Saturday, November 5, 2016

And the gals who sing about 'em!

 Patricia Morison and her "I Hate Men" moment in Kiss Me Kate.
Cole Porter wrote this show, supposedly, in response to R&H's Oklahoma! 
How so? Well, that show was one of the first to actually
integrate the songs into the plot.
Before that musicals were more like revues, with songs placed sort of willy-nilly anywhere in the show. 
R&H changed that with songs that connected with the story, 
and even (heaven forbid) advanced it!
Cole followed suit with Kate and it became his biggest success. 

 Ava Gardner played Julie LaVerne in the 1951 movie version
of Showboat (born in 1927, on Broadway, 
midwives: Jerome Kern and Oscar H).
Below, the lady who dubbed for Ava: Annette Warren.
AW was a jazz singer in her own right,
but also dubbed for Lucille Ball in Fancy Pants and Sorrowful Jones.
We'll hear "Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man Of Mine".

 Leanne Cope and Robert Fairchild,
of the recent Broadway version of An American In Paris.
Leanne and Robert are ballet dancers (who can sing, who can act,
who can leap tall buildings in a single bound).
The NYTimes called the show a "visual feast".
We'll hear Leanne and "The Man I Love".
 Above, Barbra Steisand in the "Cornet Man" number 
in Funny Girl,
and below Kay Medford who played Mom Brice...
according to Jean Stapleton, Kay should "Find Herself A Man".
Garson Kanin, who became (at long last) the director of Funny Girl,
wrote Smash, a fictionalized accounting of FG's birth:
A saga that included conflicts of casting, directors,
choreographers, and more.
(BTW, it's still "in print".)

 Dee Hoty, above with David Carridine, in The Will Rodgers Follies
(we'll hear "No Man Left For Me", 
a Cy Coleman/Comden and Green creation), 
and below center in a more recent production,
Bright Star.
On the right, one of the show's creators: Banjo-toting Steve Martin.
On the left, trivia lovers, stands unshaven, over-alled Jeff Blumenkrantz,
the musical god from Murder For 2.

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