Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris

We saw this performed in the early 70’s and remembered enjoying it. But once the music began, I realized that we must have bought the album and played it a lot! Unfortunatley it did not make the transition from album thrugh cassette to cd. Immediately after the show Keith downloaded the original sound track – interestngly the Stratford cast sounds better.
The cast was fantastic – even the understudy was fantastic. Brent Carver, Mike Nadajewski, Jewelle Blackman and Robin Hutton all have wonderful voices. My only complaint was that Robin Hutton is clearly not a French speaker, so her phrasing in Ne Me Quitte Pas was off.
Brilliantly staged with a new musical orchestration by Rick Fox, this productin was just wonderful. Stafford Arima is clearly a director to watch out for.

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About cathyriggall

Theatre junkie, who thinks live theatre is the ultimate form of living on the edge. You never know what will happen when an actor steps on the stage.
This entry was posted in Brent Carver, Jewelle Blackman, Mike Nadajewski, Robin Hutton, Stafford Arima. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris

  1. Keith says:

    Cathy's right – the Stratford version was better the original cast recording, even without taking the staging into account.Part of it was the arrangement and orchestration, which were much better than the original, but the voices were better too. Brent Carver has the weakest vocal skills of the four – but his dramatic skills more than made up for it, he performed his songs. The other three all did a great job too. I am not generally a big fan of musicals, but this one kept me focused.

  2. Keith says:

    Just a follow-up on the standing ovation thing.To some degree, it is just an emotional matter – If I have to think about whether I should stand up, I shouldn't.I enjoyed this show, there are some great songs, the performers were wonderful, as were the arrangement and orchestration. However, there are a bunch of ho-hum songs too and a degree of sameness to them and the show really is only a concert, despite the efforts of the Stratford production, good as they were.So, very good, but not a standing ovation (for me).

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