This part have FIVE songs because of someone’s weird decision to change a song
Ma maison c’est ta maison (My House is your House)
Ma maison c’est ta maison is one of the sweetest songs in Notre Dame de Paris. In it Quasimodo offer Notre Dame as both protection and a home to Esmeralda, very nice. This is the only version really do this as Esmeralda isn’t in any trouble.
It also just a nice duet between Quasimodo and Esmeralda but it offer some character development, like what Notre Dame means to Quasimodo, like it’s his passion, his air, his prison his homeland etc. Esmeralda admits to being afraid of Quasimodo but through this interacting she changing her mind as he reminds her of the gargoyles which make her laugh when she is bored. That could sound mean but it’s not meant that way.
Melodically the song is very gentle and sweet. Unlike the other songs in the song the built isn’t with music, it’s Esmeralda and Quasimodo singing together which is a nice little change.
This song also makes Notre Dame seem great, cool in the summer and warm in the winter, I live in New England so that sound wonderful as we have insane winters and crazy humid summers.
One more thing, I really like when Esmeralda takes Quasimodo’s hands, it’s very nice. It’s always nice when the performer have good chemistry and Garou and Helene Segara have really wonderful chemistry.
Ave Maria Païen (The Pagan Ave Maria)
Ave Maria Païen is one of Esmeralda’s big musical numbers. It’s a clear homage to the 1939 version when she prays to Mary. Disney had a similar scene but the tone and message was a little different.
In this song Esmeralda ask for protect for herself and she asks that barrier like race, nationality and other creeds that divide people be lifted which is her philosophy. So while she asks for protection and also ask for the welfare of people who get trampled on people in power much like God Help the Outcast.
The song itself is rather simple but gorgeous. Instead of having complex chords and music it instead has a children choir which just adds a lot of beauty and atmosphere. Also Helene Segara sells with song with a lot of passion in her voice.
Jens sens ma vie qui bascule (I feel my life slipping)
While Esmeralda was praying Frollo was watching her and he becomes more fascinated by her. Really, this bridge song is meant to link Ave Maria Païen with Tu vas me détruire but in some way it’s more of introdution to Frollo’s song. It makes that point that Frollo is becoming vulnerable.
As a bridge song goes, Je sens ma vie qui bascule was perfect for Frollo’s character and the flow of the show and then they ruined it.
Si Tu Pouvais Voir en moi (If you could see inside me)
Sometime in 2001 someone changed Jens sens ma vie qui bascule to Si Tu Pouvais Voir en moi song by Quasimodo, who is now the one watching Esmeralda pray taking Frollo out of the scene which makes his following song come out of no where which makes for sloppy flow.
But more than that this song is basically Quasimodo calling Esmeralda out for being shallow and not loving him as every other guy’s love is not true like his. This song is just fucking pointless, we already know this from Belle. I just don’t understand the thought process of ruining the pacing, the following song, and ruining Quasimodo’s character. Quasimodo is calling her shallow for not seeing inside and yeah Quasimodo did something like that in the book with vases but this song feels wrong for his character.
Really it would have been fine for Quasimodo to watch Esmeralda pray but it ruined too much to be meaningful to the show. I HATE this song, hate, hate, hate. Boo!
Tu vas me détruire (You will destory me)
This is Frollo’s first big solo number. In Tu vas me détruire, Frollo sings about how his obsession is going to destory him and he on the one hand cares as he curses her but on the other he doesn’t care. He is going to sink into his obsession without any remorse.
The performer playing Frollo typically put their own spin while singing this song. Some are more angry while others are tragic. What I like about Lavoie’s version is that he has a great combination of pathos and desperate anger which is perfect for the character. I also like the way he hold his hand with a lot of tension like he trying to retain what little control he has left.
The staging is also really great. As Frollo sing pillars are trying to crush him. Literally his issues of purity and purity are trying to kill. If you really look at those pillars, you can see eyehole and a doors.
The music has a weird mix of being gentle but really off and I don’t mean off like the timing but like a stirring madness which again is perfect for the character and mood.
When I was first into this show, this song was one my favorites.
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