News Archive

Musical Theatre Melodies presents Kander & Ebb’s THE ACT

The next “Musical Theatre Melodies” to be broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 17th October will feature a 40th Anniversary tribute to John Kander and Fred Ebb’s “The Act”, from the original 1977 Broadway cast recording starring Liza Minelli in her second Tony Award winning role, with Wayne Cilento, Michael Leeds, Roger Minami, Albert Stephenson, Carol Estey and Laurie Dawn Skinner. This will be preceded by an introduction (via Skype) from New York-based theatre critic and Internet columnist, Peter Filichia. 

The remainder of the programme will feature Act 2 of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein’s “Allegro”, from the 2008 New York studio cast recording with Laura Benanti, Norbert Leo Butz, Liz Callaway, Nathan Gunn, Judy Kuhn, Audra McDonald, Marni Nixon and Patrick Wilson.


The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EDT local Melbourne time; (= 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZDT; = 6 – 8 a.m. EDT New York time; = 3 – 5 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.)


N.B.  Melbourne is now on Australian Eastern Daylight Saving Time, hence the earlier starting times elsewhere.


The on-line “address” of the 96.5 FM web-player has changed:

For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio – go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au, simply click on the menu item “LISTEN LIVE” at the top of this page or click on the following link – https://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer2/index.php?c=innerfm
ILLUSTRATIONS  FROM THE OVERTURES ARCHIVES

Musical Theatre Melodies features the complete recording of Allegro

The next “Musical Theatre Melodies” to be broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 10th October will feature a 70th Anniversary tribute to Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein’s “Allegro”, from the 2008 New York studio cast recording with Laura Benanti, Norbert Leo Butz, Liz Callaway, Nathan Gunn, Judy Kuhn, Audra McDonald, Marni Nixon and Patrick Wilson.

This will be introduced by New York-based theatre critic and Internet columnist, Peter Filichia.


The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EDT local Melbourne time; (= 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZDT; = 6 – 8 a.m. EDT New York time; = 3 – 5 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.)


N.B.  Melbourne is now on Australian Eastern Daylight Saving Time, hence the earlier starting times elsewhere.


The on-line “address” of the 96.5 FM web-player has changed:

For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio – go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au, simply click on the menu item “LISTEN LIVE” at the top of this page or click on the following link – https://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer2/index.php?c=innerfm
ILLUSTRATIONS  FROM THE OVERTURES ARCHIVES

Musical Theatre Melodies celebrates the 10th Birthday & opening of Young Frankenstein

Coinciding with the London premiere of Mel Brook’s “Young Frankenstein“, the next “Musical Theatre Melodies” broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 3rd October will feature a 10th Anniversary tribute to the Broadway opening of “Young Frankenstein”, (based on the original film story and screenplay by Gene Wilder and Mel Brooks), from the 2007 original Broadway cast recording starring Roger Bart, Megan Mullally, Sutton Foster, Shuler Hensley, Andrea Martin, Fred Applegate and Christopher Fitzgerald.

Mel Brooks and Susan Stroman’s London production have significant differences from the Broadway original with the London show having fewer numbers and some new ones and an all together more intimate feel.


The remainder of the programme will feature song highlights from the 2001 original Broadway cast recording of Mel Brooks’ The Producers, (based on the original film by Mel Brooks), starring Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick with Roger Bart, Gary Beach, Cady Huffman and Brad Oscar. 


The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EDT local Melbourne time; (= 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZDT; = 6 – 8 a.m. EDT New York time; = 3 – 5 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.)
 


N.B.  Melbourne is now on Australian Eastern Daylight Saving Time, hence the earlier starting times elsewhere.


The on-line “address” of the 96.5 FM web-player has changed:

For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio – go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au, simply click on the menu item “LISTEN LIVE” at the top of this page or click on the following link – https://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer2/index.php?c=innerfm
ILLUSTRATIONS  FROM THE OVERTURES ARCHIVES

WEST SIDE STORY – MUSICAL THEATRE MELODIES MARK THE 60TH ANNIVERSARY

The next “Musical Theatre Melodies” broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 26th September will feature a 60th Anniversary tribute to Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim’s “West Side Story“, from the 1957 original Broadway cast recording starring Carol Lawrence, Larry Kert and Chita Rivera, with Mickey Calin, Marilyn Cooper, Reri Grist, Eddie Roll, Grover Dale, Hank Brunjes, Tony Mordente and David Winters. This will be introduced by New York-based theatre critic and Internet columnist Peter Filichia. 

