BWW DVD Reviews: FROM BROADWAY WITH LOVE: A BENEFIT CONCERT FOR SANDY HOOK Showcases Contemporary Broadway Talent
Early in February, I got my hands on the FROM BROADWAY WITH LOVE: A BENEFIT CONCERT FOR SANDY HOOK album. I was moved and impressed with how heartfelt the concert was. The outpouring of love from the Broadway community to the town of Sandy Hook, Connecticut was and still is monumental. In addition to releasing the CD and digital albums of the concert, Broadway Records released a DVD and Blu-Ray of the performance. Like the CD and digital albums, 100% of its profits from the DVD and Blu-Ray are going to support the Newtown-Sandy Hook community via the Newton-Sandy Hook Community Foundation.
The DVD of the concert is beautifully shot, giving home audiences unparalleled access to the concert. Utilizing multiple angles, close-ups, and wide shots, those who purchase the DVD or Blu-Ray will get to experience the concert in its entirety and from the best seat in the house. Likewise, there is a range of interesting Special Features on the disc as well, which includes a featurette about how the concert went from idea to actuality and a feaurette with interviews from the red carpet.
Having heard the performances before, I was impressed by how affecting they were when paired with the visual element that the DVD adds. My favorite performances are still Robin de Jesus, Ashley Blanchet, and the From Broadway With Love Chorus' stirring rendition of Jonathan Larson's hit "Seasons of Love" from RENT, Mary Testa's delivery of a rousing rendition of John Kander and Fred Ebb's "When You're Good to Mama," Michael Cerveris singing a stunningly beautiful version of Stephen Sondheim's "Finishing the Hat" immediately followed by "Sunday" with the Newton High School Chamber Choir, and Brian Stokes Mitchell's performance of the indelible and uplifting "The Impossible Dream" from Dale Wasserman, Mitch Leigh, and Joe Darion's MAN OF LA MANCHA. Lastly, my absolute favorite performance is still the Newton High School Chamber Choir's lush performance of Robert Edgerton's gorgeous arrangement of "Somewhere" from WEST SIDE STORY.
This DVD, like the CD, is a showcase of contemporary Broadway talent doing what they do best. Also, unlike the one-hour special that aired on select PBS affiliates, the DVD is the full concert and runs approximately 1 hour and 49 minutes. If you're a fan of live performance, this DVD is for you. If you're a fan of any of the stars that performed, this DVD is for you. If you are a fan of musical theatre, this DVD is for you.
FROM BROADWAY WITH LOVE: A BENEFIT CONCERT FOR SANDY HOOK was released as a single disc DVD on February 4, 2014. It can be purchased from Amazon. The single disc Blu-Ray release of the concert was released on February 18, 2014. It can be purchased from Amazon.
For more information about the various releases and the concert itself, please visit http://www.frombroadwaywithlove.org.