CLASSIC TUNES: Show music fans across the country have good reason to rejoice with the release of five digitally remastered classic Broadway musicals on CD: A Chorus Line; Cabaret; My Fair Lady; Kiss Me, Kate; and Camelot. Sony Classical and Columbia/Legacy Recordings are responsible for launching this new series, which is entitled Columbia Broadway Masterworks, and the first five titles are already in stores. Not only do these CDs feature superior sound, but each includes extensive new liner notes and archival photos, and most of the recordings contain previously unreleased tracks. The Cabaret recording boasts four rare demo tracks sung by John Kander and Fred Ebb, the show's composers, and the Chorus Line CD includes an additional segment of the "Hello Twelve, Hello Thirteen, Hello Love" number. Theatre lovers can also look forward to the releases of these other musicals in the year to come: Annie, South Pacific, West Side Story, Gypsy, Mame, Sweet Charity, Nine, Show Boat, Fiddler on the Roof, Anything Goes and more.
THE SHOW GOES ON: Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt are probably best known for composing the longest-running musical in the world, The Fantasticks, which still draws theatregoers nightly at New York's Sullivan Street Theatre. This past season, the duo combined forces with three talented singing actors, JoAnn Cunningham, Emma Lampert and J. Mark McVey, and presented songs from The Fantasticks as well as tunes from their past collaborations (110 in the Shade, I Do! I Do! and Celebration) and from some works in progress (Grover's Corners and Mirette). Now available on CD from DRG Records, The Show Goes On offers a wonderful retrospective of their work. Highlights include a moving version of "My Cup Runneth Over" from I Do! I Do! and, of course, "Try To Remember" from
SOUND BYTES: Broadway's Biggest '97-'98, a new recording from Varèse Sarabande, contains intimate, instrumental versions of 12 songs from shows that opened this past season, including "Circle of Life" from The Lion King and "Goodbye My Love" from Ragtime . . . Last month, JAY/TER Records recorded Triumph of Love, the short-lived romantic musical comedy that starred Betty Buckley, F. Murray Abraham and Susan Egan. Look for Triumph in stores this fall . . . Pianist Eric Reed's jazz interpretations of classic Broadway tunes like "Hello, Young Lovers," "Send in the Clowns" and "I Got Rhythm" can be found on his new CD, Pure Imagination, from Impulse! Records.
SPOTLIGHT: The Sound of Music
Every young child's favorite musical, The Sound of Music, can currently be found at the Martin Beck Theatre, featuring a new staging from director Susan H. Schulman and starring Rebecca (The Secret Garden, Show Boat) Luker in the role that was first portrayed onstage by Mary Martin and later immortalized on screen by Julie Andrews. Luker possesses one of the most beautiful sopranos in the theatre today, and her voice is the highlight of the new recording from Varèse Sarabande. Just listen to the way she wraps her lush voice around such Rodgers and Hammerstein gems as "I Have Confidence," "My Favorite Things" and the soaring title tune. --
By Andrew Gans