Alan Jay Lerner: A Lyricist's Letters (Hardback)
  • Alan Jay Lerner: A Lyricist's Letters (Hardback)
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Alan Jay Lerner: A Lyricist's Letters (Hardback)

(editor)
£39.99
Hardback 336 Pages / Published: 23/10/2014
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The man behind "I Could Have Danced all Night" and "Almost Like Being in Love", lyricist Alan Jay Lerner (1918-86) is widely regarded as one of the most important figures of the American musical stage. In penning the lyrics to some of the most well-known and beloved Broadway shows, including Brigadoon, Paint Your Wagon, My Fair Lady, Camelot, Lerner worked and corresponded with some of the greatest luminaries of popular entertainment over a career which spanned four decades, from performers like Rex Harrison and Julie Andrews to composers like Andre Previn, Leonard Bernstein, Charles Strouse, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and especially Frederick Loewe. In this rich collection of correspondence, most of it published for the first time, author Dominic McHugh sheds new light on Lerner's working relationships with these legendary figures. McHugh's extensive commentary reveals Lerner's turbulent partnerships with Loewe and Lane, his affection for Harrison, and his reverence for Burton. Particular emphasis is placed on Lerner's aborted projects with composers like Richard Rodgers and Arthur Schwartz. Especially valuable is the correspondence from his final years, in which he worked on a movie version of The Merry Widow, a BBC TV series about musicals, and a musical version of My Man Godfrey, none of which came to fruition. The collection ends with a poignant final exchange between Lerner and Andrew Lloyd Webber, with whom he was to have written The Phantom of the Opera. Overall, this important and lively book reveals the highs and lows of the career of one of America's wittiest and most romantic lyricists.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199949274
Number of pages: 336
Weight: 578 g
Dimensions: 240 x 163 x 27 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Not only is Lerners boast (to Bob Fosse) that his letters are usually terribly well-written and frequently amusing an accurate one, the same could be said for Dominic McHughs informative and stylish commentary on Lerners witty, illuminating letters, like a gripping epistolary novel told by a reliable narrator. * Geoffrey Block, author of Enchanted Evenings: The Broadway Musical from 'Show Boat' to Sondheim and Lloyd Webber (OUP, 2009) and Series Editor of Oxfords Broadway Legacies *
Alan Jay Lerner: A Lyricist's Letters [wins] our gratitude for making available personal documents that help to explore the ethnic identity of one of the most justly acclaimed American Jewish writers for the musical theatre. * Benjamin Ivry, the Forward *
McHugh ... has concentrated on Lerner's working relationships amid the complex demands or musical comedy * Russell Davies, The Times Literary Supplement *

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