Tuesday, January 26, 2016


15 years ago I worked for a stupid jewelry company in their credit department. The only good thing about this job was the coworkers I sat next to -- not MOST of my coworkers, just the ones in my immediate vicinity. One Christmas I won tickets to a Browns game in a raffle. I had no interest in these tickets at all, but my friend Matt had a HUGE interest in them. He worked for a radio station and could order CDs that were hard to find, so he said if I gave him the tickets, he'd let me on his radio show and buy me 2 CDs of choice. I chose System of a Down and Candide.

I mean... it was 2001. Of course I did.

Anyway, Leonard Bernstein is a gift to our ears.

I am not going to do a lot of operettas because they're not REALLY musical theatre, but Candide is different, because it's Bernstein and it's had a lot of famous Broadway actors, including the  incomparable Barbara Cook as Cunegonde. She is perfect. She is my favorite soprano. Her voice is so clear, it's like she's not even singing in her head voice. God, I dunno... maybe she wasn't. Maybe she has the most incredible mix of all time and mixed that entire score. Regardless, I love her. I love Candide. I know it had a lot of problems when it opened, but so much of the score (especially the first half) is glorious. 

And the overture is possibly the BEST OVERTURE OF ALL TIME. 

I'm glad they re-worked Candide into what is considered a great little operetta, so that it gets performed a lot (in a lot of college vocal programs), because people need to hear this music. I honestly don't even CARE how bad the original moved along, I would have been going bananas in my seat just by every musical note played. The story doesn't even MATTER to me because THAT'S HOW GOOD THE MUSIC IS!!

Music by Leonard Bernstein
Lyrics by Various
Book by Lillian Hellman and High Wheeler

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