On January 30th Legacy, a division of Sony Music, released an "expanded" version of Bat Out Of Hell. This new edition features two additional tracks recorded live at Nassau Coliseum in Hempstead (Long Island), New York in 1978. New tracks include Steinman's adaptation of classical composer Maurice Ravel's "Bolero"( which was used to open the stage show for the original Bat Out Of Hell Tour) and a blistering 15 minute "in-concert" version of the album's title track. Read a well-written review of this release here.
I'm Obsessed With Obsession
MTV announced, as part of it's plan to develop 10 new original movies, "Wuthering Heights." The Emily Bronte classic about obsessive love takes a new spin in a contemporary adaptation based on a screenplay by Jim Steinman and Patricia Louisiana Knop. Jim will be executive producer and compose the original score for the movie. The writers, Max Enscoe and Annie deYoung, are currently working on two horror-thriller scripts (Day The World Ended & The Spider) for HBO and expect their first cinematic release to come in Fall of 2001 with "Wooly Boys." MTV generally spends in excess of 4 million dollars per movie and expects to complete production on "Wuthering Heights" in late 2001 or early 2002.
We'll Miss It, No Matter What
Whistle Down The Wind has closed in London after a successful 2 1/2 year run that spawned the immensely successful single, No Matter What. Collectors will be interested to know that Donny Osmond covers that song on his current release "This Is The Moment."
After a West End run of over two and a half years, the Andrew Lloyd Webber
and Jim Steinman musical, Whistle Down the Wind, will close at the Aldwych
theatre on Saturday Jan 6th 2001.
Andrew Lloyd Webber said, "I am sad to see "Whistle Down the Wind" go, though
a two and half year run is pretty good. Although with hindsight I feel I
might have been treading water, the show did contain 'No Matter What', my
biggest ever Number One hit in the UK, and many other songs of which I am
extremely proud. That is why I will return to it."
There is talk about the show possibly changing theaters - (the Aldwych is not
one of the many owned by ALW's RUG) - or taking it on tour. It's sad news
because the musical is really very beautiful, consistently placed in the Top
10 selling shows of the West End and recouped it's investment.
Let The Revels Begin - Vampires Dance On Broadway
Dance Of The Vampires is scheduled to arrive on Broadway in Fall 2001.
The show will feature book, music and lyrics by Steinman and he'll also be co-directing.
Holy Cow - It's Batman
Work on Batman - The Musical, (a Warners Brothers project), continues.
Steinman provides music and lyrics for a David Ives book. It will likely come to
Broadway in the 2001-2002 season.
Isn't It Romantic?
Frank Wildhorn is developing a new concept in musical theater. His project
is called The Romantics and on it he'll collaborate with a variety of
lyricists, including Jim Steinman, Don Black and Stephen Schwartz. Wildhorn
describes it as "a multi-layered project about ten couples." (Couples include
Adam & Eve, Bonnie & Clyde, and F.Scott & Zelda Fitzgerald). Wildhorn hopes
The Romantics will spawn two albums, a television special, material to use in
a concert setting and two complete musicals. Wildhorn's wife (Jekyll and Hyde
star) Linda Eder, is the female star of the show and will be featured in all
female lead parts. Steinman will provide lyrics for the Ladyhawke section of
the musical. Ladyhawke is the story of two lovers - cursed to walk through
life together, yet endlessly apart. Separated by an evil spell, they
alternate between animal (hawk or wolf) and human form - allowed to be
together, both as humans, during the brief moments when day turns to night
and night turns to day. A total eclipse helps bring an end to black magic
that plagues them.
Until The Very End, I'm There
RUG Denies Whistle Down The Wind Closing Rumors
Rumors have been circulating, (largely started by remarks made by Andrew
Lloyd Webber to Variety Magazine while doing press for his current musical,
The Beautiful Game) that Whistle Down The Wind may close in January 2001.
RUG denies this and is booking through Spring 2001. Whistle Down The Wind
continues to do well - 2 1/2 years since opening, it generally ranks in the
West End Top 10 and it's almost completely recouped all investment money.
The Aldwych Theater, where Whistle is housed, is not one of the many West
End theaters owned by RUG/ALW. My hope is that this philosophical and
poignant work will continue to be available to audiences for many years to
No Matter Where There's Darkness, I Bring My Song To You:
Michael Ball sings No Matter What on his upcoming release "Michael Ball - This
Time...It's Personal." The CD is scheduled for released on October 23rd with
a video release scheduled to follow.
