The word "Orient" is a nineteenth-century European term, and a concept that carries the lush overtones of mystery, luxury, and exotica. These extravagant narrations of familiar Middle Eastern and Indian poets and Western poets writing about the region harken back to the "mysterious East" of yesteryear. The selections are heavy in meter and rhyme, the narrations are bombastically melodramatic and the musical interludes swell the pulse and the heart. It's all horribly, almost comically, over the top, yet it works wonderfully well, too, in the way old movies and forgotten pop tunes do. The musical selections are especially good, and give focus and purpose - and balance - to what might otherwise be kitsch.