Die-hard fans of filmmaker Quentin Tarantino know the dedication the geek autuer puts into choosing the epic soundtracks for his films.
Think of the songs you remember from classic Tarantino scenes like Dusty Springfield’s "Son of a Preacher Man" in Pulp Fiction and everything from the 5,6,7,8’s in Kill Bill, Part 1. From classic oldies to moody sleeper tracks, Tarantino is a master at establishing mood and tone in his films through his brilliant application of just the right tracks.
A touring concert of live music, live performance and film sequences gathers these indelible musical achievements into a whirlwind production called For the Record: Tarantino in Concert. This is the fourth in a series of director-inspired soundtrack musicals by Los Angles based company, Show At Barre. (The other directorial inspirations being The Coen Brothers, John Hughes and Baz Luhrmann.) Their latest soundtrack reinterpretation makes its world premiere at The Long Center during SXSW.
The show is not an official SXSW event, says Show At Barre Artistic Director Shane Scheel, but it is appropriate that the show happens during this week considering its seamless integration of music and film. More engaging than just film, more visual than just music — For the Record re-imagines the two elements in a completely unexpected way.
"SXSW just celebrated its 25th year, and Tarantino has been making movies for just as long. So it’s actually a perfect blend of all the elements involved," Scheel adds.
While the filmmaker will most likely not be in attendance, his influence and artistry will be in grand display throughout the show. Live musicians will play the famous scores from his span of movies starting with Reservoir Dogs and ending with Inglorious Basterds while performers like Death Proof‘s Tracy Thoms will provide the vocals and choreography.
"We have such an amazing talent pool in our company now," Scheel explains. "We’ve got people who have been on American Idol and Bravo’s Platinum Hit, others who have been on TV and film. It’s a very diverse group that has come together to form this family, which is really unique in L.A. because the city can feel very isolating and competitive. We’re really proud of that."
Fans of Tarantino’s work, (which by now is really anyone who loves classic storytelling and doesn’t mind seeing excessive violence), will thrill at seeing the creative reinterpretations of these memorable songs presented in a brand new format.
Animated scenes, choreographed numbers and original filmed footage will transform the scenes and songs you’re familiar with. "It is definitely not a Broadway revue," clarifies Scheel. "We don’t want anyone to confuse it as that."
Scheel and his Show At Barre co-creator Christopher Bratten are both huge Tarantino fans and actually originated the idea of the directorial dedication show with his music in mind. Years later, after producing three other such shows with Show at Barre, they’re excited to present For the Record on a larger stage and scale than ever before.
"We started doing these shows one night a week at the bar I run in East Hollywood," recalls Scheel," and then we grew into doing it six nights a week. So people have definitely responded; they get it. So now we’re taking it way outside of the bar to explore what its life can be outside of the club and out of L.A. It’s a difference of about 2,200 seats between the club and the Long Center."
The million dollar question is: Has Tarantino seen the show?
"Yeah, he’s seen it and he loves it. He drank me under the table after the show," laughs Scheel. "We talked a long time afterward about the choices we made. Some of the lesser-known tracks, he even forgot about, so that was cool. So, yes, he knows we’re doing it and he has the invitation. But I believe he’s filming in Louisiana right now."
Louisiana isn’t too far away from Austin, so who knows…?
For the Record: Tarantino in Concert premieres at The Long Center Mar 14 at 8 p.m. Tickets are available at the Long Center website.