Library of Congress Adds Original Sweeney Todd Cast Album to National Recording Registry

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02 Apr 2014

The 1979 original Broadway cast recording of Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd is among the 25 recordings that have been marked for preservation by the Library of Congress' National Recording Registry.



Each year 25 recordings are selected that are "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" and are at least 10 years old. The latest announcement brings the total number of recordings in the registry to 400.

Nominations were gathered through online submissions from the public and from the National Recording Preservation Board, which comprises leaders in the fields of music, recorded sound and preservation.

"These recordings represent an important part of America’s culture and history," said Librarian of Congress James H. Billington in a statement. "As technology continually changes and formats become obsolete, we must ensure that our nation’s aural legacy is protected. The National Recording Registry is at the core of this effort."

The original cast recording of Sweeney Todd was produced by Thomas Z. Shepard. It features Len Cariou and Angela Lansbury in the respective roles of Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett. The musical has a book by Hugh Wheeler.

This year's selections also include Linda Ronstadt's 1974 album "Heart Like a Wheel"; the Depression-era song "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime"; presidential recordings of Lyndon B. Johnson; Aaron Copeland's "Copland Conducts Copland: Appalachian Spring"; U2's "Joshua Tree"; the Jeff Buckley single "Hallelujah"; and Bob Brooker and Earle Doud's 1962 comedy album "The First Family," which was originally pulled from distribution following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.