This double album features a huge selection of numbers from twelve great Noel Coward shows, including ‘London Calling’ (1923) and ‘Pacific 1860’ (1946). Indispensable for Noel Coward and Gertrude Lawrence fans alike – a treat for everyone.
“The CD has the highest quality sound of any recording from the 30s and 40s I have heard. I have listened to it twice and feel the recording captures some of the spirit of both Noel and Gertie” Arthur Bickford, USA
Born in Teddington, Middlesex on 16 December 1899, Noel Pierce Coward was a star pupil of the Itala Conti stage school and was recalled by fellow pupil and contemporary Gertrude Lawrence as “…a thin, unusually shy boy with a slight lisp”. Little could either teenager have foreseen the years of world fame that would follow and the times when they would work as a team and enthrall their audiences. Although moderately successful as a young actor, Noel’s first big break came in 1923 in the Andre Charlot revue London Calling where he appeared with his soul mate Gertrude Lawrence. As librettist and composer, his Parisian Pierrot as performed by Gertrude was the hit of the show.
The following year saw Coward’s career really begin to snowball. He had written a meaty part for himself in a play called ‘The Vortex’, which created a sensation with its frank depiction of drug taking.
With the revue On With The Dance in 1925 Noel began a nine year partnership with leading impresario C B Cochran. Unsure of Noel’s composing abilities, Cochran refused to entrust the music to him, conceding only on the book and lyrics. Philip Braham was commissioned for the music but the wily Coward ensured that much of the music (his) was inexorably entwined with his sketches. In the event, Coward’s own Poor Little Rich Girl, as sung by Alice Delysia, was the best remembered song of the revue. Cochran had wanted it removed but Coward insisted; his point was proven.