Comden & Green Appreciation Thread

madbrian
Broadway Legend
joined:6/1/06
Comden & Green Appreciation Thread
Posted: 8/15/14 at 07:27am
Haven't seen a thread devoted to these giants of stage and screen, so here we go. I can't think of a more prolific team that has had relatively little written about them. Would appreciate any insight or inside stories that folks may have. How did they interact with their various collaborators? What were the dynamics between the two of them? It's difficult for me to choose a favorite work of theirs, either on stage or screen. On screen, Singin In The Rain would be the obvious choice, but I am partial to Auntie Mame.
"It does me no injury for my neighbour to say there are 20 gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket, nor breaks my leg." -- Thomas Jefferson
GavestonPS
Broadway Legend
joined:6/10/12
Comden & Green Appreciation Thread
Posted: 8/15/14 at 07:34pm
A lot of critics consider SINGING IN THE RAIN the greatest film musical of all time, which ain't too shabby!

My husband worked with them on A DOLL'S LIFE and can't praise them highly enough as people and as collaborators. At that point in their careers (mid-1980s), they were somewhat at the mercy of whatever Prince wanted to produce; I have heard they didn't always agree with his choices.

Personally, I never met them, but I grew up loving BELLS ARE RINGING, PETER PAN, GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES and WONDERFUL TOWN. I've come to appreciate ON THE TOWN and ON THE 20th CENTURY. I might quibble with their fondness for writing lyrics composed of the names of celebrities, but they were often at their best writing parodies of various forms of show business, particularly opera.


(ETA I keep having to edit this thread as I think of more Comden & Green scores I love.)


Updated On: 8/15/14 at 07:34 PM
Musical Master
Broadway Star
joined:4/28/13
Comden & Green Appreciation Thread
Posted: 8/15/14 at 07:37pm
What a very underrated team they were. ON THE TOWN, GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES, etc. are all such great musicals in their own way, even the flops had such good lyrics to them.
GavestonPS
Broadway Legend
joined:6/10/12
Comden & Green Appreciation Thread
Posted: 8/19/14 at 12:41am
This forum is going to pot!

Where were our hot shots to correct me: GENTLEMAN PREFER BLONDES's lyrics were written by Leo Robin, not Comden & Green. (Sorry, Music Master) Comden & Green contributed additional lyrics when the show was revived as LORELEI in the mid-1970s. Naturally, I regret the error.

Wake up, people! Those of us with early-onset Alzheimer's depend on you!

Oddly enough and despite their justified fame, Comden & Green never really had a monster Broadway hit. BELLS ARE RINGING and APPLAUSE (they wrote the book only for the latter) ran about 2 years apiece.

But their big hits were in the movies and on TV: the Mary Martin PETER PAN only ran about 3 months on Broadway. But, per Wiki, the show attracted 65 million viewers, at the time the highest audience ever for a single program.