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In A Tale Of Two Sisters, The Story's In The Songs

The new Disney film <em>Frozen</em> is the tale of sisters Anna and Elsa, whose relationship is captured in music by songwriters Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez.
Courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures
The new Disney film Frozen is the tale of sisters Anna and Elsa, whose relationship is captured in music by songwriters Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez.

When you hear the name "Disney," you might picture a few things — Ariel the mermaid perched on a rock, or Mrs. Potts observing the blossoming love between a beauty and a beast. But just as important is what begins playing in your head: The songs that accompany these moments are perhaps even more iconic than the characters who sing them.

The new Disney film Frozen aims to add to that list with a tale of two sisters. The older sister, Elsa, is born with the power to create snow and ice out of her hands. As she grows up, her powers become too strong, and she is forced to hide them. The sisters are divided; Elsa lives in fear, while Anna longs for connection.

Husband-and-wife team Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez wrote eight songs for the film. Robert Lopez is best known for composing songs for Avenue Q and The Book of Mormon — songs that are far from G-rated. But the two both got their start in children's theater, and they say making the transition from edgy to family friendly is easier than you'd think.

"I think a story is a story, a character is a character," Kristen Anderson-Lopez says. "If your story is edgy, your songs are edgy. If your story is full of heart, your songs, hopefully, are full of heart."

The couple spoke to NPR's Arun Rath about the music of Frozen; hear more of their conversation at the audio link.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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