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Musical Theater Melodies Celebrates 120th Birthday of Legendary Composer Richard Rodgers with Broadcast and Streaming Premiere

Starring Tony Award-winners Mary Martin, Leonard Bernstein, Helen Gallagher, Richard Kiley and other legends from Broadway's Golden Age.

Tuesday June 28th, 2022, marks the 120th Anniversary of the birth of legendary Broadway composer Richard Rodgers, Rob Morrison's Musical Theatre Melodies will commemorate the occasion with the broadcast and streaming premiere of the Friends of the Music and Theatre Collection of The Museum of the City of New York's A CELEBRATION OF Richard Rodgers, recorded live at The Imperial Theatre, New York City, on March 26th, 1972. The program will be streamed around the world on the 96.5 Inner FM Radio website on Tuesday, June 28th, 2022.

Richard Rodgers was one of the most important American composers of the 20th Century, and one of only seventeen artists to have ever reached EGOT status and win the Emmy, Grammy, Osar, and Tony Award. He is the only EGOT winner to also receive a Pulitzer Prize, and is a member of the American Theater Hall of Fame. Rodgers wrote 43 Broadway musicals and over 900 songs for Broadway, films, and television. He collaborated on 13 musicals with Oscar Hammerstein II, including the landmark productions of OKLAHOMA!, CAROUSEL, THE KING AND I, SOUTH PACIFIC, and THE SOUND OF MUSIC. He also collaborated with lyricist Lorenz Hart on shows including PAL JOEY, THE BOYS FROM SYRACUSE, and BY JUPITER, with Stephen Sondheim on DO I HEAR A WALTZ, Martin Charnin on TWO BY TWO and I REMEMBER MAMA, Sheldon Harnick on REX, and he wrote both lyrics and music for NO STRINGS, the TV musical ANDROCLES AND THE LION, and additional songs for the film version of THE SOUND OF MUSIC. He passed away on December 30th, 1979.

The Friends of the Music and Theatre Collection of The Museum of the City of New York's one night only Broadway event, A CELEBRATION OF Richard Rodgers, was produced by Anna Sosenko, directed by Tony Award winner Donald Saddler (NO, NO, NANNETTE), with musical direction by Colin Romoff (FADE OUT-FADE IN). Tony Award winner Mary Martin (SOUTH PACIFIC, THE SOUND OF MUSIC) headlines a cast of Rodger's friends and alumni, which also features musical performances by Tony Award winner Leonard Bernstein, Jan Clayton (CAROUSEL), Tony Award winner Helen Gallagher (PAL JOEY), Celeste Holm (OKLAHOMA!), Tony Award winner Patsy Kelly (NO, NO, NANNETTE), Tony Award winner Richard Kiley (NO STRINGS), Gordon MacRae (Oklahoma!, Carousel), Tony Award nominee Pamela Myers (COMPANY), Tony Award nominee Gene Nelson (Oklahoma!), Tricia O'Neil (TWO BY TWO), Tony Randall (OH, CAPTAIN!), John Reardon (DO RE MI), Terry Saunders (THE KING AND I), cabaret legend Bobby Short, opera star Joanna Simon, Benay Venuta (BY JUIPTER), and Tony Award nominee Walter Willison (TWO BY TWO), with remarks by Tony Award winning choreographer Agnes De Mille, author and longtime editor of Playbill Leo Lerman, Pulitzer Prize winning author of Tales of the South Pacific James Michener, and Richard Rodgers, himself.

This rare concert recording will be preceded by an introduction from actor, singer, and director Walter Willison (GRAND HOTEL, PIPPIN), who will share his memories of the concert, the performers, and of Richard Rodgers, who became a friend and mentor after casting Mr. Willison in his Broadway musical debut in TWO BY TWO, a performance which earned him a Tony Award nomination and a Theatre World Award.

Musical Theatre Melodies is a weekly broadcast hosted by Australian radio personality Rob Morrison (not to be confused with the New York based actor of the same name), which pays tribute to the best of Broadway, London's West End, the Australian stage, and the occasional European operetta in a two-hour program celebrating significant anniversaries in the world of Musical Theatre. Recent guests from New York have included Leslie Bricusse, Ted Chapin, Joan Fagan Marshall, Peter Filichia, Daisy Eagan, Harry Groener, Sheldon Harnick, Cady Huffman, Tom Jones, Elaine Joyce, Michael Lavine, Karen Morrow, Denise Nettleton Jacobs, and Frank Wildhorn. A selection of Rob's past archived interviews from Musical Theatre Melodies can be found on the Theatre Heritage Australia website.

Broadcast from Melbourne, Australia, A CELEBRATION OF Richard Rodgers will stream on the 96.5 Inner FM website at http://right-click.com.au/rcPlayer2/index.php?c=innerfm, and can be heard in New York at 7am EST; on the West Coast at 4am PST; in the UK at 12 noon BST; and in Australia at 9 pm local Melbourne time, on Tuesday, June 28th, 2022.

 




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