Original NBC Televison Soundtrack – 2016 / Music by Marc Shaiman and lyrics by Marc Shaiman & Scott Wittman
Starring: Maddle Baillio, Derek Hough, Jennifer Hudson, Kristin Chenoweth, Harvey Fierstein, Garrett Clayton, Ariana Grande, Martin Short, Ephraim Sykes, Dove Cameron, Shahadi Wright Joseph
Rate: 8 (from 1 to 10)
Review: “Welcome to the 60s” and to the soundtrack of the live NBC adaptation of the Broadway musical!
This is probably the best and most exciting rendition of the score. The orchestrations are more exciting, the 60s spirit is more alive, the energy is superior and everyone in the cast sounds like they’re having the time of their lives. I haven’t’ seen the NBC production yet so I don’t I know about it, but the soundtrack is great! Besides songs written originally for the Broadway score, it includes “Ladies’ Choice” and “Come So Far (Got So Far to Go)” that were written for the 2007 movie adaptation, and both blend perfectly with the rest of the score.
On her debut, Maddei Baillio as Tracy is a winner leading lady and strongly delivers all her songs. Jennifer Hudson is terrific as Motormouth Maybelle and deliver her songs with feeling. Kristin Chenoweth is probably the best Velma Von Tussle I heard until now and she seems to love every moment of her “(The Legend of) Miss Baltimore Crabs”. Derek Hough sounds like he just come out of a sixties show. The one and only Harvey Fierstein returns to the role he created on Broadway and sounds exactly the same, his duet with Martin Short, “(You’re) Timeless to Me”, is one of my favorite songs of the show.
For me, the highlights are the already mentioned “(You’re) Timeless to Me”, “I Can Hear the Bells” and the exciting “Welcome to the 60s”. I also love “Come So Far (Got So Far to Go)”, where Hudson and Ariana Grande strongly lead the company.
This kind of music isn’t exactly my cup of tea, but it’s difficult to resist to the toe tapping rhythms and the contagious joy of living of this recording. Even if you’re a big fan of the Broadway cast recording, I’m sure you’ll love this much better rendition of the score. Believe me, “You Can’t Stop the Beat”.