It’s been almost a year since Hollywood stars like Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron and Zendaya took to the circus ring in the movie musical “The Greatest Showman.” This holiday season, 17 music artists came together in collaboration to create “The Greatest Showman: Reimagined” in what can only be described as even more magical than the original.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, “The Greatest Showman” tells the story of successful American promoter P.T. Barnum, played by Jackman, who turned his misfortune into a world of mystique and magic that would become “The Greatest Show on Earth” and what later became the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus in the late 1800s.
“The Greatest Showman: Reimagined” contains covers by many different pop, hip hop and R&B artists, each bringing something new to the original soundtrack. While each song represents a significant moment in the story of the film, most of the artists were perfectly matched to the covers they recorded based on their unique styles and vocal ranges.
Some stayed true to the movie’s original tone of a light but strong Broadway-inspired performance. Opening the show, rock band Panic! At the Disco takes on its version of “The Greatest Show,” which adds a touch of rock but still sticks to the original’s intensity. The song’s Broadway tone comes from lead singer and frontman Brendon Urie and theatrical, over-the-top performance style.
American singer-songwriter Kelly Clarkson sung her heart out in her version of “Never Enough,” a song written to portray the strong emotions of Swedish opera singer Jenny Lind and her role in Barnum’s circus.
Pop-rock singer P!nk showcased her rendition of “A Million Dreams” from the original film, highlighting her voice in a calm and uplifting ballad. With the added reprise on the album sung by her daughter Willow Sage Hart, both songs give life to the childish wonder of P.T. Barnum and his vision of a new world.
The rest of the artists on the album simply add their own styles of music to the original with ease. British pop artists Years & Years and Jess Glynne create the same upbeat feeling as the original but add a funky twist in their version of the song “Come Alive.”
The forbidden love story of Phillip Carlyle and Anne Wheeler from the film, played by Efron and Zendaya, is retold through the voices of pop artists James Arthur and Anne-Marie in “Rewrite the Stars,” particularly when the duet begins, as their voices intertwine.
While singers MAX and Ty Dolla $ign negotiate a business deal set to song and dance in “The Other Side,” Zac Brown Band puts its own country flare on Barnum’s climatic change-of-heart in the song “From Now On.”
One of the most powerful songs “This is Me” from the original soundtrack was sung by American actress and singer Keala Settle, who played Lettie Lutz, the bearded lady with a voice of gold.
With the song winning the 2018 Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song, singer Kesha and rapper Missy Elliot came together with Settle to sing another version of “This is Me” for the Reimagined album, featuring a strong duet between Kesha and Settle with an original rap by Elliot, creating the perfect message of self-confidence and perseverance.
When it comes to movies like “The Greatest Showman,” everyone loves a movie musical combined with a rags-to-riches storyline and a slight tug at your heart strings.
Compared to the original soundtrack, which peaked number one on the Billboard 200 and sold over a million copies in the U.S. as of May, it’s no wonder their remixes would top the charts as well, reaching number one on the U.S. iTunes sales chart within the first week of its release.
Each song reflects emotions of excitement, determination, hopefulness, sadness, heartbreak and revelation. When every artist brings something new and interesting to the table, “The Greatest Showman: Reimagined” is sure to make you come alive and dream with your eyes wide open.