The cast album of the Encores! concert staging of Tenderloin, the Bock and Harnick musical about the red-light district of 1890s New York, will be on store shelves July 25.
Composer Jerry Bock and lyricist Sheldon Harnick were present at the April 8 studio session of Tenderloin and contributed liner notes for the new recording of the 1960 score, which was not embraced in its initial run despite its character rich score. Bock and Harnick, of course, would go on to international fame for Fiddler on the Roof. The liner notes suggest there are many songs that were written and cut during the creation of the show.
Their Tenderloin also had an original Broadway cast album, which is available on CD. The new disc was originally scheduled for release June 15, but was bumped.
Hugh Fordin produced the new recording, which preserves the New York City Encores! concert revival of March 23-27, 2000. The cast included Debbie Gravitte, Patrick Wilson, Sarah Uriarte Berry, Jessica Stone and David Ogden Stiers.
With a book by Jerome Weidman and George Abbott, the tuner is a look at prostitution and corruption in New York City in the 1890s, with the forces of morality represented by Dr. Brock (Stiers), a monomaniacal preacher who infiltrates the red-light district, known as "the tenderloin." Wilson plays the duplicitous tabloid reporter, Tommy, who falls for decent Laura (Uriarte Berry). Cecil Beaton provided the stylized costumes for the original. It's generally thought the best songs of the score ("Reform," "Little Old New York," "Artificial Flowers" and "The Picture of Happiness") go to the drinkers, pimps and prostitutes, while the puritans sing such tunes as "Bless This Land," "Good Clean Fun," "Army of the Just" and "Dear Friend."
Pop singer Bobby Darin had an unexpected, swinging hit with "Artificial Flowers," which is sung in the show as a sentimental 19th-century story ballad.
-- By Kenneth Jones