Bec Heim Staff Writer
In May 2009, I sat down and checked out this little pilot of a TV series called Glee. It was mainly to satisfy curiosity because I think the last musical show on primetime was the infamous so bad it’s kind of awesome Cop Rock from the 90’s. The music in the show was pretty good. However, that final musical number set the stage for a love affair that has lasted for years.
In January 2013, Glee has filmed its five hundredth musical performance, which according to rumors is the New Directions Boys singing “Shout” on the March 7th episode “Girls (and Boys) on Film”. Twitter has been a-flutter most of the day with this news. And it’s a huge, impressive achievement. The music of Glee is the core of the show, how the characters express their inner feelings. Now love the show or not, the actors on the show are some of the hardest working on TV. They have to learn the song, record the song, learn the choreography sometimes in a matter of hours, and then perform it multiple times.
We’ve had musical numbers in shopping malls, on football fields, in daydreams, on the stage, in competition, in New York City either solo, duets, group numbers, numbers with some of the most talented performers on Broadway/TV/film. The performances have ranged from the iconic to sad to silly to introspective to bizarre. They broke our hearts or made us laugh or cringe awkwardly or roll our eyes but they invoked something in the viewer. Since that very first episode with that very first note sung: this cast has done it four hundred and ninety nine more times since then.
That is impressive especially for a show no one was entirely sure was going to be a success way back in the beginning. I mean it seems silly now but where would shows like Nashville or Smash be without Glee? I mean would we even have them?
From “Don’t Stop Believing” to “Teenage Dream” to that glorious “Rumour Has It/Someone Like You” mash-up, there have been some great musical moments on the show that people remember fondly.
I will argue that “Don’t Stop Believing” is still the best song Glee has ever given us. It may not be flashy nor had expert choreography or anything we get out of the more elaborate. It was honest and minimal, but not and it became this moment of iconic television.
“Teenage Dream” started the path to Klaine and rocketed Darren Criss from Internet sensation (StarKids represent!) to a star in his own right. It was the beginning of something really good in Kurt’s life, too. This song is still the highest selling Glee song bar none.
“Rumour Has It/Someone Like You” was just gorgeous and depressing. It was a song fueled by story of Santana Lopez being forced out of the closet before she was ready. The vocals from Naya Rivera and Amber Riley were some of their most gorgeous vocals on the show. The way it was shot, the movement on stage, the emotions fueled into that one number was beautiful.