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Wonderful Town: First Complete Recording (1998 Studio Cast)
Leonard Bernstein, Betty Comden, Adolph Green
Wonderful Town: First Complete Recording (1998 Studio Cast)
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Soundtracks, Classical, Broadway & Vocalists
 
  •  Track Listings (13) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (11) - Disc #2

Recorded in 1998, this two-CD set is a complete document of 1953's Wonderful Town. Rebecca Luker and Karen Mason play Eileen and Ruth Sherwood, the two Ohio transplants trying to make it in New York. Mayhem ensues--and so ...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Leonard Bernstein, Betty Comden, Adolph Green, Rebecca Luker, John Owen Edwards
Title: Wonderful Town: First Complete Recording (1998 Studio Cast)
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 0
Label: Jay Records
Original Release Date: 11/3/1998
Release Date: 11/3/1998
Album Type: Cast Recording, Box set
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Soundtracks, Classical, Broadway & Vocalists
Styles: Historical Periods, Modern, 20th, & 21st Century, Musicals, Traditional Vocal Pop
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaCD Credits: 2
UPCs: 605288128127, 2605000025787, 5015062122329

Synopsis

Amazon.com
Recorded in 1998, this two-CD set is a complete document of 1953's Wonderful Town. Rebecca Luker and Karen Mason play Eileen and Ruth Sherwood, the two Ohio transplants trying to make it in New York. Mayhem ensues--and so does love, of course. It must burn many contemporary songwriters that Leonard Bernstein and his lyricists Betty Comden and Adolph Green came up with the entire score in five weeks. Five weeks! The lengthy opening number, "Christopher Street," completely captures the city's raucous energy, and then there's over a dozen others that are just as thrilling, such as "100 Easy Ways," "A Little Bit in Love," "Conga!" and "Swing!" Comden and Green are at their most bitingly funny, and Bernstein's music is a marvel of jazzy syncopation and bursts of brassy energy. The whole thing's a barrel of fun. --Elisabeth Vincentelli
 

CD Reviews

A wonderful recording, worthy of a classic musical
path31783 | NJ | 07/30/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Wonderful Town easily ranks among West Side Story, The Music Man, and all the other greatest musicals of the fifties and sixties; why it has been utterly forgotten by most is beyond me. Leonard Bernstein delivers one of the theater's best scores (when has he not?); the overture has more personality than many more successful shows have in their entire scores. This recording is the perfect representation of an amazing show. True, there is nothing particularly wrong with the original; however, this one is even better. Rosalind Russel gave a brilliant performace- or so Im told - but she is fundamentally an actress, and although her voice is passable, she couldnt really do justice to the fantastic songs, chosing to use her personality more than her singing ability in many instances. Nothing wrong with that. But here we have Karen Mason, who, while not as forceful a personality as Russel, has just enough no-nonsense attitude to pull off the part, and boy, can she sing. Rebecca Luker is the perfect Eileen- she combines a lovely voice with ditzy charm, just what her songs require. Ron Raines and Gregg Edelman both sing perfectly. Add to all this the presence of the National Symphony Orchestra, which allows Don Walker's sparkling orchestrations to shine far more than could any pit band, and you have a fantastic recording of Leonard Bernstein's fantastic score."
Complete indeed!
JCS | Ann Arbor, MI United States | 08/28/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This recording of Wonderful Town is fabluous. Extraordinary playing and singing all the way around. I have just completed a run of this show (as music director/conductor). While I understand those who prefer the orignal w/Rosalind Russell (I have that one, too), this recording in its completeness is unbeatable. Every measure of the score is present on this recording. This is especially helpful, since the available piano vocal score is nearly unplayable at the keyboard due to both scoring and manuscript difficulties. Even with talented rehearsal accompanists, we ended up teaching every bit of the choreography straight from this recording, with virtually no changes in the orchestra once they came in to production. I highly recommend this item, especially if you are thinking of doing this show!"
At last, a fresh and complete recording of a great show!
path31783 | 02/18/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"At long last, a complete recording of "Wonderful Town" has been done. With the best of the new Broadway singers. Rebecca Luker as Eileen is all around passionate and sweet, with a lovely voice and Ron Raines, is brilliant, in a class of the male Broadway stars of the 60's. And with Karen Mason in the Rosalind Russell role of Ruth, gives it a new meaning, Russell was not a singer but Mason is. She puts the comedy where it belongs, in the song and the emotions when needed. She does not merely sing the song, she performs it. There's much more in here than any CD has and with the little more, the story line is there. This is a classic recording, and why not reasemble these performers for a revival. mlop"