Meandering Monday about Musical Memories

I used to act (I think I’ve mentioned that a few times before), though the last time I was in a show was early 1979, and the last time I auditioned was probably near the end of that year. Almost FORTY years ago, and yet I still hold onto acting as part of what I am; still somewhere deep in my soul, I guess.

I don’t remember most of my lines – except “Grateful? To these swine!” and some other choice ones. And the beginning paragraph or so of my 3-page opening monologue from Euripedes’ The Bacchae (but that may have been from the ordeal of practicing it over and over in a closet-sized room with Takis telling me exactly where to breathe. I may have blocked out the rest.) And the “All the world’s a stage” speech from As You Like It, which I used as an audition for Hamlet and rehearsed to death because I wanted to play one of the kings (Hamlet was already taken; I wanted to be his murderous uncle Claudius, or the ghost of Hamlet’s father – I wound up being the third king in the tragedy – The Player King.)

Some things leave us if we don’t stay on top of them, and we bemoan their loss (although why should we bemoan it if it wasn’t important enough to maintain the connection?), but others will rise up from our memories unbidden, with no rhyme or reason as to why they’re still occupying our grey-matter. Songs – even ones I never performed publicly except when grocery shopping (which still humiliates my family to this day) stick with me.

When Jesus Christ Superstar Live was broadcast this Easter, I could remember how the original concept album sounded (much to the detriment of my opinion of John Legend’s performance – sorry, Mr. Legend, you just weren’t cutting it.) I can still perform most of the album by myself (including imitating the instrumentals), even though I haven’t listened to it for over forty years. Here lately, for some unaccountable reason, a lot of my old musical theater background has been rising to the surface, and I catch myself singing songs from My Fair Lady, Godspell, Funny Girl, Cabaret, or Man of La Mancha. (it’s occurred to me that I really ought to have some of those shows in my karaoke collection. Why don’t I?)

That tells you the power of music – that it becomes so effectively cemented in your mind. It’s not the words – just the melody, although that music can make the words sung with it stick in your mind. You need to be careful about not letting a catchy and enjoyable tune plant words and thoughts in your head that may not be so desirable. You never know – forty years later they might come out of your mouth at an inopportune time. Just saying…


BlueNeonCoverThe release weekend has completed for “Interview with the Blue Neon God”:

What would you expect if you were to talk to God?

A novice reporter is sent after a story that could be a career-maker – or something more.

“Interview with the Blue Neon God” is a short, speculative fiction, and is available now at several online retailers, including, but not limited to:




CollectionTheLast3CoverWilliam Mangieri’s writing – including his most recent collection The Last Three ‘Things I Could Get Out of My Mind’  – can be found in many places, including:
• Smashwords:
• His Amazon Author page:
• Barnes & Noble:
• Createspace (if you prefer physical books):
• His site on WordPress:
• “William Mangieri’s Writing Page” on Facebook at:
• His Goodreads author page:
• Or on twitter: @WilliaMangieri

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