New York Philharmonic to Feature Frank Loesser Tribute in March
The New York Philharmonic will present Anywhere I Wander: The Frank Loesser Songbook, a celebration of the late legendary Broadway composer of Where's Charley?, Guys and Dolls, The Most Happy Fella, Greenwillow, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Monday, March 26, 2012, at 7:30 p.m. Directed and conducted by Tony Award winner Ted Sperling, the evening will feature an all-star cast that includes Ann Hampton Callaway, Victoria Clark, Robert Morse, Bryn Terfel, a special appearance by Loesser's widow and leading Lady Jo Sullivan Loesser, and others to be announced. The program will be choreographed by Andrew Palermo.
One of the most versatile of musical theater composers, Frank Loesser (1910–69) wrote works that are among the most creative and enduring achievements of Broadway. Even before he wrote his first show he was known to America for the song hits of his Hollywood career, including the Oscar-winning "Baby, It's Cold Outside." In all, he wrote lyrics for more than 60 songs for films, including Destry Rides Again, Neptune's Daughter, Thank Your Lucky Stars, and Fred Astaire's Let's Dance, not to mention the lyric of "Heart and Soul," to music by Hoagy Carmichael.
Loesser made his composing debut with music and lyrics for the title song of the Paramount film Seventeen in 1939, and subsequently wrote the wartime hit "Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition." He had his first smash hit with Where's Charley?, starring Ray Bolger, and a score that included "Once in Love with Amy" and "Make a Miracle." In 1950 Guys and Dolls won the Tony Award for Best Musical, with a nowfamous score that includes "I've Never Been in Love Before," "Luck Be a Lady," "I'll Know," and "Sit Down, You're Rocking the Boat." The Most Happy Fella opened in 1956 and ran for two years, featuring songs such as "Standing on the Corner" and
How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying - with music, lyrics, and book by Frank Loesser - hit the Broadway boards in 1961, running for four years and winning not only the Pulitzer Prize but seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical, with songs such as "I Believe in You" and "The Brotherhood of Man." Frank Loesser also created one of his best-loved scores for the film Hans Christian Anderson (1952), starring Danny Kaye, which featured such songs as "Wonderful Copenhagen," "Anywhere I Wander," "The Inch Worm," and "Thumbelina," which was nominated for an Academy Award.
This one-evening event is the New York Philharmonic's Spring Gala, and is presented by BNY Mellon. The Gala Co-Chairs are Alec Baldwin and Jo Sullivan Loesser. For information about the Gala, which includes a pre-concert champagne reception, concert, and post-concert seated dinner with the artists, please contact Courtney Ford at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call her at (212) 875-5757.