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Following on the heels of the audio collection of Sir Cameron
Mackintosh's 'greatest hits', with the same name and released in the
1980s, this video is a great record of a selection from some of the
greatest musical productions from the late 1960s to now from a
veritable who's who of West End and Broadway musical stars.
Highlights? Numerous - I'll stick to just a dozen (in the order they appear in the film):
1 I've Grown Accustomed To Her Face - Jonathan Pryce with Liz Robertson; done before Jonathan played Higgins opposite Martine McCutcheon (or at least when she bothered to turn up)
2 Suddenly Seymour - Ellen Greene & Teddy Kempner; no one was a better or more fragile Audrey than this
3 Unexpected Song - Bernadette Peters; Emma's song of love from 'Song and Dance'; a real belter
4 I Love A Lassie - Jimmy Logan as Harry Lauder; sweetly Scots and a nice change of pace
5 Is You Is Or Is You Ain't My Baby? - Five Guys Named Moe Cast; a thrilling version of the Louis Jordan classic
6 How Many Tears? - Maria Friedman; sadly the only decent song in the revamped 'Martin Guerre'
7 Phantom of the Opera segment - Colm Wilkinson, Lisa Vroman, and Michael Ball; interesting to compare with Antonio Banderas as the Phantom in the ALW tribute video
8 Broadway Baby - Julia McKenzie and about everyone else who appeared in a Mackintosh production
9 Send In The Clowns - Judi Dench; truly touching, just as she did it in the National production
10 Losing My Mind - Michael Ball; a girl's song from Follies reinvented beautifully
11 Being Alive - Bernadette Peters; what a voice that lady has!
12 Les Miz segment; although truncated, always nice to see Colm Wilkinson, Philip Quast, Michael Ball, etc., reprising their roles in this fantastic production
Highly recommended. Any chance of a DVD release in the UK?
June 1998 at The Lyceum Theatre, London. Somehow, over 200 actors and
dancers and singers all crammed into this theatre for an evening of
unforgettable entertainment. (In fact, 2 performances were given 7
and 8 June, the second one being the Royal gala charity that was
filmed.) Over nearly three hours we are guided through highlights of 26
shows produced by one man over 30 years or so. Cameron Mackintosh. Many
of the original casts reprise their roles, and many more stars are on
hand to add to the glitter. There are some fairly rare appearances,
too. Millicent Martin, David Kernan and Julie Mackenzie do a bit from
'Side by Side by Sondheim' and Tom Lehrer sings a song of his that was
used in 'TomFoolery.' Dame Judi Dench sings an unforgettable 'Send in
the Clowns' and Andrew Lloyd Webber and Stephen Sondheim do a duet (!)
. one could go on all night! The list of shows and cast would do
justice to a dictionary of musical theatre. It is a splendid tribute to
the indefatigable talent of 'Mr. Producer' Mackintosh. I think there
are two items cut from the DVD. The opening medley number of Act 2 and
one of the Tom Lehrer numbers. But no matter, this is without doubt a
stunning achievement by all concerned.
'The best bits' will clearly depend on your own likes and dislikes. For me, the Sondheim numbers were the highlight. The man's a genius. It should be mentioned that nearly all the numbers are fully staged and costumed. (The logistics of this are mind-numbing!) They are not just a gaggle of stars in evening dress. The big 'production numbers' are spectacular especially 'Cats' and the final piece from 'Les Miserables'. If you have any love or interest at all in musical theatre, this DVD is a 'must'. There is no on-screen info about the numbers coming up or the artists performing them. I feel this is something that could easily have been remedied. However, a listing can be found in the archive section of Albermarle of London website. (www.albermarle-london.com)
"Hey, Mr. Producer" is the most wonderful thing out there right now for
fans of Broadway and the West End who can't quite make it to the theatre.
What a roster: Julie Andrews, Bernadette Peters, Michael Ball, Dame Judi
Dench, Ruthie Henshall, Lea Salonga, Jonathon Pryce... it goes on and on!
The best parts, though, include: The reunion of Dames Millicent Martin and Julia McKenzie, and David Kernan for "Side by Side by Sondheim" (their performances are especially engaging in this title song, "You Can Drive a Person Crazy", and "You Gotta Have a Gimmick"); Ellen Green's brilliant performance in the forever-hers role of Audrey in "Little Shop of Horrors" singing "Somewhere that's Green"; The Les Miserables section in which the finishing "One Day More" song is a breathtaking effect on the film--I can just imagine how moving this was live!; Julie Andrews' entrance in the "My Fair Lady" montage---" I washed my face and hands before I came, i did."; and the sequence of "Miss Saigon", one of the most brilliant musicals ever written and perfectly recreated here with Lea Salonga returning to her lead role. This Cameron Mackintosh fest is a joy to treasure for years to come--i love watching my copy--i could watch it every day! And it's perfect to finish off with Stephen Sondheim's marking piece "Old Friends"---"But us, old friends, what's to discuss, old friends..... Who's Like us? DAMN FEW!!!!"
I put the DVD into the machine yesterday morning without any idea what
it was going to be like. Two hours later (three, actually, cause I kept
repeating it) I walked out the room swaying from side to side, laughing
cause I was think of the jokes there, and wholeheartedly impressed. It
was the greatest show I had ever seen.
