Licensing Company: Concord Theatricals
Flower Drum Song (Revival)
A dazzling update to Rodgers & Hammerstein’s jewel, Flower Drum Song. Mei-Li is a naive young refugee from Mao’s communist China, who befriends Wang, a man struggling to keep the Chinese opera tradition alive.
This licensed version is based upon the 2002-03 Broadway Revival Production with a book by David Henry Hwang.
Unlike the original R&H version, this updated version is orchestrated to be conducted from the piano although it can also be stick conducted at the podium.
There are 2 keyboard parts in the show. As mentioned, there is a Piano/Conductor book which is all piano with no programming.
The Keyboard book has dozens of unique patches that range from orchestral (woodwinds, brass, strings) to keyboards (various acoustic pianos, electric piano, accordion, organs, clav) to the Traditional Chinese instruments such as pipa, yangquin, guzheng, and sheng. There is also lots of harp, a glass harmonica, and even a theramin patch. This is a very enjoyable book to play and really gives the score its authenticity. It is not technically difficult but would benefit from an advanced player who is comfortable with lots of keyboard programming.
ORIGINAL MUSICAL EQUIPMENT USED
Double stack MIDI keyboard controllers:
Keyboard A – Kurzweil 2500X
Keyboard B – Korg M1
ORIGINAL MUSIC TEAM
Music by: Richard Rodgers
Lyrics by: Oscar Hammerstein II
Book by: David Henry Hwang
Based on the original book by: Oscar Hammerstein II and Joseph A. Fields
Based on the novel by: C. Y. Lee
Music orchestrated by: Don Sebesky
Musical Director: David Chase
Vocal and dance arrangements by: David Chase
Music adapted by: David Chase
Musical Director: David Chase
Conductor: David Evans
Keyboards: David Evans
Violin: Claire Chan
Viola/Violin: Julius Rene Wirth
Violin/Mandolin: Mineko Yajima
Cello/Erhu: Clay C. Ruede
Bass: Lou Bruno
Flutes/Bamboo Flutes/Dizi: Janet A. Axelrod
Woodwinds: Richard A. Heckman, Ronald Jannelli and Chuck Wilson
Trumpet: Christian Jaudes and Stu Satalof
Horn: Russ Rizner
Trombone: Jack Schatz
Guitar/Pipa: Andrew Schwartz
Drums: Raymond Grappone
Percussion: Howard Joines
Musical Coordinator: Seymour ‘Red’ Press
Music Preparation: Miller Music Services
“To create something new, we must first love what is old,”claims Mei-Li in Tony Award winner David Henry Hwang’s new adaptation of this Rodgers and Hammerstein jewel. The sentiment is obviously shared by the author himself, who has created something dazzlingly new while honoring the original material. Mei-Li flees Mao’s communist China after the murder of her father and finds herself in San Francisco’s Chinatown. This naive young refugee is befriended by Wang, who is struggling to keep the Chinese opera tradition alive despite his son’s determination to turn the old opera house into a swingin’ Western-style nightclub. A unique blending of American razz-ma-tazz and stylized Chinese opera traditions creates a beautifully theatrical tapestry. The wonderful score, by turns lushly romantic and showbiz-brassy, retains all of its luster in this lovely new version of an American classic. Mei-Li’s gradual assimilation is informed by her realization that the old and new can coexist when there is respect for both.