The curtain rises on a hotel room out of town, and songwriters in the midst of a desperate, all-night creative frenzy to save a faltering show. Lyrics & Lyricists 2016 season opens with real-life theatrical drama as three-time Tony-winner Kathleen Marshall returns to 92Y with the nail-biting stories behind the 11th-hour songs that saved the day and became Broadway classics. The show runs January 9-11 at 92Y, Lexington Avenue at 92nd St in New York.
Joining her to sing such numbers as “Comedy Tonight” (A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum), “You’re Just in Love” (Call Me Madam) and “Before I Gaze at You Again” (Camelot) are vocalists Darius de Haas, Ann Harada, Greg Hildreth, Elena Shaddow, Aaron C. Finley, and Betsy Wolfe. For “A Funny Thing Happened: Songs from the Road to Broadway,” Kathleen digs up some unknown before-and-after versions of these hits, as well as songs that were cut out of town, such as “The Man I Love” (cut from two Gershwin shows) and “Ten Percent” (cut from Chicago).
“I love the romantic idea of composers and lyricists writing a last-minute song in a hotel room or a theatre lobby out of town — the pressure of creating on the fly, with the clock ticking and adrenaline pumping,” comments Kathleen Marshall. “Many of those songs not only made a huge impact on the show, but became standards as well. We will explore some of the wonderful and surprising stories behind classic Broadway songs.”
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Now celebrating its 140th Anniversary, 92nd Street Y is a world-class, nonprofit cultural and community center that fosters the mental, physical and spiritual health of people throughout their lives: wide-ranging conversations with the world’s best minds; an outstanding range of programming in the performing, visual and literary arts; fitness and sports programs; and activities for children and families. Since 1970, Lyrics & Lyricists, the pioneering American Songbook series, and one of 92Y’s signature series, has celebrated the work of songwriters like Jerome Kern, Cole Porter, Dorothy Fields, Betty Comden & Adolph Green, Sheldon Harnick, and David Zippel with champions and interpreters of the American Songbook including Rob Fisher, Ted Chapin, Mark Lamos, Kathleen Marshall, and Billy Stritch. Lyrics & Lyricists receives underwriting support from Gilda and Henry Block; Kenneth Kolker z”l; The Henry Nias Foundation, courtesy of Dr. Stanley Edelman; The Edythe Kenner Foundation; and the Hite Foundation, Inc.
92nd Street Y is a world-class, nonprofit cultural and community center that fosters the mental, physical and spiritual health of people throughout their lives, offering: wide-ranging conversations with the world’s best minds; an outstanding range of programming in the performing, visual and literary arts; fitness and sports programs; and activities for children and families. 92Y is reimagining what it means to be a community center in the digital age with initiatives like the award-winning #GivingTuesday, launched by 92Y in 2012 and now recognized across the US and in a growing number of regions worldwide as a day to celebrate and promote giving. These kinds of initiatives are transforming the way people share ideas and translate them into action both locally and around the world. More than 300,000 people visit 92Y annually; millions more participate in 92Y’s digital and online initiatives. A proudly Jewish organization since its founding in 1874, 92Y embraces its heritage and welcomes people of all backgrounds and perspectives. For more information, visit www.92Y.org.
Lia Chang is an award-winning filmmaker, a Best Actress nominee, a photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Examiner.com, Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.
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