Monday, May 11, 2020

Happy Birthday Irving Berlin

Back in high school, we always had several concerts throughout the year. During my Freshman year, we held our annual Spring Band/Choral event, where I played alto saxophone, and sang in the choir. As it turns out, that was also the year that Irving Berlin turned 100 years old. So of course, we had to do a tribute to him featuring some of his most popular songs. Now while I was familiar with a few of his songs like "God Bless America", "White Christmas", "Puttin' on the Ritz", and "Alexander's Ragtime Band", I didn't realize exactly how many songs he actually wrote.

As it turns out, he composed over fifteen hundred tunes during his sixty year career. That's a lot of songs my friends. Plus what I didn't know until a year or two later, was that he composed the score for a number of Broadway shows as well. Actually he wrote a total of twenty-three, between the years 1914 and 1962, including Call Me Madame, Miss Liberty and Mr. President. Most of which played at the Music Box Theatre, which he owned until his death in 1989. His biggest hit of course, was Annie Get Your Gun, which featured such well known songs like, "There's No Business Like Show Business", "You Can't Get A Man With A Gun", and "Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better)."

Now with the exception of the show's 1999 Tony Award winning revival, starring two-time Tony Award winner Bernadette Peters, I like most, probably assumed that would be the last time that an Irving Berlin show would ever play on Broadway. Boy was I wrong. In 2009, we saw the premier of White Christmas, followed by Holiday Inn in 2016. Well would you look at that? Maybe we will see another Irving Berlin show again in the near future? Here's a thought. How about an all-star Irving Berlin tribute at the Music Box Theatre? Sounds like a great idea to me. Stay safe everyone, and keep looking out for each other. Until next time theatre fans.

Applause Theatre and Entertainment Service, Inc.
165 West 46th Street
Suite 1107
New York, NY 10036
or 1-800-451-9930
Facebook:Applause Theater and Entertainment Service

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