The spring is always a busy time on Broadway, with new musicals opening at every turn. When new productions arrive, there is a guaranteed abundance of cast recordings waiting in the wings. Here are some of the exciting cast albums to look forward to this spring, with more on the way.
(April 21-Digital, May 12-CD)
The most recent cast recording available for listeners to enjoy is Groundhog Day. With a score by Tim Minchin (Matilda), the album features the Olivier Award-winning performance of Andy Karl as the arrogant weatherman Phil Connors who is caught in a mystical loop, requiring him to live the same day over and over until he gets it right. Co-produced by Masterworks Broadway and Broadway Records, the digital recording became available on April 21, with a CD release on May 12.
It took a long time (thirty-six-years) to cross the Atlantic from Broadway to the West End, but Dreamgirls is taking Great Britain by storm. With a score by Henry Krieger (Music) and Tom Eyen (lyrics), the London production features Glee star Amber Riley (a recent Oliver Award-winner) belting out “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going”, arguably the musical’s most well-known number. The album comes courtesy of Sony Classical, with a digital release scheduled for April 28, followed by a CD version on May 12.
(April 28-Digital, June 9-CD)
In Transit may have departed Broadway prematurely, but fans can savor the original cast recording by Walt Disney Records for years to come. The a capella musical, with music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez (Frozen), James Allen-Ford, Russ Kaplan and Sara Wordsworth, is set in a subway station and brings together a cross-section of people who sing about their lives in NYC. Among the cast are Broadway favorites Telly Leung, Justin Guarini, Margo Seibert, and James Snyder. In Transit makes its digital debut on April 28 and arrives on CD June 9.
A Bronx Tale
Decca Broadway has already released the digital version of A Bronx Tale, but the CD will be available on May 12. Alan Menken (Newsies, Sister Act) provides the music and Glenn Slater (Sister Act, School of Rock) the lyrics. The story follows a young man, raised in the Bronx, who is torn between his love for his father and his aspirations to join the mob and rise in its ranks. The cast includes Nick Cordero, Hudson Loverro, Richard H. Blake, Bobby Conte Thornton, and Ariana Debose.
(May 12-Digital, June 2-CD)
Bette Midler returned to Broadway this spring, inspiring great excitement as the title character in Jerry Herman’s Hello, Dolly!. The eagerly-anticipated album has been recorded by Masterworks Broadway. With its well-known title tune and time-honored score, not to mention a cast that includes David Hyde Pierce, Gavin Creel, and Kate Baldwin, theatre fans will be counting down the days to the release on May 12 (Digitally) and June 2 (CD).
Mark Robinson is the author of the two-volume encyclopedia The World of Musicals and maintains a theatre and entertainment blog at markrobinsonwrites.com.