AVAILABLE IN AUSTRALIA!
(October 14, 2005)
The American Musical
A History of Broadway
ABC DVD 104998-9 Musical
This sensational series on the
history of the Broadway musical was originally presented on PBS television
in the United States. Recently televised on the ABC on Sunday nights,
this award winning series is now yours to own on DVD. Whilw no one series
of this nature is absolutely complete, this series is a must have for
any musical theatre enthusiast. It is also an excellent resource for music
and drama teachers at all school levels.
My Favourite Broadway
The Leading Ladies Live at Carnegie Hall
DVD 8573862202 Musical
This DVD is a treasure. It conveys the electric excitement between
the performers and the audience, and what a list of performers: Karen
Ziemba, Bebe Neuwirth, Marin Mazzie, Linda Eder, Andrea McArdle, Jennifer
Holliday, Priscilla Lopez, Debra Monk, Nell Carter, Dorothy Loudon, Liza
Minelli, Audra McDonald, Judy Kuhn, Rebecca Luker, Dee Hoty, Lea DeLaria,
Faith Prince, Anna Kendricks and Elaine Stritch, hosted by Julie Andrews.
Most of these talented ladies perform songs that they introduced as members
of the original cast of their respective productions. This makes the recording
both historically valuable and exciting. The orchestra is conducted by
the legendary Broadway conductor, Paul Gemignani. If you know these women,
you will want to watch this show. If you dont know these women,
you should, and you will never forget them after you watch and listen
to The Leading Ladies.
Hey Mr Producer
VHS 3984271293 Musical
This recording still awaits a release on DVD. It is the full recording
of shows produced by the prolific champion of the Broadway
musical Cameron Mackintosh. You can be sure that Mr Mackintosh did not
let this show in his honor get produced without his adding his personal
touch. Like My Favourite Broadway The
Leading Ladies Live at Carnegie Hall, this is a star studded event.
But the stars do not shine on their own. It is thanks to the expert musical
and stage direction that these events have the audience impact that they
do. This is a must see recording in its entirety (164 minutes). If you
watched the version shown on television you only saw half the story.
The Dream Cast
DVD 3984239272 Musical
Dont think that every musical DVD is a gem, but this one
is also a must have for your collection. The recording was made live at
the Royal Albert Hall to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Les
Misérables in London. Re-packaging this recording under
the title of The Dream Cast is very appropriate.
It is a dream cast. Comprised of performers from productions around the
world this is no ordinary concert.
Supported by a chorus of 100 voices (not credited on the DVD or CD) and
the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, this is a performance of operatic stature.
Les Misérables The
Musical is a unique musical production that stands in a category
of its own in the classification of musical theatre productions. While
the full theatrical interpretation never fails to impress its audience,
this concert performance in full costume suits the medium of DVD and the
television screen to a tee and is a must have for your collection.
Sweeney Todd in Concert
Patti LuPone & George Hearn
DVD 0927462372 Musical
Here is a Stephen Sondheim musical that was
preserved in its original staging on VHS starring the original Mrs Lovett,
Angela Lansbury and George Hearn (who co-starred with Ms Lansbury
in the national tour) as Sweeney Todd. One hopes that this recording will
receive a transfer to DVD sometime very soon. In the mean time, Sweeney
Todd in Concert starring Patti LuPone as Mrs
Lovett and Mr Hearn re-creating his performance as Sweeney, has been preserved
on DVD. This concert version of Sweeney
Todd was orignally created for performance by
the New York Philharmonic. A CD was made of this concert and has had limited
release on the New York Philharmonic label.
This DVD is a recording of the concert version presented by the San Francisco
Symphony, once again starring Ms LuPone and Mr Hearn, with some but not
all of the supporting cast from the New York Philharmonic recording. It
is an entertaining and credible performance, and one that Im sure
was worth seeing live. For those of us not fortunate enough to be able
to attend these events, audio and video recordings are always worth having
It is wonderful to see as well as hear Patti LuPone, Davis Gaines (Anthony
Hope), Timothy Nolan (Judge Turpin) and the rest of the cast perform in
this incarnation of what is now a Stephen Sondheim classic. However, I
still refer to my opening comment and hope the original will be available
soon on DVD too.
Sunday in the Park with George
Michael Brandman, Emanuel Azenberg and
The Shubert Organisation in association with American Playhouse.
DVD 8573861452 Musical
This is a complete Broadway production preserved on DVD. Originally
available on VHS, this DVD version delivers the higher quality video and
audio you would expect. In addition there is a full-length commentary
about the show by Stephen Sondheim (composer and lyricists), James Lapine
(book and direction), Mandy Patinkin (George) and Bernadette Peters (Dot).
Sunday in the Park with George is a work
of fiction based on the life of George Seurat and his most famous painting
Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.
Seurat belonged to the Neo-impressionism school of painting during his
short life (18591891). His contemporaries included Toulouse-Lautrec,
Signac, Gauguin, Cézanne, Bernard and Van Gogh. Little is known
about Seurats life, but this monumental painting is testimony to
his ideas about style and technique, color and light.
James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim have conjured up a story that is as
daring as Seurats painting when he created it. The story is witty
and imaginative, portraying the characters in the painting and the method
used to create it as subject matter in Act 1. Act 2 begins with a bridge
between the past and the present. The present places another George (the
great-grandson of Seurat) in the spotlight as a contemporary artist suffering
for his art as he vies for the dollars of late 20th century patrons and
Sunday in the Park with George is quirky,
yet hypnotically enticing musical theatre.
The bonus full-length commentary on the DVD is lighthearted and enlightening,
making this DVD good value for musical theatre enthusiasts.