Milk and Honey [Bonus Track]

Milk and Honey [Bonus Track]

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Milk and Honey [Bonus Track]

The 1961 Broadway musical Milk and Honey is remembered as the first show to be set in Israel, but it is more significant in theater history for marking composer Jerry Herman's Broadway debut. Never revived on Broadway (there was a 59-performance Off-Broadway production by the American Jewish Theatre in 1994), it is most intriguing 47 years later in 2008 -- the date of this reissue of the cast recording -- for the insights it gives into Herman's style. It is easy to hear in the lively march "Chin Up, Ladies" and the comic ballad "Hymn to Hymie," both written for Yiddish theater star Molly Picon in a supporting role, the seeds of similar material that would turn up in Herman's next Broadway show, the far more successful Hello, Dolly! Think of "Before the Parade Passes By" and Dolly's entreaties to her dead husband Ephraim, not far removed from Clara's (Picon's character) addresses to her dead husband Hymie. And then there's "Let's Not Waste a Moment," which seems like an early draft of "It Only Takes a Moment" from Hello, Dolly! There is no direct equivalent for "Hello, Dolly!" itself, but there is a song that clearly was intended to be the hit of the show, "Shalom." (In this reissue, Robert Goulet's cover of the song has been added as a bonus track.) The problem with the score, as with the show, is that as a whole it simply isn't as lively as its best material can be. Herman is tied down to writing operatic ballad material for the two leads, Robert Weede (of The Most Happy Fella fame) and Mimi Benzell, rather than more for Picon. He does so, but not to anyone's benefit, making this score one for musical theater fans who want to know what he did before Hello, Dolly! Kenneth Jones' newly conducted interview with the composer, included in the CD booklet, is informative.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/24/2008
Label: Drg
UPC: 0021471911428
catalogNumber: 19114

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Robert Goulet   Vocals
Molly Picon   Vocals,cast
Marty Manning   Conductor
Tommy Rall   Vocals,cast
Mimi Benzell   Vocals,cast
Robert Weede   Vocals,cast
Juki Arkin   Vocals,cast
Diane Goldberg   Vocals,cast
Lanna Saunders   Vocals,cast
Gerrianne Raphael   Vocals,cast
Milk and Honey Cast Ensemble   Choir, Chorus

Technical Credits

Robert DeCormier   Choir Arrangement
Jerry Herman   Composer,Lyricist,Liner Notes
George Avakian   Producer
Hugh Fordin   Reissue Producer
Kenneth Day Jones   Reissue Liner Notes
Joe Linhart   Producer
Marty Manning   Arranger
Ernie Oelrich   Engineer
Eddie Sauter   Orchestration
Hershy Kay   Orchestration
Max Goberman   Musical Director,Music Direction
Genevieve Pitot   Dance Arrangement
Alice Butts   Art Direction,Reissue Design
Don Appell   Book
Anaida Garcia   Reissue Production Assistance
Kenneth Jones   Liner Notes
Ernest Oelrich   Engineer

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