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Oscar Hammerstein Ii

First Nighter: Eric Comstock, Gabrielle Stravelli Light Up Cabaret

David Finkle | Posted 08.26.2014 | Arts
David Finkle

Cabaret is alive and not quite yet reduced to gasping for breath in New York City.

Hungry for Love

George Heymont | Posted 08.07.2014 | Arts
George Heymont

"Sing For Your Supper" was one of the many delights on a menu of nearly 50 songs by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart that were performed during 42nd Street Moon's recent musical salon (Thou Swell, Thou Witty!) dedicated to the legendary songwriting team.

Easy Listener: 5 You-Gotta-Have CDS From Five You-Must-Know Women

David Finkle | Posted 08.05.2014 | Entertainment
David Finkle

If you like great songs -- not necessarily great songs you already know -- and you like women delivering them, here are CDs that you'd be extremely foolish to think you can live without:

"Show Boat" - Jerome Kern's Masterpiece at San Francisco Opera

Sean Martinfield | Posted 08.05.2014 | San Francisco
Sean Martinfield

It's an opera - where the ideal performer with the optimal voice is a capital match for the intentions of the composer and his lyricist, Oscar Hammerstein II.

First Nighter: Mary Martin Let Down in Inventing Mary Martin

David Finkle | Posted 06.27.2014 | Arts
David Finkle

Somehow it should seem appropriate that Inventing Mary Martin is as corny as Kansas in August. But the kind of corniness prevalent in conceiver-writer Stephen Cole's revue, at the York, tributing one of Broadway's great musical comedy leading ladies, is never welcome.

First Nighter: Kathryn Forbes' I Remember Mama Well Remembered

David Finkle | Posted 05.31.2014 | Arts
David Finkle

More than anything the script is presenting a woman's world. With only women on stage, he suggests that families are, possibly more often than not, women's domains. If this is what he has in mind, he realizes his intentions extremely well.

First Nighter: The Met's New "Die Fledermaus" Far Too Batty

David Finkle | Posted 03.03.2014 | Arts
David Finkle

Die Fledermaus back again as the Metropolitan Opera's New Year's Eve gala confection? Directed by Jeremy Sams, who also supplied the revised lyrics, ...

First Nighter: Bacharach Revue Awkwardly Asks 'What's It All About?' -- Steve Tyrell Smoothly Answers

David Finkle | Posted 02.04.2014 | Arts
David Finkle

Truth is, Tyrell's effortlessly infallible phrasing has the effect of making what he does appealingly conversational. The emotion he's experiencing is a component of his seemingly off-handed -- smile-smile-smile -- style. Let's just say he's singing for all generations.

First Nighter: London's 'Jeeves and Wooster in Perfect Nonsense,' 'Mojo,' 'From Here to Eternity'

David Finkle | Posted 01.23.2014 | Arts
David Finkle

As popular as P. G. Wodehouse and his creations, suave manservant Jeeves and first-prize twit Bertie Wooster, have been for almost 100 years, they've apparently never toddled onto a West End stage until -- wait for it! -- now.

Easy Listener: Tom Wopat, Kevin Dozier, John Lloyd Young Are Singers You Need to Know

David Finkle | Posted 07.28.2013 | Entertainment
David Finkle

Hey music lovers, let's consider--for want of a better term--pop crooners. At the moment, the greater listening public seems to think there are only ...

First Nighter: Soft ...Hardbody, Happy Happy Birthday and It's a Bird... It's a Plane... It's Not Too Good

David Finkle | Posted 05.22.2013 | Arts
David Finkle

Hands on a Hardbody follows -- with music -- a marathon where the contestant who keeps at least one hand on a truck the longest gets to drive the shiny new vehicle home.

First Nighter: The Woefully Misunderstood Damsels in Distress of Passion and Cinderella

David Finkle | Posted 05.18.2013 | Arts
David Finkle

The correct title for the Sondheim-Lapine opus would be Romantic Obsession, and it wouldn't try to ingratiate itself as a depiction of what genuine love is. Passion is anything but a love story.

Easy Reader: Recommending Michael Feinstein on the Gershwins and Him, Gary Marmorstein on Lorenz Hart

David Finkle | Posted 03.01.2013 | Books
David Finkle

Ostensibly, what Feinstein is offering in his book is, as its title promises, a prolonged glimpse into his life as a devoted George and Ira Gershwin protegé.

From Stage to Screen and Then Back Again

George Heymont | Posted 01.14.2013 | Arts
George Heymont

In recent decades, movie musicals that began as full-length animation features and original movie musicals have become multi-million dollar stage vehicles drawing audiences into theatres in cities around the world.

First Nighter: Encores! Series' Pipe Dream Almost a Dream Come True

David Finkle | Posted 05.29.2012 | Entertainment
David Finkle

Of course, when songs so ebullient and/or passionate are this good, who's going to complain? Although a number of the Encores! dust-offs have moved to Broadway, this one certainly won't. Never mind, since it has enough going for it right where it is.

First Nighter: Cy Coleman's Best is Yet to Come is Here Now at 59E59 Theaters

David Finkle | Posted 07.27.2011 | Arts
David Finkle

The best is yet to come? Not this time. It's already here as it deliciously unfolds by way of singers Sally Mayes, Lillias White and Rachel York.

First Nighter: Rodgers & Hammerstein's Stage Fair Much More than Merely Fair

David Finkle | Posted 05.25.2011 | Entertainment
David Finkle

Rodgers and Hammerstein thought they wrote nine Broadway musicals. But there is a tenth that neither of them ever knew about it.

First Nighter: Our Sinatra Revue Is Truly Chairman-of-the-Board-Worthy

David Finkle | Posted 05.25.2011 | Arts
David Finkle

Our Sinatra is a case of songs treated with utterly convincing maturity, depth and, where appropriate, genuine humor.

Let the N.E.A. Lead Them

Dr. Susan Corso | Posted 05.25.2011 | Arts
Dr. Susan Corso

We in the theatre have known for a long, long time that the show must go on. I'd venture to say that there's only one man in Washington who knows this in his bones -- National Endowment for the Arts chair, Rocco Landesman.

The Scottsboro Boys: New Kander-Ebb Musical, Old Kander-Ebb Formula

David Finkle | Posted 05.25.2011 | New York
David Finkle

Time was, audiences went to musicals--more often called musical comedies then--to see famous entertainers sing great songs written by first-rate lyric...

Back in Lady Liberty's Head

Dr. Susan Corso | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Dr. Susan Corso

The real, full name of the Statue of Liberty is "Liberty Enlightening the World." She wears a crown because she's a goddess championing the cause of all causes: freedom.