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Broadway Showstoppers

4.8 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Audio CD, January 19, 1993
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Editorial Reviews

Produced 1992 EMI Records

Product Details

  • Performer: Brent Barrett, Kevin Colson, Kim Criswell, George Dvorsky, David Gaines, et al.
  • Conductor: John McGlinn
  • Audio CD (January 19, 1993)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Angel Records
  • ASIN: B000008IBA
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #88,790 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By John H. Flannigan on July 30, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
David Saemann above covers all the bases in reviewing this album, but I have to call special attention to one of its real gems, "Some Girl Is On Your Mind" from Kern and Hammerstein's "Sweet Adeline" (1929). This is one of Jerome Kern's most inspired songs: a scene for male soloists and chorus that combines a sentimental 1890s ballad, "Jenny Lee," with an incredibly beautiful blues melody by Kern. In the song's final moments, as if the artful combination of two songs weren't enough, Kern adds another layer of sound to the all-male chorus and has the soprano (Judy Kaye on this CD), sing haunting fragments of two more wonderful Kern melodies from "Sweet Adeline": "Here Am I" and "Why Was I Born?" The effect is overwhelming and unforgettable, especially when heard with the gorgeous, original Robert Russell Bennett orchestration. For me, it's one of the finest things in American musical theatre history and must have been extremely effective on stage. "Some Girl Is On Your Mind" alone makes this a CD worth having. It's tops.
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Format: Audio CD
The title of this album, Broadway Showstoppers, is a bit misleading. Yes, there are some big hits included, like Swanee and Tea for Two. However, there also are numbers from some obscure shows and two from a complete flop. Kurt Weill's September Song is given in its original, somewhat menacing version, totally unfamiliar from all the cover versions. Bill from Show Boat is performed in the version with the original, 1918 lyrics by P.G. Wodehouse which was removed from the show it was originally intended for. The CD also contains the first recording of the original version for soloists and chorus of Kern's All the Things You Are, taken from the flop Very Warm for May, a show about summer stock theaters. There are three engaging numbers from Kern's 1929 Sweet Adeline. Perhaps most notably, the CD includes two numbers from the 1976 Lerner/Bernstein flop, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. One of them, Duet for Two, is a virtuoso romp for Judy Kaye, who portrays two successive First Ladies in the same number. The album is beautifully sung overall, while John McGlinn presides over the whole of it with wisdom and verve. The sound engineering is very good, too. In sum, Broadway Showstoppers may be a somewhat optimistic title, but this CD offers much real pleasure nevertheless.
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Format: Audio CD
This is an impressive recording. Out of the fifteen tracks, there are four numbers from Jerome Kern's Sweet Adeline, of which one, "Some Girl Is on Your Mind," was compared in a New York Times review of a revival of the show by Encores to the great ensembles of Verdi! "Triplets" can be uproariously funny as it is here. One of the best moments in the CD comes at the end. It is the original version of "All the Things You Are" from Kern's Very Warm for May. It's a soaring and powerful double duet with chorus.
Arkiv Music has reissued the recording, and it is available at Amazon. This is one of Arkiv's most significant releases.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Maestro McGlinn made four remarkable Jerome Kern recordings between 1987-92, the complete SHOW BOAT, rare early overtures coupled with the brilliant SWING TIME film score, and more Broadway rarities on the superb JEROME KERN TREASURY. Here in 1991 there is some filler to flesh out the "showstoppers" theme (the Bernstein excerpts run 16 minutes and are contextually misplaced), but there is enormous interest in this release in hearing even the non-Kern selections in their original Great White Way orchestrations, many by the great Robert Russell Bennett. The original opening-night charts--and the unrevised lyrics--are especially revelatory in "Tea for two," "Dancing in the dark" and "September song," with the 1931 orchestration (a glorious 6'30") of "Dancing in the dark" pointing 22 years ahead to its Astaire-Charisse film apotheosis arranged by Conrad Salinger.

The Kern tracks are the permanent keepers, however, with McGlinn comprehending the neglect of Kern's Gay Nineties specialty score SWEET ADELINE composed for Helen Morgan. McGlinn includes four exceptionally choice numbers, "Here am I," "Why was I born?," "Don't ever leave me" and the incredibly moving men's drinking song "Some girl is on your mind," the last proving conclusively that Kern always composed operatically, even for fairly transitory Broadway vehicles. No less moving is the sublime original version--double duet with chorus, and Hammerstein's unrevised lyrics--of "All the things you are" as introduced in VERY WARM FOR MAY. (McGlinn has also memorably programmed, from this final Broadway score, the rapturous "Heaven in my arms" and "Harlem boogie-woogie" on KERN TREASURY.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
If you love Broadway, the well known and the trivial, you should love this recording. A talented group of singer-actors (Kim Criswell,Judy Kaye, Davis Gaines,etc.) present some well known songs and some novelties, including two songs from Leonard Bernstein-Alan Jay Lerner's disastrous "Pennsylvania Avenue". It makes for an enjoyable concert for your car as you travel this summer.Costs much less than attending a live concert, as well.
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