The remainder of the programme will feature an archival interview with leading-lady, Carol Lawrence talking about her career to Kevin Trask, (host of “That’s Entertainment”, heard on 96.5 FM each Sunday at 12 noon), during a visit to Melbourne in 1999.

The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EST local Melbourne time; (= 12 noon – 2 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZST; = 7 – 9 a.m. EDT New York time; = 4 – 6 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.)

The on-line “address” of the 96.5 FM web-player has changed:

For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio – go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au, simply click on the menu item “LISTEN LIVE” at the top of this page or click on the following link – https://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer2/index.php?c=innerfm
ILLUSTRATIONS  FROM THE OVERTURES ARCHIVES

First Recipient of the Overtures Award for SSSSPOTY gets Lead in Major Biopic

Of all the famous musicians that resonate across generations, Elton John is among the most deserving of being the subject of a biopic. So much so, in fact, that in 2011, it was reported that John would be producing “Rocketman”, a musical biopic about his life. However, the project has hit a number of obstacles the main one being finding the right actor that can sing the challenging songs.  However, now it’s been announced that Taron Egerton will play Elton John.

Taron Egerton had been having conversations with “Rocketman” producers Matthew Vaughn (Egerton’s Kingsman director) and Dexter Fletcher about boarding the biopic to play Elton John. Elton John, who also features in the new Kingsman movie, is reported to have loved working with Egerton and that he has experienced first hand that he has no problem with belting out tunes in a way that makes him ideal for the role. The “Rocketman” team is to start shooting the movie before 2017 is finished.

A 21 year old RADA student Taron Egerton won the coveted Stephen Sondheim Society Student Perfomer of The Year Award 2011 in the finale of the competition at the Queens Theatre in London’s West End. The competition featured all 12 finalists selected from the qualifying heats and required them to perform 2 songs, a Sondheim number and a new work from a musical theatre composer. Taron chose to sing ‘Giants In The Sky’ from “Into The Woods” and “May As Well And Why Not” by Craig Adams and Nona Shepherd. Asked why Taron stood out as the unanimous winner, judge, Kerry Ellis said one thing that set him apart was his totally believable, understated performance which was echoed by another of the judges, Timothy Sheader who had recently produced Into The Woods at the Regents Park Open Air. Anna Francolini thought that his ability to hit and hold every note made his performances faultless, whilst composer and musical director, Sarah Travis, thought that there was a magic in his ability to draw the audience into the songs that he performed. Edward Seckerson, chair of the judges, believed that in another year anyone of the 12 would have been good enough to win but Taron gave a complete performance and as it says in the title it is “Performer Of The Year”. Presenter Julia McKenzie told Taron that his performance was faultless – no faint praise.


Pictured is Taron reprising Giants In The Sky as the competition winner, and receiving the Award from Patrick Hayward, CEO of Overtures (The Bunnett-Muir Musical Theatre Archive Trust) and with judge Kerry Ellis.

Taron was brought up in North Wales where he established himself as a more than competent performer with Aberystwyth Arts Centre featuring in “Oliver!”, “Little Shop Of Horrors”, “The Tempest” & “Return To The Forbidden Planet”. With RADA he has excelled in “Three Sisters”, “A Doll’s House”, “Ajax” and “The Brothers Karamazov”, proving that he is much more than a one trick pony and he still had a further year before graduation.

 

Upon graduation he appeared in plays at the National Theatre and Royal Court before starring in a Sky TV series “Smoke” about the London fire brigade. His first film role was in the 2014 WWI drama “Testament Of Youth” and then his Hollywood career kicked off in 2014 (early 2015 in the U.S.) with the release of Kingsman: The Secret Service, where he played lead protagonist Gary “Eggsy” Unwin. Egerton has recently reprised Eggsy in “Kingsman: The Golden Circle” alongside Colin Firth and Elton John, which hits cinemas this week, but outside the world of finely-dressed British says, Egerton’s other notable credits include playing Edward ‘Mad Teddy’ Smith in the Krays biopic “Legend”,  the eponymous character”Eddie The Eagle” alongside Hugh Jackman (as his coach) and voicing Johnny in the animated movie “Sing”.

He also stars as “Robin Hood” from the director of tv’s ‘Peaky Blinders’ in next year’s big IMAX release. One completed film missing from this list is “The Billionaire Boys Club” where Egerton plays Dean Karny, a pro tennis player, alongside Kevin Spacey and although completed in 2016 no release date has been published. Suffice to say that Egerton has cemented himself as a notable talent, so him playing Elton John would be another boost for his rising fame.

