My Top 5 Showtunes: Amie Giselle-Ward
The actress tells us the musical numbers she couldn't live without
Amie Giselle-Ward is currently starring in the European premiere of Little Women at the Hope Mill Theatre in Manchester. Her previous credits while training include Catch Me If You Can, The Wild Party, and Guys and Dolls.
We caught up with Amie and asked her: "If you were stranded on a desert island which five showtunes could you not live without?"
1. "Make Me Happy" from The Wild Party
In the midst of a score brimming with revivalist gospel, jittery jazz, operatic quartets and smooth pop ballads, the stinging sweetness of "Make Me Happy" and it's stabbing musicality easily makes it one of my favourites. The emotional intensity in both the orchestrations and the powerhouse vocals are simply irresistible, unstable and unpredictable. And when the three part harmony kicks in, instant chills. I have such a huge infatuation with Brian D'Arcy James' Burrs, an absolute masterclass in acting through song, timeless.
2. "Take A Chance on Me" from Little Women
Of course I had to choose a song from Little Women! There's no other musical I'm humming in the shower at the moment. Of course Danny Gurwin sings it beautifully on the original broadway album but I can't imagine anyone other than our brilliantly incomparable Connor Hughes singing it to me, his rendition would definitely be an extra ray of sunshine on that deserted island
3. "It's Hard to Speak my Heart" from Parade
The entire show's score moves me to no end. Jason Robert Brown is one of my favourite composers and Parade is, I believe, one of his most powerful and beautiful. Brimming with gospel, blues, ragtime and hymns, and a typically relevant story line regarding a notorious American miscarriage of justice. This particular song with its swelling orchestrations, poignant lyrics and sheer vulnerability encapsulated into a song always gets me!
4. "Money" from Cabaret
Should absolutely preface this one by saying that Cabaret is one of my all-time favourite musicals, Sally Bowles will forever be high on my list of goal roles! I'm a sucker for anything Kander and Ebb, Cabaret borrows from the 1920/30s sound with flare and exuberant lyrics, classically charming! The hypnotic piano clunking quickly into a swell of chorus girls, the bawdy drumbeats are sexy, the wailing brass downright dirty. There's something so satisfying and captivating about it, especially with Alan Cumming as the Emcee.
5. "Say It To Me Now" from Once
Glen Hansard is one of my favourite artists outside of the musical theatre bubble and his writing and musical flavour personified into Once has a special place in my heart. This song in particular will forever be one of my favourite songs of all time. Please bring the show back to the West End!