Seventh Minute of "Being Alive" Has Audience Yearning for Death
by Aidan Sears. @aidanjsears.
SOMERVILLE, Mass. — Tensions rose during the North Side Theater’s performance of Company this past Friday, as Michael Fletcher (Bobby) took more than seven minutes to finish singing ‘Being Alive,’ leading several audience members to begin praying for the merciful silence of death, our sources confirmed.
“It’s a really beautiful number about embracing the chaos of life and how feeling pain is a more invigorating way to live than feeling numb,” audience member Cara Wagner said. “But honestly after listening to him do vocal runs for seven and a half minutes, I would give the world to not have to feel anything anymore.”
The performance was allegedly padded with countless vocal runs and dramatic pauses, and audience members also suspect that Fletcher improvised his own additional lyrics, which helped take the number from simply overlong to violently excessive.
“The whole thing is a blur to me at this point,” audience member Andy Xu said. “I kind of dissociated at about the five or six minute mark. But I remember him singing lines like ‘Someone to like all my posts,’ which I don’t remember being in the original cast recording at all.”
Although the audience disapproved of the rendition, Fletcher defends his creative choices, claiming that “the silences in between lines often say more than the words themselves.”
“The first two lines are ‘Someone to hold me too close / Someone to hurt me too deep,’” Fletcher said. “Those are powerful lines, and they need room to breathe. That’s why I take a bare minimum 30-second pause in between them, or 45 if I feel we really need to marinate those babies that night.”
Fletcher completed the night by indulging in a similarly overlong curtain call, the specific length of which we were unable to attain as the entire audience left the theater before Fletcher finished.