EMI Classics is thrilled to announce the U.S. release of The John Wilson Orchestra’s That’s Entertainment: A Celebration of the MGM Film Musical. World renowned conductor and arranger John Wilson leads an all-star cast of singers and his Grammy® Award-nominated eponymous orchestra, comprised of some of the UK’s finest musicians, on this dazzling recording of some of the greatest songs from Hollywood’s Golden Age. Most of the scores have been lovingly and painstakingly reconstructed by Wilson, as MGM destroyed the originals in 1969.
This is the first time the songs, including “Singin’ in the Rain”, “Steppin’ Out with My Baby”, “The Trolley Song”, and title track “That’s Entertainment”, have been recorded in their intended orchestration since the films’ original soundtrack recordings. That’s Entertainment, also features a world-class cast of singers including Kim Criswell, Matthew Ford, Sarah Fox, Seth MacFarlane (the creator of the hit series Family Guy, and film comedy Ted) and Curtis Stigers.
The Standard Edition CD, a Deluxe Edition and a DVD of the 2009 BBC Proms, which launched John Wilson to fame in his native UK, is currently featured as part of a major national PBS pledge drive in August and September, will be available through all stores and online retailers on September 25th, 2012.
John Wilson is a world renowned conductor, arranger and film music expert who has worked closely with Sir Paul McCartney, and also arranged and conducted the music for the Kevin Spacey film Beyond the Sea. Wilson was given permission by Warner Bros., then rights holders to the MGM film catalogue, to reconstruct the scores to the classic MGM film musicals. In 1969, the studio made the decision to destroy the scores to their legendary film musical catalogue, which includes High Society, The Wizard of Oz, Meet Me in St. Louis and An American in Paris. It is difficult now to understand the thinking that led to the destruction of the MGM scores, yet Wilson explains, “the attitude of the time was that they’d served their purpose. Nobody realized that this music might later be seen as great popular art of the 20th century.”
The audio album will be released in deluxe, standard and digital versions. The deluxe, hardcover book edition features a CD and DVD with music videos from the sessions, a making of featurette, an interview with Wilson on the recreation of the scores and five Sing-a-long tracks, so that fans can be part of The John Wilson Orchestra experience in the comfort of their own homes. The recording will also be available in a standard 1 CD version, as well as digitally. Fans who purchase the deluxe edition will be able to unlock additional music, video and more via an exclusive digital portal.