Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Kiss Me, Kate (1999 Broadway Revival Cast)
Genres: Pop, Soundtracks, Broadway & Vocalists
This terrific new recording of Cole Porter's greatest show grabs you from the beginning: shimmering strings lead straight into "Another Op'nin', Another Show" before the orchestra takes over. Then it's on to many of Porter... more »
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This terrific new recording of Cole Porter's greatest show grabs you from the beginning: shimmering strings lead straight into "Another Op'nin', Another Show" before the orchestra takes over. Then it's on to many of Porter's best-loved melodies and wittiest lyrics, including "Wunderbar," "So in Love," "Always True to You (In My Fashion)," and "Why Can't You Behave?" Art imitates life in this story of a troupe's performance of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, as the stars quarrel as much offstage as they do onstage, and Porter's score reflects this with both contemporary '40s songs ("Too Darn Hot") and Bard-inspired stage songs ("I've Come to Wive It Wealthily in Padua"). Similarly, Don Sebesky's marvelous new orchestrations alternate a jazzy band with Elizabethan-period drums and recorders. Brian Stokes Mitchell and Marin Mazzie (both alums of Ragtime) are in glorious voice as the feuding stars, while Amy Spanger and Michael Berresse shine as the secondary couple. Surprisingly, when this production debuted on Broadway in the fall of 1999, it was the show's first-ever major revival. The original 1948 cast recording is still great listening, but this is a Kiss Me, Kate for the new century. --David Horiuchi
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Suffers only by comparison
F. Behrens | Keene, NH USA | 01/25/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"There are now three recordings of that are worth considering. The original cast has the advantage of having the three lead voices for which Cole Porter composed his score and they are all very good indeed: Alfred Drake, Patricia Morison and Phyllis Kirk. Then there is the absolutely musically complete studio version on EMI with Josephine Barstow, Thomas Hampson and Kim Criswell. And now we have the revival-cast recording of the highly praised production of 1999 out on DRG 12988. Not having seen it, I cannot vouch for how well this cast acquits itself on stage; but I cannot give the highest marks for what I hear on this CD. Brian Stokes Mitchell has a voice close to Drake's but more lightweight and more comical. For me, he ruins "Were Thine That Special Face" by treating it less musically than did Drake and fairly shouting the "You'll be mine all mine" at the end. Marin Mazzie is also less musical and more screechy than Morison ever was in "I Hate Men" though she is fine in "Wunderbar" and "So in Love." Finally, Amy Spangler has a somewhat colorless voice and lacks the spark Kirk gave the role back then. Note: This is not to say that the original way is the only way in which these roles can be sung! I am saying that in this particular case, the original singers are far more effective to me than are the recent ones. Yet this DRG offering has the advantage of far better sound than that of the original Columbia LP and a good deal more music: the Act I finale, "Cantiamo d'amore," Pavane, and a lot of dance music, all of which are not in the original recording. (Of course the 2-CD EMI set has every note and even appends some songs dropped before opening night.) Also the numbers involving the chorus are far livelier than on either of the rival sets, with the "ad libs" and chorus noises as they sound in the stage production. So as momento of the revival, this is a very good purchase indeed. And while it will not replace the original cast set, it certainly complements it nicely."
Classic Broadway Lives On ! ! !
Eddie Landsberg | Tokyo, Japan | 07/24/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've been a fan of Marin Mazzie and Brian Stokes Mitchel ever since I saw them in RAGTIME, so to me, this cast recording is THE Broadway Dream Team. - - Both of these individuals are commanding performers and have a strong stage presence. You know who are the stars when they're on stage, and both have unforgettable voices that not only hit the right notes, but really convey the emotions of the words they sing and drive them home. If you don't find the performance and orchestration of SO IN LOVE alone to be a haunting and memorable listen, its time for the Prozac me-thinks. Performers aside, this is a play that has the audience in its grips from the opening scene, and much of it is due to the witty dialogue and Cole Porter's tongue twisting and outrageous lyrics. This is definitely not the type of CD that you'll buy and listen to one time because you have tickets to or saw the musical, I guarentee you, it'll be in the player for a long time to come and keep coming back.Viva Classic Broadway ! ! !"
Wunderful! Better than the movie!
Jackie | St. Louis, MO | 06/15/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"OMG! This revival is amazing! I've seen Kiss Me Kate, the movie musical, before, and it never interested me-- Howard Keel is of course amazing, but I feel he never challenged his voice. Ann Miller is talented, but half her act is but dancing. And of course, that doesn't come off too well on a CD.Well my thoughts on this musical totally changed since I bought the revival CD. Marin Mazzie is amazing--her I Hate Men is the most entertaining, Amy Spanger has such an amazing voice for Broadway, I'm surprised I've never heard of her before this! And Brian Stokes Mitchell...he definitely deserved the Tony! You can tell at the end of some songs, the notes aren't the easiest for him to hit, but he hits them with power. You can tell he took this role to another level in every song he performs! Each actor has such a presence, they put so much into every time you hear them...it's just simply amazing :-) So needless to say, if you are to buy any musical cd this year, it should be this Kiss Me, Kate! And if you are wise enough to chose Kiss Me, Kate, it should be the New Broadway Cast Recording! :-) ~*Jackie*~"