Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Music of Romberg
Genres: Pop, Classical, Broadway & Vocalists
Listen to Samples
Romberg never sounded better!
Karine Philippot | Montreal, Quebec, Canada | 09/24/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I am one of those who, as a great fan and collector of operetta songs, find this album (actually a compilation of 3 LPs from 1963) the single most brilliant one ever recorded.
There are very few singers who could get so completely into the spirit of the songs and characters of operettas as Gordon MacRae. A technically magnificent voice with a phenomenal range, vibrant intensity and great warmth and sincerity - the rare singer whose performances all felt spontaneous and who could go from caressing the ear one moment to singing in the most powerful tones the next - all in a glorious legit voice of course. His rousing numbers like "The Riff Song" from The Desert Song and "Stout-Hearted Men" from New Moon are so exilarating that they actually conjure up a larger-than-life vision. His haunting "Softly as in the Morning Sunrise" obliterates all other versions and in terms of passion expressed in song, it would be difficult to surpass his rendition of the Desert Song.
Kudos also of course to the everlasting charm, grace and talent of the great Dorothy Kirsten who sounds perfectly convincing and fetching as the youthful heroines she portrays even though she was already fiftyish at the time this was recorded. Her solos of "One Kiss", "Romance" and "Lover Come Back to Me" are nothing short of superb and convey the longing of her characters beautifully. Truly enchanting.
As someone who loves to compare as many versions as possible of the great musicals and operettas, I can truthfully say that I have never heard more exquisite versions of those songs anywhere. While many versions I have heard elsewhere seemed either over the top or emotionally detached, these ring with true romantic ardor and the arrangements are beautiful. If the beautiful duets like "Wanting You" from New Moon and "Deep in My Heart, Dear" from The Student Prince don't send shivers up your spine, nothing ever will. They litterally take your breath away.
I do feel, however, that a couple of the songs from the earlier MacRae version (from the early 50s) of The Student Prince rank a bit higher than the songs from this version if only for the fact that the arrangements of the "Student Marching Song and The Drinking Song" were livelier and performed not just by the chorus as they are here, but led by Gordon MacRae at his very best. I miss hearing him on those when I play this CD. (Most of the songs from his earlier versions of The Desert Song and The Student Prince are available on various CD compilations. His earlier version of New Moon has not been released on CD yet, but can be found on vinyl).
The Roger Wagner chorale is absolutely outstanding and does a splendid job throughout.
(Please note that the original vinyl albums of each show featured additional songs not included in this compilation and a finale medley).
Yes, I would definitely recommend this album to anyone who loves operettas, melodious songs and rich singing voices!"
A Favorite! Romberg as I heard him in boyhood!
Karine Philippot | 06/22/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a favorite of mine. I remember hearing many of these songs as a boy, and have treasured the scratchy 78's for years. Now it is a delight to hear this music return on CD. The performances are brilliant, clear, and technically satisfying."
A MUST BUY FOR ANYONE WHO LOVES MUSIC!
Karine Philippot | 03/08/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I would rate this as my favorite operetta cd, and right up there at the top of ANY cds I own. The composer Romberg's melodies are wonderfully melodic and you couldn't find a better recording of them than this one!"