Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
The Producers (1968 Film)
Genres: Special Interest, Pop, Soundtracks
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Can't get a ticket? Here is your 3-step solution....
David Kusumoto | San Diego, CA United States | 12/18/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As I've written elsewhere, if you can't get a ticket to this, the greatest Broadway show of all time, here's what you should do, courtesy of Amazon.com.1. BUY THIS BOOK. It contains all of the lyrics, super pictures, and more important, not only the entire script, but the entire chronology, from its inception as a movie to creating the stage story to slapping together the first few songs to nervously hosting the first previews in Chicago to its blockbuster grand opening at the St. James Theater in New York! It doesn't get more comprehensive than this!2. BUY THE ORIGINAL CAST ALBUM ON CD. This contains every song, from start to finish, sung by the award winning cast. The lyrics are here too.3. BUY THE DVD/VIDEO, "Recording The 'Producers' - A Musical Romp with Mel Brooks." This is the closest you can get to seeing the musical, albeit not on stage. And don't be fooled by the liner notes. This isn't ONLY the 85 minute version that aired on PBS, it has extra footage that clocks the package at around 1 hour and 40 minutes!I saw the show in October and I'm going back to New York to see it again in March. I've NEVER been this INSANE about any entertainment product (books, films, music, staged theater) in my LIFE. With all three items -- the book, the CD and the DVD/video -- you get a pretty good idea of what makes "The Producers," with its spectacular mix of merriment and mirth, mayhem and satire, so great! It deserves all of its hype. You can't oversell it!Every song is a show-stopper, a throwback to the riffs that feel like a "best hits" package from the greatest musicals ever made. A little bit of Cole Porter, Gershwin, vaudeville and classic dance melodies reminiscent of Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly (e.g., "Gotta Sing-Sing!" -- as in prison!), with lyrics that are so happily vulgar and irreverent that you're lucky you're not more doubled-over in pain from laughing so hard if you could only see the girls wearing pretzels on their heads and others doing the swastika "circle" march (visible via a tilted mirror toward the audience), done in Busby Berkeley style! Heck, there's even a bit of an homage to the Andrew Sisters (e.g., "He's a Hot-sie-tot-sie Nazi! Woo-woo, he's a hot-sie-tot-sie Nazi! Woo-woo! The Fuhrer...is in a FUROR!")... Sadly, this original cast won't be together much longer, but the traveling show officially begins next year (it'll be in San Diego from December 2002 to January 2003)! So the wait won't be as long as we thought!To recap -- get the CD, the DVD/Video and THIS BOOK! Then you'll save some big-time $$$ until the show arrives in your backyard! Whatta deal!"
The Producers a smash book
D. Clancy | Portland, Or USA | 11/28/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Unless a person has been isolated in Siberia I think everyone has heard of the Mel Brooks hit musical "The Producers". Written by Brooks and Thomas Meehan it is probably the biggest hit on Broadway in the past 50 years. Tickets are unavailable until July 2002 and "prime" seats are fetching $480. Is the show worth it? You bet and so is the book. And it is only ...
The book is a wonderful coffee table volume full of wonderful photographs from the production, rehearsal, casting and out of town tryout. There are stories from the stellar cast such as Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick, Roger Bart, Gary Beach, Brad Oscar and Cady Huffman. Madeleine Doherty relates her hilarious audition as a little "old lady" and Brad Oscar's rise from a swing/understudy to the permanent part of Franz Liebking when another actor was injured.
All of the lyrics and most of the book are included Act by Act. The lyrics for some of the songs that were deleted are hilarious. With Mel Brooks heavily involved in the book, we get to know how this valentine to Broadway was created and how the original 1968 film came to be.
Miramax Books is to be given a standing ovation for the gorgeous design on this publication.
If you have seen "The Producers" in New York as I did one month ago, this book is a wonderful souvenir and a necessary addition to your bookshelf. If you haven't seen it yet, it is still a wonderfully enjoyable volume. Anyone interested in Broadway or musical theatre will pore over the pages for hours.
