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Richard Rodgers

Richard Charles Rodgers

Composer, Lyricist, Author, Musical Theater Director

(1902 - 1979)

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Biographies:

 
wikipedia.org
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songwritershalloffame.org
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Articles:

 
"Babes in Arms" at lorenzhart.org
 

Other:

 
Filmography at imdb.com
On Broadway at ibdb.com
Films--"Some Enchanted Evening" ...
Rodgers Collection at loc.gov
Book--"Richard Rodgers Reader" a...
DVD--"The Sweetest Sounds" at sh...
 
Richard Rodgers began composing at nine and became one of America’s most revered songwriters. His collaboration with Lorenz “Larry” Hart began in 1919 and lasted until Hart’s death in 1943. The success of Garrick Gaieties in 1925 with numbers such as “Manhattan” and ”Mountain Greenery” started a string of hits from The Girl Friend (1926) to America’s Sweetheart (1931).

In 1931 they went to Hollywood to write for such talents as Maurice Chevalier, Bing Crosby, and Al Jolson. They rereleased “Blue Moon” with new lyrics, and it became a million seller and a big hit for the Casa Loma orchestra in 1935.

The team returned to Broadway with two successes in 1936, one of which, On Your Toes, included Rodgers’ ballet, “Slaughter on Tenth Avenue.” 1937’s Babes in Arms produced half a dozen hit songs such as “Where or When,” “I Wish I Were in Love Again,” “My Funny Valentine,” and “The Lady Is a Tramp,” and the intervening years brought more. But in 1940 the team shocked Broadway with the harsh realism of Pal Joey although the show produced the popular “I Could Write a Book” and “Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered.” Their last show was By Jupiter (1942).

Rodgers began the second stage of his remarkable career teaming with Oscar Hammerstein II for 1943’s smash hit Oklahoma! which ran on Broadway for six years. They won an Academy Award for “It Might As Well Be Spring” from the 1944 film State Fair. Giant successes followed, although all of the productions dealt with sensitive subjects uncommon to Broadway: Carousel (1945), South Pacific (1949), and The King and I (1951). Their partnership ended with Hammerstein’s death in 1960 but not before they scored another prize, The Sound of Music (1959).

In the third stage of his career Rodgers wrote both music and lyrics for No Strings (1962) and collaborated on shows with Stephen Sondheim (1965) and Martin Charnin (1970). In 1960 he wrote the background music for a second TV series, Winston Churchill: The Valiant Years, having scored the 26-episode Victory at Sea in 1952.

The Rodgers songs that have entered the jazz standards repertoire are too numerous to mention but they include “Isn’t It Romantic,” “My Romance,” “My Heart Stood Still,” “You Took Advantage of Me,” “Little Girl Blue,” “It Never Entered My Mind,” and the song that John Coltrane made famous, “My Favorite Things.”

Rodgers received over 50 significant awards during his lifetime, including two Pulitzer Prizes, and after his death a Broadway theater was named for him.

- Sandra Burlingame


A Richard Rodgers Centennial Celebration

Various Artists



With A Song In My Heart: The Rodgers & Hart Songbook

Wesla Whitfield, Lorenz Hart, Richard Rodgers



Wall to Wall Richard Rodgers

Wall to Wall Richard Rodgers



Sings Fred Astaire

Mel Torme Includes "Mountain Greenery"



Where or When

Lin Halliday



My Funny Valentine

Chet Baker



My Funny Valentine

Miles Davis



It Might as Well Be Spring

Ike Quebec



Sings It Might as Well Be Spring

Sarah Vaughan



I Could Write A Book: The Music Of Richard Rodgers

George Coleman


I Could Write a Book

Miles Davis



Pal Joey: Highlights From The Original 1980 London Cast Recording

Lorenz Hart



Little Girl Blue

Nina Simone



Victory At Sea: Music From The Award Winning Television Series

Richard Rodgers (Composer and Conductor)



My Romance

Houston Person



My Favorite Things

John Coltrane
Reading and Viewing

At Amazon.com you can often buy used for a fraction of the new price


Meryle Secrest

Somewhere for Me: A Biography of Richard Rodgers

Knopf


Richard Rodgers, Mary Rodgers

Musical Stages: An Autobiography

Da Capo Press


Gordon MacRae, Gloria Grahame

Oklahoma! (1955)

DVD


Gordon MacRae, Shirley Jones

Carousel (1956)

DVD


Deborah Kerr, Yul Brynner

The King and I (1956)

DVD


Rossano Brazzi, Mitzi Gaynor

South Pacific (1958)

DVD


Rita Hayworth, Frank Sinatra, Kim Novak

Pal Joey

Sony Pictures

DVD


Various

Victory at Sea

St Clair Vision

DVD

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