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Entries in My Fair Lady (14)

Friday
Aug312018

Happy Alan Jay Lerner Centennial!

by Nathaniel R

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Alan Jay Lerner, one of the most crucial figures in the American songbook. The lyricist, librettist, and screenwriter was born in New York City. That's where he first made his mark, too, on Broadway with his first big hit Brigadoon in 1947. Soon he went Hollywood, working on original movie musicals as well as transfers of his famous work from the stage, and garnering 7 Oscar nominations and 3 wins (for his screenplays to Gigi and An American in Paris, and songwriting for"Gigi"). His career ended with The Little Prince (1974) but at the time of his death in 1986 he was working on a musical adaptation of My Man Godfrey and had started work on Andrew Lloyd Webber's Phantom of the Opera, though his only efforts are in the song "Masquerade" (uncredited).

Earlier this summer I had the opportunity to moderate a screening of My Fair Lady (1964) and my guest was Amy Asch who co-edited/annotated the book you see to your left here. So for fun today I thought I'd share a handful of favorite lyrics from his vast repertoire. 

You can sing along as you read...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jul032018

Doc Corner: The Dandy Glam of 'Love, Cecil'

by Glenn Dunks

Cecil Beaton was a dandy. He was an elegant fop, an aesthete, a bright young thing, a (mostly) homosexual. These are all words used to describe him in Love, Cecil, a charming bio-doc from director Lisa Immordino Vreeland. They are words not used in malice, but in reverence to a man whose singular attitudes flew in the face of what men were ‘supposed’ to be. Cecil Beaton had about him an air of posh aristocracy that belied his place in society, but which would ultimately allow him to become ingratiated into the inner-sanctum of Britain’s upper-class (including right up the Queen herself), the world of celebrity, and even the Academy as the Oscar-winning designer behind Gigi and My Fair Lady. He also just happens to be one of the great photographers of the 21st century

Love, Cecil is Vreeland’s most accomplished film to date...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Apr272018

"Carousel" and "Spongebob" lead the Drama Desk Nominations

by Nathaniel R

Jessie Mueller and Joshua Henry in Rodges & Hammerstein's revived "CAROUSEL" which led the nominations

As discussed in a previous recent post, most theatrical awards don't have as direct a correlation to the Tony Awards as film awards do to the Oscars. At the Drama Desk Awards, which have been around almost as long as the Tonys, Off Broadway is also considered so their nominations naturally differ quite a lot. Expected Tony frontrunner The Band's Visit received zero nominations due to its previous Off Broadway run (i.e. eligible last season instead with the Drama Desk)

The nominations are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Mar092018

Stage Door: "My Fair Lady" through the Years

by Nathaniel R

Tony season is (nearly) upon us so we're reviving the Stage Door column toward the end of March. But before we start reviewing shows, a history lesson.

Julie Andrews and Audrey Hepburn as Eliza Dolittle

My Fair Lady began its classic life in 1956 as a Broadway musical. No, that's not quite right. It began its life as George Bernard Shaw's play Pygmalion, which premiered way back in 1913, over a century ago! That play inspired the stage musical by Lerner & Loewe. On March 15th previews will begin for the latest Broadway revival. Lauren Ambrose (Six Feet Under) headlines as Eliza Dolittle, with Harry Hadden-Paton as Professor Henry Higgins, two time Tony winner Norbert Leo Butz (♥︎) as Eliza's father, and showbiz legend Dame Diana Rigg (The Avengers, On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Game of Thrones, etc...) as Higgins' mother. 

This will be the sixth major incarnation of the hit musical. Let's recap...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Apr052017

On This Day: Pharrell Williams, "Out" Nominees, and the 1964 Oscars

On this day in showbiz history, some gay Oscar lore, lots of two time Oscar winners, and future Oscar winner Pharrell Williams (and much more)...

1883 Oscar favorite Walter Huston (The Treasure of the Sierra Madre) born in Toronto. Without him no Huston acting dynasty!

1887
Helen Keller learns "water" from teacher Anne Sullivan, the moment will serve as the emotional climax of the popular stage and screen drama The Miracle Worker

1900
 Two time Oscar winner Spencer Tracy (Boys Town, Captain Courageous) born...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Mar212016

Stage Door: Revive This! (a musical lover's list)

This week I caught the Off Broadway hit Red Speedo about a swimmer who thinks he needs performance enhancement drugs. It was a totally solid thought-provoking play and if that sounds like faint praise it's only that because the raves have been so breathless. I had front row seats (not intentional) which is a weird angle with which to see this show because the pool part of the stage looms large in front of you (you do get splashed). I don't mind getting wet so I wished they'd used the pool part of the well designed stage a little more. The actors were uniformly terrific so if you're interested in the topic, by all means go. 

But back to Broadway itself. After finally seeing The King and I, one of last year's Tony winners, and the news that Hello Dolly will finally return (with Bette Midler!) after decades of invisibility, thoughts turned to shows that rarely get revived. Some shows like Les Miz & Gypsy & Fiddler on the Roof and a handful of others seem to return to the big stage every 4 or 5 years.  It begs the question of why others are never revived. So herewith a list!

10 Longest Running Shows That Have Not Been Revived in Over 20 Years 
Not a qualitative list but factual based on how long the show ran.

01 Oh! Calcutta! - the nude musical revue closed in 1989 after two very successful multiple-year runs. Why no third?

02 Life With Father -Broadway's longest running straight play ever closed way back in 1947 the same year the film version came out. Among its 1939 opening night cast was future Oscar winner Teresa Wright. 

more after the jump...

Click to read more ...