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JEANETTE MacDONALD and "A Little Night Music", 1962


EleanorDugan
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A belated correction to Valeska Suratt's posting of 8/04 which states that Hugh Martin wrote a song called "Wasn't It Romantic?" for Jeanette to sing in a Broadway version of Sunset Boulevard. in the 1960s. I have no idea what is in Hal Prince's autobiography, but I am very familiar with the song and its lyricist, Marshall Barer.

 

In a taped interview March 28, 1987. Barer described to me the plot of a Broadway musical by him and Hugh Martin that they called A Little Night Music, no relation to the later Sondheim musical. The story concerned a group of retired actors living secretly on a studio lot, sleeping by day, coming out at night.. One scene has them watching a film of the young Jeanette singing "Isn't It Romantic?" in Love Me Tonight. The live, older Jeanette then joins in, singing "Wasn't It Romantic?" contrapuntally with her screen image!

 

Barer had me write a TV movie treatment of the show which he hoped to present to Disney when he met with them about the TV-movie version of his "Once Upon a Mattress". Alas, nothing came of it. The original audition tape for A Little Night Music, which I have a copy of, was made in 1962 and features singers Marshall Barer, Corinna Manetto, the young John Davidson (age 18), with Hugh Martin at the piano.

 

An unknown Liza Minnelli was to make her Broadway debut as the ingenue.

 

Edited by: EleanorDugan on Sep 6, 2013 8:29 PM

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Eleanor. sounds like it could have been a winner. Too bad MacDonald never found that great vehicle in which to return to Broadway. She would have been great in THE KING AND I.

 

Gloria Swanson had also commissioned a musical version of SUNSET BOULEVARD around this same time mentioned. I believe there are materials floating around and maybe a film clip of Swanson singing a tune from that doomed show.

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