After a Jan. 24 print ad for Fosse quoted a critic likening the new revue to "having good sex...for two-and-a-half glorious hours," you can only imagine what preparations technicians made in the midtown Manhattan studio where the show's numbers were recorded Jan. 24-25.
The resulting 78-minute disc and cassette are in stores April 13.
The recording of music from the revue of dances and numbers staged by legendary director-choreographer Bob Fosse was made at the Hit Factory in New York City under the supervision of producer Jay David Saks. Saks is the winner of seven Grammy Awards, including four in the Best Musical Show Album category.
This recording commits to disc songs unpreserved in the previous Fosse compilation, Dancin' (1978). Newly-designed recreations of Dancin' songs ("Sing, Sing, Sing," "Crunchy Granola Suite," etc.) make up a large chunk of Fosse, which opened to mixed to-positive reviews at the Broadhurst Theatre Jan. 14.
The show is doing glowing business. The week of April 11 capacity at the Broadhurst was at 99.75 percent. The disc includes much but not all of the three-act show. For example, not all of "Rich Man's Frug" has been preserved ("The Heavyweight" sequence is gone), and also missing are "From This Moment On," "Percussion No. 4," "Walking the Cat," "Shoeless Joe From Hannibal, MO," "Dancing in the Dark," "I Love a Piano," "Glory" and "Mein Herr."
The disc includes:
"Life is Just a Bowl Cherries" (Big Deal)
"Fosse's World" (dance elements inspired by "The Little Prince," How to Succeed... and other shows or films)
"Bye Bye Blackbird" (TV's "Liza With a Z")
"Big Spender" (Sweet Charity)
"Crunchy Granola Suite"(Dancin')
"I Wanna Be a Dancin' Man" (Dancin')
"Steam Heat" (The Pajama Game)
"I Gotcha" ("Liza With a Z")
"Rich Man's Frug: The Aloof & The Big Finish" (Sweet Charity)
"Cool Hand Luke" (choreographed for Gwen Verdon for 1968's "Bob Hope Special")
"Dancin' Dan/Me and My Shadow(s)" (Big Deal)
"Nowadays" and "Hot Honey Rag" (Chicago)
"Take Off With Us -- Three Pas de Deux" (film's "All That Jazz")
"Razzle Dazzle" (Chicago)
"Who's Sorry Now?" ("All That Jazz")
"There'll Be Some Changes Made" ("All That Jazz")
"Mr. Bojangles" (Dancin')
"Life Is Just a Bowl of Cherries" -- reprise (Big Deal)
"Sing, Sing, Sing" (Dancin')
Patrick S. Brady is the musical director-conductor.
Credited with co-conceiving Fosse are Richard Maltby Jr., Chet Walker and Ann Reinking. Fosse's widow and longtime collaborator, the legendary dancer Gwen Verdon, is "artistic advisor." The production is directed by Maltby, and co-choreographed by Walker and Reinking.
The Broadhurst was a lucky house for Fosse -- that's where his Dancin' ran 1,774 performances. Fosse died after suffering a heart attack in 1987.
The Livent-produced show is considered "new" in the sense that it's a repackaging of routines, dance elements and full numbers devised by Fosse, the onetime dancer, stage director-choreographer and film director known for his slinky, hot, isolated muscle movements. The retrospective draws from previous Broadway shows, films, nightclub acts and TV specials.
The number, "Alley Dance," in which two men try to top each other with dance routines, was cut in New York previews. It was from the film, "My Sister Eileen."
For Fosse ticket information, call (212) 239-6200.