BWW ALBUM REVIEW: Andrew Lloyd Webber's 70'th Birthday Is To Be Celebrated With The Release of ANDREW LLOYD WEBBER: UNMASKED: THE PLATINUM COLLECTION
BroadwayWorld Sydney was given an exclusive taste of Andrew Lloyd Webber: UNMASKED: THE PLATINUM COLLECTION ahead of it's release on 16th March 2018 through Universal Music. A brilliant celebration of the British composer's 50 year career, the collection presented as both 2CD and 4 CD options. Whilst the 2CD option includes an impressive cross section of songs, the 4CD pack includes works from all of the acclaimed composer's shows (across the 4 CDs), five new orchestral suites and an exclusive 40 page book in which Lloyd Webber has written and introduction to the indepth track notes written by Michael Coveney, a respected theatre critic and Lloyd Webber biographer along with tributes from the famous stars that the composer has worked with over the years.
In the lead up to his 70th Birthday on 22nd March, Lloyd Webber has personally curated and overseen the selection of songs for the album. Drawing on music from his earliest work, JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOUR DREAMCOAT (1968), to his most recent SCHOOL OF ROCK (2015), the collection includes songs presented by the singers that originated the great roles like Michael Ball as the first Alex (ASPECTS OF LOVE), Sarah Brightman and Michael Crawford as the original Christine and Phantom (PHANTOM OF THE OPERA), Julie Covington as the first Eva Peron (EVITA), and Paul Nicholas as the original Mr Mistoffelees (CATS). The collections also include newly recorded songs from pop superstars like Nichole Scherzinger (Memory from CATS), Gregory Porter (Light At The End Of The Tunnel from STARLIGHT EXPRESS) and Lana Del Ray (You Must Love Me from EVITA). The set also includes the first release of Beyonce's performance of Learn To Be Lonely, accompanied by Lloyd Webber on piano along with newly created orchestra suites which emphasise the grand orchestral aspects of his work and to showcase Lloyd Webber's dearest shows.
Listening to the 2CD selection, Andrew Lloyd Webber: UNMASKED: THE PLATINUM COLLECTION is a wonderful reconnection with the music that, for your BroadwayWorld Sydney Senior Editor, coloured a childhood, adolescence and beyond. It was wonderful to reconnect with Lloyd Webber's beautiful music which captures emotion and stirs the soul, particularly in the hands (voices?) of the fabulously talented singers that have given his songs a voice. Lloyd Webber has the ability to spark the imagination with a single song, capturing the energy and ambition the young Eva Duarte was preparing to unleash on Argentina in Buenos Aires (EVITA, GLEE Cast), the grit and cynicism of old world Hollywood in Sunset Boulevard (SUNSET BOULEVARD, Kevin Anderson), and mystery of TS Elliot's Practical Cats in Macavity (CATS, Wendy Edmead and Donna King). His work can make you laugh, cry and look at the world differently, from Michael Ball's famous rendition of Love Changes Everything (ASPECTS OF LOVE), to Sarah Brightman and Jose Carreras' contribution to the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, the unifying Amigos Para Siempre, and Eva Peron's heartbreakingly earnest plea You Must Love Me (EVITA), recorded by Lana Del Rey for this collection.
Along with the release of the CDs on 16th March 2018, Lloyd Webber's new autobiography UNMASKED is also being released by Harper Collins on 6th March. Whilst BroadwayWorld Sydney is yet to get hold of a copy of the book, we have been informed that Lloyd Webber recounts his fascinating life and remarkable career, all in his own words, sharing his natural storytelling ability with his signature humour and self-deprecating tone. He shares details of his early personal and professional years, including his early artistic influences. He takes stock of his achievements, the twists of fate and circumstance, which bought him both success and disappointment, and the passions that inspire and sustain him.
Andrew Lloyd Webber: UNMASKED: THE PLATINUM COLLECTION
Available from 16 March 2018 through Universal Music