American Musicals, 1927-1949

American Musicals, 1927-1949

The Complete Books & Lyrics of Eight Broadway Classics

Book - 2014
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In this first volume of a lavishly produced two-volume collector's edition, The Library of America presents eight enduring masterpieces charting the evolution of the musical from the groundbreaking Show Boat through the genre's glorious mid-century. Based on new research, the complete libretto of each musical is presented in its Broadway opening night version, making these beloved cultural treasures available as never before. The texts are supplemented with additional song lyrics, biographical sketches of the musicals' creators, original cast lists, detailed accounts of each show's sources and production history, textual and explanatory notes, and full-color portfolios of illustrations featuring posters and photographs from each musical's original Broadway run. This volume gathers eight landmark musicals written by an astonishing roster of talents: Show Boat (1927) by Oscar Hammerstein II and Jerome Kern, an epic work that revolutionized the musical form; As Thousands Cheer (1933) by Irving Berlin and Moss Hart--published here for the first time--a peerless example of the Broadway revue and a time capsule of the early Depression era; Pal Joey (1940) by John O'Hara, Richard Rodgers, and Lorenz Hart--in a newly restored text--with its sophisticated take on sex and ambition in a Chicago nightclub; Rodgers and Hammerstein's triumphant Oklahoma! (1943), a celebration of the American heartland that signaled a major leap forward in the development of the book musical; On the Town (1944) by Betty Comden, Adolph Green, and Leonard Bernstein, the spirited tale of three sailors enjoying an unforgettable twenty-four-hour shore leave in "New York, New York"; Finian's Rainbow (1947) by Fred Saidy, E. Y. "Yip" Harburg, and Burton Lane, an improbable fusion of Irish mythology, Jim Crow politics, and the economics of the atomic age; Kiss Me, Kate (1948) by Samuel and Bella Spewack and Cole Porter, which brushed up Shakespeare to an irreverent Broadway sheen, and won the first Tony Award for Best Musical; and South Pacific (1949) by Rodgers, Hammerstein, and Joshua Logan, a Pulitzer Prize-winning success that tapped into still-vivid emotions about the experience of World War II [Publisher description]

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