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The Dream Girls Play

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" The Dream Girls Play"

The storyline of the movie Dream Girls written and directed by Bill Condon consist of three long time friends who are members of a trio-singing group. The story follows the history and evolution of American R&B music during the 1960s and 1970s through the eyes of a Detroit, Michigan girl group known as "The Dreams" and their manipulative record executive. During that time, the most popular music label for African Americans to be signed to was Motown Records. The trio had big dreams of becoming mainstream, billboard toping artists and were willing to work hard to get there. They started out performing at small time gigs around their hometown to get enough exposure to book more shows around the country. The movie was originally created to tell the story of "The Dreams" also known as "The Supremes" which was a singing group that consist members were Diana Ross, Florence Ballard, and Betty McGrowth.

The movie replaced the original group members with current successful recording artists in the new millennium. The main cast members were Grammy award winning artist/actor Beyonce' Knowles, Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Hudson, Eddie Murphy, and Anika Noni. Beyonce played the role of Dena, which was a slim, fair tone, shy, small town girl with soft but respectable vocals. Effie's character was played by Jennifer Hudson, was an aggressive brown skin, full figured woman with a strong and soulful voice in love with Curtis. As for petite Lorel the peacemaker, played by Anika Noni the youngest of the three was nurtured by the other two group members because she was viewed as the "baby sister". On the other hand Curtis was the businessman involved. He handled everything from their bookings, to the sound of their music, to their look. Most of all he was responsible for the group's image and brand. Jamie Foxx portrayed Curtis' character to the best of his ability. He also had a relationship with Effie, but it failed because he lost interest in her and gained interest in Dena. Jimmy was the most unpredictable character of the entire cast. He was a successful soul artist, who performed with so much creativity and charisma. Jimmy formed a personal relationship with Lorel, and transformed her from a girl to a "woman".

"Move! Move! Move right out of my life! Move it! Move it! Out of my life!" In the play titled Dream Girls at Hampton University, produced by Karen Turner Ward; Ward directed the actors display the movie in the play in a way that words may never be able to describe. Ward did so by perfecting every song, every gesture, scene, and even the lightening and stage props. Attending the play was like going to see the actual movie in theaters because that's how excellent it was. The actors did an outstanding job portraying each character in the play. The play was such an unforgettable experience because each participant did his or her part to the maximum degree.

The opening act excited the crowd, with the lights dim and the live instruments being played in the background of the singers performing the song "Looking For Something" by the "Stepp Sisters". As the girls entered the stage, they walked with confidence, which portrayed great stage presence. As the first group performed Dena is introduced to the audience. She pleads her case to Curtis, explaining why her group couldn't make it to the showcase in time to perform. She caught his attention by her innocent beauty. The facts that she was so beautiful, made him stop and listen to her troubles. As human beings sometimes our natural instincts are uncontrollable. Although it was none of his concern that the "Dream Girls" missed their performance, he took the initiative to give them the opportunity to perform and get exposure.

Curtis did not only give them a chance for their well-being, but for himself as well. He felt if he displayed strong concern and provided some sort of security he could gain Dena's trust. If Curtis was able to gain her trust, he knew that she would convince the rest of the group to trust him as well. In a sense he used her, just as well as she used him. It was a win-win situation for both people. Curtis' was slightly more clever than Dena because he used reverse psychology in that situation. He tricked her into believing he was helping her group out, by giving them a fair chance in the showcase. Dena didn't think much of it then, but later in the play she realizes how much of a snake Curtis is as far as the music industry. Curtis' took their singing group under his wing to control them, while making a profit off their talent.

After all the performers competed in the showcase, they announced the winner, and unfortunately it wasn't the Dreams Girls. During that scene, Curtis watches the group discuss their lost amongst one another. Their conversation concluded with Effie deciding to go home and take that show as another shower they didn't win. As opposed to Dena who wasn't necessarily upset that they lost, but she didn't want her group to lose sight of their dream. She encouraged the group to stop settling for less, and stand up for what they believed in, by being open to new opportunity. After Dena gives the group the pep talk, Curtis takes it upon himself to interfere in the conversation and offer them to sing back up a well-known soul artist by the name of Jimmy Early for a fixed amount of money. When Effie and Lorel finally meets up wit Dena at the first showcase and Dena proposes Curtis' "great idea" Lorel instantly agreed but convincing Effie to move along with his deal was a challenge. Effie was the oldest of the group, which meant she was more experienced so she made decisions majority of the time.

Curtis was unable to instantly convince Effie with his offer because she knew the offer was too good to be true. Effie was against becoming a back up singer for a mainstream artist because she felt their talent was far beyond a few "ooohs & aaaahs". As for Dena and Lorel, they viewed the offer through narrow binoculars, only looking at the large amount of money they would be paid. Effie realized she would be minimizing her talent and self worth if she easily agreed to sing back up for a few dollars. In the end of the conversation Effie decided to take Curtis' offer to get the opportunity to travel and get more exposure for her group by performing with Jimmy Early.

Everything seemed to fall in place on the road, as far as Curtis keeping his word, and allowing the group to progress by occasionally performing



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