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Fiorello! (1959 Original Broadway Cast) [Cast Recording]

Sheldon Harnick , Jerry Bock , Patricia Wilson , Nathaniel Frey , Ellen Hanley , Tom Bosley , Bob Holiday , Eileen Rodgers , Pat Stanley Audio CD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Performer: Jerry Bock, Patricia Wilson, Nathaniel Frey, Ellen Hanley, Tom Bosley, et al.
  • Composer: Jerry Bock
  • Audio CD (September 14, 1993)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Cast Recording
  • Label: Angel Records
  • ASIN: B000002SOJ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,710 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Act 1: Overture - Fiorello Orch
2. Act 1: On The Side Of The Angels - Bob Holiday/Nathaniel Frey/Patricia Wilson
3. Act 1: Politics And Poker - Howard Silva/Chor
4. Act 1: Unfair - Tom Bosley/Chor
5. Act 1: Marie's Law - Patricia Wilson/Nathianiel Frey
6. Act 1: The Name's La Guardia - Tom Bosley/Chor
7. Act 1: The Bum Won - Howard Do Silva/Chor
8. Act 1: I Love A Cop - Pat Stanley
9. Act 1: 'Til Tomorrow - Ellen Hanley/Chor
10. Act 1: Home Again - Bob Holiday/Nathaniel Frey/Patricia Wilson/Pat Stanley/Tom Bosley/Howard Da Silva/Mark Dawson...
11. Act 2: When Did I Fall In Love - Ellen Hanley
12. Act 2: Gentleman Jimmy - Eileen Rodgers/Chor
13. Act 2: Little Tin Box - Howard Da Silva/Chor
14. Act 2: The Very Next Man - Patricia Wilson
15. Act 2: Finale - Tom Bosley/Patricia Wilson/Chor

Editorial Reviews

The team of composer Jerry Bock and lyricist Sheldon Harnick came up with only six shows--but what shows! In addition to the phenomenally successful Fiddler on the Roof, aficionados usually gush about 1963's She Loves Me and 1959's Fiorello!. The latter turned a not particularly appetizing topic--the years leading to Fiorello LaGuardia's election as mayor of New York--into a great musical. (It even won the Pulitzer Prize for drama, only the third musical to do so.) Harnick and Bock's versatility was in evidence as they wrote numbers in every Broadway style: novelty, ballad (about sweatshops), duet (the absurdly catchy and funny "Marie's Law"), and, of course, a rousing number that doesn't really fit anywhere but is so good that it simply must be included (Eileen Rodgers's "Gentleman Jimmy"). This may be one of the wittiest, most melodic shows you've never heard. --Elisabeth Vincentelli

