In Transit: Original Broadway Cast Recording
Distributed by: Hollywood Records
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
When I first saw promos for the new Broadway musical, In Transit, I was excited. Just the bits of the show I could see brought me back to the days of riding the subway system in New York City. When I was offered the chance to check out a sampling of the Original Broadway Cast Album of In Transit, scheduled for release by Hollywood Records in July 2017, I couldn’t wait to check it out.
In Transit tells the tale of eleven New Yorkers faced with the challenges of living in the city. As we travel along on the subway, each member of the cast notes how long it takes them to get anywhere while offering us glimpses into their lives. Jane is a struggling actress who works jobs she doesn’t really want to work just to make a living so she could one day get the one she does want. Nate was a successful businessman, but an email with some disparaging comments about his boss that he accidentally sends “reply all” gets him canned. Now he is trying to find a job, but realizes he won’t get anywhere without money on his Metrocard. His sister, Ali, has been pining over her ex, but she soon realizes he isn’t worth ruining her own life over. Steven and Trent are lovers with a problem – Trent’s mother has expresses some very uncomfortable homophobic views. She has no idea that he is gay. Althea is a New York City Transit worker who wants more out of life.
I was only given a seven-song excerpt of the In Transit: Original Broadway Cast Album, but I loved every bit of what I heard. In Transit is entirely a cappella and I was amazed at the talent of each and every performer in the cast. Cast members include David Abeles (Once), Moya Angela (Ghost The Musical), Justin Guarini (American Idol), Steven Cantor (2012 American Beatbox Vice Champion), Telly Leung (Allegiance), Erin Mackey (Amazing Grace), Gerianne Perez, Margo Seibert (Rocky), James Snyder (If/Then), Mariand Torres, Nicholas Ward (On the Town), Adam Bashian, Laurel Harris (Beautiful), Amy Justman (Phantom of the Opera), Arbender Robinson (Shuffle Along), Brad Stanley, Aurelia Williams and Chelsea Williams (Mamma Mia!).
The opening song, Deep Beneath the City / Not There Yet is hilarious and reminds me of all the things that used to go through my head while waiting for a train in the New York City subway system – the lateness of the train, the crowding, the smells, the lateness of the train, the things I needed to do for the day, the lateness of the train, and more. Do What I Do – I think most of us can relate to Jane’s struggle to make ends meet so she can do what she really loves. I think we can also relate to her dilemma when her boss offers her A Little Friendly Advice about quitting her dreams. Wingman is also a story that those of us who participated - or are still participating in - the dating scene can relate to.
I was utterly amazed that this musical was entirely a cappella, but pleasantly surprised that the cast had the vocals and beatbox skills to carry it out. Listening to this album has only succeeded in making me want to hear more! Now I’m going to have to go out and buy the full edition of the soundtrack to add to my Broadway musical collection!