Musicals on Television
Saturday, October 10, 2009
A part of the New York Musical Theatre Festival, The Paley Center for Media in New York and Los Angeles will screen a sampler of musicals written exclusively for television, including The Bachelor (1956), starring Hal March, Jayne Mansfield, Julie Wilson, and Carol Haney, with music and lyrics by Steve Allen (plus additional songs by Ervin Drake); Hans Brinker, or the Silver Skates (1958), directed by Sidney Lumet and starring Tab Hunter, Peggy King, Dick Button, and Ellie Sommers, with music and lyrics by Hugh Martin; and Alice Through the Looking Glass (1966), with an all-star cast including Jimmy Durante, Nanette Fabray, and Agnes Moorehead, with music by Moose Charlap and lyrics by Elsie Simmons. In addition, the Paley Center will also screen the 1967 television adaptation of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel, starring Robert Goulet and Mary Grover.
Saturday, October 10
The Sunday Spectacular: The Bachelor (1956)
Hal March, best known as the emcee of The $64,000 Question, stars as an advertising account executive who plays the field with three girlfriends (portrayed by Jayne Mansfield, Julie Wilson, and Georgann Johnson) and has the undivided loyalty of his secretary (Carol Haney, who also choreographed the dance numbers). Steve Allen wrote the music and lyrics—highlighted by his best-known song, “This Could Be the Start of Something Big”— with additional songs (including “Slave Girl”) by Ervin Drake. Featuring Harry Holcombe, Raymond Bramley, Peter Gennaro, and Frank Derbas. Produced and directed by Joe Cates, with an original story and teleplay by Arnie Rosen and Coleman Jacoby. (1956; 90 minutes)
Hallmark Hall of Fame: Hans Brinker, or the Silver Skates (1958)
No expense was spared in producing this live television musical (for which half of NBC’s television studio in Brooklyn was converted into a frozen Dutch canal), with music and lyrics by Hugh Martin, teleplay by Sally Benson, direction by Sidney Lumet, music direction by Franz Allers, choreography by John Butler and a first-rate cast including Tab Hunter, Peggy King, Olympic skating champion Dick Button, Basil Rathbone, Carmen Mathews, and opera star Jarmila Novotna. Hans Brinker was watched in 11.5 million homes, setting a viewership record for Hallmark Hall of Fame telecasts that remained unbroken for two decades. (1958; 90 minutes)
Panel Discussion in New York: This screening will be introduced by Bill Rudman, host of the Sirius XM On Broadway program On the Aisle. Following the screening, Mr. Rudman will interview Dick Button, Peggy King, Ellie Sommers, and other Hans Brinker cast and creative team members (to be announced).
Special thanks to The Musical Theater Project.
Sunday, October 11
Alice Through the Looking Glass (1966)
In this very loose adaptation of the Lewis Carroll classic, Alice (who resides in an upscale New York apartment) learns she can become a queen by visiting the Royal Castle—if she can avoid the monster known as the Jabberwock. With original songs by Moose Charlap and Elsie Simmons, teleplay by Albert Simmons, and direction by Alan Handley. Starring Judi Rolin as Alice, and Jimmy Durante, Nanette Fabray, Ricardo Montalban, Agnes Moorehead, Jack Palance, and Tom and Dick Smothers. (1966; 90 minutes)
Armstrong Circle Theatre: Carousel (1967)
Paul Bogart directed this memorable television adaptation of the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic, starring Robert Goulet and Mary Grover, with Pernell Roberts as Jigger, Marlyn Mason as Carrie, Patricia Neway as Nettie, Marge Redmond as Mrs. Mullin, Linda Howe as Louise, Jack De Lon as Mr. Snow, Herbert Voland as Mr. Bascombe, and Charlie Ruggles as the Starkeeper. Adapted for television by Sidney Michaels, with musical direction by Jack Elliott and choreography by Edward Villella. (1967; 120 minutes)
Plus: Seven minutes of excerpts from a 1945 film of members of the original Broadway cast of Carousel (including Annabelle Lyon, Peter Birch, Bambi Linn, and Robert Pagent) performing two dances choreographed by Agnes de Mille.
New York: FREE for Members; included with general admission
Los Angeles: Free open admission for all
Plan Your NY Visit
Get address, directions, hours of operation, and other information about the Paley Center in New York to help you plan your visit.