Monday, October 7, 2013

MT Soundtracker: Day 7

Brigadoon (1947)

London Cast Recording (1988)

Music: Frederick Loewe
Lyrics: Alan Jay Lerner

Synopsis: Tommy and Jeff ,two Americans, get lost in the Scottish Highlands and end up in a town named Brigadoon which, curiously, is not marked on their map. They find out that Brigadoon only appears for one day every 100 years and that its inhabitants are not allowed to leave the town or else it will disappear forever. The two men are invited for a meal at the MacLaren household and one of the daughters falls in love with Tommy. Tommy, however, is already engaged to a girl back in New York...

The reason for listening to the 1988 revival recording instead of the original Broadway one was quality of the audio. Deciphering the lyrics from the old soundtrack proved a little challenging. 
Some of the Scottish accents going on were quite... well, shall we say, approximate. From time to time understanding the meaning of songs was difficult but that was partly due to dialectal words I did not understand. 
The actual music is heavily influenced by traditional Scottish music. The song I enjoyed the most was Love of My Life for the energetic delivery. I guess the fact it is a character song made it a little bit better articulated and the lyrics were easier to understand but there was something about the way it was sung that made it pleasant to listen to as well. I am a fan of witty lyrics too (some of you may have gathered that by now) and the number of innuendos in that song made me chuckle. There are some songs in the show that have become famous in their own right such as Almost Like Being in Love.
Brigadoon was Lerner and Loewe's first truly successful musical. They took their inspiration from the recent success of Rodgers and Hammerstein's work and to someone who is not a musical theatre person, Brigadoon probably doesn't sound too different from the work of R&H. 

The original production of Brigadoon did well on Broadway and there have been several subsequent revivals. The musical made it to the West End two years after the first Broadway opening. There is also a film version available, released in 1954. 

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