A more explanatory title might be "Sons of Sondheim" since this disc is the first anthology of the young, brainy, literate, hip songwriters who are influenced by Stephen Sondheim and just might turn Broadway's artistic compass several degrees away from Disneyland. Musically, they break most unwritten precepts by freely modulating into distant keys and throwing traditional notions about form and symmetry to the wind when dramatic content dictates it. Adam Guettel is the master storyteller in "Come to Jesus" (about abortion) and "Baby Moon" (about pregnancy). Michael John La Chiusa writes great character sketches: his "Mistress of the Senator" might as well be a tour through the mind of Monica Lewinsky. Ricky Ian Gordon is the most subtle, poetic, and abstract, exploring interior states of being, using the words of Langston Hughes and others. McDonald is ideal throughout, deploying her lustrous soprano with the dramatic relish that has won her three Tony Awards. This could be a watershed release.