Various Artists

Musicals: The Gold Collection

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Looking at the cover of Silva Treasury's four-CD box set Musicals: The Gold Collection, the prospective buyer could be forgiven for assuming that the collection draws upon vintage recordings from original London cast albums. After all, the word "gold" is in the title, and the artist credit is to "stars of the London stage." But those who are familiar with Silva's other recordings, which tend to be newly made versions of classic film soundtracks, will not be surprised to discover that many of the label's usual performers, particularly the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra and the Crouch End Festival Chorus, are on board, and that these are also new recordings. And the "stars of the London stage?" Well, they are Meredith Braun, Keith Burns, Sharon Campbell, Mary Carewe, Gerard Casey, Chris Corcoran, Keith Ferreira, Lesley Garrett, Helen Hobson, Michele Hooper, Christopher Howard, Jason Howard, Ria Jones, John Langley, David Shannon, Deborah Steel, Jill Washington, Dave Willetts, and Tania Williams. Don't feel bad if you've never heard of any of these "stars." In addition to the name performers who originate starring roles and open shows on Broadway and in the West End, there is a small army of talented artists who stand in for those real stars when they are sick or replace them in long-running shows, and those are the kind of singers heard on this album. For example, Dave Willetts, who sings five songs, including two from Phantom of the Opera, has, according to the liner notes, played the part of the Phantom in London and on tour for more than five years, and Jill Washington, who duets with Jason Howard on "Stranger in Paradise" from Kismet and "Make Believe" from Show Boat, has played the leading part of Christine in The Phantom of the Opera "more than any other actress in the world." As Britons, these performers, not surprisingly, got their real grounding in the Andrew Lloyd Webber-composed British musicals of the 1970s and '80s, as well as in Les Misérables, and they are at their best when performing songs from those shows, as they do on 19 tracks out of 56. They are less impressive on the older American material, including 11 songs composed by Richard Rodgers. And the two schools of musical do not sit well together, as they are more or less randomly interspersed on the four discs. The result is a long album of miscellaneous show music dating from the 1920s to the 1980s, recorded in the 21st century by professional, largely unknown performers. It will be of interest as a curiosity to theater music fans, but it does not deserve to be called a "gold collection" performed by "stars."

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
West Side Story, musical
1 Paul Bateman / Crouch End Festival Chorus / Helen Hobson / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 05:00 SpotifyAmazon
Annie, musical
2 Paul Bateman / Helen Hobson / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:58 Amazon
Annie Get Your Gun, musical
3 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:23 SpotifyAmazon
4 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:49
Aspects of Love, musical
5 Paul Bateman / Chris Corcoran / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:05 SpotifyAmazon
Anything Goes, musical play
6 Helen Hobson / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / Nic Raine 03:01
Cabaret, musical play
7 Paul Bateman / Helen Hobson / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:59 Amazon
La Cage Aux Folles, musical
8 Paul Bateman / Philharmonia Orchestra / Dave Willetts 02:56 SpotifyAmazon
Carmen Jones, musical play (adapted from Carmen by Oscar Hammerstein II)
9 Lesley Garrett / Andrew Greenwood / Philharmonia Orchestra 03:37 Amazon
Cats, musical
10 Paul Bateman / Lesley Garrett / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 04:01
11 Paul Bateman / Michele Hooper / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra / Deborah Steel 05:10 SpotifyAmazon
Carousel, musical
12 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 07:39 SpotifyAmazon
13 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:17 SpotifyAmazon
14 Paul Bateman / Crouch End Festival Chorus / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:42 SpotifyAmazon

