Opera stars usually do this kind of album when their voices are no longer up to par but it's good to hear that Ms. Von Stade's voice is in good condition and she is able to negotiate the lower range quite nicely. Perhaps she was just tired of the pace an international star has to keep up these days. The delight of this CD is the number of Rodgers and Hart rarities she sings. Songs from 'Lido Lady','Chee Chee','Betsy','Two Weeks With Pay' and 'Dearest Enemy' aren't things you run into every day. It almost made me wish the entire project had been devoted to those rare works exclusively ... but that's no way to make a recording saleable. The familiar songs have been recorded many times and Von Stade does them well, precisely as they were written, which would make Richard Rodgers very happy, and Larry Hart's clever show lyrics, some of which may be unfamiliar. Ms. Von Stade was always an endearing performer and remains so here and sounds as though she's enjoying herself immensely, particularly in that gem from 'Connecticut Yankee', 'To Keep My Love Alive' and I only wish she'd done all the verses. The engineers have given the singer a 'stage' presence (no close microphoning) which adds to the overall feeling of a 'theatrical' performance. The orchestra, under the able leadership of the late John McGlinn, also uses 'theatrical' arrangements with nice 'toe-tapping' up tempo interludes. Even the chorus sounds like they've just come from doing a performance. All in all a really fine collection tailor-made for anyone who enjoys musical theatre ... on Broadway or in The West End.