on 4 October 2010
It's been a long time coming, but finally, we now have on CD what I consider to be the finest cast recording of R&H's The Sound Of Music. Petula Clark's interpretation is spot on, complemented by excellent orchestrations and a fine supporting cast. The CD company have taken much time to research this product, which is evident in the liner notes and the quality outer packaging. 5/5. Well done. Hope you sell plenty!
on 9 September 2012
I have always had a great fondness for this West End recording of The Sound of Music, but I saw the original production (several times - a friend of mine was in the cast) and this may colour my experience of listening to it. However, I think it is tremendously fresh and immediate and I was very pleased, after being unavailable for some years, when this recording was re-released.
If you are a purist, it may not be to your taste, as the director and MD have reorganised some of the songs, re-scored the show and rearranged some of them. The title song which opens the show has a newly arranged ending which brings it to a satisfying climax and 'big finish', for instance, and 'A Bell Is No Bell', unknown to me when I originally saw the show as it's not included for the Mother Abbess in the movie, replaces the Mother Abbess' version of 'My Favourite Things' which was in the original Broadway production (and the most recent West End revival).
June Bronhill is the Mother Abbess here. This is the last big thing she did and whilst it is, in some respects, a fading voice, this is nonetheless a stirring vocal performance and one that generates a great deal of excitement. If you like her recording of the original West End production of Robert and Elizabeth, for instance, then you should add this recording of The Sound of Music to your collection.
There are two highpoints in this recorded version: the title song and 'Something Good' which is breathtakingly sweet, warm and touching.
Overall, I think this is an excellent recording of a stage production and a must if you are a Petula Clark fan.
on 29 August 2011
where do I start? after many years of waiting, this recording has finally been released in cd format... well it is definitely worth the wait! Petula Clark, aged 49 when she played maria, has a charming voice and hits some amazing notes! such as the end of the sound of music and I have confidence. The whole cast is excellent and the orchestra is out of this world. If you want something to relive the show or just for the music... this is definitely the one to purchase!
on 18 November 2010
I admit - nothing can top the 1965 film version and soundtrack of "The Sound of Music" starring Julie Andrews. But this 1981 London cast recording of the beloved musical comes very close. Much of that is due to Petula Clark's featured role in this production. I am a fan of Clark's and she does a wonderful job singing the classics which are usually associated with Andrews or Mary Martin, who created the role of Maria on Broadway. Clark is in fine voice, and her co-stars are also excellent.
I must praise the packaging and sound quality of this package - they are both superb. It sounds fresh, as if the show was recorded yesterday.
This was the first production to feature the entire score of songs from both the original stage production and film version (a few songs were added for the film).
But this collection stands out because of its own merits. Highly recommended.
on 4 December 2010
I was lucky enough to see this production in the early 80s in London. Petula Clark was amazing as Maria and created a performance that was very different from the movie version and previous stage productions. The opening song "The Sound Of Music" that Petula sang high atop a faux mountain on stage was simply thrilling to see and hear. Petula's vocal pop style is so effective in this stage production because she draws on her lifetime of experience on the concert stage and conveys a unique blend of raw emotion and confidence. The other principal cast members were legends of the movies, TV, and the theater and all created charming performances. I have the other stage versions on CD and must admit this recording outshines all the others. Copies of the original LP album sold for over $100 dollars on the auction sites. It had been out-of-print for 30 years so don't wait to buy it before it sells out and goes out-of-print again. Buy it now! You will not be disappointed.