This is the third part of the music review of Der Glöckner von Notre Dame
Hilf den Verstoß’nen
Hilf den Verstoß’nen (God Help the Outcast) is for the most part the same as the Disney version with one exception, Quasimodo sings in it. This add-on makes the song a touch longer. Another minor difference is that unlike the parishioners in the Disney that sings about wanting wealth, fame, glory together in the stage show the first two lines are sung in solos. A minute difference. Musically the song is identical to the Disney. Seriously, play the songs together and they are the same musically.
It’s a nice version of God Help the Outcast. On the one hand, I rather like the addition of Quasimodo here but on the other it robs Esmeralda of a song to herself. I mean Phoebus gets one but Esmeralda also sings with someone else whereas Quasimodo gets two songs for himself, three is you want to count the Gargoyles as part of his psyche. Considering that I wish they had let Quasimodo out of the song but maybe Menken and Schwartz felt that Esmeralda and Quasimodo should have got one song together but Quasimodo shyness would have prevented him from actively singing with her so him stalking her around Notre Dame and sing along wit her prayer was a logic move to make but still would it have killed them to give her a solo song. Really if they really want to take God Help the Outcast from her they should made Einmal (Once) her solo song but we’ll get to Einmal later.
Watch a Video clip here
Hoch über der Welt
Hoch über der Welt (High above the World) takes place when Esmeralda and Quasimodo are a top of Notre Dame and it is sung by Esmeralda and the gargoyles. Esmeralda thinks that Paris is better when viewed from above and the gargoyles encourage Quasimodo to put the moves on her. His move constitutes asking to sit next to her, which she agrees to and in the gargoyle tradition of jumping to conclusions they start planning the wedding.
This song acts as a bonding song between the two and it’s a good example of what works in a musical version wouldn’t work in a movie. A song like this in the movie would have killed the pacing and would have worked against Esmeralda sweeter less experienced nature.
Musically it employs the tactic that Zuflucht employed which was two melodies that are song together in the third part of the songs. This makes it so the first person(ie Frollo, Esmeralda, Phoebus etc) sing unaware of the gargoyles singing with them. And like Zuflucht the harmonies work well together.
Hoch über der Welt is a nice and sweet on Esmeralda’s end and fun and energetic on the gargoyles’ end. It also works to help establish Quasimodo and Esmeralda’s friendship more than just one the conversation they had in the movie
Das Licht des Himmels (Heaven’s Light)
Das Feuer der Hölle (Hellfire)