Funny Girl (1964 Original Broadway Cast) Cast Recording
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Yet this recording is where some argue she is heard at her best. Not quite 22 when she did the show, her voice on the CD is a marvel - no other word for it. She brings new meaning to the word "clarion", providing [I think] some of the most thrilling moments to be heard on ANY cast recording. "People" comes from this score and Streisand did a beautiful reading of it in the film. But it can't compare with the simplicity of her version on the stage - it's just exquisite. The score itself is top-notch and compares favorably with Jule Styne's masterpiece, GYPSY. Bob Merrill's lyrics [remember it was HE who gave us those memorable words to "People"] are first-rate, proving that he really was a talent of the first water. Sydney Chaplin as Nicky Arnstein, while not possessing the richest of baritones, is no slouch with a song, and does a really fun, sexy, version of "You Are Woman". A number of songs left out of the film are of course to be found here on the Original Cast CD. Among those is the lovely, lovely "The Music That Makes Me Dance" which Miss Streisand turns into a gorgeous, very moving showstopper. It's one of those Broadway Cast Albums that really is special. With a star perhaps bigger than any in recent history, a score that is up with the best of the sixties, and a recording that's rich-sounding and theatrical, you won't regret this joining your collection. And by the way, THAT overture [like so many from Styne, the overture "king"] is a treat in itself: talk about "setting the mood"! What more can you ask for? Streisand and a score to die for.
The story of FUNNY GIRL is the story of Fanny Brice; lower eastside nobody who climbs the ladder of success to become a star of the Ziegfeld Follies. The success comes at a cost though: becoming main breadwinner in the family and helping to bring an end to your marriage.
The original production of FUNNY GIRL opened at the Winter Garden Theatre on March 26 1964 and ran for 1, 348 performances. Barbra Streisand, then with only one minor role in a Broadway musical - I CAN GET IT FOR YOU WHOLESALE - was applauded to the rafters. Her supporting cast included Sydney Chaplin as Nicky Arnstein, Kay Medford as Mrs Brice, Jean Stapleton as Mrs Strakosh and Danny Meehan as Eddie Ryan.
Barbra stayed with the show to the end of 1965, then opened the show in London. The Broadway show continued for an additional year with Mimi Hines as Fanny; proving that the musical could stand alone on its own merits.
The magnificent Overture opens this recording; a musical taste of what's to come. Normally this is accompanied by some sort of montage. Numbers sung by Mrs Brice, Mrs Strakosh and Eddie Ryan - "If A Girl Isn't Pretty", "Who Taught Her Everything?", "Find Yourself A Man" - are as comical as the characters themselves.
Fanny is given the hokey Keeny's Music Hall song "Cornet Man", as well as the wistful "Who Are You Now?", "His Is The Only Music That Makes Me Dance" (which is a masterpiece in itself); and "I'm The Greatest Star". Nicky Arnstein is given solos in "I Want To Be Seen With You Tonight" and "You Are Woman, I Am Man".
A fantastic, record-breaking Broadway show, equalled by a thrilling recording which more than evokes the magic of this musical performance.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Young Barbra Streisand is a socko belter and she freaking nails this recording. The orchestra, too, is outstanding (props to the first trumpet player), as are supporting cast... Read morePublished 6 months ago by John Arnold
I ordered this to have access to songs that were performed in the Broadway production that were not part of the subsequent movie.Published 10 months ago by patmarion
A classic Broadway score, this show made Barbra Streisand a star. It doesn't get better than this.Published 14 months ago by BondFan
To say that this score is one of the best in Broadway history is pretty silly. Twenty two additional songs were written during the tryouts which didn't make the cut, so this a... Read morePublished 19 months ago by addison de witt