The roar of the crowd after Julie Andrews warbled a bit of "The Rain in Spain" was one the spine-chilling moments in the October 2000 concert, My Favorite Broadway: The Love Songs, and the roar echoes on the live CD release, in stores Feb. 27.
The Hybrid Recordings disc features, as the concert did, Paul Gemignani musical-directing some of Broadway's past and present top talent singing a range of love songs, wistful, comic, romantic and rueful — and a couple not from Broadway shows.
Whether or not "The Rain in Spain" from My Fair Lady counts as a love song is open to debate, but when Michael Crawford prompts Andrews with the famous Lerner and Loewe number (which she created), it's a thrilling moment. It's doubly special because it was thought Andrews would never sing following what she called botched throat surgery a few years ago. She does indeed conjure a few notes, and the audience responds with abandon.
Songs include "Lullaby of Broadway" (Tom Wopat and company); "Sue Me" (Nathan Lane); "He Touched Me" (Heather Headley); "Gigi" (Ron Raines); "When Did I Fall in Love" (Marin Mazzie); "If Ever I Would Leave You" (Robert Goulet); Medley: "Come Rain or Come Shine," "I Don't Know How to Love Him," "What Kind of Fool Am I?" (Linda Eder); "Seasons of Love" (Adam Pascal); "Music of the Night" (Michael Crawford); "Every Single Day" (Barry Manilow, from the musical, Harmony); Medley: "Too Late Now" (Rebecca Luker, from the film, "Royal Wedding"), "Sometimes a Day Goes By" (Peter Gallagher), "Not a Day Goes By" (Marin Mazzie); "I'm a Brass Band" (Bebe Neuwirth); "How Lucky Can You Get?" (Chita Rivera, from the film, "Funny Lady"); "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face" (Michael Crawford); "The Rain in Spain" (Crawford and Julie Andrews).
— By Kenneth Jones