This is a question that has never crossed my mind before until it was brought up in a theatre forum and then many magazines started to write about it. So I thought I would write down my thoughts on my blog.
When I go to the theatre to watch a musical, I know I am going to experience a fantastical show stopper of a number. And 9 times out of 10 I will already have listened and learnt all of the numbers to that particular musical but will it urge me to singalong with the musical live on stage? The answer to that is no.
That is because A I can’t sing B it is rude C I want to experience the performance in all its glory. I don’t want to ruin the experience for my fellow audience members by singing and nor do I want someone sitting next to me joining in either. I understand that it maybe a great number but we have paid money to see and listen to the actor singing not the other way around.
There are sing a long shows or moments in a musical where the cast encourage the audience to join in, which is exciting. I don’t have an issue with that but the theatre staff may have problems. I can remember when I was a theatre watching a jukebox musical and the cast asked the audience to get up and dance to a song, when all of a sudden the ushers told us to sit back down. I was worried that I had upset somebody but I looked and everyone was up on their feet so I had no idea why we were all asked to sit down, it did take the enjoyment out of it a little.
If it is not one of those experiences then I do think it is unacceptable to sing along to musicals in theatre.
Don’t get me wrong as soon as you get out of the theatre, you want to dance and sing along to those songs on your way home then go for it. Just don’t do it in the theatre.
I want everyone to enjoy their time at the theatre but within reason.