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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on 5 August 2005
It's nice to see this CD finally re-mastered and reissued. The original CD has long been deleted and copies have been changing hands for surprisingly high prices (up to £200!) on e-bay. This new issue contains all the songs contained on the original LP (my copy being mono and very crackly) and from the EP (ditto), which had three more tracks for which the LP had no space.
Blitz! was Lionel Bart's follow-up to Oliver! It ran in London for 568 performances and has since largely been forgotten except for occasional amateur productions. This is a shame because it is a tuneful musical and very evocative of the blitz era and the people living through it.
This re-master brings out the clarity of the 1962 recording which is lost in my scratchy vinyl and background noise is very slight. The stereo imaging and reverberation are very typical of the 1960's but the score is excellent. Performances are uniformly good too, especially from Amelia Bayntun as the central character, Mrs Blitztein. Best known songs include the children's play song 'Mums and Dads', and 'Far Away', which was later recorded by Shirley Bassey. I really enjoy 'The Day After Tomorrow', which recorded especially for the show by Vera Lynn. The words and music for this song give it such an authentic, wartime sing-along feel.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 18 December 2005
I've loved this show ever since I played Georgie Locke in an amateur production back in 2003. The songs are really good and its a really good story as well. It's a shame its never been revived in the West End. Personally I think this is Bart's finest work because you can tell that this was a story he really cared about and it was the show he really wanted to be remembered for but unfortunatly people associate him more with Oliver. This is definatly MY favourite Lionel Bart show.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Last year the Three Towns Theatre Company put on the show 'BLITZ!' at the Brook Theatre, Chatham. This CD helped us a lot in rehearsals. It was invaluabe with the timing of the show and helped me by giving me something and someone to sing with in my car. For fans of the show or Lionel Bart this is an ideal purchase.
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Unashamedly an emotion tugger, this spectacular 1962 Lional Bart musical strives to recreate the East End spirit at the time bombs rained - a community determinedly bouncing back, whatever the damage inflicted.

This 60+ min CD stereo recording vividly conjures up the mood, right from its spine-tingling start as sirens blare and residents race for the underground.

Impressively heading the cast is Amelia Bayntun as widowed battleaxe Mrs. Blitztein - she the equivalent of "Coronation Street"'s Ena Sharples. She holds everything together, at once raising spirits with "Our Hotel" as trains rattle past.

Highlights? There are many. "The Day After Tomorrow" - Vera Lynn's voice over the wireless as all gather round and gradually join in. Fully to appreciate "Another Morning" you have to imagine what has just preceded on stage as the audience gaped. Sirens. A night raid. Bombers. Searchlights. Explosions. Fires. Buildings collapsing. At last the All Clear - surrounded by smoke, St. Paul's still intact. Those who slaved through that horror now appear, tired but defiant - time to clear up and start over, business as usual. Very moving.

"Who's This Geezer Hitler?" ridicules the tyrant's attempts to crush them. Their way of life is praised (and gently mocked) in "Petticoat Lane" and "Down the Street". The children make the most of "We're Going to the Country" and the hilarious "Mums and Dads" (parents' rows faithfully recreated). Wistful and appealing, "Far Away" is sung by Mrs. Blitztein's daughter Carol, now blinded. For a real tour de force how about Mrs. B's "So Tell Me" - she at her wit's end, begging her husband for guidance from above. "Is This Gonna Be a Wedding" depicts a typical East End knees-up. (Too boisterous as it happens, for the vibrations set off an unexploded bomb - a major shock for the theatre audience.)

The CD has three numbers not on the original LP, best of them "As Long as This is England" - residents of all races and religions united against the common enemy.

This recording revived memories of a stirring evening at the Adelphi - and of a most unexpected comment overheard at its end. As all rose to leave, a voice lamented, "I'd never have come if I'd known it was about the war."

Be advised, about the war "Blitz!" most assuredly is.

Recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 15 September 2011
THE CD BLITZ IS BRILLIANT,I WENT TO SEE THE STAGE MUSICAL WITH MY FAMILY AT THE REGAL CINEMA IN EDMONTON LONDON MANY YEARS AGO AND AS I WAS A WARTIME EVACUEE MAKES IT AMUSING.I.E.IM GOING TO THE COUNTRY.GOING TO HAVE A REAL BARF IN A LOVELY OUSE.4.99.WHAT A BARGAIN.ALSO BOUGHT ONE FOR MY BROTHER WHO IS 94 YEARS OLD.THANKYOU A GREAT SERVICE
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on 11 March 2013
As a brash young Australian, I saw this "musical" in the early 1960s. Unlike the American WW2 shows such as South Pacific, this one is centred on the civil population in war, and does it wonderfully. Features a song specially written for and sung by Vera Lynn in the manner of her WW2 hits. AS must for all genuine lovers of the musical genre.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 2 June 2010
Brillant CD, great music, will help me with audition for SIMADS next show in Oct 2010.
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on 14 January 2013
I was SO pleased to find this on DVD. My sister appeared in the original show at the Adelphi as an evacuee child. I bought it for her for her 60th birthday and she was thrilled to bits. It bought back lots of happy memories for her. The recording was excellent. Wouldn't think this was music from 60 odd years ago.
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Far, far fro Lionel Bart at his best; I bought it as a memoir of the original production, which I remember well; no really wonderful numbers, but a pleasant musical in and of its time.
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on 15 June 2012
Terrific music, great lyrics, exceptional singers, especially the lead woman, Amelia Bayntun, who I don't think did anything significant again - but I could be wrong.
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