I highly recommend it and it would make a great gift."
Outstanding Look at Creating The Producers!
Professor Donald Mitchell | Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 97,000 Helpfu | 11/26/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Caution: This book contains vulgar three and four letter words in the libretto and lyrics of The Producers. The intent behind the use of these words is humor, rather than prurience. The Producers is by far the best book I have ever read about the development and staging of a Broadway show. Anyone who likes Broadway, comedy, or Mr. Mel Books will find this book to be irresistible! For those who cannot get tickets to The Producers (or have tickets for 2003), this book is your best bet to enjoy this marvelous musical in the near future. I strongly recommend this book as a gift item for those who don't mind some salty language and references. This book contains reminiscences of the show's development from the first contact by Mr. David Geffen to Mr. Mel Brooks to encourage Mr. Brooks to create a Broadway musical version of the 1968 motion picture of The Producers by Mr. Brooks. Each personal statement is accompanied by beautiful, lighthearted candid photographs of the people involved. One of the most touching sections involves how Ms. Susan Stroman was chosen to direct and choreograph the show after her talented husband and artistic partner, Mike Ockrent died, and Ms. Stroman was still in mourning. The stories about the first reading for producers will leave you with a tingle of excitement. After the first act was read, Mr. Rocco Landesman offered the St. James Theatre. Fourteen producers present eventually invested in the show, after Mr. Geffen had to bail out due to other commitments. The accounts are full of one-liners to keep you laughing as you learn. For example, turning a movie with two songs into a musical with 16 more is described as being "not unlike trying to translate it from English into Serbo-Croatian." Although the feedback was good all along, everyone kept waiting for something to go wrong. But it never did. The most negative thing anyone said about the show was Mr. Brooks. "It's not funnier than Blazing Saddles." When the New York Times Review came in, it was an amazing rave that began with "How do you single out highlights in a bonfire?" You then get some background on sets, costumes, and winning 12 Tony awards.From there, the book presents the libretto of the show and the lyrics of the songs. The only thing that's missing is the musical score. But you can sing to yourself, and enjoy the many wonderful photographs of the 22 person cast (featuring Nathan Lane as Max Bialystock and Matthew Broderick as Leo Bloom -- with full allusions to Ulysses intended). This is an annotated version, so it includes notes about what the draft versions had called for and the reasons why certain changes were made. Having seen the changes, I must agree that the decisions were unerringly improvements. Some of the false starts are pretty funny, too, such as the planned beginning with a "Hey, Nebraska" spoof of a well-known Broadway musical. If you are one of the few people who doesn't know the story line, let me give you a brief summary without spoiling it for you. Max has just had a flop ("Funny Boy" based on Hamlet). Accountant Leo notices that Max made a small profit and speculates that a lot of money could be made by over raising money for a flop on which little was spent. Max falls in love with the idea, and draws Leo into a plot to do this. They find a story called "Springtime for Hitler" which they feel will offend practically everybody, and hire a director to make an outrageous version. Max raises the money by romancing elderly female investors. The rest of the story takes a number of unexpected twists that will delight and entertain you. One of my favorite lines from the show comes in Act 1, Scene 1 when Max comments that "the reviews come out a lot faster when the critics leave at intermission." The appeal of the story is that it ultimately upholds positive values while poking good-natured fun at everyone involved in the Broadway community. Since no one is spared by the satirical spear, no one can be terribly offended. There's a lot of cross-dressing to spread out the small cast that gives the show some of the sophomoric appeal of a Hasty Pudding theatrical, which is well captured in the photographs. Creativity experts say that you can find improved solutions by trying to do the opposite of what you've been trying to do. So the notion of trying to make something bad . . . to find something good . . . is a well established one. Turning something from one form into another one is also advised. So you can learn new ways to solve old problems, even from Broadway musicals!"