“This Time Next Year;” Andrew Lloyd Webber’s New Year Promise

Andrew Lloyd Webber has had huge success with musical based on The Phantom of the Opera, poems by T. S. Eliot, and even stories from the Bible. Anyone familiar with Billy Wilder’s masterpiece Sunset Boulevard (1950) won’t be surprised that the great Broadway showman was inspired by the film’s intriguing story. He made it into a highly successful musical which is basically the Charles Brackett and Billy Wilder script set to music. Rebekah considered breening this musical, which has become a favorite soundtrack of ours, for our Sunset Boulevard Blogathon, but we decided that it was pointless. The only major difference between the movie and the musical is the profanity and unacceptable content added to the lyrics, so if breened it would be nothing more than a sung version of the film’s script!

As my first entry in our blogathon, I decided to write about one song from this musical. On New Year’s Eve, a chorus of down-on-their-luck Hollywood folks sing “This Time Next Year” at a party. The various lyrics about everything being great a year from then resonates with all of us in the new year of 2021. While we aren’t all dreaming of getting a break in the entertainment industry, we are all certainly finding that we “hope we aren’t still saying these things this time next year!” Click the above link to hear this song in the American Premiere Recording of this musical. Of course, more confident optimists may instead choose Norma’s anthem that this will be “The Perfect Year.”

If you want to hear this whole musical to compare it to the timeless movie, I suggest you listen to the two playlists above. The first is from the World Premiere Recording, featuring Patti LuPone, and the second is from the American Premiere Recording, featuring Glenn Close. While I prefer some of the performances in the first one, the story is more complete in the second due to more dialogue and some added songs. Although I have an emotional attachment to The Phantom of the Opera, I think that Sunset Boulevard is Andrew Lloyd Webber’s best work, musically-speaking. I don’t know where he got them, but he has some very stirring, moving melodies in that piece. The theme song and overture really capture the spirit of the story. Of course, nothing can actually compare to the amazing movie, but it is enjoyable to listen to the soundtrack between viewings.

Glenn Close as Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard. 1995 | Glenn close,  Theater performance, Actors
Glenn Close as Norma Desmond is ready for her close-up.

Have you ever listened to or seen this musical? What are your thoughts on it? If you’d rather not send fan mail, you can just leave a comment below this article!

Glenn Close to make West End debut in Sunset Boulevard
Glenn Close is big; it’s the musicals that got small!

Happy New Year, Darling!

Please join our other two upcoming holiday blogathons!

The Unhappy Valentines Blogathon!


The Luck o’ the Irish Blogathon!

Follow us to bring back the Code and save the arts in America!

We are lifting our voices in classical song to help the sun rise on a new day of pure entertainment!

Only the Code can make the sun rise on a new day of pure entertainment!

One thought on ““This Time Next Year;” Andrew Lloyd Webber’s New Year Promise

  1. Hello. Since joining your group, I seem to have lost my way. I’m not a blogger, just an avid classic film fan. I tried to unscramble the blog opportunities but failed and gave up. Today, I’m not sure what my role is, here, without blogging. I’ve seen many wonderful ‘code’ films, and could definitely recommend a few. Beyond that, I remain bewildered. Please advise if so inclined. Many thanks, and Happy New Year! -Kathy

    Liked by 1 person

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