Don't be silly, you're not long-winded at all.
Regarding orchestration/arranging: I can only speak as a listener and lover of great arrangements. For me, NO ONE orchestrates a pop song like Burt does. How he does it -- I have no idea. What I love about his orchestrations is the complexity of it and how so much is going on... different rhythms, his countermelodies, his harmonies, his choice of instruments, when they come in, when they go out, his background singers and their harmonies, etc. etc. I think of his very first A&M album, "Reach Out", and how I was blown away by his orchestrations. It boils down to Burt's imagination and creativity. I've never seen anything like it. There's such excitement and movement in his orchestrations. Think of what Burt did with "Freefall", as just one example.
Regarding "Promises, Promises": If Jonathan Tunick really orchestrated all those songs by himself, then, by god, you could fool me! Because I saw that original Broadway production and I would have bet my life that Burt did those orchestrations. Jonathan Tunick can not be that great. As far as I'm concerned, if JT did orchestrate the show, then Burt had to have told him what instruments to use and where to use them. If anything, they simply had to work in tandem with Burt saying "I want this and I want that". If JT did, in fact, orchestrate it himself, then he channelled Burt very very well. And JT must have listened to all of Burt's songs over and over again and figured out what Burt did, but the original "Promises, Promises" sounded, to me, exactly as if Burt had done it himself.
Regarding "Gift of the Magi": As things stand now, with those reviews, I don't see the show coming to Broadway.
Neil Simon knew how to write plays. He was genius, for heaven's sakes. He had one hit show after another on Broadway. One of his shows was "Promises, Promises". He was the Shakespeare of his time. Burt, Hal and Neil simply should have written another Broadway musical, for heaven's sakes. After a year or so, Burt should have gotten over the bad experience he says he had, and simply scored another musical with Neil and Hal. "Promises, Promises" was a huge hit. Think if Richard Rodgers had quit after his first show. My god! Burt and Hal could have been the next Rodgers and Hammerstein. Oh well, that just wasn't meant to be, I guess. Que sera sera.
From what I'm reading about "Gift of the Magi", it just doesn't seem big enough to be a Broadway hit. I hope I'm wrong.