New Victory Blog

The New Victory Blog is a place to learn more about New York's theater for families and the shows we produce. Find out what we do and what we're passionate about—exploring the arts as a family.

In the story of The Pied Piper, the melodies of a mysterious stranger have the ability to hypnotize his listeners, first rats and later children! The hypnotic power of music is not just the stuff of fairy tales, though. As any music-lover can attest, it's easy to get lost in a great song. Our musical tastes may all be different, but we can all agree that there are some songs so delightful, so infectious, that we'd be content to leave them on repeat all day long.

So, in honor of The Pied Piper's irresistible tunes, we asked our staff to contribute their favorite earworms. Take a listen below, and learn more about what makes each song so alluring to its adorer!

One of my favorite songs to listen to is "Þú Ert Jörðin" (Icelandic for "You are the earth") by Ólafur Arnalds. I'm drawn to this song because it always seems to change its shape depending on what mood or setting I'm in. If I'm stressed, it calms me. If I'm sad, it comforts me. If I'm tired, it lulls me to sleep and if I'm happy, it only adds to my euphoric state. It's truly one of the most beautiful, mesmeric compositions I've ever listened to. – Christopher Ritz-Totten, Public Relations Associate

One song that has had me under its spell for years is "Folkloric Feel" by Apostle of Hustle. It has an usual rhythm that shifts halfway through and a peculiar mix of sounds that make me feel like I'm both marching forward and jumping in place. Even though it's a seven-plus-minute song, I'm always waiting for it to keep going! – Zack Ramadan, Digital Marketing Associate


I have a million of these, but the most recent ones that I have on constant replay are "Fool for Love" by Lord Huron and "Solsbury Hill" by Peter Gabriel. They both have an alt-folk feel, with bouncy melodies that I love. – Melinda Berk, Director of New Victory Operations

Tough decision! One song I can listen to repeatedly is "The Last Saskatchewan Pirate" by The Arrogant Worms.  The sea shanty energy gets me moving any time I listen to it, but the bottom line is that I never tire of hearing a farmer-turned-pirate sing about his adventures "stealing wheat and barley and all the other grains." – Kali DiPippo, Assistant Director of Artistic Programming

I love "Row, Row, Row Your Boat." I love how it can go on and on, and I love the message of moving forward gently and being carried, too. – Melissa Kalt, Senior Manager, Individual Giving

I'm such a big music lover that it's very hard to pick just one song that's rested in my head. I spend much of my day humming one song or another to myself. Carly Simon's "Legend in Your Own Time" is one that often ends up at the fringes of my brain, and then there's always Janis Joplin's version of "Bobby McGee".  In my head, I hear my voice singing these songs flawlessly, even though in real life, I'm usually quite off key! – Alice Arias, Controller

There is something about the pacing of "Angel from Montgomery" by Bonnie Raitt that sets a new rhythm for my breathing. When I am not feeling all that peppy, it feels almost meditative. – Lindsey Buller Maliekel, Director of Education / Public Engagement

I've been really into this band called Hiatus Kaiyote lately. I'm really into jazz-inspired music, and "Nakamarra" by Haitus Kaiyote is my favorite song of theirs. It has a great mix of jazzy, soulful, smooth vocals by the lead female singer and a nice constant upbeat rhythm by the drums and bass guitar. – Tionge Johnson, Spring 2016 Development Apprentice

I'm a huge Kylie Minogue fan. "Get Outta My Way" became my hypnotic earworm because, when I really need to get my art focus on, I find myself listening to the same song on repeat. It helps me focus! And this song just blends into hours of focusing. – Katie Diamond, Marketing & Design Associate

Oh my gosh! "Rhythm Divine" by Enrique Iglesias never gets old. The music itself is transcending—listening to it, I can picture myself dancing in an open air café lit by twinkling lights by the ocean! – Rhesa Richards, Assistant to the Executive VP and VP, Operations



So what song puts a spell on you? Let us know in the comments below, and don't miss Milan's famed Carlo Colla & Sons Marionette Company's THE PIED PIPER, at the New Vic through May 15.
Posted by Zack Ramadan
January 8, 2016

A Sense of Memory

NIE Theatre's Museum of Memories opens this weekend! The innovative and poignant show tells the story of a young man's life, as remembered by his friends and family. Our memories are often tied up with our senses—we hear an old song or smell a familiar fragrance and we're instantly transported to a distant moment. For people with synesthesia, the senses can even trigger one another, so that seeing an image might provoke the sound of music! We've gathered some sense memories from our staff below—do you have any?

Museum of Memories

To this day, if I smell a certain kind of plastic, I immediately think of my troll dolls! Suddenly I'm right back in my room, lying on my tummy, brushing their long long hair and dreaming up scenarios for their busy troll lives. — Rhesa Richards, Assistant to the Executive VP and VP of Operations

The smell of suntan lotion always reminds me of the countless summer days spent at my grandparents' house. And the song "Get On Your Feet" by Gloria Estefan always reminds of me of the family dance parties we had in our living room growing up (and may or may not still have to this day...). — Lauren Hood, Artistic Programming Assistant

The combo of cigarette smoke and sofrito (an hispanic mix of herbs and spices used on everything you could possibly eat) sends me right back to being at my abuelita's house as a kid. — Janice Acevedo, Education Programs Associate

I think I have synesthesia. Certain words and names carry with them a visual image or color, and sometimes even a sound! It certainly affects my life and makes me have a gut reaction to words. For instance, when I'm writing letters, I listen to the sounds they make, if that makes sense. If they're melodious, I'll hear trumpets! — Melissa Kalt, Director of Individual Giving

I remember passing a discarded leather chair while walking home in the rain last spring, and a waft of cigar smoke hit me at the same moment. The two smells combined, leather and smoke, and zap! I was back in my grandparents' living room in 1989. On the musical side of things, the song "Rie y Llora" by Celia Cruz transports me back to a springtime of high school senioritis, windows down and salsa blaring. — Zack Ramadan, Digital Content Producer

I moved out of my family's house and in with two friends in 1976. We were three poor roommates sharing a three-bedroom apartment in Woodside. We barely had beds to sleep on, but we had a record player and the brand new double album, Songs in the Key of Life, that Stevie Wonder had just put out. We danced to it morning, noon and night. Now lifelong friends, the three of us went to hear Stevie Wonder play Songs in the Key of Life at Madison Square Garden last month. We danced and sang and cried at the wonderful memories that flooded us all. What a joyful, loving and peaceful work it is! — Alice Arias, Controller
Museum of Memories Icon   Have you ever been struck by a strong sense memory? Let us know in the comments below, or on Twitter! NIE Theatre's Museum of Memories is playing at The Duke on 42nd Street, January 8–17 for everyone ages 13 and up. Check out our Family Activity for some activities and resources to explore before and after seeing the show.
Posted by Zack Ramadan
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