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Bounce

Bounce

24 Jan 2009

£5.39 (VAT included if applicable)
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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 4 May 2004
  • Release Date: 4 May 2004
  • Label: Nonesuch
  • Copyright: 2004 Nonesuch Records
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 1:12:38
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B001FA4IB6
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 97,619 in MP3 Albums (See Top 100 in MP3 Albums)

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 26 July 2004
Format: Audio CD
There is no doubt of Stephen Sondheim's greatness. He is a towering figure, who has permanently influenced English-speaking musical theatre. Born in 1930, with major achievements there for all to see, it must be very difficult for him to move on to pastures new. BOUNCE is in a number of ways a regressive work. It is a collaboration with Hal Prince, with whom there were many triumphs in the 1970s, and with John Weidman, who provided him with two intelligent books (PACIFIC OVERTURES and ASSASSINS) in the past. More to the point, it mines the same seams as those two collaborations with Weidman, as well as FOLLIES and MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG from the partnership with Prince. Revealingly, BOUNCE has been a project that Sondheim apparently first thought about nearly half a century ago. Perhaps unsurprisingly, although the songs are new, the feeling is a little weary. It is of course impossible to comprehensively assess a work of music-theatre on the basis of a cast album. And it is certainly true, as Frank Rich suggests in his accompanying sleeve-notes, that posterity has been kinder to Sondheim's works than contemporary reviews have ever been. But BOUNCE, while often delighting, no longer surprises. The skill is as great as ever, and is at the command of that unique sensibility. But this great artist's work once again needs to renew itself in his material. Sondheim knows about artistic renewal: when he first collaborated with James Lapine, he arose like a phoenix from the ashes of the collapse of MERRILY. In BOUNCE he seems to be trying to rekindle something that has burnt itself out.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mr. James M. Bateman on 16 Jan 2009
Format: Audio CD
Well I liked it. I'm still quite new to Mr Sondheim's material and being determined to work my way through all his musicals I snapped at the chance to own this. I was pleasantly surprised at the lightness of some of the tracks, the title track is a joy and as with all Sondheim's work it's full of little phrases or tunes that are repeated to great effect, pulling on your heartstrings in the only way Mr S. can. All i'll say is 'Look at it'
Personally I prefer this to some of his other more 'liked' works, it's far easier on the ear than 'Passion' a score which I find boring and tuneless.
If you are a Sondheim fan and this has passed you by, give yourself a pinch and purchase it. Don't expect great things and you'll be pleasantly surprised.
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Format: Audio CD
Not the best that Sondheim has written, but even when Sondheim is not at his best, he produces music which stays with you. Best considered as 'work in progress', mostly recycled into his longer musical on the same topic which was produced briefly in late 2008. But it's Sondheim. We'll hear individual items from 'Bounce' for a long time, even if he never does re-work it into a full and succesful stage format.
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Format: MP3 Download
Not as well known as Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, or Sweeny Todd, but, if you're a Sondheim fan well worth picking up. An interesting story line, told in reverse timeline, good characterisation, emotional representation, ironic twists, and the usual gifted wordplay. This production was a Broadway flop, and was later recrafted with the title "Road Show"Road Show. This version, "Bounce", is a convincing performance by the cast, the orchestration is very good (orchestrations on different recording of the same show can often vary considerably in scale and style), and the recording is just right.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 43 reviews
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
BOUNCE - a look at the score 17 Jun 2004
By Mark Andrew Lawrence - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
On stage, BOUNCE offered some interesting musical sequences side by side with an awkward book that spent a good deal of time telling us a story without ever fully explaining why this particular story should interest us. Stephen Sondheim's scores are thoroughly composed to weave together information about the story and characters. Whether the music is pure and simple, or more complex, it serves specific purposes. When song fragments are reprised it is usually to help the listener establish links with what has been heard before. This is the major reason why his scores stand up to repeated listens...each time you go through the score you will become aware of more subtle details. Few composers writing for the theatre today understand this. The sooner they do, the better musical theatre will be!
OVERTURE - very much in the standard 1950s musical comedy style. An opening fanfare ("Boca Raton") leads to a lively playing of that tune, followed by "The Game", then the show's key ballad: "The Best Thing that Ever Has Happened", followed by the theme of "Gold!" and ending with a restatement of the "Boca Raton" theme.
