Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Lullabies of Broadway: Over the Moon

When I think of lullabies, I think of the tin song in a music box or the tune of a mobile, rotating in a crib. The kinds of bedtime songs I think of are nursery rhymes, kiddy songs to lull an infant into a state of submission. It would seem that as adults we have less of a need for lullabies-- but then I think to the fact that I still often need a song to carry me off to sleep, and I realize that they might be more relevant than I had originally thought.

To raise money for breast cancer research and support, Kate Dawson and Jodi Glucksman have co-produced the new album Over the Moon, a collection of 26 lullabies written by premiere theatre composers and recorded for the first time. Performed by Broadway stars, this collection boasts songs by the likes of Stephen Sondheim, Maury Yeston, Tom Kitt, Adam Gwon, Timothy Huang, and Marcy Heisler and Zina Goldrich. The amount of talent on this CD is unreal, and all the money goes to a good cause.

Last night was a concert celebrating the project and featuring 13 of the 26 songs sung live by some incredibly talented artists, including Marc Kudisch, Nikki M. James, and Marva Hicks. With every song performance was a projection of an illustration that can also be found in the picture and ebook versions of the album, which are all available for purchase from the project's website. For a sampling of some of the music performed last night, here are a couple of behind-the-scenes clips:

What I think I love most about this project in particular is how it brought the art of the lullaby back into the public consciousness. Thought they are deceptively simple, they serve a very important purpose-- what is it that we most want to hear before we go to sleep? What kind of comfort can we offer? Much like the mission of this project, lullabies seek to reassure us of the things we have and the life we've lived-- it's a reflection on love and time and a gentle wish into the future.

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