The soundtrack of the new animated version of The King and I hits records store March 16, introducing a new generation of listeners to the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic.
The Warner Bros.-Morgan Creek film, a freely adapted version of the 1951 stage musical, opens nationally March 19.
The recording reflects the revised script (by Peter Bakalian, Jacqueline Feather & David Seidler), which cuts "We Kiss in a Shadow" and "Something Wonderful" from the story. However, the soundtrack does include previously-released versions of those classics, sung by Barbra Streisand (and played over the final credits).
Lady Thiang, who sings "Something Wonderful" is not a character in the film. A grown-up version of the Prince now replaces Lun Tha and falls in love with Burmese servant Tuptim.
The film features the voices of Martin Vidnovic (King), Miranda Richardson (Anna's speaking voice), Christiane Noll (Anna's singing voice), Ian Richardson (The Kralahome), Darrell Hammond (Master Little, a new character), Allen D. Hong (Prince Chululongkorn's speaking voice), David Burnham (Prince's singing voice), Armi Arabe (Tuptim's speaking voice) and Tracy Venner Warren (Tuptim's singing voice). Arrangements and orchestrations are by conductor William Kidd. Richard Rich is the film's director ("The Fox and the Hound," "The Swan Princess.").
Among the disc's vocal tracks: "I Have Dreamed" (Streisand), "We Kiss in a Shadow" (Streisand), "Something Wonderful" (Streisand), "Getting to Know You," "The March of the Siamese Children," "A Puzzlement," "I Whistle a Happy Tune," "Hello, Young Lovers," "I Have Dreamed," "Shall I Tell You What I Think of You?," "Prayer to Buddha," "Shall We Dance?"
There are also 24 orchestral tracks, by the Philharmonia Orchestra of London.
Vidnovic is a Broadway actor who has been seen in numerous projects, including the 1979 Broadway revival of Oklahoma!. Noll has appeared in Broadway's Jekyll and Hyde and York Theatre Company's Little by Little. Burnham appeared in the title role of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat in Toronto.
-- By Kenneth Jones