Colm Wilkinson's concert, recorded in December 1996, was shown March 8 in New Yorl and is scheduled to be broadcast March 12 on other PBS stations across the U.S.
The PBS program, with the working title "Colm Wilkinson Sings Music from Les Miz, Phantom, Evita and much more with Special Guest Patti LuPone"(!) airs Wednesday, March 12, 8-9:20 PM (ET) on PBS (check local listings for times elsewhere).
"Colm Wilkinson Sings..." features the Irish tenor (and Les Miz star) performing many songs written for the stage as well as some of his own favorite pop tunes. The concert opens with Evita's "Oh What a Circus" (Wilkinson was the first to record the role of Che on the original concept album with Julie Covington) and includes such other songs as "Music of the Night" from The Phantom of the Opera; "Bring Him Home" and "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables" from Les Miz; the American folk song that became a rock-n-roll hit "House of the Rising Sun"; "This is the Moment" from Jekyll and Hyde; U-2's "MLK"; "Danny Boy" and others.
As the title indicates, Patti LuPone is his special guest. LuPone and Wilkinson had starred in the original Royal Shakespeare production of Les Miserables at the Barbican Theatre in London (which then transferred to the West End).
LuPone sings her dynamic rendition of Evita's "Don't Cry for Me Argentina," the show-stopping "I Dreamed a Dream" from Les Miz and her lilting version of "Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered" from Pal Joey. LuPone also dazzles the audience with Oliver's "As Long As He Needs Me" and the Irving Berlin classic "Steppin' Out with My Baby."
Both LuPone and Wilkinson are backed by a 38-piece orchestra conducted by Canadian music director Rick Fox. The evening was taped at the Manhattan Center Ballroom in New York City.
By Andrew Gans