The Elton John biopic is expected to explore several decades of the performer’s life, from when the young Reginald Dwight (Elton John’s real name) started going to the Royal Academy of Music through the time he became a pop sensation in the 1970s to the he was time scoring popular musicals, like The Lion King for Disney. Rocketman will also look at some of the “juicier details” of John’s personal life, but the movie’s main focus will be to show how John became one of the world’s greatest singer-composers and how he’s stayed relevant despite being hit by certain scandals.

 

Musical Theatre Melodies Heralds THE GLORIOUS ONES

The next “Musical Theatre Melodies” broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 19th September will feature a 10th Anniversary tribute to Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty’s “The Glorious Ones“, (based on the novel by Francine Prose), from the 2007 New York Lincoln Center Theater cast recording starring Marc Kudisch, David Patrick Kelly, Natalie Venetia Belcon, Julyana Soelistyo, John Kassir, Erin Davie and Jeremy Webb.

There will also be highlights from the 1994 original London cast recording of Ahrens and Flaherty’s “Once On This Island” , (based on the novel “My Love, My Love” by Rosa Guy ), starring Lorna Brown, Anthony Corriette, Shezwae Powell, Johnny Worthy, Trevor Michael Georges, Clive Rowe and Suzanne Packer.

The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EST local Melbourne time; (= 12 noon – 2 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZST; = 7 – 9 a.m. EDT New York time; = 4 – 6 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.)

The on-line “address” of the 96.5 FM web-player has changed:

For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio – go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au, simply click on the menu item “LISTEN LIVE” at the top of this page or click on the following link – https://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer2/index.php?c=innerfm
ILLUSTRATIONS OF THE LONDON LANDOR PRODUCTION  FROM THE OVERTURES ARCHIVES

Remembering Bruce Forsyth and Jerry Lewis on the London Stage

Two giants of the business called show have left this world within days of each other.  They may or may not have met each other, but both came from the same background of variety / vaudeville.  One owed his initial fame to television, the other film.  One was American the other English.  Neither had extensive legitimate theatre credentials, but what they did was memorable.

English Bruce Forsyth was a man of television and a past master of hosting family orientated quiz games and inventing catch phrases.  Jerry Lewis made his name on film but hosted a marathon of charity fund raising on television.  Lewis was a knockabout, child-like comedian gaining his stardom in a duo with the singer and straight man Dean Martin.  Forsyth was multi-talented and earned the title of an all-round entertainer as well as becoming a ‘Sir’ late in life.

Film made Lewis a star on both sides of the Atlantic, and in the fifties he and Martin topped the bill at the London Palladium with huge success.  Forsyth attempted success on Broadway with his one-man show but left without succeeding.  Americans will only know him through his limited film spots such as playing Julie Andrew’s father in Star. 

Sir Bruce starred in two West End shows, the American import Little Me and a semi-revue of Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse songs called The Travelling Music Show.  The first was a terrific hit for him, as it had been on Broadway for Sid Caesar.  Having to play many characters played to his talents.  These talents unfortunately could not save the other.

Jerry Lewis was to appear in a Broadway revival of Damn Yankees playing Applegate, the Faust character.  He took over from Victor Garber in the 1994 production and then toured with it around the States before bringing it to London in 1997.  He cleverly wove into his solo number ‘Those were the good old days’ a Vegas like cabaret act that landed right back into the story proper.  Unfortunately Lewis’s performance was not committed to disc.

The world of entertainment has lost two great and unique performers.

RSB       

CoCo the musical – a recording rarity in the Collection

Coco is remembered more for its star than the show itself.  The star, of course, was Katherine Hepburn (although the still alive Coco Chanel on whose life the musical is based may have mistakenly thought it was that other Hepburn, Audrey.  Other that THE star it had what looks like a solid pedigree: book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner, music by Andre Previn, musical numbers and fashion sequence staged by Michael Bennett with sets and costumes by Cecil Beaton (who also did the Coco art-work).

It opened on Broadway on 18 December 1969 and was recorded on 8 January the following year – the Christmas and New Year celebrations ruined the traditional fist Sunday after opening recording date. The issue was rushed out, the sleeves having been already printed.  The sleeve note states: ‘refer to label for exact sequence.  Selections accurate as of 12/ 9/69’ (9 December).

When Miss Hepburn received her rushed copy she did not like what she heard – after all she was not the strongest singer – and stopped the album issue for it to be re-mixed and ‘improved’ and re-issued.  That was done.  However, some copies of the original issue managed find their way to other people.  

