Thursday, September 13, 2018

Sweet AND Charitable!

"If My Friends Could Se Me Now",
from Sweet Charity.
The quintessential Broadway creative team
worked on this show:
Cy Coleman, Dorothy Fields, Neil Simon,
Bob Fosse, and Gwen Verdon.
Scenic design (which must have included the bear rug idea,
and maybe the champagne bottle on his head)
was by Robert Randolph.
Costumes...Irene Sharaff,
Tony Award winner and costumier for over 80 films,
as well as Broadway gems
like The King And I.

 Gwen with Bud Vest
who played Vittorio Vidal,
the Italian film star.

 Every night, Charity's "tattoo" had to be reapplied,
with "Charlie", the no-account boyfriend. 

"Rich Man's Frug",
Broadway style,
with Irene's creations.
Edith Head got the gig for the movie version.

 Above, "I Love To Cry At Weddings"
with Gwen and John Wheeler center,
Fandango girls and patrons. 
Below, the "taxi-dance" gals "dressing room".

 Arnold Soboloff (center),
as Daddy Johann Sebastian Brubeck,
"The Rhythm of Life"

Publicity pose with a member of
Ringling Brothers.

 Gwen with Shirley McClaine
who would snare the Charity role in the movie,
done 3 years later.
Perhaps Shirley had the "bigger name" in the movie biz,
but it was unfortunate that Ms. Verdon wasn't used. 
(Gwen coached her in the role, nonetheless.)
 The revival of the show on Broadway
starred Debbie Allen,
and Gwen was there AGAIN to teach and re-work choreography.
After rehearsing the national tour of the revival
for its opening in Chicago,
Bob died of a heart attack.

 Gwen would live for 14 more years, 
performing in television, plays, film, and 
working to keep Fosse's legacy alive.
She passed away in 2000, at the age of 75.

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