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October 27, 2004

It's the annual pre-Halloween show, with nightmares, ghost ballets and visits to really creepy places - like John Ashcroft's imagination.

Selection Source Performer(s) Comments
No Parking Somewhere Over the Radio Stevens and Grdnic An urban nightmare: the day all the parking spaces disappeared!
John Ashcroft's Nightmare GOP Party Monsters (2004) Wayne Lammers A look inside Ashcroft's brain; now THAT'S scary!
The Nightmare When the Palm Trees Grow in Central Park (2004) Dottie Burman; Paul Greenwood (piano) Burman in a New York-based singer, songwriter, cabaret artist and motivational speaker. Most of the songs on here (all by Burman) are from a one-woman show that she launched at the Don't Tell Mama Cabaret Theater in Manhattan.
Tevye's Dream Fiddler on the Roof (London Cast 1967) Topol, Miriam Karlin, Heather Clifton, Susan Paule, Company Tevye has arranged a marriage between his daughter Tzeitel and the prosperous, middle-aged butcher Lazar Wolf. Alas, Tzeitel is in love with the younger and poorer tailor Motel Kamzoil. Tevye caves in, but still has to convince his wife. So he invents a wild nightmare in which the ghost of the butcher's deceased wife threatens Tzeitel with death. Needless to say, it works. Topol (full name: Chaim Topol) would go on to play Tevye in the 1971 film version.
Ghosties and Ghoulies and Things the Go Bump in the Night; Halloween Ballet Meet Me in St. Louis (OC 1990) Betty Garrett, Courtney Peldon, Ensemble Having been thoroughly warned about the evil spirits abroad, Tootie imagines herself surrounded by all sort of creepy apparitions as she goes trick or treating. The elaborate ballet sequence (complete with ice-skating ghosts) is usually cut in revivals of the show.
Incantation Topsy-Turvy (OS 1999) Shirley Henderson, Kevin McKidd, Martin Savage From Gilbert and Sullivan's The Sorcerer (1877), the title character, John Wellington Wells, invokes "fiends of the night" to help him create a requested love potion. Directed by Mike Leigh, this 1999 film deals with the ups and downs of the partnership between Gilbert (Jim Broadbent) and Sullivan (Allan Corduner). Martin Savage is George Grossmith, who originated many of the "principal comedian" roles in the Savoy operas.
The Nightmare Song Great Patter Songs (1978) John Reed; Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Royston Nash From Iolanthe (1882), this elaborate patter song describing the Lord Chancellor's increasingly fanciful nightmare is a wonderful showpiece for comic baritones everywhere. Reed the lead comic baritone in the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company in the 1960s and 1970s, taking over from Peter Pratt.
My Name is John Wellington Wells The Art of the Savoyard (1991) Walter Passmore Recorded December 19th, 1900, this number from The Sorcerer is probably the quintessential Gilbert and Sullivan patter song with rapid-fire rhymes ("Barring tautology, / In demonology, 'Lectro-biology, / Mystic nosology, / Spirit philology, / High-class astrology, / Such is his knowledge, he / Isn't the man to require an apology!") and a demanding triplet melody. Passmore joined the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company in 1894, towards the end of Gilbert and Sullivan's collaboration, but he appeared in revivals and tours of many Savoy operas (including The Sorcerer) until he left the company in 1903. He performed regularly in numerous plays and musical comedies, both in London and on tour, for another 30 years, retiring in 1933.

Acronyms and other mysteries defined:

OC: Unless otherwise indicated, the Original Cast recording of a Broadway show, along with the date.

OS: Unless otherwise indicated, the Original Soundtrack recording of a film, TV show, etc.

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 Back to Playlists  |   Previous Show— Arms and the Man (October 20, 2004)   |   Next Show— The Country's in the Very Best of Hands (November 3 2004) 
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