Mr. President (1962 Original Broadway Cast) Cast Recording, Original recording remastered
|New from||Used from|
Audio CD, Cast Recording, Original recording remastered, February 24, 2009
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
Broadway musicals of the early Sixties were in a definite state of flux. "Bye Bye Birdie" virtually reinvented the sound of musicals, so when the audiences of MR. PRESIDENT were invited, in the opening number, to "go back to the waltz", you can imagine their confusion!
Cast members Nanette Fabray and Anita Gillette (playing the first lady Nell Henderson and her teenage daughter Leslie) manage to keep their songs nice and bouncy; but they can only do so much to give the score, as a whole, it's needed lift. I agree with previous reviewers who've recommended listeners to programme the CD with just Fabray's musical numbers--it does make for a far more pleasurable experience! This was Fabray's long-awaited return to Broadway after a ten-year absence (her last role had been as Janette in 1951's "Make a Wish", another show which flopped badly); in between, Fabray had made a success in movies with "The Band Wagon" and established herself as a popular TV personality. MR. PRESIDENT is sadly Fabray's final Broadway musical appearance to date.
I also own the original Columbia LP with it's silver foil cover and colour-tinted cast photo inside the gatefold; a real treasure (the same photo is replicated on the back of the CD booklet). This is the second major CD reissue of the MR. PRESIDENT cast album (following a long-deleted release on the old Sony Broadway label), so grab it before it disappears...again.
The best that can be said about the music and lyrics is their pleasant and the worst predictable. Did you ever wonder what a first lady thinks? It's all there-"The First Lady" What does the president think about when he is away from his cabinet and world leaders--"It Gets Lonely in the White House" When the love-sticken but poor secret service agent is trying to court the presidents daughter-"Empty Pockets Filled With Love". Showing he was up to the times Mr Berlin even tries a twist number called "The Washington Twist"--this is the twist with a twist-hmmm.
One little theatrical antecdote. Joshua Logan the director(he must have this in his contracts)always had to have a scene or two where either the leading man or the chorus boys were down to their undies. Now how to do this in a show about a President, his wife and two grown children. Eureka! Have the first lady go on a world-wide tour "They Love Me" featuring native dancers, a kabuki spider and some "tanned Tahitians".
"Mr President" was Irving Berlins last show and although the critics jeered, any man who is responsible for "God Bless America" is ok by me.
It is a very old-fashioned musical that just made you smile. The critics were very harsh to this sweet little show. But, the score here is what counts and its a good one. There are some very precious Irving Berlin standards. THIS IS A GREAT COUNTRY, IN OUR HIDE AWAY, and PIGTAILS AND FRECKLES to name a few and one song I love just listening to IT GETS LONELY IN THE WHITE HOUSE. No one writes scores like this anymore. Its' worth having it, just to remember what good scores used to be. There are real melodies here, there a great orchestrations and wonderful lyrics. When was the last time you had all three in a Broadway musical today. I love this score. I saw the show at the St James theatre with a bus trip with my aunt. I was so glad I did. Enjoy it, you will never hear the likes of it again. You will smile and it will bring a tear to your eye. You will wish that musicals like this would come back to Broadway. As one song in the show, goes LETS GO BACK TO THE WALTZ. Shall we!
"The score by Berlin is pleasant enough, but lacks a really dynamic song or two. Robert Ryan was a fine actor but a poor singer and his "It Gets Lonely in the White House" is quite painful.
The original LP was packaged in a gatefold jacket with 4 pages of notes and pictures inside. The cover was a foil-like material that glittered. It's not an essential cast album, and the show will never be revived, but it has enough of Berlin's old-fashioned melodies (and Nanette Fabray) to make it worthwhile."
Fabray's contributions add sparkle to the recirding: "The First Lady" and "They Love Me" are both great fun, as is Anita Gillette' "The Secret Service (makes me Nervous.)"
DRG deserves credit for giving collectors a chance to get this score without paying obscene prices.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I loved this show when I saw it in 1962, The score is very funny and beautiful music It was my favorite until I saw Fiddler On the Roof, 3 years later. Read morePublished 15 months ago by stevetrek
Irving Berlin never wrote another show after this one (though I believe he did later contribute a new song or two to a Lincoln Center revival of ANNIE GET YOUR GUN). Read morePublished on January 26, 2014 by G. Schneider
I was very young when this opened on Broadway, but my parents had the cast album so I was listening to it and marching around the house to it as a 6 year old. Read morePublished on June 24, 2013 by Tom George
I had forgotten what a fun score this is! Nothing out of this world, but pretty melodies and fun lyrics and rhymes ("The secret service ... makes me nervous ... Read morePublished on September 3, 2009 by Peter Mins
Knowing this was Irving Berlin's last musical, I was hoping to find some great melodies. What I really found was an old fashioned story accompanied by an uninspired score.Published on May 16, 2009 by DC theatre fan
There's no use pretending this is a great show score, but it's not unpleasant, and when Nanette Fabray gets a song between her teeth, things perk up considerably. Read morePublished on March 28, 2009 by Ronald F. Payne