A few years ago, singer songwriter Judith Owen and husband Harry Shearer (of Spinal Tap and The Simpsons fame) opened their Santa Monica home for an annual gathering at Christmas for family and friends where music would be played, songs sung, and jokes told, and the evenings grew into heart-warming house parties. Then in 2005, the couple decided that they would move … [Read more...]
Reviews of Cast Recordings, Soundtracks from Musicals & Music
Reviews of music from performers from the stage, cast recordings, soundtracks from stage productions, albums etc...
London Musical Theatre Orchestra’s debut album GIRLFRIENDS
With such a talented cast, it’s difficult to single out stand-out performances. But the ones that stick in my mind are Bronté Barbé’s rendering of ‘The Chances Are’, a heartfelt number about the sitting and hoping that goes on when one’s partner is out to war, and Rob Houchen’s tenor voice is perfectly suited to the soaring melodies in this musical. It’s not often that a new recording of a musical with an orchestra as large as the LMTO is released these days. Rather longer than most cast recordings, coming in at just under two hours, this is set to be the go-to album for Girlfriends, a hearty and passionate listening experience.
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As the audience enters the auditorium of the Queen Elizabeth Hall, a single spotlight shines down from the ceiling highlighting a single microphone stand. The dust and atmosphere drift like smoke up into the rafters; it’s an iconic image - like moonlight in a forest. Then Maria Friedman enters from stage left and a marvellous evening of entertainment begins as the … [Read more...]
Melinda Hughes has found her perfect onstage partner: the soul legend and Hackney gal Alison Limerick (Where Love Lives). Billed as Diva ll Diva they jam, dance and bounce lyrics off each other in a dazzling series of complementary and contrasting styles, genres and tempos. In a whirlwind 90 minutes of duets and solos at the fabulous cabaret venue the Crazy Coqs, … [Read more...]
First of all, I have to come clean. I’m a big fan of Sarah Jane Morris. I’ve seen her many times live and have all of her albums. I’m also a big fan of John Martyn’s music although the only time I saw him live was when he staggered drunkenly onto the stage at the Shepherd’s Bush Empire to sing with The Band and almost fell off into the audience! Sarah Jane has … [Read more...]
This week I have seen two famous Wulfrunians. On Monday I saw a play about Wolverhampton’s most famous cook Nigel Slater and last night Sinatra: Raw starring the wonderfully charismatic Richard Shelton. With Wolverhampton Wanderers back in the Premier League clearly there is something of a renaissance in the famous old Black country city. Richard Shelton is Sinatra. … [Read more...]
Graceland Live would do well to follow in the footsteps of The Simon & Garfunkel Story (different show, same production company) and get into a West End theatre for a few dates. The original live event, Graceland: The African Concert, was held in Harare, Zimbabwe, in 1987, and featured several South African musicians, most notably Miriam Makeba (1932-2008), Hugh … [Read more...]
Like the boy who dares say that the emperor has no clothes on Melinda Hughes takes down pomposity and bigotry without fear or favour. Now more than ever we need her no holds barred comic deflation of megalomaniacs everywhere. Comfortable in her own skin Melinda is sassy, sexy, street smart and satirical. Seamlessly weaving together stand-up comedy, spot on … [Read more...]
In January 1963 I was lucky enough to see The Beatles at the Finsbury Park Astoria in their Christmas show. And see them is what I did as a combination of two thousand or so screaming pre-pubescent girls and the tiny amps they used in those days meant I couldn’t hear a thing! I was a big fan of the band buying all their records the day they came out and seeing their … [Read more...]
Disney’s The Lion King has an enduring popularity amongst theatregoers in the West End, playing at the Lyceum Theatre since 1999, and on Broadway since 1997. Before that, of course, there was the 1994 animated motion picture and now in 2019 a ‘live action’ remake has done very well at the movie box office. It is, perhaps inevitably, a chance to rethink and shake … [Read more...]