Review – Dreamgirls Cast Recording

Ok its confession time – I appear to be the last person to actually see the stage production of Dreamgirls? There you go I’ve said it, I’ve just not had the opportunity. So when I was offered the chance to review the cast recording I thought it’s a perfect time to listen to the songs preempting actually getting my act together and seeing it?

Which actually translates to the fact that I’ve got no concept of the performers, the production or individual performances and can give an unbiased review on the vocals and songs alone.

Initially the songs reminded me of an old favourite of mine Hairspray their catchy, toe-tapping feel, led me to imagine how enigmatic a show it is.

Moving swiftly to a gospel feel in Fake Your Way To The Top. Mellow and heartwarming Family with its beautiful harmonies. The rousing title track Dreamgirls full of starry oomph. The huge production number of One Night Only really stood out for me as having the power and verve you’d expect from a ballsy Broadway show.

And the numbers just keep coming Listen shows the prowess of immense vocal talents. Both Hard To Say Goodby and Dreamgirls (Reprise) managed to move me even whilst sat on the comfort of my settee and I can only guess in the production it must command even stronger feelings.

In summary

I must admit it’s been hard to review this recording not having seen the production. However what I can appreciate is how good the vocals are and what a visual spectacle it must be.

Buy it from Amazon today in conjunction with (as I intend to do now) booking to see the real thing. Go and see the production DREAMGIRLS which is wowing audiences at The Savoy Theatre – this cast recording has inspired me to!

Information

Featuring iconic songs from the musical including, ‘And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going’ ‘Listen’, ‘I Am Changing’, ‘One Night Only’, ‘Steppin To The Bad Side’, ‘Move’ and title track ‘Dreamgirls’, this double-album was recorded live over four performances at the Savoy Theatre in February 2017. With no additional studio re-recordings or musical overdubs it captures the on-stage exhilaration of the Dreamgirls original London cast, 14 piece band and the audience thus retaining the live in-theatre integrity of these special performances.

TRACKLISTING:

CD1 ACT 1

1. I’M LOOKING FOR SOMETHING, BABY Curtis Taylor Jr, Marty, Stepp Sisters
2. GOIN’ DOWNTOWN Little Albert and the Tru-Tones
3. TAKIN’ THE LONG WAY HOME Tiny Joe Dixon
4. MOVE The Dreamettes (Effie White, Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson)
5. FAKE YOUR WAY TO THE TOP James Thunder Early and The Dreamettes (Effie White, Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson)
6. CADILLAC CAR Curtis Taylor Jr, Jimmy Early, C.C. White, Marty, The Dreamettes (Effie White, Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson), Cadillac Man, Ensemble
7. STEPPIN’ TO THE BAD SIDE Curtis Taylor Jr, Jimmy Early, C.C. White, Wayne, The Dreamettes (Effie White, Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson), Ensemble
8. PARTY, PARTY Effie White, Curtis Taylor Jr, Jimmy Early, Lorrell Robinson, C.C. White, Ensemble
9. I WANT YOU, BABY James Early and The Dreamettes (Effie White, Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson), Ensemble
10. FAMILY C.C. White, Effie White, Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson, Curtis Taylor Jr, Jimmy Early
11. DREAMGIRLS The Dreams (Deena Jones, Effie White, Lorrell Robinson)
12. PRESS CONFERENCE Deena Jones, Curtis Taylor Jr, Effie White, Lorrell Robinson, Ensemble
13. HEAVY The Dreams (Deena Jones, Effie White, Lorrell Robinson), Curtis Taylor Jr, Jimmy Early, Ensemble
14. IT’S ALL OVER Curtis Taylor Jr, Effie White, Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson, Jimmy Early, C.C. White, Michelle Morris
15. AND I AM TELLING YOU I’M NOT GOING Effie White

 

CD2 ACT 2

1. LOVE, LOVE YOU BABY The Dreams (Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson, Michelle Morris), Jimmy Early, Curtis Taylor Jr, C.C. White, Ensemble
2. WHEN I FIRST SAW YOU Curtis Taylor Jr, Deena Jones
3. I AM CHANGING Effie White
4. AIN’T NO PARTY Lorrell Robinson, Jimmy Early, The Five Tuxedos
5. I MEANT YOU NO HARM Jimmy Early
6. THE RAP Jimmy Early, Curtis Taylor Jr, Lorrell Robinson, Wayne, Ensemble
7. I MISS YOU, OLD FRIEND C.C. White, Effie White, Ensemble
8. ONE NIGHT ONLY Effie White, The Dreams (Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson, Michelle Morris), Curtis Taylor Jr, Wayne, Ensemble
9. I’M SOMEBODY The Dreams (Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson, Michelle Morris), Curtis Taylor Jr, Marty, Effie White, C.C. White
10. LISTEN Deena Jones, Effie White
11. EFFIE WHITE’S GONNA WIN / YOU ARE MY DREAM (REPRISE) Curtis Taylor Jr, C.C. White, Marty, Mr Morgan, Effie White, Deena Jones
12. HARD TO SAY GOODBYE The Dreams (Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson, Michelle Morris), Ensemble
13. DREAMGIRLS (REPRISE) Effie White, The Dreams (Deena Jones, Lorrell Robinson, Michelle Morris), Ensemble

Produced by Henry Krieger and mixed by Andy Bradfield, the Dreamgirls Original London Cast Recording features Olivier Award-winner Amber Riley (Best Actress in a Musical) as Effie White, Liisi LaFontaine as Deena Jones and Ibinabo Jack as Lorrell Robinson – making up the soulful singing trio ‘The Dreams’. Joe Aaron Reid plays Curtis Taylor Jr, Adam J. Bernard plays Jimmy Early (a role for which he won the Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical), Tyrone Huntley plays C.C. White, Nicholas Bailey plays Marty and Lily Frazer plays Michelle Morris. Further cast includes Michael Afemaré, Jocasta Almgill, Callum Aylott, Hugo Batista, Samara Casteallo, Chloe Chambers, Carly Mercedes Dyer, Joelle Dyson, Kimmy Edwards, Candace Furbert, Nathan Graham, Ashley Luke Lloyd, Gabriel Mokake, Siân Nathaniel-James, Sean Parkins, Kirk Patterson, Ryan Reid, Rohan Richards, Noel Samuels, Durone Stokes and Tosh Wanogho-Maud.

Henry Krieger says of the Original London Cast Recording: “It is my great pleasure to share this ‘alive’ live recording of the West End production of Dreamgirls. Producing this recording and working with our brilliant Musical Supervisor Nick Finlow and studio pros Andy Bradfield and Tris Penna, has been a dream come true. I am thrilled to share the Dreamgirls Original London Cast Recording with those who have loved the production for 35 years as well as with those who are just discovering it now.”

Buy it from Amazon today in conjunction with (as I intend to do now) booking to see the real thing.

Go and see the production DREAMGIRLS which is wowing audiences at The Savoy Theatre.

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