Forever's Gonna Start Tonight
Pia Douwes, Uwe Kroeger, Viktor Gernot and Marika Lichter teamed to perform
four concerts in Vienna last September. The show, called "In Love Again...With
Musicals," featured a Pia Douwes and Uwe Kroeger duet on Totale Finsternis
(Total Eclipse Of the Heart) from Tanz der Vampire. A live recording release
is planned and this number is slated for inclusion. A release date has not
yet been announced.
Did You Get To Try Anything New?
In addition to the above, Jim continues to work on a variety of exciting
projects. Although it's premature to discuss these "back burner" projects
with certainty, they include developing new talent for the Ravenous Records
label, developing a screenplay for TV, plus work on an assortment of
No Way Jose!
Jim Steinman is not involved with Meat Loaf's latest recording endeavor, Fun
Restless Records / DAS Label Press Release
23 YEARS AND 37 MILLION RECORDS LATER …
"BAT OUT OF HELL" GOES COUNTRY
Meat Loaf's "Bat Out Of Hell" was released in 1977 and has sold over 37 million copies since. A new spin on the extraordinarily successful rock-opera classic will feature various country artists covering the tunes on "Bat Out Of Nashville." More
On July 26th VH1 plans to air "Meat Loaf: To Hell and Back," a new original movie that tells Meat Loaf's version of his dramatic rise to fame in the 1970s, his subsequent fall as a result of personal and professional problems, and his return to fame after recording the sequel to Bat Out Of Hell in 1993 with Jim Steinman. W. Earl Brown ("There's Something About Mary") stars as Meat Loaf, Dedee Pfeiffer ("For Your Love") as Lesley Aday and Zachary Throne ("Frank Leaves for the Orient") as the Meat's legendary inventor, Jim Steinman. The film is directed by Jim McBride ("Great Balls of Fire," "The Big Easy").
Steinman and most others portrayed in the film, aside from Meat Loaf, were not consulted on the script with regard to accuracy or content.
Stuttgart's Tanz der Vampire stars Kevin Tarte and Barbara Köhler's performance of "Totale Finsternis" on the German TV station ZDF-Sendung on the program "Straße der Lieder" has been rescheduled. They are now tentatively scheduled to appear April 22nd.
The Stuttgart cast of Tanz der Vampire are also scheduled to appear on "Kinderquatsch mit Michael" on April 1st but that date is also subject to change.
Jim's record label, Ravenous, is now associated with the Columbia Records family of music. A variety of projects are being planned.
"Dance Of The Vampires" (Stuttgart, Germany version) opens March 31, 2000 with previews beginning mid/late March. Returning visitors to the show will be pleased to find an extended and re-written Draussen Ist Freiheit/dance sequence. Visit Stella on-line for booking and ticket information.
"Dance Of The Vampires" (United States version) is working toward a Fall 2001 Broadway arrival. Contrary to a report appearing in a New York paper's gossip column, Roman Polanski will not be directing the U.S. production.
Jim continues to prepare "Batman : The Musical" for Warner Bros. with book by David Ives, music and lyrics by Steinman.
Filming is set to begin on VH1's Meat Loaf bio-pic "To Hell And Back." Although an actor has been cast and a role scripted for Steinman, Jim was not involved in script development nor will he assist with production.
A United States release of "The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Plays The Music Of Meat Loaf" is tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, April 25, 2000. Orchestral renditions of Bat Out Of Hell, Dead Ringer For Love, You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth, Rock And Roll Dreams Come Through, I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That), Read 'em And Weep, Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad, and Paradise By The Dashboard Light are featured on the 12 track collection. The Royal Philharmonic, one of the premier orchestras in the world, have previously featured the songs of U2, R.E.M Oasis and Madonna.
