‘Wicked’ Song Featured In ‘Oprah’ & ‘Glee’ Farewells
By Mark Kennedy, AP Drama Writer
NEW YORK – There’s something wicked about Tuesday.
In a strange convergence of events, “For Good,” a song composer Stephen Schwartz wrote for the hit Broadway musical “Wicked,” will be featured during two high-profile goodbyes: the season finale of the TV show “Glee” and the second-to-last airing of “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”
“It’s absolutely amazing to me that this is happening,” said Schwartz, a Grammy Award and Oscar winner. “It seems to be taking on a life of its own and that’s really thrilling for me.”
The song, a farewell duet between Elphaba and Glinda, is about how the two witches have been changed by their friendship. “I know I’m who I am today because I knew you,” one of the lyrics goes.
On Tuesday afternoon, Kristin Chenoweth, a “Wicked” alumna, will be broadcast belting out the song as nearly 300 Morehouse College scholarship students who benefited from Winfrey’s largess walk the aisles of the United Center in Chicago, where a two-day farewell event was taped last week.
A few hours later, Lea Michele and Chris Colfer will sing “For Good” in a performance taped for “Glee” on the stage of the Gershwin Theatre, where “Wicked” plays eight times a week. The two singers, who play frenemies Rachel and Kurt, will bury the hatchet and reveal their affection for each other.
“Obviously, the confluence of both ‘Glee’ and the Oprah show is one of those once-in-a-lifetime coincidences that you just have to smile and enjoy,” says Schwartz, whose other musicals include “Godspell” and “The Magic Show,” and who teamed up with Alan Menken for the animated films “Pocahontas” and “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.”
Schwartz says he’s written at least two others songs that have had lives outside their original shows — “With You” from 1972’s “Pippin” and “In Whatever Time We Have” from 1991’s “Children of Eden,” which have become popular songs at weddings.
“I have had this happen before but there’s something about the way this particular song is used that really feels good to me,” he says. “What writer wouldn’t be excited about that?”