experience affect your end of work.
Sherman: I think it’s a little fun to make a musical film. You don’t always have people who are necessarily theater singers or necessarily pop singers. They all come from different backgrounds and have different strains and different things. Yeah, and the interesting thing about cinema as opposed to theater – theater is a new word that I coined – as opposed to working in the theater is that you work in a studio and you are very micro on things. So we were in the studio with Andrew and we put him with a bunch of singing teachers and he really embraced this desire to sing and want to make this thing as magical as possible. And then we were in the studio with him, just watching him after he took all these singing lessons and it was really amazing just the amount of change, the amount of development he had in his voice and to the end, he’s this amazing singer.
And then there are more polished people like Vanessa Hudgens, but you’re still in the studio with her and you can still take things apart and figure out what she really wants to do and how her vocals will affect the character. Same thing with Josh Henry who is a professional musical theater. And so shaping things with him is a different experience, but just as rewarding to really put things under the microscope and understand how to get the emotions that they are trying to go through, to overcome, to overcome as actors. , but also make it sound as good as possible.
And of course I have to ask you about the ‘Play Game’ 90s musical streak.
Lacamoire: I love this sequence. This video is so good. It’s so on point, all about it. It really brought me back to my Yo! MTV Raps Days. This is exactly what it would look like, it was perfect. No, it was just awesome. It was just Lin’s brilliant idea. He said to me, “Yeah, we must be having a dark thought on this. And we’re like, “Yeah, that sounds good.” And who made the trail for that, Bill?
Sherman: It’s a guy called Kwame. I don’t know his full name. Kwame is a member of Atlantic Records and it was produced by our friend Riggs Morales from Atlantic Records who has worked in A&R for a hundred years. Yeah, and then Tariq came in and dropped the verse and crushed it. It was a fun, peaceful, respite from the movie. I liked it.
Lacamoire: Yes. And they were able to use Jonathan’s voice to be a part of it. If you listen to it, you hear the phrase “PPP-Play Game”, it is actually Jonathan Larson’s vocal extract. So it’s part of the fabric. So I think they did it in such a smart way, even the sounds that were used were just old school sounds. It was just perfect. Yes, a very fun time.
In that sense, are there any other musical Easter Eggs hidden in the movie that you can point out?
Lacamoire: The sheet music itself is a bunch of Easter eggs, in terms of, these are all songs that are from Jonathan Larson’s catalog, many of which may not have been heard by more than 20, 25 people. But it was Lin’s idea to make sure that all of the underlining in the movie was based on the songs Jonathan wrote, whether they were songs from “Tick, Tick … Boom!” or these are songs from Jonathan’s trunk. So it was really fun. Songs that I know I hadn’t even heard of before this movie, but when he’s in the focus group, there’s a song called Ever After playing underneath. When Jonathan and his girlfriend, Susan, are on the roof, you hear this freestyle song he wrote in the background. And even the end credits has a song that was written by him that I know I had never heard before. So really, Jonathan is all over the movie and he should be too.
Sherman: The other two funny ones are “Green, Green Dress”, which comes from the radio, which is actually Josh Henry singing “Green, Green Dress”, an R&B version of it. And then another one that I like is, when they’re in the car heading to the Victory Towers, there’s a CNN jingle or what’s supposed to be a CNN jingle, which is actually something Jonathan wrote. and which we have just developed for radio. But yes, there are little things like that.
“Tick, Tick … BOOM! ”Is now streaming on Netflix.