The Contest

You can't have everything, and in bringing the story of merfolk and an underwater kingdom to the stage, the Broadway production team already had enough on their plate to deal with. Logically, that is true, and I give them mad props for what they did accomplish, but I can't say that I'm happy that the Ursula-turns-into-Vanessa subplot was removed from the stage show. Besides that Vanessa was a remarkably memorable "evil mirror" version of Ariel, the dark-haired rival for the prince's affections was a major part of Hans Christian Andersen's original story, and in taking that out, they're taking even more steps away from the source material, which makes me a sad panda.

In place of Vanessa's appearance, a contest is held where the princesses with the best singing voices in all the land are brought in for a contest to see who is the one Prince Eric will finally choose to be his queen, in a way that gives me flashbacks to Swan Lake. It's an interesting change to the plot, because it leads to Ariel proving once and for all that it's not her voice that matters. (I'm gonna be a spoilsport and say that it would have been much more effective if Eric had chosen voiceless Ariel over Vanessa who had the right voice).

That aside, a brilliant move they made in this sequence is to have the princesses sing to the tune of Ariel's theme, Part of Your World.


Welcome, dear friends to our contest
The first that this kingdom has ever seen
We gather today for a vocal display
So our prince may at last choose a queen

These six princesses possess the most accomplished voices in all the land. Tonight, one of you will go home with the crown. May the best woman win.

Princess 1:
Listen to me
Don't I sound rich?
Loud, am I not?
Plus I've got perfect pitch
Wouldn't you think I'm the girl
The girl who has everything?

That's not her voice. I'll know it the moment I hear it.

Princess 2:
Listen to this
Clear as can be
You'll know I'm it
When I hit my high C

Princess 3:
Wouldn't you think I'm the girl
The girl who has everything?

Princess 4:
I'm a world-famous coloratura

Princess 5:
My vibrato is second to none

Princess 6:
I'm a walking display of bravura

It's so clear
Can't you hear
I'm the one
I'm the one
I'm the one
I'm the one
I'm the one

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