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The Best of Broadway - The American Musical (PBS Series)


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Audio CD, October 5, 2004
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The Best of Broadway - The American Musical (PBS Series) + Greatest Hits: Broadway + Ultimate Broadway
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE COLLECTION OF BROADWAY MUSIC EVER ASSEMBLED! Decca Broadway & Columbia Broadway Masterworks have joined together in a historic partnership to offer music from the 6-part PBS series Broadway: THE AMERICAN MUSICAL Broadway's Greatest Hits - all on 1 CD! The definitive Broadway collection - features 21 of Broadway's most memorable songs of all time. A century's worth of Broadway's best - everything from Showboat to the Tony Award winner Wicked.

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A companion to the fabulous PBS series, the 21-song, 77-minute The Best of "Broadway: The American Musical" provides about as good a single-disc compilation as anyone could hope for. (There's also a five-CD version.) What sets it apart from so many other "best of Broadway" collections is its breadth--because it had access to a variety of record-label vaults it doesn't have to try to disguise gaps by using revivals or solo recordings. Here you get all the authentic stuff, including: Paul Robeson singing "Ol' Man River" from the first modern American musical, Show Boat; Ethel Merman singing "You're the Top"; the title song from Oklahoma!; Julie Andrews singing "I Could Have Danced All Night" from My Fair Lady; West Side Story's "America"; Betty Buckley singing "Memory" from Cats; Hairspray's "Good Morning Baltimore"; and "Defying Gravity" from Wicked, the newest show discussed in the PBS series. And it's hard to argue with the songwriters represented: Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, Cole Porter, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Frank Loesser, Lerner and Loewe, Leonard Bernstein, Bock and Harnick, Kander and Ebb, Stephen Sondheim, and Andrew Lloyd Webber, among others. Obviously, no single-disc compilation could ever please everyone (did we really need two ALW songs?), but as a sampler intended for people who watched the series and want to hear more of the Great White Way, The Best of "Broadway: The American Musical" can't be topped. --David Horiuchi

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. There's No Business Like Show BusinessJay Blackton 3:09$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. SwaneeAl Jolson 2:35Album Only
listen  3. Ol' Man RiverPaul Robeson 4:06Album Only
listen  4. You're The TopEthel Merman 2:53Album Only
listen  5. OklahomaAlfred Drake 2:29$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Luck Be A LadyRobert Alda 2:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. I Could Have Danced All Night (Original Cast Recording/1956)Julie Andrews and Phillipa Bevans 3:29Album Only
listen  8. AmericaChita Rivera and Marilyn Cooper and Shark Girls 4:32Album Only
listen  9. My Favorite ThingsMary Martin 2:47Album Only
listen10. PeopleBarbra Streisand 3:25Album Only
listen11. If I Were A Rich ManZero Mostel 4:55Album Only
listen12. The Impossible DreamRichard Kiley 2:20$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. CabaretJill Haworth 4:29Album Only
listen14. Let The Sunshine InJames Rado and Lynn Kellogg and Melba Moore 3:36Album Only
listen15. Send In The ClownsGlynis Johns 3:26Album Only
listen16. OneDon Pippin 4:44Album Only
listen17. TomorrowAndrea McArdle 2:05Album Only
listen18. Memory (Original 1982 Recording)Betty Buckley 3:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen19. The Music Of The Night (Original 1988 Recording)Michael Crawford 5:11$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen20. Good Morning Baltimore (Original 2002 Recording)Marissa Jaret Winokur 3:40Album Only
listen21. Defying Gravity (Original Cast Recording/2003)Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth 5:55$1.29  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 5, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Verve
  • ASIN: B0002W4T9E
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,531 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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All the music, full streaming songs, photos, videos, biographies, discussions, and more.
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Customer Reviews

When we listen to it, we feel him humming right along with us.
Julia Paris
Decca and Sony have done an excellent job of remastering the various recordings, some of which still show some of their age, but come across quite well.
Neaklaus
The music from Broadway's best loved musicals are on this album.
Robert G Yokoyama

