When I recorded this album I was in my twentieth year in the professional theatre. (I started very young!) Although I had jumped at any chance to act without music whenever possible, there’s no doubt that I have been most fortunate when acting in musicals.
My first professional engagement was in a touring production of the Newley/Bricusse show ‘The Roar of the Greasepaint’ in 1964. Three years later, I made it into the West End as part of the chorus of ‘Hair’ and by 1973 I had my first leading role – Sandy in ‘Grease’ – immediately followed by Rita in ‘Billy’, playing opposite Michael Crawford. But of course my real break was in 1978 when I was chosen to play the title role in ‘Evita’, and thus became the first actress to sing “Don’t Cry For Me Argentina” on the stage anywhere in the world. Three years later, I had the honour to be the originator of another theatrical standard, “Memory” from ‘Cats’.
There had been many great songs from shows which I never got to sing – some because I was a humble member of the chorus, some because I wasn’t even in the show. This album was my chance to put that right. When I was in ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ I longed to sing “I Don’t Know How To Love Him”, and when I was in ‘Hair’ “Good Morning Sunshine”. And in ‘Evita’ almost the only song of that exhausting score during which I was able to relax offstage was “Another Suitcase In Another Hall”. So in addition to “Argentina” and “Memory” I included here those three songs from shows in which I had actually appeared. The other seven numbers on this album were from shows which at the time I had never played in.
Tony Visconti and his immaculate production made these superb songs sound superber – is that a real word? To all the writers of these wonderful stages songs, my eternal gratitude.
Note: The ‘Stages’ album was a top 5 hit and stayed on the British album chart for a staggering 48 weeks. It also attained a 2x Platinum certification by the BPI (The British Recorded Music Industry) for sales in the UK – this award marks sales of 600,000 units of an individual album title to UK retailers.
Memory (from the musical 'Cats')
Be On Your Own (from the musical 'Nine')
Another Suitcase In Another Hall (from the musical 'Evita')
Send In The Clowns (from the musical 'A Little Night Music')
Running Back For More (from the musical 'Blondel')
Good Morning, Starshine (from the musical 'Hair')
Don't Cry For Me Argentina (from the musical 'Evita')
I Don't Know How To Love Him (from the musical 'Jesus Christ Superstar')
What I Did For Love (from the musical 'A Chorus Line')
One Night Only (from the musical 'Dreamgirls')
Losing My Mind (from the musical 'Follies')
Tomorrow (from the musical 'Annie')