At long last, the official cast recording for Broadway’s The Band’s Visit has arrived.
Composed by David Yazbek with book by Itamar Moses, the musical is based on the 2007 film of the same name and takes place in Bet Hatikvah, an isolated desert village in Israel where an Egyptian police band inadvertently lands and must spend the night.
The Broadway opening of the show, which stars Tony Shalhoub and Katrina Lenk, took place in November and received rapturous reviews; the show won the Obie for Best Musical, in addition to a slew of critics’ prizes, earlier this year for its celebrated Off-Broadway run. The official cast recording was announced in October.
The Band’s Visit has been uniformly praised for its music, and in their soft emotion and cultural specificity, the songs are quite distinct for a Broadway musical. Highlights include cafe owner Dina’s solo “Omar Sharif,” sung powerfully by Lenk, and the rousing final number, “Answer Me.” The entire original Broadway company has contributed to the album.
Entertainment Weekly exclusively premiered The Band’s Visit Broadway cast recording before it becomes digitally available on Dec. 15. (Pre-order it here.) Below, fans can listen to the entire album and check out photos from the cast recording.
“The Band’s Visit is unlike any modern musical I have ever seen,” Ghostlight Records founder and album executive producer Kurt Deutsch said in a statement. “David Yazbek creates a sonic and distinct world though his humor, beautiful melodies and character studies that is transcendent, thought-provoking and profoundly moving. It is an honor to work with him again and preserve this beautiful show with a cast recording.”
The Band’s Visit is currently playing at New York’s Ethel Barrymore Theatre.