15 de 17 personas piensan que la opinión es útil
- Publicado en Amazon.com
Formato: CD de audio
Many people have come into contact with and grown to love Frank Loesser's work through his most famous musical, the wonderful Guys and Dolls, but in my opinion this is infinitly superior and no broadway collection can be said to be complete without it. I immediately fell in love with this musical, but at first I was unable to see wherein the charm actually lay. The music, while catchy and fun to listen to, is not extraordinary, and, while Loesser's lyrics are clever and creative, he is certainly not my favorite lyricsist. The cast is excellent and perfectly suited to the piece, but that is the case in many of the original cast recordings of the best broadway musicals. And yet, despite not being overwhelmed by it, I could not stop listening to it. At length, I concluded that it is the story and the nonchalant, carefree feeling of the piece that captivates me. Each character is somehow endearing, in every song it is possible to relate to their emotions and desires, and yet, at the same time, it is so light and funny; at times it is as if nothing could shatter the playful frolicing world Loesser has created. Musicals are usually built around unusual events or are set in unusual places; it is the very simplicity that makes this recording so endearing, the idea is such a basic one, a young man trying to make his way in the world, and yet he goes about it in such an unorthadox fashion that the audience is instantly charmed and sucked into the story. From the first moment that he appears on stage we want him to succeed. That is the mark of a good musical. This down to earth, innocent style is especially well embodied by Robert Morse and his Rosemary, Bonnie Scott. It is impossible to listen to Happy to Keep His Dinner Warm or I Believe in You without a smile coming to your lips. And there are many other wonderful moments on this CD. M personal favorite is The Company Way, but I cannot resist the charming Been a Long Day, the electricfying Paris Original, the lovely Rosemary or the wonderful climatic moment that is Brotherhood of Man. Buy this recording, dont even think abut buying the revival cast first, (i mean, come on, how could they leave out Cinderella, Darling? It's one of the catchiest moments on the whole CD) or better still buy the Deluxe Edition if you can. But whatever you do, dont hesitate to buy it at the earliest oppurtunity. Even if you dont believe me, take a look at the facts, 1,417 performances, every possible award for best musical in its season, a Pulitzer Prize, (if nothing else sways you that should, I mean, only two other musical won one) productions all over the world, a successful revival, a reasonably successful film...I could go on and on. Please, just do me a favour and invest in something that you will enjoy for the rest of your life.
3 de 3 personas piensan que la opinión es útil
- Publicado en Amazon.com
Formato: CD de audio
"How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying" is a musical that Don Draper would had gone to see after a hard day of flirting, backstabbing, and three-hour lunching at Sterling Cooper Draper. This original cast album captures perfectly the experience Draper would have had, preserving the performances and songs that lifted "How to Succeed" into the upper ranks of classic Broadway musical comedies.
"How to Succeed" opened in the fall of 1961, towards the tail end of the classical Broadway musical era that began during WWII and "Oklahoma" and ended around 1964, when "Camelot" became identified with the tragically cut-short Kennedy Administration. It seems hard to image now, when the Broadway stage has become an elephant's graveyard of musical versions of mediocre Hollywood movies, that Broadway musicals were once a dominant driving force in American popular culture. Must shows, however, rarely reflected the world audience members lived in -- not many New York theater-goers participated in the Oklahoma land rush or took lessons in proper dictation from eccentric English linguists.
In "How to Succeed," however, Broadway audiences saw their professional lives, with all its values, office politics, and countless ethical compromises, being satirized up on the stage. The show dared to mock the American Corporate Way of Life and those "Men in a Gray Flannel "Suit" that kept the Great American Capitalist Machine running. However, the show's creators were careful to avoid any radical, C. Wright Mills-style agit prop. Instead, the satire was kept to a Mad-magazine level, and its characters were caricatured just enough so that the paying audience members could find the characters recognizable -- not as themselves, of course, but people they worked with -- their boss, their bosses's boss, the incompetent who got his job through nepotism, the overly-ambitious jerk in the next office over.
As this original cast album attests, "How to Succeed" was an example of all the creative elements being at the very top of their game. The show's main writers were Frank Loesser and Abe Burrows, the duo responsible for the monster hit "Guys and Dolls" several years before. Their experience with Damon Runyon's gangsters and the molls who loved them seems to have perfectly prepared them for the cutthroat world of office politics and romance. The star of the album, as in the show, is Robert Morse, in a star-making performance that shines through in this recording. (Unfortunately, Morse lacked the skill in timing at his character, J. Pierpoint Finch, possessed; becoming a musical comedy star just as that genre was was going the way of vaudeville) . Morse is ably supported by Rudy Vallee, the 20s-era crooner steals every song he is in. The cast also features Charles Nelson Reilly, who launched his career in the show, and such Broadway stalwarts as Bonnie Scott, Paul Ford, Sammy Smith, and Claudette Sutherland.
All the songs the show is justly famous for appear here, including "Company Way," that homage to job security through corporate conformity, "A Secretary is Not a Toy," which slyly sends up workplace sexism and gender objectification, "Grand Old Ivy," an old-boy-network anthem, and "Rosemary" and "Been a Long Day," which encapsulate work-place romance. Then there are "I Believe in You" and "Brotherhood of Man," self-knowing parodies of uplifting musical numbers that still have a heart beating beneath them. Fans who only know:"How to Succeed" through the 1967 movie version will discover such delights as "Coffee Break," "Cinderella Darling," and my favorite, "Paris Original," which delightfully skewers the basic premise of modern advertising.
The sound in this remastered recording is crisp and clear. This version also includes a highly informative essay on the story behind the show, based on the liner notes from the original recording release, and a song-by-song synopsis of the show. If there is one creative element missing, it is the voice-over quotations from the actual "book" Finch refers to as he makes his way up the treacherous corporate ladder. The eco-friendly packaging is an added plus.
How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Eco-Friendly Packaging) is a must-have for any fan and collector of classic Broadway musicals.