How do you know if you have the ‘original’?   On the plastic next to the label there is a hand etched number – for this it is: LPS 76957 – 513 on the A Side and LPS 76958 – 5 on the B Side.  The issue sold in the shops was etched: LPS 76957 on the A Side – 6 and LPS 76958 – 6 on the B Side.

RSB                                                           Illustrations from the Overtures Collections

Leave It To Jane – listen to Musical Theatre Melodies

The next “Musical Theatre Melodies” broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 29th August will feature a Centenary tribute to Jerome Kern nd P.G. Wodehouse’s “Leave It to Jane”, (based on The College Widow by George Ade), from the 1959 off-Broadway revival cast recording starring Kathleen Murray, Dorothy Greener, Angelo Mango, Jeanne Allen, Art Matthews, Ray Tudor, Jan Speer and George Segal.

The remainder of the programme will feature selections from the CD Lost Broadway and More: Volume 6 – Jerome Kern with songs from such Kern musicals as Fluffy Ruffles; Nobody Home; Have a Heart; Toot Toot; Good Morning Dearie; Dear Sir; Criss-Cross; Lucky and Centennial Summer.

The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EST local Melbourne time; (= 12 noon – 2 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZST; = 7 – 9 a.m. EDT New York time; = 4 – 6 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.) For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio player is  http://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer/index.php?c=innerfm or go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au and follow the links.
ILLUSTRATIONS FROM THE OVERTURES ARCHIVES

Simply Heaven features on this week’s Musical Theatre Melodies

The next “Musical Theatre Melodies” broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 22nd August will feature a 60th Anniversary tribute to David Martin and Langston Hughes’ Simply Heavenly, (based on the novel “Simple Takes a Wife” and other stories by Langston Hughes), from the 1957 original Broadway cast recording starring Melvin Stewart, Marilyn Berry, Claudia Mcneil, John Bouie, Anna English, Brownie McGhee and Duke Willlams; plus additional songs from the 2005 London cast recording starring Rhashan Stone, Allyson Brown, Ruby Turner, Clive Rowe and Nicola Hughes. This will be introduced (via Skype) from New York-based theatre critic and Internet columnist Peter Filichia.

The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EST local Melbourne time; (= 12 noon – 2 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZST; = 7 – 9 a.m. EDT New York time; = 4 – 6 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.) For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio player is  http://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer/index.php?c=innerfm or go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au and follow the links.

Musical Theatre Melodies features Romberg’s MAYTIME

The next “Musical Theatre Melodies” broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 15th August will feature a Centenary tribute to Sigmund Romberg and Rida Johnson Young’s Maytime:

Featuring the 2005 Ohio Light Opera cast recording starring Joshua Kohl, Robin De Leon, Tyler Nelson, Brian Tanner, Sarah Walker, Danielle McCormick, Shannon Langman and Grant Knox. Also, the broadcast will feature orchestral selections from Romberg’s Her Soldier Boy (1917) played by the Eastman-Dryden Orchestra conducted by Donald Hunsberger.

The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EST local Melbourne time; (= 12 noon – 2 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZST; = 7 – 9 a.m. EDT New York time; = 4 – 6 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.) For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio player is  http://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer/index.php?c=innerfm or go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au and follow the links.
ILLUSTRATIONS FROM THE OVERTURES ARCHIVES

Cyrano De Bergerac features on Musical Theatre Melodies this week

The next “Musical Theatre Melodies” broadcast on 96.5 FM on Tuesday, 8th August will feature Frank Wildhorn and Leslie Bricusse’s Cyrano de Bergerac, (based on the play by Edmond Rostand), from the 2004 U.S. concept album starring Douglas Sills, Linda Eder and Rob Evan, with Brian d’Arcy James, Allen Fitzpatrick, Kevin Ligon and Douglas Storm. There will be a “live” introduction to the musical  from the award-winning composer/lyricist and librettist* – Leslie Bricusse.


The broadcast will go “to air” between 9 – 11 p.m. EST local Melbourne time; (= 12 noon – 2 p.m. BST in Britain; = 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. NZST; = 7 – 9 a.m. EDT New York time; = 4 – 6 a.m. PDT Los Angeles time.) For those listening in via the Internet on 96.5 Inner FM’s website the webpage link for the Inner FM Web Radio player is  http://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer/index.php?c=innerfm or go to the Inner FM homepage at www.innerfm.org.au and follow the links.
ILLUSTRATIONS FROM THE OVERTURES ARCHIVES