Dangerous Liaisons the Musical
"Dangerous Liaisons is a story of intrigue, of the perilous games played
between people when desires are supressed and motives concealed. The characters of the story are extreamely passionate, yet
exist in a time when passions were not to be openly expressed. What happens to a person who is denied their passions? In Dangerous
Liaisons, the characters must resort to their hidden games, games that lead to a spider web of relationships pulled taught
by unspoken tensions."
- Johnathan Daniel Steppe
"Les Liaisons Dangerouses is a classic French novel
from which several film versions and stage plays have sprung, even opera and musical theatre. Its melodramatic nature is very
operatic, and cries out to be set to music. But the nature of the story, the characters and the complexities of the plot demand
the grittier performance, faster pace and flexibilities that are afforded in a musical, that you just can't pull off as well
in pure opera. ...Ours, though classically flavored, is a large-scale,
Broadway-type show that draws from the features of both worlds, falling somewhere between musical theatre and opera."
- Malcolm Caluori
From composer Malcolm Caluori, with libretto by Johnathan Daniel Steppe, the high art
and irresistibility of opera meet the immediacy and mass accessibility of musical theatre in a balance perfectly struck for
one of Western literature's most inextinguishable and gripping tales. The immediate popularity, scandal and overwhelming success
of Pierre Choderlos de Laclos' 1782 novel Les Liaisons Dangereuses has since led to a proliferation of
innumerable derivations of the work, in all genres. And yet, despite the novel's seductive antihero and his wicked, domineering
counterpart, its extreme emotions, brilliant comedy and high melodramatic tragedy, no opera or musical based on the lurid
classic has been itself called a classic. Until now.
Caluori's dramatic instinct and skilled orchestration
informs a score that parallels grand opera. But as a melodist, and in his setting of the text of Steppe's sharp and loyal,
episodic libretto, he betrays the deep affection and ties to the musical theatre shared by both collaborators. The resulting
combination brings a vibrancy to the characters and a unique theatrical thrill to their circumstances, establishing the work
as the definitive musical dramatization of the story.
For in-depth details on Dangerous Liaisons, click the links below.
Songbook, and Complete Original Concept Recording now available in our online store.
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See a preview of the exciting upcoming book, Killing Valmont, by D. Hector
Francis. More than providing an interesting look at music and lyrics, Killing Valmont properly views Dangerous Liaisons
through the lens of drama, and ushers the reader through the process that gave rise to the innovative methods employed in
"...Mr. Francis' bold yet reader-friendly look
dynamic relationships between music,
libretto, and underlying drama...[considers] the stuff
that really makes musical
drama tick. I think
even I have learned a few things
about Dangerous Liaisons."