The Official Blog of the
Williamstown Theatre Festival

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Special Feature | Our Lives as a Theme Song

by Kristin Idaszak

It’s Jewdy’s Show: My Life as a Sitcom chronicles Judy Gold’s quest for a second bathroom, aka her own sitcom, aka the perfect theme song—because the theme song is the secret to a successful sitcom. At least that was what Sherman Schwartz, the creator of The Brady Bunch and Gilligan’s Island, maintained.

Recounting his pitch of Gilligan’s Island to CBS, he explained the necessity of a good theme song: “There would have to much exposition explaining what the hell these seven people were doing on the island and it would be so dull before you ever got to the comedy. [I said,] I will have a song written that will take care of all the exposition in one entertaining minute. That's all you were allowed in those years. Sixty seconds was your limit. I said in 60 seconds I will tell the whole background story so there won't be any exposition. I myself have a saying: ‘Exposition is the enemy of entertainment.’ That's the truth. If you have to keep explaining what people are saying and doing, and why they're where they are, you never get to the story.”

In honor of Judy’s raison d’etre I polled the team behind It’s Jewdy’s Show about their personal theme songs. My findings are best introduced by a song (to be sung to the tune of The Brady Bunch):

Here’s the story of a theatre called Williamstown
That was putting up eight very lovely shows
One of them was about a Jewish lesbian
In search of her own sitcom
But the one day when this lady met her production team
They decided to put on a play instead
All of them have their own theme songs too
Which we’ll now share with you:

Kate Moira Ryan, Playwright – “If Love Were All” by Noel Coward

Judy Gold, Playwright and Performer – “There’s Gotta Be Something Better Than This” from Sweet Charity

Amanda Charlton, Director – “Don’t Stop Believin’” by Journey

Kalyn Lummis, Wardrobe Supervisor – “Pink” by Aerosmith

Alex Neumann, Sound Designer – “I Think It Is Beautiful That You Are 256 Colors Too” by Black Moth Super Rainbow

Wilburn Bonnell, Lighting Supervisor – The Price is Right theme song

Adam Dworkin, Assistant Director – “Harder Better Faster Stronger” by Daft Punk

Sam Hough, Photographer – “Teen Angst” by M83

Marisa J. Barnes, Assistant Sound Designer – “Caterpillar Girl” by The Cure

Phil Tokarsky, Assisstant Set Designer – “Give Me Love” by George Harrison

Josh Hacket, Associate Properties Master – Sanford and Son theme song

Caitlin Griffin, Company Management – “There She Goes” by Sixpence None the Richer

Andrew Layton, Scenic Design Dept Supervisor – “Happy Birthday” by Stevie Wonder

Jeanette Lee Porter, Assistant Scenic Designer – “I Wear My Sunglasses at Night” by Corey Hart

Kristin Idaszak, Dramaturg – “Twentysomething” by Jamie Cullum

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