Thank You, Dolores Gray!!!
Alan W. Petrucelli | 11/08/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The incomparable Dolores Gray mesmerizes on this Broadway Cast Recording from 1959. Her recent death makes the work she displays here even more poignant. She was one of a kind who deserved more fame and accolades than she ever got, because her talent was one for the ages. There is no other Broadway voice (including Merman) to compare to hers, and she displays all of her versatility on this recording. From the ballads "I Say Hello" and "Anyone Would Love You" to the roof-raising "Fair Warning", Gray shines in her quintessential role as Frenchy. Andy Griffith makes a surprisingly good foil, and his singing, while not in the same league as Gray, suits the proceedings just fine. Harold Rome, an underrated composer, wrote his finest score for this somewhat forgotten musical, but it is really Dolores Gray who is the draw here. Also, check out the Broadway Cast Recording of "Two on the Aisle" and the MGM musicals "Kismet", "The Opposite Sex" and "It's Always Fair Weather" to experience Gray in all her splendor. Anyone would love her!"
ENJOYABLE AND ENERGETIC --- BUT NOT A TRULY GREAT RIDE
Alan W. Petrucelli | THE ENTERTAINMENT REPORT (ALAN W. PETRUCELLI) | 02/09/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Michael Kidd's "Destry," with music and lyrics by Harold Rome, is a zesty, rousing reminder of how great even marginal musicals of the '50s were. Produced the same year as "Gypsy," "The Sound of Music" and "Fiorello," the score contains no standards, but has some lovely ensembles and ballads, as well as some wonderful whoop-it-up western tunes. Starring Andy Griffith, who had yet to discover the idyllic pleasures of Mayberry and sultry Dolores Gray and based on the Marlene Dietrich-Jimmy Stewart comedy, "Destry" would be a welcome addition to any musical buff's library ... even if you won't be too eager to let it ride again and again on your CD player. (Submitted by staff member Stephen J. Finn)"
Destry IS Dolores Gray
Alan W. Petrucelli | 06/29/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"What a great, under-sung winner this is. A rousing score by Harold Rome, great orchestrations by Lehman Engel, with stirring, personality-filled voices of the kind you don't hear on Broadway any longer, most notably, the one-of-a-kind Dolores Gray. To the general public (in America, at least) Gray may not be as famous as such legendary Broadway divas as Ethel Merman, Mary Martin, Elaine Stritch, Angela Lansbury and others, but she was every bit their equal. In fact, when she did Annie Get Your Gun in London, critics praised her singing and performance as miles ahead of Merman's. She had a stunningly warm and powerful voice, sultry, sly comic chops, a spectacular figure and a tart, acerbic personality. A Tony-winner and nominee several times over, she was adored by critics right up to her final "big" performance in the London revival of Stephen Sondheim's "Follies," in which her biggest number, "I'm Still Here" stopped the show cold nightly. Sondheim reportedly told many people that Gray was the one brilliant thing in the whole revival. On film, in "Kismet" and "The Opposite Sex," we get hints of what dynamite she was. Here, on "Destry, " too, we can at least get a sense of what a knockout shemust have been on stage. The show sounds very much in the tradition of Whopee, Annie Get Your Gun, Oklahoma and Paint Your Wagon. I can't imagine any musical fan not finding it worthwhile."