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SWEENEY TODD Cast Album Added To Library Of Congress Registry & Sondheim Comments


SWEENEY TODD Cast Album Added To Library Of Congress Registry & Sondheim CommentsThe original 1979 Broadway cast recording of iconic musical thriller SWEENEY TODD: THE DEMON BARBER OF FLEET STREET has been officially added to the Library of Congress National Recording Registry this week and composer/lyricist Stephen Sondheim has issued a statement on its inclusion.

As part of a larger comment, Sondheim said he was "thrilled' with the addition of the album to the registry.

Furthermore, the songwriter shared, "As a composer who has been both informed and influenced by sound recordings, I feel passionately that they are a heritage too easily lost, and one which requires all due diligence to preserve. It is important to remember that not only do recordings capture individual performances, scores and arrangements but also a great deal of music which was never written down."

The official description of SWEENEY TODD's entry in the National Recording Registry is as follows: "In reviewing the cast album for "Sweeney Todd," critic John Rockwell characterized Stephen Sondheim's work as "complex mosaics, built up of bits and pieces of tunes." The recording, Rockwell suggested, allows a listener a better chance to more fully appreciate such construction than a spectator in the theater, where elements of the production vie with music for attention. A moral tale presented in the form of a horror story-a wronged barber partners with an amoral businesswoman to make meat pies out of clients-the show ultimately dramatizes the value of human life. Thomas Z. Shepard, the record's producer, stated that he conceived of this work "to a large degree, as re-creating an old-time radio program. ... You should be able to close your eyes and get a fairly satisfying dramatic experience." Known for the meticulousness with which he oversaw recordings of his shows, Sondheim contributed greatly during "Sweeney's" recording session. Upon listening to the final product, he was moved to tears."

For the complete list, visit the official Library of Congress website here.

Check out the original article on the matter here.

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Pat Cerasaro Pat Cerasaro is BroadwayWorld's Chief Interviewer and Senior Editor, contributing exclusive columns including InDepth InterViews, Sound Off, Flash Fridays as well as additional special features and extensive news coverage. His work for the site has appeared in The New York Times, US Weekly, The Biography Channel, NBC and more.