‘Melody Monday’: Powerful storytelling in ‘Welcome to My Life’ lyrics

Katrina Rose Dideriksen, Andrew Barbato, Gerard Canonico, Zachary Infante and Emily Rogers at the Welcome to My Life reading.

Katrina Rose Dideriksen, Andrew Barbato, Gerard Canonico, Zachary Infante and Emily Rogers at the Welcome to My Life reading.

 

Continuing with last week’s “Melody Monday” theme of musicals that might be unfamiliar, this week we’re introducing a show called Welcome to My Life, or W2ML, a musical written by Bobby Cronin and Alicia Dempster.

It didn’t make its way to a big Broadway show but on April 11, 2011, the musical held an invite-only reading in Manhattan which featured an all-star cast including Dee Roscioli (Wicked), Gerard Canonico (Bare, American Idiot), Andrew Call (American Idiot, Glory Days) and  Katrina Rose Dideriksen (Hairspray, Things To Ruin).

Welcome to My Life follows five teenagers who are sent on an intervention retreat to the wilderness by their parents. Throughout the show, the teens must dig deep within themselves to learn how to face whatever life will throw at them.

The music is hard-hitting and the lyrics are raw and real. The story of these teenagers and their journey is told within the lyrics. The songs are about what teens, and even some adults, are facing in the real world. The music is an honest confession about the issues that the characters are facing. The lyrics talk about death and love and about what might have been.

Several of the songs have become staples of cabarets and showcases all across the country. The pop/rock score is similar to other relatively new shows like Spring Awakening and American Idiot, but at the same time, the complete antithesis.

“Dear Daddy,” one of the most popular songs from the musical, is a letter written from a daughter to her father. The lyrics are conversational and reflect what a teen might actually say. Every word targets a specific feeling inside the character, a feeling that inadvertently forces the audience to reflect on their own lives.

But even with the heaviness of its message and the intensely introspective lyrics, what’s really cool about Welcome to My Life is that it’s really good music sung by really talented people. It doesn’t sound like a traditional musical but it’s not a compilation of pop standards either. It’s an eclectic, vibrant pop-rock score in which anyone can find something to relate to.

Watch Mallory Bechtel sing “Dear Daddy” accompanied by Bobby Cronin at Cabaret for a Cause on Aug 14, 2011:

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2 Responses

  1. W2ML is currently under option for a first-class Broadway production, so keep an eye out for a staged production in the not-too-distant future!

    • This is awesome news! I would LOVE to see it on stage. I’ll definitely keep my fingers crossed.