This is just one of those things that you JUST CAN'T MISS (that's why I'm forcing my other friends to watch it). Every single performer, from the host Julie Andrews to the singers to the dancers to the sound effect guys was absolutely fantastic. The show was just...absolutely fantastic. Bernadette Peters, Jonathan Pryce, Lea Salonga, Colm Wilkinson and Andrew Lloyd Webber (regarding to his little performance)are one of my many favorites. Greatest concert ever. Just...go and watch it. It' pays off. Seriously.
I love Leah Salonga, the original Miss Saigon, a truly amazing talent
from the Philippines. She is brilliant, spectacular, fabulous and the
best singer I have seen in the West End of London.The original cast of
Les Miserables was also brilliant.
I totally agree with Stepahie K, Liz Robertson didn't quite make the standard as Eliza that Julie Andrews set, and Bernadette Peters wasn't as good as she normally is, she sounded really tired. Although some of the singers looked tired and were not as brilliant as seen on stage years ago, they still performed quite well.
The video is a culmination of all the best musicals in the West End of London and the brilliance of Sir Cameron Mackintosh. A must for everyone to buy and keep forever.
I loved watching this show. It had a great display of talent, all parts
were great but some of my favorite parts were:
1. The American Dream segment, Jonathan Pryce was great as The Engineer and does a phenomenal job in the role.
2. One Day More Segment, one of those songs I can watch being preformed repetitively, Colm Wilkinson is fantastic as well as the rest of the cast (though I still profess Terrence Mann is the best Javert).
3. Oh, What a Beautiful Morning, ahh... the days when Hugh Jackman was not a mega-star, nice to see his musical roots later shown in Boy From Oz.
I am a self-proclaimed musical theater fanatic (understatement, I assure
you). Be that as it may, this video was the most brilliant musical revue I
have ever seen (also an understatement!) If you have any passion for musical
theater whatsoever, you MUST see this!
The theater has always been my joy, but I never thought I would see so many showstoppers by so many theater legends in a three-hour period. I mean, Julie Andrews, Bernadette Peters, Lea Salonga, Jonathan Pryce, Colm Wilkinson, Ellen Greene...the list goes on and on and on.
The amazingly prolific career of Cameron Mackintosh is portrayed without flaw...everything from Oliver to Cats to Carousel to Les Miserables. Les Miserables is my favorite musical, but I still love this more (if possible) than the Les Miz Tenth Anniversary Concert because it includes so much more from the brilliance of the stage.
My personal favorites were "The American Dream," performed perfectly sleazily by Jonathan Pryce; Lea Salonga in EVERYTHING, she is SO amazing; and "One Day More," (The song never gets old, I came <This> close to COMPLETELY losing it).
In short, a must-see for anyone with a passion
In the words of Cameron Mackintosh they put together the greatest oray of talent possible. Some of my favourites would include David Campbell(Martin Guerre and Miss Saigon). I thought he did a wonderful job and is a really great singer. I also enjoyed Jonathan Pryce no words can describe him. Micheal Ball, Lea Salonga, Philip Quast, Ruthie Henshall, and many more. All these people made it a wonderful show. With all their singing talents put together made it enjoyable to watch. It also made it interesting to watch from a semi short stage perspective. It was overall a wonderful piece to watch and I continue to watch it to enjoy the music of the musicals and voices of the participating actors. Oh yeah one of the best was Adam Searles. EponineFantine
Hey Mr. Producer is spectacular! It's also addictive. . .I got it from my
library, and have watched it at least seven or eight times so far! It really
grows on you.
The best performances of the evening are Johnathan Pryce. . . so versatile, and totally slimy in The American Dream. . . Michael Ball. . . my man, always good! In top form in this. . . Lea Salonga. . .what can I say? She just lights up the stage. . . Philip Quast. . . the best Javert. EVER. . . Bernadette Peters . . . looking rather tired, but still riveting. . . and most of all, Dame Judi Dench. Her performance of Send in the Clowns is amazing. I felt like crying after she sang it. She REALLY looks like she felt what she was singing. I never tire of watching her sing it. There are so many other great performances in this video, that I know I'm leaving out several that I'll regret later. Everyone does a great job.
My favorite musical numbers were, Is You Is, Or Is You Ain't?, Unexpected Song, the medley from Miss Saigon (that Lea Salonga, wow), You Could Drive a Person Crazy, You Gotta Picka Pocket or Two, the two songs from Martin Guerre, Losing My Mind (my Mikey, SO good), Send in the Clowns, and Memory (Elain Paige, fabulous!) The best part of the musical though, was the Les Miserables medley. Absolutely wonderful. Though, all of the performance was great (my least favorite part was the long My Fair Lady segment.) Other honorable mention is Andrew Lloyd Webber and Stephen Sondheim's duet. . . a really funny treat!
All musical fans must see this video. Five stars.
I loved this - almost all of the stars gave some of their best performances. Jonathan Pryce was great in both his roles, David Campbell, Hugh Jackman and Philip Quast did Australia proud (I have met Philip - he's as wonderful a person as he is an actor), Sonia Swaby was perfect as Nancy, and Elaine Paige gave Grizabella all she had and was great also. Some were a little dissapointing...Liz Robertson didn't quite make the standard as Eliza that Julie Andrews set, and Bernadette Peters wasn't as good as she normally is, she sounded really tired. I liked You've Gotta Have A Gimmick, and Poisoning Pigions in the Park, as well as the sections from CATS, Little shop of Horrors, the Phantom, Oliver and Les Mis - although they cut so much out of the songs by that stage that there literally were only half of them left. But, despite this, it was fantastic. I could watch this all day, it was so good.
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