Friday, 9 October 2015

Album Review: The Light Princess Original Cast Recording

The Light Princess (Original Cast Recording)
Mercury Classics
Released on Friday 9th October 2015

Marking two years since Tori Amos and Samuel Adamson's musical The Light Princess premiered at the National Theatre, Amos has reunited the original company to release a cast album. I have fond memories of being swept away by the production; not only was it visually breathtaking and courageously creative, but I adored Amos' score which captures the beauty of the sweetest fairy tale as well as the pain of the darkest nightmare.

The show centred around Althea who, following the death of her mother, was left unable to cry and became so light with grief that she began to float, much to the disgust of her disapproving father who locked her away. The Light Princess was a show about love, friendship, closure and acceptance.

Despite not having seen The Light Princess for two years, upon my first listen to the cast album the show came flooding back to me. I would struggle to hum you one song from recent musicals such as Stephen Ward or Bend It Like Beckham, yet after all this time The Light Princess’ score sounds so familiar.

Rosalie Craig gave a career defining performance when she played Althea to tremendous acclaim and has flawlessly recreated her performance on this recording. Her vocals are so versatile - Craig can both charm her way through a fun number such as (my personal favourite track) 'Better Than Good' or pour her heart and soul out as she does on 'Tears'. Craig does it all so effortlessly; it’s clear she was involved with the show’s early development because the score fits her voice like a glove. She is an absolute dream.

The supporting cast are equally as strong; Amy Booth-Steel (Piper) and Clive Rowe's (King Darius) vocals soar on 'The Whistleblower' which is a sensational belter of a song. Nick Hendrix (Digby) joins Craig for another of the highlights, act two opener 'Amphibiava'. It is joyous to hear Laura Pitt-Pulford (Falconer), Kane Oliver Parry (Llewelyn) and Malinda Parris (Serjeant-at-Arms) return to their respective roles alongside the wonderful ensemble. 

The Light Princess may have divided opinions, but it made its mark and many – like myself – fell in love with it. Often a show's legacy is dependent on a cast album and it is fantastic that The Light Princess can now live on and be discovered by musical theatre geeks in years to come. It is a truly special album which beautifully captures the magic of an unforgettable production.

Reviewed by Andrew Tomlins (Editor)

The Light Princess Original Cast Recording is avaliable now. 

Read our interviews with Amy Booth-Steel and Laura Pitt-Pulford

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