T2C Interviews Beth Malone as The Unsinkable Molly Brown Is Digitally Released
The production of the Transport Group of The unsinkable Molly Brown won the 2020 Off-Broadway Award for Best Revival and was nominated for the Drama Desk. It was in the middle of her critically acclaimed run at the Abrons Arts Center in New York when the COVID shutdown happened. Meredith Willson’s Reworked Molly Brown Version Starred Tony Award Nominee Beth Malone in the title role. T2C spoke with Beth about life, the album and what’s next.
Also in the cast was David Aron Damane (The Book of Mormon) as JJ, Whitney Bashor (MJ: The Musical) as Julia, Omar Lopez-Cepero (On your feet!) as Vincenzo, Alex Gibson (SpongeBob SquarePants) as Erich and Paolo Montalban (Pacific Openings) like Arthur. This version of The Unsinkable Molly Brown, seen regionally in Denver, Colorado, and St. Louis, Missouri, has music and lyrics by Willson (The Music Man)with additional songs from his catalog, and a new book (based on the original by Richard Morris) and new lyrics by Tony nominee Dick Scanlan (Completely modern millie, everyday delight). The music is adapted by Michael Rafter (Resolutely modern Millie), and the production is directed and choreographed by three-time Tony winner Kathleen Marshall (Anything goes, the pajama game). The musical tells “the rags-to-riches story of Margaret ‘Molly’ Brown – a turn-of-the-century heroine of the underdog, champion of women’s rights, fighter for labor rights, advocate for workplace reform. immigration – and, most famously, a survivor of the Titanic disaster.But Brown is also a progressive woman, rejecting her destiny in a world ruled by men.
She hasn’t fallen yet! Presented by the award-winning Transport Group Production in collaboration with Music Theater International, this studio recording of The Unsinkable Molly Brown will be available everywhere, digitally, on Friday, July 22. The unsinkable Molly Brown features original score and lyrics by Meredith Willson plus unknown gems from Willson’s vault, with new book and added lyrics by Dick Scanlan, and liner notes by Luis Miranda. The album was recorded on December 12, 2021.
“In addition to preserving a show that has been one of the most joyful and fulfilling of my career,
part of the fun of recording this score is introducing Meredith Willson songs that no one else had
never heard before the new The Unsubmersible Molly Brown. –Dick Scanlan.
The Unsinkable Molly Brown is produced by Michael Croiter, Michael Rafter and Dick Scanlan. The album features orchestrations by Larry Hochman and additional orchestrations by Michael Starobin and Bruce Coughlin. Meredith Willson’s musical adaptation was provided by Michael Rafter. The album is recorded by Andy Manganello. Musical coordination by Joey Chancey, musical preparation by Howard Begin. Musical assistance by Nick Stephens with Jill Dell’Abate as production manager. Script supervision, Covid compliance and production assistance by Stephanie Prugh. The recording was mixed and edited by Michael Croiter at Yellow Sound Lab, New York, NY, and mastered by Michael Fossenkemper, Turtle Tone Mastering, New York, NY. The album was recorded at Power Station in Berklee, New York, NY. MTI is the exclusive licensor of performance rights to The Unsinkable Molly Brown.
Transport cast featured on album includes Tony nominee Beth MaloneDavid Aron Damane, Whitney Bashor, Omar Lopez-Cepero, Alex Gibson, Paolo Montalban, Paula Leggett Chase, Lauryn Ciardullo, Karl Josef Co, Kaitlyn Davidson, Tyrone Davis, Jr., Gregg Goodbrod, Michael Halling, Nikka Graff Lanzarone, Keven Quillon and Coco Smith.
The group is under the direction of Joey Chancey. With Meg Zervoulis on acoustic piano and synth, Suzy Perelman on violin, Joe Wallace on double bass, Micah Burgess on arch top, steel strings, banjo and mandolin. John Skinner plays alto saxophone, clarinet, flute and piccolo, and Justin Vance plays flute, clarinet, bass clarinet and tenor saxophone. The group is completed by Jami Dauber on trumpet and flugelhorn, Alex Jeun on tenor and bass trombone and Barbara Merjan on percussion and drums.
Video by Magda Katz