Sunday, August 24, 2014


This is what perfect timing means! A new production of this musical has just opened in Chicago and in a few weeks a new revival will open on Broadway, so this was the perfect time to release the original London cast of this classic show.

Like the original Broadway cast, this recording is probably the less operatic one I heard. The fact that Leonard Bernstein is well known for his work with classical music, made his musicals a natural target for classical/operatic approaches, but not here.

The songs sound light and easy and there’s no doubt that Bernstein knew how to catch the spirit of New York and put it into music, just listen to the opening number, “Times Square” or “Imaginary Coney Island” and you’ll see what I mean.

I was always very fond of two songs written for this score: the haunting “Lonely Town” and the happy “Lucky to Be Me”. Here both are well sung by Don McKay. Two of the most comic songs written for a musical are part of this score, “Come Up to My Place” and “I Can Cook Too”, and Carol Arthur had a funny time with the Betty Comden & Adolph Green lyrics. The most famous name in the cast is Elliott Gould, who gets “Carried Away” with Gillian Lewis, but his singing voice wasn’t his best talent.

This 1963 recording is a good way to enjoy, or even discover, the score and to prepare for the upcoming new Broadway revival.

Rate: 8 (from 1 to 10)

No comments:

Post a Comment