Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Way I Danced With You (glossary)

Michael Johnson & Sarah Blubaugh
(Blank Canvas Theatre)
Perhaps you are planning to catch The Way I Danced With You at Blank Canvas Theatre this weekend. I hope you are. But perhaps you were born after the year 1980, one of those "Millennials" people keep talking about.

Maybe when you hear the name "George Michael" you immediately think of Michael Cera. Maybe you've never been to Chicago. Maybe you don't even know where you are.

Here is a brief list of pop culture references which may help you appreciate and enjoy the performance.

All entries sourced from Wikipedia.

Deerfield is a village in Lake County, Illinois, approximately 25 miles north of Chicago. Deerfield High School is consistently one of the top high schools in the state. It is said Deerfield was a major inspiration for Shermer, Illinois, the fictional setting for several of John Hughes’ 1980s teen films.

"A Different Corner" is a 1986 song written and performed by George Michael. The song reached number 7 on the US Billboard Hot 100.

The Fly is a 1986 American science-fiction horror film directed and co-written by David Cronenberg. Starring Jeff Goldblum and Geena Davis, the film tells of an eccentric scientist who, after one of his experiments goes wrong, slowly turns into a fly-hybrid creature.

Footloose is a 1984 American musical drama. It tells the story of Ren McCormack, an upbeat Chicago teen who moves to a small town in which, as a result of the efforts of a local minister, dancing and rock music have been banned.

Glencoe is an affluent suburb of Chicago, located on the shore of Lake Michigan. This village is also the setting for the 1983 film Risky Business.

Geena Davis & Jeff Goldblum
(The Fly)
Harold Washington College is a community college part of the City Colleges of Chicago system of the City of Chicago, in Illinois. Founded in 1962 as Loop College, the college was renamed for the first African American to be elected Mayor of Chicago, Harold Washington, after his sudden death in office in November 1987.

"Love on the Rocks" is a song written by Neil Diamond and Gilbert Bécaud that appeared in the 1980 movie The Jazz Singer. The single reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks in January 1981.

Midland is a city Michigan. In 2010, Midland was named No. 4 "Best Small City to Raise a Family" by Forbes magazine.

Mel Gibson was People Magazine’s “Sexiest Man Alive” in the year 1985.

Navy Pier is a boardwalk entertainment district on Lake Michigan in Chicago, which in 2018 encompasses more than fifty acres of parks, gardens, shops, restaurants, family attractions and exhibition facilities. Established in 1916, and not yet extensively renovated until the early 21st Century, by the 1980s it was a destination in decline.

A Night at the Opera is a 1935 American comedy film starring the Marx Brothers, A smash hit at the box office, A Night at the Opera was selected in 1993 for preservation in the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."

Older is the third solo studio album by George Michael, released in 1996. It was his first album since 1990's Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1 – the six-year gap was due to the legal battle that Michael experienced with his record company. "Older" is also the title of a single from this album, released in 1997. The single peaked at number 3 on the UK Singles Chart. It did not chart in the United States.

The Palmer House (now the Palmer House Hilton) is a historic hotel in Chicago in the city's Loop area. It is a Historic Hotel of America member, the official program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. It is one of the longest continuously operating hotel in North America.

Wham ft. George Michael
("The Edge of Heaven")
“The Queen and the Soldier” is a song from Suzanne Vega’s eponymous, 1985 debut album.

The South Side of Chicago has a varied ethnic composition. It has great disparity in income and other demographic measures. Although it has a reputation for high levels of crime, the reality is much more varied. The South Side ranges from affluent to middle class to poor, just like other sections of large cities.

Top Gun is a 1986 American romantic military action drama film directed by Tony Scott, Despite its initial mixed critical reaction, the film was a huge commercial hit. Additionally, the film won an Academy Award for Best Original Song for "Take My Breath Away" performed by Berlin.

“The Way I Danced With You” is a lyric from “Careless Whisper” (1984) by English singer-songwriter George Michael. It was released as a single and became a huge commercial success on both sides of the Atlantic and on both sides of the Pacific. It reached number one in nearly 25 countries, selling about 6 million copies worldwide.

Winelight is a 1980 album by jazz musician Grover Washington Jr. It received the Grammy Award for Best Jazz Fusion Performance in 1982. It is also the title of the first track of the album.

Blank Canvas Theatre presents “The Way I Danced With You” three nights only at 78th Street Studios, March 22 - 24, 2018.

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