Contemporary Musicals on Film, Television and the Internet (due March 31, 2011)

full name / name of organization: 
Kenneth Chan and Aviva Dove-Viebahn

In recent years, the musical genre has seen a revival on American screens, with television shows like GLEE (2009-present) and AMERICAN IDOL (2002-present) and a litany of cinematic adaptations from CHICAGO (2002) and DREAMGIRLS (2006) to FAME (2009) and BURLESQUE (2010). Even before the wild popularity of GLEE, myriad television shows, including BUFFY: THE VAMPIRE SLAYER (1997-2003), ALLY MCBEAL (1997-2002), EVEN STEVENS (2000-2003), SCRUBS (2001-2010), and HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER (2005-present), used musical interludes or aired special musical episodes to garner ratings and entertain fans. Web series and one-off celebrity skits like "Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-long Blog" and "Prop 8: The Musical," respectively, have also jumped on the musical bandwagon.

This anthology of collected essays aims to explore the revival of the musical on film, television and new media in the last two decades. Essays can explore any aspect of the musical genre in these media, from musical adaptations and original musical episodes or shows to the impact of films, television and media focused on music or musical performances.

Topics of potential essays include, but are not limited to,

- Discussions about what drives this revival
- Considerations of what makes these contemporary musicals different from older screen-based musical adaptations
- The impact of television musicals on film musicals, or vice versa
- Incorporation of pop music in musical score; appropriation/reconfiguration
- Pop stars turn actors; actors turn singers
- Raw talent; rise-to-stardom narrative
- From Broadway to screen
- Musicals based on bio-pics of pop stars or composers
- Musical elements in non-musical shows and films
- Hybrid genres – e.g. horror musicals
- Impact of Hollywood and American musicals on global cinema
- Bollywood influences on Hollywood musicals
- Queer deployment and analysis of contemporary musicals
- Questions of gender and race in contemporary screen musicals
- The internet and other new media applications of the musical genre (web series, spoofs, etc.)
- Critical readings of musicals from a range of contemporary theoretical perspectives.

Please send a 300-word abstract and a brief C.V. (focusing on recent publications, if any) by March 31, 2011, to both Kenneth Chan ( and Aviva Dove-Viebahn ( Complete essays will be due August 1, 2011.