Current Cast For The Stuttgart Premiere Of Dance Of The Vampires:
Count von Krolock - Kevin Tarte
Von Krolock (alternate) - Charles Fornara
Alfred - Aris Sas
Alfred (alternate) - Fritz Schmid
Sarah - Barbara Köhler
Sarah (alternate) - Christina Koeb
Professor Abronsius - Werner Bauer
Chagal - James Sbano
Rebecca - Anne Welte
Herbert - Thomas Mülner
Magda - Maaike Schuurmans
Koukol - Torsten Flach
Raymond Sepe - Understudy Krolock / Chagal
René Rosenburg - Understudy Alfred / Professor
Isabella Prühs - Understudy Magda
Juliana Albrecht - Understudy Rebecca
Damian Kacperski, Akos Tihanyi, Philip Ranson, Bart Sluis, Witalji Kühne, Francseco Abós, Anne Tiger Days, Liane Maynard, Isabella Massé, Virginia Kop, Tiziana Doneda, Nuria Castells
Norbert Kohler - Understudy Alfred / Herbert
Frank Röbling - Understudy Professor
Alexander Wengel - Understudy Koukol
Andrew Hunt - Dance Captain
Lillemor Spitzer - Understudy Sarah
Maryanne Kelly - Understudy Magda
Marion Furtner - Understudy Sarah
Tanz der Vampire prepares to open in Stuttgart, Germany
(Previews start March 17th, Opening Night - March 31st, 2000)
Count von Krolock: Kevin Tarte (alternate): Charles Fornara
Alfred: Aris Sas (alternate): Fritz Schmid
Sarah: Barbara Köhler (alternate): Christina Koeb
Professor Abronsius: Werner Bauer
Chagal : James Sbano
Rebecca: Anne Welte
Herbert: Thomas Mülner
Magda: Maaike Schuurmans
Koukol: Torsten Flach
On Saturday March 25th, Kevin Tarte and Barbara Köhler (Stuttgart's Krolock and Sarah) will perform
"Totale Finsternis" on the German TV station ZDF-Sendung on the program "Straße der Lieder."
NEW YORK MORNING SHOW LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO PROMOTE OVERLOOKED CANDIDATES FOR ROCK HALL
The New York morning team of Steve Mason & Sue Kolinsky who host what they
call "The Anti Show" on 102.7 WNEW have launched the online ROCK HALL OVERSIGHT PETITION at the show's website at
The list of overlooked candidates was compiled by Mason, Kolinsky, and callers over a period of weeks. "There were some obvious omissions like
Aerosmith and Queen," says Mason, "but there are also some personal favorites." Sue Kolinsky is a big fan of Steely Dan and Laura
Nyro, while Mason is a Harry Chapin aficionado and, having grown up in Toledo, has a soft spot for straight ahead rock like 38 Special, REO
Speedwagon, and Cheap Trick. Two of the candidates who have clearly earned a place in The Rock Hall, but might not garner support without a public push are Burt Bacharach
and Bernie Taupin. "Bacharach's career and influence spans the 60's, 70's, 80's, and 90's," Mason points out. "From his string of hits with Dionne
Warwick to his recent collaborations with Elvis Costello, he is a distinctive musical voice that deserves recognition. As for
Taupin, it is
his lyrics that created hit after hit for Elton John. The Rock Hall is for songwriters as much as it is for performers."
Visitors to the website at www.stevemason.com can vote for as many of the candidates
as they believe are deserving of Rock immortality. Mason &
Kolinsky will foreward all online petitions to Rock Hall voters, the Rock &
Roll Hall of Fame, and to major music publications. Here is a list of all of
the candidates on THE MASON & KOLINSKY ROCK HALL OVERSIGHT PETITION.
38 Special, Aerosmith, Burt Bacharach, Harry Chapin, Cheap Trick, Don McLean,
Moody Blues, Rush, Laura Nyro, Queen, Stevie Nicks (solo), REO Speedwagon, Jim Steinman (writer/producer),
Bernie Taupin, Steely Dan
Jim recently interviewed for 20/20. The episode is scheduled to air Thursday October 28th 1999 on ABC Television.
The Classic Albums Special : Meat Loaf - Bat Out Of Hell will be shown on ITV on October 23rd 1999. This show features extensive interview clips with Jim. See Rockman's Classic Albums preview section for samples. The show will also be released on VHS and DVD. Limited edition packages including the Bat Out Of Hell CD will also be issued.
The CD Pavarotti & Friends For Guatemala and Kosovo has been released on Decca Records (289466600-2). The album features a spectacular debut with Pavarotti and Boyzone performing No Matter What. There is also a video of the concert, directed by Spike Lee, available (440074220-3).
A new CD called "The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Plays The Music Of Meat Loaf"
(MCCD403) has been released in the United Kingdom. The CD features orchestral
versions of 12 songs of which 8 are penned by Jim - those songs are:
Bat Out Of Hell / Dead Ringer / You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth /
Rock And Roll Dreams Come Through / I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do
That) / Read 'Em And Weep / Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad / Paradise By The Dashboard Light
The CD can be ordered on-line for HMV Direct, the telephone # (U.S. callers) is
011 44 990 334578
Whistle Down The Wind has extended it's booking period at the Aldwych Theater in London. You can now purchase tickets through September 2000.