Review From Words And Music © September 1997

Kim Criswell has made a magazine cover (Words and Music issue 14 * January 1993); we all know she can even hit a high C; her sugar IS the sweetest around; and in John Owen Edwardsís recording of ON THE TOWN she makes the best taxi driver. Kim has always excelled at supersonic singing, and with I Can Cook Too she gets an ample opportunity to do so; truly Betty Comden and Adolph Greenís wonderful lyrics just sum it up perfectly. This Jam preserveís sexy singing style comes to the for with Come Up to My Place; while the always excellent Gregg Edelman (as Chip) is more than enough to dispel any memories one might have of Sinatra in the movie version.

Until I heard the First Complete Recording, as conducted by the exciting John Owen Edwards I never realised how lush this rich score could sound, in fact I never realised what a wonderful composer Leonard Bernstein was. For Owen Edwards is never afraid to experiment, he is such a refreshing change from the staider conductors (no disrespect intended mind you) who have always tackled such works as this, until now.

With a cast comprising several Americanís and a bunch of British artistes (including a gifted vocal parodiest) who are well accustomed to this sort of work, it is no wonder that the accents are accomplished.

This spectacular recording also stars Judy Kaye (as Claire), Ethan Freeman (as Gabey), Tim Flavin (as Ozzie) and Tinuke Olafimihan (as Ivy). There is strong support to from Owen Edwardís and Jay Productionís regulars: such as Valerie Masterson, Matt Zimmerman, and in the chorus: Katrina Murphy,Bruce Ogsten and Gareth Snook amongst others.

For me the icing on the cake just has to be the two redheads on track 3, CD2, a song called I Wish I Was Dead, where Kim Criswellís sassy Hildy heckles the Cabaret Singers, whose parts are sung with all the vocal power and versatility that Louise Gold can command.

This recording is well worth buying!

- Go on, treat yourself to this pot of joy.

This Review First Appeared In Words and Music Issue 28, September 1997. My grateful thanks to Wordís and Musicís Editor, Carol Hughes, for permission to use it.


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