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Neaklaus VINE VOICE on April 7, 2005
Format: Audio CD
This CD from Decca Broadway is a wonderful selection of some of

the "Greatest Hits" of the Broadway stage. Decca and Sony have

done an excellent job of remastering the various recordings, some

of which still show some of their age, but come across quite

well. Are there a lot of songs that I would have put on this

disc? Yes, but the ones on here are good choices. I may have to

get a copy of the Five disc set and the DVD's just to see if any

more of my favorites made it on the list. What this disc seems to

try to do is show the evolution of the Broadway song from it's

early days to the present. It succeeds quite well I think.

If you enjoy Broadway theater this CD is a must!
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Robert G Yokoyama VINE VOICE on October 6, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I loved listening to this CD. The music from Broadway's best loved musicals are on this album. I recogized most of these songs, even though I've only seen a few of them on the local stage. I have so many favorites on this CD. It is hard to pick one. I'm a big fan of Barbara Streisand. I loved her performance of People from Funny Girl. Memory is the hit song from the musical Cats. Betty Buckley's performance of this song is so emotional and sincere.

I loved the song Annie. It is a wonderfully optimistic song performed by the original Annie Andrea McArdle. Another highlight for me is the song One performed by the cast of a Chorus Line. Luck Be A Lady Tonight is another of my favorite broadway songs on this CD from Guys and Dolls. The music of the night is a beautiful song by Michael Crawford from Phantom of the Opera. Richard Kiley has such a strong and powerful voice. He sounds so inspirational singing The Impossible Dream from Man from La Mancha. My dream is to see some musicals on Broadway someday and listen to these songs performed live.

I'm surprised that there isn't any music from Miss Saigon or Jesus Christ Superstar included here. I think they are classic musicals with great songs Maybe they will appear on a future compilation from PBS.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jacquelyn A. Bride on October 31, 2005
Format: Audio CD
This one plays in the car, on the ipod and in the house. When the kids were little they would ask if we could take them to "The Street". That is what they called Broadway (little did they know at that time how famous that street is). They still love it and we can not get enough of it. This CD covers the best and makes you want to go and see a live performance. You can not beat that.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Julia Paris on March 4, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
When my father who had Alzheimers would get agitated, we would put on his favorite show tunes and it would calm him down. My two sisters and uncle grew up on these tunes as well and when my father passed away, I bought a copy for each of us to remember him by. When we listen to it, we feel him humming right along with us.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Finn on March 2, 2006
Format: Audio CD
This is a pretty good compilation, but I have to wonder at some of the choices that went into it.

"Good Morning Baltimore" is almost the least impressive song from Hairspray. "You Can't Stop the Beat" was a much more anthemic song from that show.

I agree that it's too bad Les Mis didn't make it in. I would have traded that for anything Sondheim, although that's a personal preference :) .

Still, the opportunity to hear the original performers and orchestras perform these works, all in one place, is a great deal.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By jeffreybh on January 8, 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Here are the tracks that are only availalbe on the single disc sampler version of this set The Best of Broadway - The American Musical (PBS Series)

5 Oklahoma from Oklahoma
8 America from West Side Story
13 Cabaret from Cabaret

Of course this five disc version has many many more tracks than the sampler but the above three are only on the sampler.
Great set though!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Anchorage on March 3, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This soundtrack was only dissapointing to me because some of the tracks I looked most forward to hearing I didnt care for. I did not like Marissa Jaret Winokur's version of Good Morning Baltimore-it sounds way too whiny, and Jill Hayworth's version of Cabaret is nowhere near the passion of Liza Minnellis.
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I enjoyed all the songs from many of my favorite musicals. All were well done by outstanding performers. I keep it in my CD player in my car and play it all the time when driving.
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The Best of Broadway - The American Musical (PBS Series)
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