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Saturday, 28 September 2019

REVIEW: Oklahoma! – 2019 Broadway Cast Recording

For those of us not lucky enough to make it over to Broadway, our best insight into the delights on stage across the pond are the cast recordings released. This year, the hottest show in town happens to be a show written in 1943 and reborn in 2019, Rogers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!which has been entirely reimagined to great acclaim. Let’s not forget that in its day, the show’s original production was considered groundbreaking, so it seems fitting that some 76 or so years later, Daniel Fish’s revival is being seen so as well. With the whole show re orchestrated to exploit the country and western root of the plot, it brings a refreshing new atmosphere to the show - and just you wait for the Dream Ballet!

So we sat down and listened to the cast album, imagining ourselves in the Circle in the Square Theater, NYC. 

Almost everyone is familiar with the opening of Oklahoma!, whether by choice or not, we all know Curly’s famous first words of “Oh, What A Beautiful Morning” and we have come to expect them accompanied by lush traditional orchestration but Daniel Fish’s production eschews tradition wherever possible whilst still maintaining the glorious essence of Oklahoma!. Damon Daunno’s Curly is accompanied by a simple cowboy’s guitar and this simplicity in the orchestration (in terms of number of instruments at least) is continued throughout much of the show. “The Surrey With The Fringe On Top” has rarely sounded more like a love song, and the overall impact of it finds a perfect balance between a 2019 country number and a classic musical theatre tune. 
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