Entertainment » Music

Big Fish: Original Broadway Cast Recording

by Steven Bergman
Contributor
Monday Mar 3, 2014
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Though "Big Fish" lasted just under three months during its Broadway run at the Neil Simon Theatre, Broadway Records brought the cast, including two-time Tony Award winner, Norbert Leo Butz, into the studio to preserve this engaging score by Andrew Lippa ("A Little Princess," "The Wild Party"), and it is now available for purchase and download.

The musical version of "Big Fish" is based on the novel by Daniel Wallace, by way of John August’s screenplay, which August transferred to the stage by writing the book for the musical. The fantastical tale, about Edward Bloom (delightfully portrayed by Butz) and his friends, family, and fictions, proved a sensible musical, albeit an unsuccessful one at the box office. Yet Butz, Kate Baldwin (as wife Sandra Bloom), Bobby Steggert (as Edward’s son, Will) and a cast of 23 make an entertaining listen of Lippa’s score, a combination of three-ring Americana, heartfelt ballads, and tales of determination.

The plot struggles to come across through the music, making understanding all the complexities of August’s story difficult for those who were unable to catch the show on Broadway. However, Butz’s performance gives the listener an entertaining musical journey nonetheless, through "Be a Hero," "Out There on the Road," "Fight The Dragons," and finally landing in "Daffodils."

The majority of dance music is included, allowing the top-notch orchestra, under the musical direction of Broadway mainstay, Mary-Mitchell Campbell, to get their moments. There are two Bonus tracks included: "This River Between Us," where Steggert’s Will Bloom expresses the rift that has always existed between him and his father, and "Magic in the Man," an attractive cabaret ballad listed as an "ITunes Bonus Track," and uncredited in the packaging.

"Big Fish (OBCR)"
Andrew Lippa
CD and digital formats
Broadway Records

Steven Bergman is a Composer / Playwright / Performing Arts Educator based outside of Boston, MA.

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