musicals has long past, the genre may just rise like a glorious phoenix from its ashes with the no frills, no star and almost no budget African American show called Leave It On the Floor, which premiered last weekend at the Los Angeles Film Festival.
One of the reasons musicals fell out of favor is because they weren’t realistic, and even though escapism has always been the main the reason people go to the movies in the first place, they were artificial in the sense that they didn’t mirror real life situations. And then there’s Leave It On The Floor.
Recent musicals that have had a successful run like Chicago and Dreamgirls have made the cut because of the way the song s are introduced to the audience. They are production numbers performed on stage rather than songs written within a script. This immediately elevates the song to another platform and doesn’t challenge the audience’s desire for realism. In this musical, characters sing on the subway and in convenience stores and due to the vitality and talent of these performers, the musical is making its way back to the American stage.
Leave It On The Floor may not overwhelm box office coffers, but it has definite potential as a cult film classic. It also has its problems; the script is rough and undeveloped in parts, but the story is truthful and concerns homophobia within the African American community. Drag queens and dance clubs abound in an extravaganza of song and dance. Written by Kimberly Burse, the songs range from rap to ballads and the choreography by Frank Gatson, Jr. is superb.
Even though the characters aren’t that well developed, the actors make them work, particularly gifted star, Ephraim Sykes.
Leave It On The Floor is a positive experience for all who are exposed to its magical dust.