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WSS: Opera/Bernstien recording 
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Post WSS: Opera/Bernstien recording
I remember seeing a 78-minute documentory on THE MAKING OF WEST SIDE STORY conducted by Leonard Bernstien.

I really enjoyed the program. It showed me how the man worked with an orchestra/singers/studio. What a thrill that must have been.

One sequence I remember is him complaining about no bass in "Dance At The Gym." Yetm they never showed how they corrected this problem. Did he get what he wanted in the end?

Is the recording available to buy? I'd love to hear the finished product.

What do you guys think of this recording/production?

Andy.

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Wed Sep 20, 2006 12:39 pm
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Fresh Face
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hey... well i have the recording and its my favorite out of all the WSS recordings... i bought mine on itunes...


Wed Sep 20, 2006 1:04 pm
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It was one of the biggest classical music label sellers the year it came out.

its a but it really bugs me how Jose Carreras sings Tony and he is Spanish!!!!

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Thu Sep 28, 2006 9:13 am
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Post WSS Opera Recording
I think this particular recording of West Side Story is completely miscast, for all its opera pedigree. The cast sounds far too old, and the delivery is too "sung" and not acted enough. There's no spirit or passion, which are the two things that you need to really ignite this show and its fantastic score.

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Sat Jan 06, 2007 9:21 am
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Fresh Face
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Post Re: WSS Opera Recording
RainbowJude wrote:
I think this particular recording of West Side Story is completely miscast, for all its opera pedigree. The cast sounds far too old, and the delivery is too "sung" and not acted enough.

Well, but this is all intentionally. Beeing a guy who had delivered interpretations of musical works for his entire life, Bernstein didn't want to put up just another "musical play"-style recording. The OBC (which he and mr. Sondheim had partly rehearsed) already did that.

Though i enjoy listening to the OBC (and probably the 1997 Studio Cast as well) more, I consider the DG recording to be a work of musical brilliance, regarding such things as phrasing and tempi.

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Sat Jan 20, 2007 3:19 pm
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Post Re: WSS: Opera/Bernstien recording
jcstar wrote:
Leonard Bernstien.


It's Bernstein. Like beer stein.

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Sat Jan 20, 2007 9:07 pm
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Salome wrote:
its a but it really bugs me how Jose Carreras sings Tony and he is Spanish!!!!


Not to mention the Maori Maria, right?

The studio recording with Michael Ball and Barbara Bonney is also pretty hysterical, for similar (and other) reasons.

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Sat Jan 20, 2007 9:11 pm
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I don't like the recording at all. I just don't see a point in having a concert of a musical just for the sake of utilizing high-profile opera singers if they aren't going to give interesting interpretations of the material. I understand that it is just a concert recording, but West Side Story is a musical play. The songs are there to serve character. It would be one thing to a cover album of various artists recording the songs from West Side Story (akin to "Lost in the Stars: The Music of Kurt Weill") but the notion that we as an audience are supposed to believe Jose Carreras as a 17-year-old Polish gangstser is laughable.


Having Kiri Te Kanawa play Maria would be kind of like having Janis Joplin play Queenie in a concert version of The Wild Party... it's just too much. Her voice in the role is jarring.

If Bernstein was going to use middle-aged pros to play juvenile delinquents, couldn't he least have found someone with a lighter, sweeter voice, like Kathleen Battle, who could at least sound a little closer to a 16-year-old?


Mon Apr 06, 2009 11:34 am
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I like the recording for the orchestra, but not the voices. For vocal the TER/JAY Masterworks 2 disc recording is better.


Wed Apr 08, 2009 4:39 pm
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