Survey of Musical Theatre, Test 3, 1940s
Survey of Musical Theatre, Test 3, 1940s THEA 11013
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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by Shelby Harris on Saturday February 13, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to THEA 11013 at Texas Christian University taught by Dr. Michael James in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 253 views. For similar materials see Survey Of Musical Theatre in Theatre at Texas Christian University.
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Date Created: 02/13/16
1940s Broadway 02/10/2016 ▯ Golden Age of Broadway- 1940s-1960s Original cast recordings The “book” musical takes over o The STORY matters o Characters matter o Lyrics drive the story First to produce significant “classics” still performed o Oklahoma! Cheap racial humor is eradicated o Man who is mostly responsible for this is Oscar Hammerstein II Musical’s artistry changed decisively and forever o Rogers and hammerstein come up with a formula for writing songs that has to be used until about the 60s Tony awards established Depression helps musical theatre “grow up” WWII will help it mature even more ▯ Pal Joey 1940 Mature show Rodgers and Hart Major breakthrough for them because they are writing a more adult oriented form of musical theatre Partnership about to end Unsavory, true-to-life characters/unhappy ending o Characters that just aren’t very nice Jiggalo, sleeze ball has an affair w a married woman Suggestion of cocaine use and homosexuality within minutes of overture Star- Gene Kelly made his character less awful Well-received but had to wait until 1952 revival to be a hit Radio & records made it a hit o People started buying one of the songs “bewitched, bothered, and bewildered” – a standard on all record labels Original Cast Recordings The age of the long- running musical like Oklahoma! Coincides with availability of Original Cast Recordings. But- it was not the first Bdwy show recorded Oklahoma! Sold over a million copies Set a precedent for popularity of original cast albums And helped keep musicals running longer on broadway o Records could only hold 3-4 minutes per side had to have an album o 1940s- up to 60 minutes on one single record album still had to leave songs out revealed a good score expose a bad show can misrepresent a show o orchestra may be augmented o songs may be slower or faster o verses may be cut o change in running order Can create incorrect imagery of show ▯ Overture Provided a buffer for latecomers Let audiences settle in Create mood transition from outside world Instantly establish tone of the musical- comedy or serious Give a hit of what is to come- sophistication, exotic, period ▯ Modern Musicals Rarely have an overture Start “cold” with song or scene or high-concept production number o We are used to that now with television Began to fall out of favor with the advent of Rock’nRoll in the 60s Audience shorter attention spans Union overtime- fear of running long o People didn’t want to keep the show to go overtime bc producers didn’t want to pay ▯ December 8,1941- US declares war on Germany and Japan World views change Broadway changes with it ▯ This Is the Army 1942 Revue written by Irving Berlin o Also stars in it Produced by the US Government Sanctioned by Army Huge moral booster It was a benefit to raise money for the Army Emergency Relief Fund Cast was entirely real soldiers Storyline: o Draftees view of Army o Also included navy and army air corp Military strictly segregated until 1948- on executive order by President Truman But- army FIRST to integrate in WWII—berlin portrays that in his cast “oh, how I hate to get up in the morning”- 10 minute standing ovation on opening night ▯ 1943- Larry Hart died (Rodgers and Hart) there had already been a problem Hart rejected Rodgers’ story and said he didn’t like it Larry hart showed up at the theatre severely drunk when working on “A Connecticut Yankee” o Alcoholic bc he was gay and even though no one on Bdwy cared, he drank Rodgers threw him out Found on the street passed out Died of pneumonia Rogers found someone who was interested in his story ▯ Rodgers and Hammerstein 1943 Oklahoma! ▯ Oklahoma! 1943 Bdwy stunned at pairing of Rodgers and Hammerstein Hammerstein had 6 flops in a row- hadn’t been successful since showboat Will contribute more to musical theatre than any other individual Show based on a flop- a dark play Story considered unsuitable for a musical--- just like showboat— which Hammerstein wrote Changed titles twice o First title based on original play- green grow the lilacs o Second name- Away we go! o Decided days before opening day to add another song- Oklahoma! And decided to change the show’s name 1942- changed the musical forever first musical with ethnic: o sound o lyrics o music folk idiom/dialogue (like show boat) trying to give the show a real feel of Americana 1 time since show boat to see real Americana onstage o trying to make americans proud of their roots Hammerstein wrote lyrics first- staying true to (dark) book Lyrics now drive/propel the story Established the “integrated musical” started with showboat Perfects the conditional ballad Explored relationships- now vital to successful play or musical Fascination in all the characters 1 time a main character dies in a musical o but we don’t see it established long first act & short second act o a formula still used today people said it wouldn’t work o “no gags, no gals, no chance” o contentious love affair o most dramatic number goes to the villain o “integrated” musical did not highlight a star or have hits singing is like dialogue the musical scene vs song o someone starts singing a song and instead of the song ending, the music keeps playing and they talk and then they start to sing again folk dancing and Dream Ballet o dream ballet perfected by agnes de mille in this show o 15 minutes dance- now integral- tells what script and score cannot o specific music written for dance dreams tell why, not what rouben mamoulian = director was now considered an integral component ran for 5 years- 2,212 national tour ran 10 years then returned to bdwy most often produces musical in the world created new “rules” o fascinaiotion in characters o so Conditional ballad can now sing a song about love even if just met “if I loved you” “make believe” ▯ ▯
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