Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Jule Styne, Betty Comden, Adolph Green|
Do Re Mi: The New Musical (1960 Original Broadway Cast)
Genres: Pop, Soundtracks, Broadway & Vocalists
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STELLAR PERFORMANCES CARRY A LESS-THAN-WONDERFUL SHOW . . .
J. T Waldmann | Carmel, IN, home to the fabulous new Regional Perf | 06/06/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Although DO RE MI was not top drawer Jule Styne (music), Garson Kanin (book), or Comden & Green (lyrics). it managed a modest Broadway run (400 performances). Headlining the cast were the incomparable Phil Silvers and Nancy Walker, comic actor/singers par-excellence. Walker, perhaps best-known as Rhoda's mother on TV, shines in "Waiting, Waiting" and "Take a Job." Silvers (TV's Sgt. Bilko) was not new to playing a con man (1947's HIGH BUTTON SHOES, also with music by Jule Styne) and here lends his considerable comedic talent to "It's Legitimate" and "The Late, Late Show," and the two leads make a minor classic out of "Ambition." Incidentally, Mr. Silvers will absolutely break your heart with the show's closing number, "All of My Life." Both leads were nominated for Best Actor Tonys, but lost to Richard Burton (CAMELOT) and Elizabeth Seal (IRMA LA DOUCE).
The show is further blessed with the gorgeous singing of John Reardon and Nancy Dussault. 1961 Theatre World Award Winner & Tony nominee (she lost to Tammy Grimes for MOLLY BROWN), Dussault delivers a stunning "Cry Like the Wind" and gets to act silly with "What's New at the Zoo," while Reardon's awesome baritone carries the best ballads of the show, "I Know About Love" and the major hit "Make Someone Happy." (Remember Jimmy Durante's version from "Sleepless in Seattle"?) Reardon and Dussault produce real fireworks to "Fireworks." David Burns (HELLO, DOLLY's Horace Vandergelder) appears as on of Silvers' shady associates.
Besides the antics of it's infamous producer (David Merrick), what kept DO RE MI from becoming a smash was it's thin plot, ". . . adapted by Mr. Kanin from his own novella. It's about a would be big shot named Hubie Cram who can't get a decent table in the better New York restaurants. He is a wheeler dealer who just can't make the big time. As his wife Kay says, they have 400 hula hoops in their garage and the phase has already passed. This time Hubie has acquired 300 jukeboxes. . . . Hubie needs $[...] to start so he brings in three retired shot machine mobsters to muscle in the jukebox racket." (Richard Connema, talkinbroadway.com)
Long out of print, the Original Broadway cast recording is now available from ArkivMusic as an ArkivSong CD-on-Demand, complete with original art work and liner notes. (Although everyone in the 1999 City Center Encores! recording does his/her best, and the booklet even includes an Al Hirschfeld drawing of the 1960 original cast, it really pales by comparison to the original. Just compare the anemic orchestrations to the sound Lehman Engel gets from his pit band.) If you can only have one recording, stick with the original.
Daniel Lowenstein | Los Angeles, California United States | 11/13/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a superb album. Phil Silvers is as good as you would expect, but Nancy Walker and John Reardon are also excellent. Silvers is particularly good on "It's Legitimate" and "All of My Life." "Make Someone Happy," sung by John Reardon is a beautiful ballad and "I Know About Love" is a fine bittersweet song. "Fireworks," a duet, has more sparkle than any real fireworks. Highly recommended!"
Underated gem of a musical!
Keith Summers | Columbia, MD | 01/06/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have to admit that I ordered this out of curiousity and was pleasantly surprised! "Make Someone Happy" was the one hit that came from this musical, but listening to the performances here, there should have been several more. Clearly, here was a strong cast and good score, but supposedly the show suffered from having a weak book. I highly recommend it and if you are familiar with this show, revisit it as a reminder of how great broadway once was."