review

A ‘small’ CD Haul

Okay – I bought a lot of CDs. There’s no point in trying to make it sound any better, but this was just such an amazing spring when it comes to new recordings of (new) musicals! Wasn’t it?

I have waited for quite some time because the newest CDs among them just became avaliable from the retailer I’m buying my more ‘special’ recordings from (it’s Sound of Music and no, sadly, I’m not affialiated with them…). Two of the recordings I own digitally already and to two more I have listened on Spotify, but to own them physically is just a must for me if I like the music. I just like CDs as objects. Although I mostly listen to music digitally.

But now to the CDs included in my order.

IMG_2366As you can see there are the following recordings in the pictures:

Ahrens & Flaherty: Nice Fighting You. A 30th Anniversary Celebration live at 54below – I saw one of these concerts on our first night out during our first trip to New York last September (read my post about it here). And there’s Brian Stokes Mitchell und LaChanze singing Sarah Brown Eyes and Wheels of a Dream on it. Can it get much better?

Bullets over Broadway – I think Betsy Wolfe’s “I’ve Found a New Baby” alone would be justify this purchase, right? And: The 20ies!

If/Then – I’ve already listened to it and I’ve seen the last preview before their opening on Broadway. The majority of the songs I really like (again: LaChanze!), but there also is a number of songs which I find rather boring. Sorry, contemporary score.

Rocky – I own the German recording, but this one is SO MUCH BETTER. So much. It’s not only the singers – by the way Rocky and Arian sound a lot lower than their German counterparts do and I think that this suits the tone of the score much more….But the sound, the producing of the recording. So. Much. Better.

Next to Normal (German recording) – listening to this reminds me of the two performance I saw of this production during its original run. The first listen I took made me listen closer to the (German) lyrics which sometimes are hideous and sometimes they are so right on the spot and very direct. The tone of the German language sometimes really goes well with the flow and the tone of some musical moments. The producing is very weird, to really be able to put my finger on that I need to give it another try – with headphones.

The Bridges of Madison County – who am I kidding? I love this score and I’ve already written about it over here. And so did the Tony voters. Fortunately. I also love the recording. Very fine art of studio recording technique can be witnessed here.

Beautiful – I always wanted Kelli O’Hara to win this year’s Tony in the leading actress in a musical category, but if she didn’t win I have always wanted Jessie Mueller to take it instead. Well…and sadly she did. Anyway, the recording not only displays Mueller’s strong vocal performance (so does Bridges, by the way only with O’Hara’s performance. And Steven Pasquale’s.) but also some nice new, modern sounding arrangements/orchestrations of Carole King- and Mann/Weill-songs.

Violet (Broadway recording) – this is like a slightly altered remake of the original recording from 1998. Plus this all star cast from this years Broadway ‘revival’. It sounds nice as far as I can tell from a first quick listen.

 

My Year #1 – Theatrical Life

Again, it’s the end of a year and it’s the time of reviewing what happened that past year and basically it’s all about numbers since it would be weird (and very long) to write a little something about EVERY SINGLE performance I saw this year. So, here they are – a few number before I’ll write some small things that happened for/to me. Have fun and a fantastic start for 2014!

What I saw:

overall 63 performances, what isn’t even close to what Erika Fischer-Lichte, one of the most famous theatre scholars in Germany who was our principal when I first started my BA studies, expected us to see (she said something about seeing two to four shows per week)

  • 6 concert style evenings (2 modern musical concerts, 4 more classical ones including Kurtag’s Kafka Fragements)
  • 32 musical theatre performances, of which 13 are modern musicals, 2 operettas and 17 operas (of which I left one at intermission – first time of my life!)
  • 9 dance performances
  • 16 plays and performances

And I went to the cinema twice. To see Hannah Arendt (Margarethe von Trotta) in January and La Grande Bellezza (Paolo Sorrentino – thank you, M, to take me to see it, I never would have gone on my own)

What I did:

I managed 29 performances of our criminal dinner entertainment and asissted 5. (in 4 or 5 different shows, I’m not completely sure…)

This is my 60th blogpost on here, I listened to endless hours of cast recordings and EPs of new musical theatre composers, spend hours searching for and watching great Youtube-Videos.

I wrote my BA thesis about the construction of Self and Other in two performances with performers from the Middle East. I startet my MA studies in dance studies (a post about how that is fitting into my life will be up soon). I met fabulous new people and lovely colleagues from “back then” and I am entirely happy to have chosen the theatre life six years ago. I still enjoy my work and the people I get to work with mostly are great to work with, I love how theatre can mean family even if you don#t see each other very often. And I started an additional job at the department for theatre studies at Freie Universität Berlin where I work with a research project “The Aesthetics of Applied Theatre” granted by the European Research Council, where I learned how to take care of websites and met great colleagues (who actually are my bosses…).
And I have the feeling that I really, really committed to blogging and I feel great doing so, I miss writing and I realize it only when I’m in fact writing.

I lost friends and found new ones and I was reminded of old ones. I discovered my love for my personal blender and green smoothies (I basically life off these most of the time. Green Smoothies and dried mango).

I spend the summer thinking and over thinking things and basically two people pulled me out of that weird depressive cycle. Even though I’m pretty sure that they won’t read that, I am very, very grateful to have the two of you in my life.

I travelled to some cities in Germany (Kiel, Münster, Nuremberg), Prague and New York City, which I’m completely in love with and I’m very happy to go back this spring – and I had a fantastic weekend of hiking and canoeing (which I really don’t have a talent for) in the Spreewald with great friends, but tons of mosquitos thought it was pretty amazing that I was there, too.

So, there’s a new year coming and I am excited for 2014, to see what will change, what will be just the same as always and after all….what happens to me growing up just a little bit more.

I wish you a very happy new year and see/read you soon, my lovely readers! (and again: I’m eager to hear what made your year special – if you care to share!) 🙂

My week #1, Apr 1st – 7th

what I saw:
Don Giovanni at Komische Oper Berlin, 2×1 of Letzte Spur Berlin a German crimi series and the first half of 3rd season Downton Abbey

what I read 
„Der Russe ist einer, der die Birken liebt“ by Olga Grjasnova (The Russian is someone who loves birches) and the first half of „Unfun“ by Matias Faldbakken and started „Aller Tage Abend“ by Jenny Erpenbeck. Some (musical) theatre magazines and essays on voice and cross dressing

what I listened to
Fidelio, Leonore (different versions of the same and only Beethoven opera), Mazeppa (Tschaikowski), I can do better than that (from The last 5 years by Jason Robert Brown)

what I bought
makeup and organic food

what I did 
I ran. I worked. I thought. I attended a very nice training by Nike causing me very sore muscles.

where I travelled
Kleinmachnow. a suburb of Berlin. To take a look at a house that is owned kind of by my family.