In: KulturPoetik 2015, Heft 2


Matthias Hurst


Bye Bye Life. Broadway-Totentanz und All that Jazz




The popular song Bye Bye Love is about a man who has been left by his lover and now feels he could die of sadness and loneliness. Despite its bleak topic, the song conveys an ironic and jaunty mood. A variation of this song, Bye Bye Life, is presented in the final act of Bob Fosse’s musical film All That Jazz, depicting a Broadway choreographer’s encounter with death. The use of the song and its particular staging reflect the unconventional story and narrative discourse of Fosse’s film. It’s a modern dance of death, creating a tension between the lust for life and the struggle with death; it bristles with existential criticism and the ambivalence of the solemn beauty and the threatening inevitability of death.