BOUNCE - an old-fashioned vaudevillian soft shoe number. It's a catchy tune because the main melodic theme gets several repeats.
OPPORTUNITY - The opening line ("One Day Lose, the next day win") reappears later as the opening line of the first version of "The Game" among other places.
GOLD! - The first appearance of this tune and if you know Copland's "Appalachian Spring" and "Hoedown" from the RODEO ballet, you'll hear echoes of both here. That said, it not a totally satisfying number because the lyrics take the lead and the music never quite develops into satisfying whole.
WHAT'S YOUR RUSH - The tune is slow and sultry (think of "Sooner or Later" from DICK TRACY) and there is a major bit of plot dialogue in the middle. As a result it sounds more like an introduction to a song, rather than a complete song itself.
THE GAME - building from the opening lines borrowed from the earlier number, "Opportunity" and builds it into a great number. This song was featured in the Overture and will reappear in fuller form at the top of Act Two.
NEXT TO YOU - a charming waltz that sets up Mamma's obvious preference for the trouble-prone Wilson over the loyal but nebbish Addison.
ADDISON'S TRIP AROUND THE WORLD - This is what Sondheim does best: a musical sequence (including dialogue) that condenses Addison's world trip. Note that the lyric changes subtly from "I'm ON My Way" to "I'm IN my way." By the end of the number Addison is back home with all his "souvenirs" which he neatly choreographs into a pleasing arrangement revealing his talent for design rather than business. A lot of information packed into this musical sequence that weaves together several pleasing musical segments. The sequence was staged by Hal Prince with breathtaking simplicity.
THE BEST THING THAT EVER HAS HAPPENED - the show's big "love" song, and the tune was showcased in the middle of the Overture. It's a simple, straightforward tune (but the lyric will change in later incarnations.)
I LOVE THS TOWN - Like "Addison's Trip" it effectively packs a good deal of info into a 4-minute number. Note the effective reprises of "You are the Best Thing ... " throughout.
ISN'T HE SOMETHING? - Jane Powell's solo number with a disturbing subtext. Addison has cared for her in her advancing years, yet here she is singing the praises of Wilson whom she admits, "Seldom comes to see me."
THE GAME - Opening Act Two, the three leads (each in a different location) give us a progress report. Once again "The Best Thing that ever happened.." re-appears this time as a lament of regret by both Wilson and Nellie (who are estranged at this point in the story.) Then the "Gold!" theme re-appears, this time promising a fortune to be made with the Florida land boom. This, of course sets up the major action of Act Two. "The Game" tune returns to wrap up the scene. Though Act One has some rough spots, you'll notice that Act Two develops much more effectively.
TALENT - We finally meet our fourth lead, Hollis as he and Addison meet on board a train bound for Florida. (Note the underscoring which has the sound of a train moving down the tracks.) Gavin Creel has a wonderful voice and makes each word count. This is one of the high points of the score, with a good gag line at the climax.
YOU - The "opportunity" theme reappears to introduce this segment which establishes the budding success as Hollis' dream of building an artists' colony in Florida as designed by Addison. As their success grows, so does their love. The choral segments are a bit complex but the main tune blossoms forth and the entire sequence is entirely satisfying.
ADDISON'S CITY - The "Talent" theme reappears to introduce this sequence, but then Hollis picks up Wilson's theme "You and me against the world" to show how Wilson has influenced him. The number builds into a march that reminds me of "Opening Doors" from MERRILY.
BOCA RATON - an exciting musical sequence that neatly encapsulates the boom ... and the bust. Note how the tempo accelerates as the people become excited buying and selling lots until the bottom drops out of the market.
GET OUT OF MY LIFE - the "final fight" as Addison finally stands up to his brother. "You don't want me to go" pleads Wilson in a richly melodic line that recalls "The Country is not what it was" in ASSASSINS. But the number doesn't end, it cuts off with dialogue.
BOUNCE - The finale...back where we started with the brothers facing eternity. "Sooner or later we're bound to get it right" assures Wilson as they head off. Hopefully that line will prove prophetic for the show as well.
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
BOUNCE - a work in progress 6 Aug 2004
By Mark Andrew Lawrence - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
On stage, BOUNCE offered some interesting musical sequences side by side with an awkward book that spent a good deal of time telling us a story without ever fully explaining why this particular story should interest us.

Stephen Sondheim's scores are thoroughly composed to weave together information about the story and characters. Whether the music is pure and simple, or more complex, it serves specific purposes. When song fragments are reprised they provide specific links to what has happened earlier. This is the major reason why his scores stand up to repeated listens...each time you go through the score you will become aware of more subtle details. Few composers writing for the theatre today understand this. The sooner they do, the better musical theatre will be!

