Cover image for Richard Rodgers
Title:
Richard Rodgers
Author:
Block, Geoffrey Holden, 1948-
Publication Information:
New Haven : Yale University Press, [2003]

©2003
Physical Description:
xiii, 315 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm.
Language:
English
Contents:
From apprentice to musical dramatist -- A tale of two Connecticut Yankees -- Hits, long runs, and a musical comedy of errors -- World War II, the musical : South Pacific -- Broadway comes to television : the three Cinderellas -- After Hammerstein.
ISBN:
9780300097474
Format :
Book

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ML410.R6315 B56 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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Summary

Summary

Richard Rodgers was an icon of the musical theatre, a prolific composer whose career spanned six decades and who wrote more than 1000 songs and 40 shows for the American stage. In this book, Geoffrey Block examines Rodgers's entire career, providing rich details about the creation, staging, and critical reception of some of his most popular musicals. his musical and dramatic language. He focuses on two shows by Rodgers and Hart (A Connecticut Yankee and The Boys from Syracuse) and two by Rodgers and Hammerstein (South Pacific and Cinderella), offering new insights into each one. He concludes with the first serious look at the five neglected and often maligned musicals that Rodgers composed in the 1960s and 1970s, after the death of Hammerstein.


Reviews 1

Choice Review

Having edited The Richard Rodgers Reader (2002), Block (music, Univ. of Puget Sound) now writes his own work on the composer. This is not a biography; for that readers will want Meryle Secrest's Somewhere for Me (CH, Apr '02). Instead Block focuses on three periods in Rodgers's career: the years with Lorenz Hart, the years with Oscar Hammerstein, and the years following Hammerstein's death. Block gives brief data on shows and concentrates on four: A Connecticut Yankee, The Boys from Syracuse, South Pacific, and Cinderella. He is interested primarily in how these shows changed over the years in revivals or different formats (film, television). For the shows after Hammerstein's death, Block gives relatively equal treatment to five stage musicals. Though not a balanced overview, this book offers an excellent sense of Rodgers's achievement. Numerous musical examples and good photographs enliven the text. The superb endnotes make up for the lack of bibliography or discography. This is the first volume in a new series, "Yale Broadway Masters," edited by Block. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. Performing arts collections serving graduate students, researchers, professionals, and general readers. R. D. Johnson emeritus, SUNY College at Oneonta