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Downright BRILLIANT! July 8, 2001
Format:Audio CD
When I read the following phrase in the review which will (soon enough) be directly below mine - "The music by Jerry Bock and lyrics by Sheldon Harnick (best known for "Fiddler on the Roof") are certainly not spectacular" - I just had to add my two cents. "Fiorello" is spectacularly brilliant!
Here's just a snippet of Sheldon Harnick's masterful lyrics:
From "Unfair": "Must we sew and sew solely to survive/So some low so-and-so can thrive?/NO!!! He'll fry in Hades/If it's up to the ladies/Waistmakers' Union, Local 25!"
From "I Love a Cop": "Then there's Thea...Oh, how gruesome!/Can you see me introduce 'em?/'You remember her? She detested you./You remember him? He arrested you.'"
From "Marie's Law": "Here's another law we women'll/Do our best to legislate:/It shall be completely criminal/For a man to break a date./Each offender shall be rapidly thrown in jail where he belongs./Thus we'll write our Bill of Wrongs."
They just don't write them like that anymore (sigh).
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a classic, underrated Broadway gem November 3, 2003
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
FIORELLO! is a lovely, ahead-of-its-time musical, based on the career of New York mayor Fiorello La Guardia. It starred Tom Bosley as La Guardia with a dream cast including Ellen Hanley, Pat Stanley and Eileen Rodgers.
The score, an early collaboration from Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick (SHE LOVES ME, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF) is very strong, and includes several show-pieces like "Politics and Poker", "Little Tin Box" and "On the Side of the Angels".
Ellen Hanley (who had previously been criminally under-used as Polly Bergen's understudy in FIRST IMPRESSIONS) glows in the role of feisty Thea, the sweatshop workers' leader. She has two of the score's best ballads, "'Til Tomorrow" and "When Did I Fall in Love".
Pat Stanley (who earned a Tony for her performance in the disastrous GOLDILOCKS) gets the cute number "I Love a Cop". Eileen Rodgers (who later starred in a successful off-Broadway revival of ANYTHING GOES) sings the showstopping "Gentleman Jimmy", a manic flapper tune. FIORELLO! is a fantastic show in that it has no less than 3 strong female roles.
For those who only started following Tom Bosley's career during his 'Happy Days', the fact that he was a top-drawer musical theater talent will come as a big surprise. Bosley played the entire run of 795 performances. Bosley later made many more successful Broadway appearances including BEAUTY AND THE BEAST and (as of this review's writing) a triumphant stint in the Sam Mendes revival of CABARET.
This lovely reissue on the Angel Broadway label sounds as fresh as paint. An excellent remaster job and an excellent cast album.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An outstanding score - A neglected masterpiece October 20, 2000
Format:Audio CD
FIORELLO was the 3rd musical in history to be awarded the Pulizer Prize for drama. It also won the Tony award for Best Musical of the season (1959-60). After a successful Broadway run the show closed and has seldom been seen since. No movie was made. No TV adaptation. Nothing. A shame because this show has a wonderful score (preserved here) and the book is very well written.
Broadway Angel has done their customary outstanding job transferring this early stero recording to CD and the extensive liner notes in the booklet provide fascinating information about the creation of this musical. The booklet also includes a detailed synopsis.
Outstanding numbers: Politics and Poker; Till Tomorrow; Litle Tin Box; and (one of the best love songs ever written for the stage) When Did I Fall in love?
The cast is good. A young Tom Bosley played Fiorello H. Laguardia. Not the greatest singing voice but then he only sings the title song. (The show is constucted so that Fiorello does not sing except during his campaign speech...all the other characters sing about him. Another innovation.) Ellen Hanley as his loving wife has a somewhat overipe operatric voice (with a bit of a wobble) but it's so in character that she makes her big number (When Did I Fall in Love?) all the more dramatic. Actually the same comment applies to most of the cast: The voices are not terribly musical but so loaded with character that they sound real. And Sheldon Harick's lyrics are dazzlingly conversational.
Get the Cd - then petition your local community group to revive the show. (A Broadway revival of this one is needed!)
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fiorello! Original cast recording July 8, 2000
By Cara
Format:Audio CD
Fiorello! is a pretty good show that unfortunately, is not that known. At first, I must admit, I was a bit skeptical, but after listening to each song a few times, I began to thoroughly enjoy them. My favorites include the very clever and funny "Politics and Poker", the upbeat, fun, Charleston style "Gentleman Jimmy" and "The Very Next Man". This show has songs of all genres. It includes beautiful ballads such as "Til Tommorow" as well as songs that are upbeat and completely fun to listen to. I would recommend this CD to any Broadway lover!
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
"Fiorello!" is one of those Pulitzer Prize winning musicals that is now pretty much forgotten. But would you believe "Fiorello!" TIED for four Tonys with "The Sound of Music" in 1959? Look it up: Best Musical, Authors, Composer, and Producers. In the title role Tom Bosley won the Tony as Best Featured Actor while the legendary George Abbott (then 72 years old ) picked up the award for Director. The idea of making a musical about a New York Mayor (who had only been out of office 13 years at that point) might seem strange, but since "Fiorello!" there have been shows on Broadway about Gentleman Jimmy Walker and an off-Broadway one about Edward Koch. But this show is about how an honest politician became Mayor rather than about La Guardia's three terms in office.
The story line in the first act follows La Guardia's career from lawyer cleaning up the sweat shops, to his surprising election to Congress, and his military service in the Great War. The second act, which has long stretches of dramatic action without any songs, focuses on his unsuccessful run against Walker and then his ultimate election as Mayor. What might be most surprising is that along with the politics there is romance. Although his secretary Marie (Patricia Wilson) is clearly in love with him, La Guardia falls in love with Thea (Ellen Hanley), the leader of the sweatshop workers. Although La Guardia marries Thea, Marie does get a second chance at love. The music by Jerry Bock and lyrics by Sheldon Harnick (best known for "Fiddler on the Roof") are certainly not spectacular (can you name a single song from this show off the top of your head?), but are entirely enjoyable and several tunes do a nice job of capturing the musical stylings of the time.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Nearly Forgotten Gem!
This is one of the forgotten gems of Broadway's Golden Era. It manages to be political without being partisan, with great characters and rousing music. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Raymond Lebowski
4.0 out of 5 stars The Little Flower
FIORELLO!, with Tom ("Happy Days") Bosley in the title role, ran a whopping 795 performances, nearly two full years, a very long run for a 1950s Broadway musical. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Allen Smalling
5.0 out of 5 stars Fiorello CD
It was wonderful to replace the vinyl finally.
Published 2 months ago by Sai Simonson
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Broadway Score. Must have for your collection.
Remember loving this score on my vinyl. But I no longer play vinyl, so I'm buying all the scores I loved in the fifties and sixties and getting them on CD. Wonderful score. Read more
Published 8 months ago by A. Silver
5.0 out of 5 stars Political music
I have loved this score since I was a little boy. It has one weakness however; their is not enough of it!
Published 13 months ago by R. Richardson
4.0 out of 5 stars Unknown musical with outstanding score
I have loved the score for "Fiorello!" for over fifty years. I had owned it on LP and I now love it on CD. Charming, funny, memorable songs and an outstanding overture. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Carl E. Bergquist-devoe
5.0 out of 5 stars Bock and Harnick sheer perfection! A little gem with a big heart.
When FIORELLO opened at the Erlanger Theatre in Philadelphia, I didn't know a thing about the little man from New YOrk. Read more
Published 15 months ago by James F. Richards
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Score Of A Hit Broadway Show
wonderful songs and well performed, but only disappointment is that the show was recorded in mono so opening tracks are somewhat soft and hard to hear. Read more
Published 18 months ago by H. Lines
5.0 out of 5 stars Great production
I bought this CD to hear Patricia Wilson in it. It is timeless and a great recording of some amazing voices.
Published 19 months ago by Beate Frome
5.0 out of 5 stars Great show, great music: Fiorello! Original Bway Cast
It's wonderful. Lots of fun and joy. The perfect New York Broadway musical, it's a delight. I play it all the time.
Published 21 months ago by HelenPearl
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