Great creative works often jump the track successfully from one medium to another. You be the judge of how well the sci-fi classic Star Wars translates to a stage musical. What’s certain is this 1996 adaptation by Palos Verdes Peninsula High School is an impressive achievement in its own right. With a talented group of performers, creative costumes & staging, and a well-written script it is a fine new telling of a story we know so well. They cleverly borrow melodies from famous musicals like Les Miserables, Tommy and Godspell, bringing applause and laughter when the crowd recognize the tunes.
Above is Star Wars the Musical: Act 1, Part 1–there are 6 videos in all, here’s Part 2. As Salon.com wrote in debuting the video earlier this month:
We are proud to present you, for the first time ever, the entire “Star Wars” musical: conceived, written and directed by Garrin Hajeianm, Kevin Bayuk and John Zuckerman. Hitting the sweet spot of teen geekiness, “Star Wars the Musical” is a must-see for anyone who loves both George Lucas and monologues carried out entirely in song. Garrin was also kind enough to subtitle the entire play.
While more musicals or stage shows are turned into films than vice versa, it’s not at all unheard of, though usually they are Broadway productions–note musicals of John Waters‘ films Hairspray and Cry-Baby. Slate even wrote a guide for how to Turn A Movie Into A Musical a few years back (again focused on multi-million-dollar Broadway versions, of course).
Back in 2008, San Francisco’s Dark Room Theater made their own non-musical, low budget stage version of the film called Star Wars: Live on Stage. Below are a few of Scott’s photos of the Dark Room production.
photos by Scott Beale