Irish Repertory Theatre Cast

Finian's Rainbow (Irish Repertory Theatre Cast Recording)

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Founded in 1988, the Irish Repertory Theatre of New York is an off-Broadway theater company that generally spends its time reviving the works of Irish playwrights like Sean O'Casey and Brendan Behan, though it also extends its charter to cover writers of Irish lineage, such as Oscar Wilde, George Bernard Shaw, and Eugene O'Neill. Still, doing Finian's Rainbow is a stretch, as it was written by E.Y. "Yip" Harburg, nobody's idea of an Irishman, and it is a musical to boot (the music is by Burton Lane). Nevertheless, the plot does concern two expatriate Irish citizens (and a leprechaun) set loose in a mythical American South, and when the company launched its stripped-down two-piano version of the 1947 Broadway show on April 14, 2004, it attracted good reviews. Off-Broadway shows generally do not result in cast recordings, either, but, as a sleeve note to this one reveals, "This album was produced through the extraordinary generosity of Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick." Presumably, then, the acting couple who have made a mint in movies and TV (Broderick hasn't done bad with Broadway's The Producers, either) financed the recording. They are to be thanked for preserving a spirited performance led by Melissa Errico, in the leading female role of Sharon McLonergan, who sings "How Are Things in Glocca Morra?," and Malcolm Gets, as Og, the leprechaun, who sings "When I'm Not Near the Girl I Love." Finian's Rainbow has enjoyed several recordings, the best of which remains the original Broadway cast album. But by taking this one down to the score's musical basics, the Irish Repertory Theatre cast and pianists Mark Hartman and Mark Janas give listeners a version that has an intimacy and directness, and that emphasizes Harburg's witty lyrics. [In an era when seemingly every album must have a "bonus" of some sort or another, Harburg himself is heard singing "Old Devil Moon" in a 1974 recording at the end.]

Track Listing

Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 3:26 Amazon
2 2:41 Amazon
3 2:32 Amazon
4 0:35 Amazon
5 3:32 Amazon
6 3:52 Amazon
7 0:27 Amazon
feat: Terri White
4:08 Amazon
9 2:33 Amazon
10 3:30 Amazon
feat: Malcolm Gets
1:15 Amazon
12 4:08 Amazon
13 3:19 Amazon
14 1:07 Amazon
15 1:44 Amazon
16 1:55 Amazon
17 3:50 Amazon
18 1:28 Amazon
feat: Malcolm Gets
3:55 Amazon
20 2:05 Amazon
21 1:11 Amazon
22 1:29 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick