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Rodgers and Hart Revisited

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  American's Sweetheart 1931

[Plot] [Reviews] [Merchandise links]

 Musical Numbers   
  • Mr. Dolan Is Passing Through
  • In Califor-n-i-a
  • My Sweet
  • I've Got Five Dollars
  • Sweet Geraldine
  • There's So Much More
  • We'll Be the Same
  • How About It?
  • Innocent Chorus Girls of Yesterday
  • A Lady Must Live
  • I Want a Man
  • Now I Believe
  • You Ain't Got No Savoir Faire
  • Two Unfortunate Orphans
  • Tonight Or Never
  • Come Across (Unused)
  • Tarts In Ermine (Unused)
  • Tennessee Dan
  • Gave Me Eyes
  • I'll Be A Star (early version of You've Got That?)
  • Cat Can Look At A Queen (Dropped before the pre-Broadway tryout)
  • I'm Hard To Please (Unused)

 


Lyrics by Lorenz Hart
Music by Richard Rodgers
Produced by Laurence Schwab & Frank Mendel
Book by Herbert Fields
Directed by Monty Wooley
Choreoghraphy Bobby Connoly
Starring: Jack Whiting and Harriet Lake (Ann Sothern)
It ran for 135 performances.
Early Titles: Came The Dawn and Came Across

 Plot   
Michael and Geraldine, came to Hollywood from St. Paul, Minnesota, determined to be silent-movie stars Geraldine becomes a success, Michael doesn't. Then come the talkies, and the situation reversed: Geraldine has a lisp (remember Marion Davies?), and now Michael is the hot property. Needless to say, love wins out in the end. First mooted as Came the Dawn, then Come Across, it finally appropriated Mary Pickford's nickname to become America's Sweetheart

 Reviews   
Critical opinion was divided. Although Brooks Atkinson of the Times thought the wit clumsy and the humor foul, he said Rodgers and Hart had "acquitted themselves most creditably." Gabriel of the American thought the show "jovial tuneful lively," its songs "close to being the pleasantest Rodgers and Hart have composed." John Mason Brown of the Post liked Larry's "drolly rhymed lyrics." Sid Silverman of Variety singled out I've Got Five Dollars and and We'll Be the Same for praise and judged the rest "as sweet a group of topical lyrics as Hart has ever turned out. Maybe they're his best."
Charles Darnton of the World was less generous. The show had "more dirt than humor," he warned. "Smut leaves its mark on any book by Herbert Fields and lyrics by Lorenz Hart." The waspish George Jean Nathan felt much the same: "Where the book isn't covered with cobwebs it is, furthermore , dully dirty, ", he sniffed. Excepting Dick's music from her attack Dorothy Parker subbing for Robert Benchley at The New Yorker, whaled away at Herb and Larry in fine style. Herb, she surmised, had "compiled his libretto with a pair of scissors" " while Larry had produced "lyrics the rhymes of which are less internal than colonic," with "a peculiar, even for Broadway, nastiness of flavor."



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