No doubt that the authors will revise BOUNCE and it may yet have a Broadway production. The CD proves the show has many fine musical sequences in Act One and virtually all of Act Two is pure gold. Consider it a work in progress.
11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
The Black Sheep of Sondheim Scores 6 Mar 2005
By Helluva Godtime - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
It took Sondheim ten years to follow up his 1994 masterpiece "Passion", and when "Bounce" made its debut in Chicago during the summer of 2003, many didn't know what to make of it. It played later that year at the Kennedy Center in DC, but, lacking the finances, did not come to Broadway. It's too bad, because, although there are quite a few flaws, "Bounce" really is a wonderful score.

"Bounce" tells the story of the Mizner brothers, whose peculiar journey started during the Gold Rush, and took them all the way to Alaska. The brothers, played impeccably by Richard Kind and Howard McGillin, couldn't be more different: Addison (Kind) is a closeted homosexual and sensitive Mama's boy; Wilson (McGillin) is a suave cad who falls hard for Nellie (the always terrific Michele Pawk), a dancer/grifter in Nome.

From there, they go to pretty much everywhere, and many problems ensue: Addy cannot come to terms with his sexuality; Wilson becomes addicted to drugs; and Nellie is an alcoholic. Addy and Willie's beloved mother (Jane Powell) dies towards the end of the first act. Addy falls in love with a rich young rebel, Hollis (Gavin Creel), who returns his affections, but, since this is Sondheim after all, nothing can turn out right.

After seeing this show in previews at the Kennedy Center, I can definitely testify that this show has several problems (mostly the book, and the fact that Gavin Creel was so incredibly underused), but the score is not one of them. It offers traditional Sondheim, with witty, esoteric lyrics and gorgeous voices.

Hopefully, this show will make it to Broadway in the near future. Until then, we can be glad that this lovely cast album was made.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
I never thought I'd ever hear a mediocre Sondheim score 12 July 2004
By Peter B. Saxe - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I did not see the production upon which this recording is based. However, my love of Sondheim's music has originally come from hearing the Original Cast Recordings from his shows.
I never thought I'd ever hear a mediocre Sondheim score, until I put this on for a listen.. just some thoughts..
1) For a show that's supposed to be quasi vaudvillian in style, this recording has precious little energy.
2) If there is a 30 + person orchestra playing Mr. Tunick's orchestration, then why does this all sound so muted?
3) Mr. Sondheim is definitely recycling stuff.. I can hear things from several shows, especially "Merrily" "Passion" "Assassins" and "Forum" but most of this material doesn't seem to feel like it has completeness.
4) I'm not getting the sense why we should care for these brothers..
5) Like Merrily, and Into The Woods, the score seems to be made of "I've learned this" and "I know this now" kinds of songs, but most of the sentiments about bouncing back and trying to succeed have been heard before in other Sondheim shows..
I'm wondering whether the earlier versions of this show was better... almost as if time and too much work has killed the excitement.
Ahh well....
11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Musical theater - not show tunes. 25 Jun 2004
By J. Wehry - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Listeners to "Bounce" would do well to remember that Sondheim writes musical theater where the book, lyrics and music are woven together. Comments from "Bounce" reviewers that some songs seem incomplete, ignore the fact that these songs take place within a context of story/dialogue/acting. Mr. Sondheim's music and lyrics are not meant to stand on their own seperate from the fabric of the show. To insist that they do, and to be disappointed when they don't, is to miss enjoying Sondheim's genius and contribution to musical theater and Broadway.
For example, one reviewer suggests that the lyrics/book contain an error when saying the Yukon is in Alaska. Correct. But, in the context of the song, it is a joke. And to focus on the words, and not the context, is to miss the joke. Likewise, to listen to the music without the story, is to miss "Bounce."
Fortunately, the "Bounce" CD has an very good booklet providing background, plot synopsis with musical cues, and lyrics. To get the full value of your purchase, while reading the synopsis, listen to the musical numbers as they are cued in the text. Visually imagine the action that might be happening on stage before, during and after the numbers. You'll have a much more enjoyable experience of "Bounce" and appreciate how the songs develop and simplify.
The CD and book production values are high quality. The voices are clear, strong and understandable. And, given today's climate of musical spectacle, the orchestrations by Mr. Tunick show excellent restraint and sensitivity.
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