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"The Beauty of Broadway"
(Available on Prima Records)

The Making of the CD by David Galligan

Sandy and Neal Davis had a dream. They had seen the Los Angeles production of "Phantom of the Opera" countless times and had flown hundreds of people in from Salt Lake City to witness the event. Performance after performanc they sat, enraptured by Dale Kristien's heartbreaking interpretation of Christine Daae. When "Phantom" closed, they decided they needed a more permanent record of the memory. And, thus, THE BEAUTY OF BROADWAY began to take form. They contacted record producer Jeffrey Weber, who in turn arranged a meeting with Dale and "her people" - agent Irvin Arthur, conductor-arranger Larry Blank, and yours truly, David Galligan, director. Right from the initial meeting it was a "go." Weber began sorting out dates, studios, arrangements, musicians. I agreed to whittle down a multitude of Broadway show tunes to 54 selections, transfer them to tape, and then, with Dale and Larry, to reduce that to eleven selections. Two months later, March 8, to be exact, we found ourselves in Salt Lake City recording THE BEAUTY OF BROADWAY. Here, then, is the culmination of those discussions - dream come to fruition.

This, then, is THE BEAUTY OF BROADWAY, both literally and figuratively - with Dale Kristien - fine of figure and glorious of voice.

Contents:

How Could I Ever Know (from "The Secret Garden")

Other than the "Phantom" material, this was Sandy Davis' only request - an exquisite bloom from Lucy Simon's score from the classic childhood book. "The Secret Garden," accompanied by Marsha Norman's flowery lyrics. Interestingly, the entire creative staff on "The Secret Garden" was composed of women - including producer-set designer Heidi Landesman, and director Susan H. Schulman. Bill Meyers did the haunting musical arrangement for our recording.

Wishing You were Somehow Here Again
(from "The Phantom Of The Opera")

WISHING YOU WERE SOMEHOW HERE AGAIN, from "The Phantom of the Opera," is Christine's plaintive aria to the memory of her father, so achingly caught in the lyrics of Charles Hart and the surge of Andrew Lloyd Webber's music. The original orchestration is by Andrew Lloyd Webber and David Cullen.

I'm Always Chasing Rainbows (from "Irene")
(CELLO SOLO BY GAIL CZAJKOWSKI)

I'M ALWAYS CHASING RAINBOWS, by Harry Carroll and Joseph McCarthy, was an addition to the 1973 revival of "Irene," which starred Debbie Reynolds and was directed by Gower Champion. Peter Myers did the arrangement for this session, recalling the sounds of a Chopin waltz. Miss Kristien is accopmpanied by her twin sister, Gail Czajkowski, on the cello - on loan from the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

Another Time, Another Place / The Sweetest Sounds
(from "Kwamina" and "No Strings" respectively)

Arranger-conductor Larry Blank skillfully blends Richard Adler's ANOTHER TIME, ANOTHER PLACE with Richard Rodgers' THE SWEETEST SOUNDS. These shows represented the first time the composers were on their own as lyricists - Adler sans usual partner Jerry Ross (he died after their "Damn Yankees" collaboraion), and Rodgers solo for the first time since the death of Oscar Hammerstein. In its original state, THE SWEETEST SOUNDS was performed like the show's title with no strings. But for this version, Mr. Blank felt it would be more appropriate to Ms. Kristien's romantic rendering to utilize a full string section. Note the way Blank has melded Rodgers's lyric - "waiting somewhere for me" into Adler's "on top of Everest or miles beneath the sea."

All I Ask Of You (from "The Phantom Of The Opera")
DUET WITH MICHAEL PIONTEK

ALL I ASK OF YOU is the prelude to the Phantom's pyrotechnical chandelier crash at the end of Act I. Michael Piontek, who played Raoul in the Los Angeles production, attempts to calm Christine's ever-increasing fears.

Tender Shepherd (Duet with children's chorus) / Never Never Land
(from "Peter Pan")

I thought it would be interesting to pair two songs from the 1954 "Peter Pan" (with Mary Martin) - TENDER SHEPHERD by Mark "Moose" Charlap and Carolyn Leigh, and NEVER NEVER LAND by Jule Styne, Betty Comden and Adolph Greene - with Dale and a children's choir. Wedding them with Ron Abel's sentimental orchestration gives a sense of a child's purity, that is both touching and right.

Dear Friend / When Did I Fall In Love?
(from "She Loves Me" and "Fiorello" respectively)

DEAR FRIEND and WHEN DID I FALL IN LOVE? are two Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick songs, the first from "She Loves Me" (currently enjoying a healthy Broadway revival), and the latter from the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Fiorello." Both are exquisitely realized in Dale Kristien's performance and in Larry Blank's arrangement - giving them a sense of one.

He Isn't You (from "On A Clear Day You Can See Forever")

HE ISN'T YOU is from the Burton Lane - Alan Jay Lerner musical about extrasensory perception. "On A Clear Day You Can See Forever" (the first show with a top price of $11.90. How times have changed!) The musical originally starred Barbara Harris and Louis Jordan, who was replaced out-of-town by John Cullum, and the movie, of course, toplined Barbra Streisand and Yves Montand. Ron Abel's arrangement brings a chamber orchestra feel to the material.

Take Care Of This House (from "1600 Pennsylvania Avenue")

TAKE CARE OF THIS HOUSE is from "1600 Pennsylvania Avenue," an unfortunate flop collaboration of Leonard Bernstein and Alan Jay Lerner. It was said to be Mr. Bernstein's favorite song. Ms. Kristien and Mr. Blank do it simply and beautifully.

Glitter And Be Gay (from "Candide")
DUET WITH LEIGH MUNRO

While hard at work on an AIDS benefit, instigated by the Los Angeles Center Theatre Group, and celebrating the music of Leonard Bernstein, Dale had the idea to do GLITTER AND BE GAY (from the musical "Candide") as a female duet. Thus, Bernstein's musical ode to greed became a hilarious rendition as done by Dale and "The Phantom of the Opera"'s Carlotta, Leigh Munro. It also didn't hurt that the costume designer was able to find the same dress (in reverse colors) for the battling divas to wear.

Think Of Me (from "The Phantom of the Opera")

THINK OF ME is Christine's Act I audition song for the Paris Opera in "Phantom of the Opera." Here it is - with Miss Kristien doing it as only she can - High C and all!

* "The Making of the CD" and the song commentary taken from
THE BEAUTY OF BROADWAY insert booklet.

For information on how to purchase Dale's cd "The Beauty of Broadway" - please send an email to jillds9@aol.com.

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