Young composer sings a TikTok ballad for the ages, inspires entire musical in a grocery store

9 October 2020, 12:14 | Updated: 9 October 2020, 12:49

Composer sings original ballad on TikTok and inspires entire musical in a grocery store
Composer sings original ballad on TikTok and inspires entire musical in a grocery store. Picture: TikTok / danieljmertzlufft / alexengelberg

By Sian Hamer

This is a masterpiece.

Daniel Mertzlufft is a composer, arranger and “proud musical theatre fanatic”, who is undoubtedly missing the passion and energy of live performance right now.

Which might explain why he took to TikTok to film a theatre parody about a couple fighting in the aisles of a grocery store, inspired by an original song from Louisa Melcher.

Little did he know, Daniel’s ballad would become the catalyst for a musical TikTok storm...

Read more: 19 classical music TikToks to distract you from practising >

His dramatic supermarket-based production spread across the social media platform like wildfire.

First, the video was duetted on by user @another.blonde, who played the other half of the arguing couple.

Shortly after, user @kelseyjadebacon built on that duet, taking on the role of the couple’s distressed child.

Read more: Lloyd Webber’s ‘Phantom of the WAPera’ TikTok mashup confuses the world >

It didn’t take long for Daniel’s TikTok musical to truly spiral out of control.

A supermarket employee was introduced to the production’s line-up, giving a fresh perspective as one of the onlookers of the couple’s dramatic grocery store squabble.

At this point, the layering of the four voices was quite the rounded performance. Best to leave it there.

But this is the Internet, and in true Internet fashion, a trend isn’t finished until it’s been well and truly milked (no supermarket pun intended).

Read more: Pianist plays Nintendo Mii theme while solving a Rubik’s Cube >

Adding to the cacophony of competing voices was the one perspective we really wanted to hear from: a can of soup, watching the whole saga unfold from a supermarket shelf.

Somehow it managed to get even sillier from this point, with duets from “the squeaky wheel of on the shopping cart” and “the automatic door with the too loud bell” swooping in.

But finally, the pièce de résistance. The supermarket vegetable water sprayer joined the chorus...

There are now more than 500 duets of Daniel’s original video.

“I’ve had people duet my videos before, which have led to some awesome collaborations — so I wasn’t surprised when they started, but I never imagined it would take off the way it did,” Mertzlufft told BuzzFeed News.

“My favourite part of working in the arts is collaboration, and it’s been hard to feel that in the past few months, and it was incredible to feel that again.”

He added: "I’m just happy to have helped bring joy to people. The world is a lot to take in at the moment, and if I helped to bring joy, starting with Louisa and with every person who added duets, I’m proud to be a musical theatre parody TikToker.”

We need more people like Daniel...