The classic American musical Finian's Rainbow returned to Broadway on October 29, 2009, to rave reviews. The New York Times predicted 'permanent sunshine' for this 'thoroughly winning and joyous' production; Variety hailed it as an 'infectious charmer, with one of Broadway's consistently melodious scores;' while the critic for The Wall Street Journal stated simply, I don't think I've ever seen a more musically satisfying show.' Featuring some of the wittiest, most heartfelt and memorable songs ever written for the stage (including How Are Things in Glocca Morra?, Old Devil Moon, and Look to the Rainbow), Burton Lane and Yip Harburg's score - rendered here by a cast of 29 and a full orchestra -- remains one of Broadway's finest. The acclaimed cast includes Broadway stars Jim Norton, Cheyenne Jackson and Christopher Fitzgerald, plus newcomer Kate Baldwin in a star-making turn. With its sparkling score of beloved standards and a whimsical story that dances between romance, satire and fairy tale, Finian's Rainbow is a musical theater treasure, and this' New Broadway Cast Recording will 'carry you away on a cloud of melody, magic and make-you-swoon performances. (New York Daily News).
may be one of the quirkier classics in the Broadway repertoire, but it is
a classic, anchored by three great standards: "How Are Things in Glocca Mora?", "Old Devil Moon," and "Look to the Rainbow." The quirkiness mostly comes from the plot: Irishman Finian McLongeran (Jim Norton) arrives in America along with his loyal daughter (Kate Baldwin) and a pot of gold that he intends to bury near Fort Knox in order to grow it into a fortune. Throw in a bunch of sharecroppers led by Woody (Cheyenne Jackson) and an angry leprechaun who wants his gold back (Christopher Fitzgerald), and you have the framework for the score by Burton Lane and E.Y. "Yip" Harburg that also includes the comedic "When I'm Not Near the Girl I Love" and the ensemble numbers "If This Isn't Love" and "That Great 'Come-and-Get-It' Day." The 2009 revival cast recording may not have the charms of the original Broadway lead, Ella Logan, but Baldwin is a particularly appealing lead herself, and top to bottom it's the best-sung recording and the most complete. While its Broadway run only lasted three months, the production received three Tony nominations, for Baldwin, Fitzgerald, and Best Revival of a Musical. --David Horiuchi