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Chess, musical play
1 Paul Bateman / Meredith Braun / Helen Hobson / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:00 Amazon
Evita, musical
2 Paul Bateman / Sharon Campbell / Crouch End Festival Chorus / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 05:15 SpotifyAmazon
3 Paul Bateman / Sharon Campbell / Crouch End Festival Chorus / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:03 SpotifyAmazon
4 Paul Bateman / Meredith Braun / Keith Burns / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:23 SpotifyAmazon
The Fantasticks, musical
5 Paul Bateman / Crouch End Festival Chorus / John Langley / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:05 SpotifyAmazon
Fiddler on the Roof, musical
6 Paul Bateman / John Langley / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 05:11 SpotifyAmazon
Gigi, musical
7 Keith Ferreira / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / Nic Raine 06:12 Amazon
Guys and Dolls, musical
8 Keith Ferreira / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / Nic Raine 03:00 SpotifyAmazon
Jesus Christ Superstar, musical
9 Paul Bateman / Christopher Howard / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:55 SpotifyAmazon
10 Paul Bateman / Sharon Campbell / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:33 SpotifyAmazon
11 Paul Bateman / Keith Burns / Sharon Campbell / Christopher Howard / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 04:09 SpotifyAmazon
Joseph & His Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, musical
12 Paul Bateman / Crouch End Festival Chorus / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:40 SpotifyAmazon
Kismet, musical (after works by Alexander Borodin)
13 Lesley Garrett / Andrew Greenwood / Philharmonia Orchestra 03:38 Amazon
14 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / Jill Washington 04:47

Track Listing - Disc 3

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Kiss Me Kate, musical
1 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:37 SpotifyAmazon
A Little Night Music, musical
2 Paul Bateman / Helen Hobson / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:23 SpotifyAmazon
Les Miserables, musical
3 Paul Bateman / Philharmonia Orchestra / Dave Willetts 03:01 SpotifyAmazon
Man of la Mancha, musical
4 Paul Bateman / John Langley / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:15 SpotifyAmazon
Oklahoma!, musical
5 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:53 SpotifyAmazon
6 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:32 SpotifyAmazon
7 Paul Bateman / Crouch End Festival Chorus / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:08
Phantom of the Opera, musical
8 Paul Bateman / Lesley Garrett / Philharmonia Orchestra / Dave Willetts 03:30 SpotifyAmazon
9 Paul Bateman / Philharmonia Orchestra / Dave Willetts 05:34 SpotifyAmazon
10 Paul Bateman / Chris Corcoran / Lesley Garrett / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 04:23 SpotifyAmazon
Porgy and Bess, opera
11 Lesley Garrett / Andrew Greenwood / Philharmonia Orchestra 02:54 SpotifyAmazon
Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, film score
12 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:17 SpotifyAmazon
Show Boat, musical in 2 acts
13 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:08 Amazon
14 Paul Bateman / Jason Howard / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / Jill Washington 03:45

Track Listing - Disc 4

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
The Sound of Music, musical
1 Paul Bateman / Helen Hobson / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:48 SpotifyAmazon
2 Paul Bateman / Crouch End Festival Chorus / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / Andy Williams 02:55 SpotifyAmazon
3 Paul Bateman / Crouch End Festival Chorus / Helen Hobson / John Langley / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:38 SpotifyAmazon
South Pacific, musical
4 Paul Bateman / John Langley / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:22 SpotifyAmazon
5 Paul Bateman / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / David Shannon 03:30 SpotifyAmazon
Starlight Express, musical
6 Paul Bateman / Keith Burns / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:13 SpotifyAmazon
Sunset Boulevard, musical
7 Paul Bateman / Gerard Casey / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:01 SpotifyAmazon
8 Paul Bateman / Mary Carewe / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:43 SpotifyAmazon
9 Paul Bateman / Mary Carewe / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 05:15 SpotifyAmazon
Tell Me on a Sunday, musical (original version)
10 Paul Bateman / Sharon Campbell / Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 03:36 Amazon
West Side Story, musical
11 Paul Bateman / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / David Shannon 02:54 SpotifyAmazon
12 Paul Bateman / Meredith Braun / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / David Shannon 04:20 Amazon
13 Paul Bateman / Meredith Braun / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra / David Shannon 03:29 SpotifyAmazon
14 Paul Bateman / Crouch End Festival Chorus / Helen Hobson / City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:59 Amazon
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