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BWW Review: GABRIEL Studio Cast Recording

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We review the new Nativity-themed musical told from the angel's perspective

BWW Review: GABRIEL Studio Cast Recording Just in time for the festive season, SimG Records will be releasing the Studio Cast Recording of Gabriel. The show is a new two-act Christmas musical that tells the Nativity story from the ambitious angel Gabriel's perspective.

Gabriel (Daniel Boys) is given the job of relaying messages from Heaven to Earth as they arrive, and in this task sees his chance to earn his much-longed-for promotion to the status of archangel. But Gabriel has no idea of what is actually coming, and, indeed, has his own set of expectations about how God ought to do it.

Suitable for the whole family, the musical features a book by Nick Stimson and Andrew Fisher, with music and lyrics also by Fisher. The lead vocals were recorded at Baker Street Studios, with most of the chorus and instrumentation captured remotely during lockdown.

Clearly a passion project, Fisher has been working on this musical since 2012, going through a series of workshops and demo recordings before its first production in 2016. Fisher also produced the album and provided the orchestrations, which are nothing short of sublime. That, paired with the leading West End cast performing on the CD, is a winning formula.

Joining Daniel Boys are David Bedella, James Gillan, Joel Montague, Kit Orton, Stuart Matthew Price, Lauren Samuels, Ben Stock, Stephen Weller and a talented chorus, who are the glue who pull everything together.

The storytelling through music is extremely strong. There is a clear Middle Eastern cultural influence throughout much of the score, which I love.

It's the small details that make a big impact, and this album is made up of many of those moments. There are some great melodies and catchy bass lines such as in "Mary" and "Make Hay", with gospel number "I Bring Word" a definite highlight.

Daniel Boys is a perfect fit for the title role. Lauren Samuels provides phenomenal vocals throughout, especially during her powerful solo number, "Why Choose Me?". David Bedella is expertly cast as King Herod with "Bow Down" and "Onwards", both exceptionally good, characterful numbers.

It is apparent how much time and work has gone into honing this musical, and it has paid off, as it is creatively strong in all areas. I'd love to see a fully staged production of the musical in the near future.

The studio cast recording of Gabriel is available now


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