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Broadway Cast Recordings on Tap for 'Aladdin,' 'If/Then' and 'Bullets over Broadway'

By Jon Sobel j.sobel@classicalite.com on May 27, 2014 08:01 PM EDT

The biggest soundtrack hit of the moment may be Idina Menzel's "Let It Go" from the Disney flick Frozen, but execs at Disney are hoping a hit from their earlier hit Aladdin from nearly a generation ago will give a bump to sales of Aladdin's original Broadway cast album too, available digitally today and on CD June 17.

The song, of course, is "A Whole New World," the Alan Menken/Howard Ashman hit that became so ubiquitous 21 years ago the darn thing is still in my head, and I don't even like it. "A Whole New World" hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart on March 6, 1993, replacing a little novelty number known as Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You" and becoming the first and, so far, only song from an animated Disney movie to climb to that peak. ("Let It Go" reached the Top 10 in March of this year.)

Releases joining Aladdin as the Tony Awards near include the June 3 debut of the If/Then cast album (Masterworks Broadway). Composer Tom Kitt and lyricist/librettist Brian Yorkey wrote their Next to Normal follow-up specifically for Idina Menzel, and all concerned have high hopes the album will gain momentum from Menzel's recording of the everpresent "Let It Go," which continues to reverberate in the hearts and brains of little girls everywhere six months after Frozen's release.

June 3 will also see the digital release of the Bullets over Broadway cast album (Masterworks Broadway), with CDs available in stores a week later. The 22-song track list features familiar songs from the 1920s and '30s like "Let's Misbehave," and "Tain't Nobody's Biz-ness If I Do."

None of those songs is likely to bump aside "Let It Go" for the affections of the little-girl demographic. On the other hand, we still know them after close to a century. Will our descendants say the same about "Let It Go" and "A Whole New World"? We can only wonder.

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Tags Aladdin, If/Then, Bullets Over Broadway, Idina Menzel, Let It Go, Woody Allen

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