Pipe Dream (musical)


Pipe Dream (musical)

Infobox Musical
name=Pipe Dream


caption= Album cover of 1955 Original Broadway Cast Recording
music= Richard Rodgers
lyrics= Oscar Hammerstein II
book= Oscar Hammerstein II
basis=
productions= 1955 Broadway
awards=

"Pipe Dream" is a musical with music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics and book by Oscar Hammerstein II. Its conception is tied up with unrealized plans by other collaborators to make a stage musical based upon John Steinbeck's best-selling novel "Cannery Row". Steinbeck, who was writing the libretto for that work, discontinued, and instead began creating the story of a sequel novel, "Sweet Thursday". Rodgers and Hammerstein acquired rights to make a musical out of this story, under the title "Pipe Dream", which is a pun on one of the aspects of the stage decor -- an old boiler-pipe that becomes the abode of the lead female character.

Background and production

"Pipe Dream" premiered on Broadway on November 30, 1955 at the Shubert Theater. The director was Harold Clurman and the choreographer was Boris Runanin. Among the leads were William Johnson as Doc, Judy Tyler as Suzy, and operatic soprano Helen Traubel as Fauna. The show marked also the Broadway debut of film actor George D. Wallace.

The original production closed on June 30, 1956, after a ran of eight months and 245 performances, thus having the shortest run of any Rodgers and Hammerstein show, and the nearest thing to a "flop" they ever wrote together. However, it was nominated for nine Tony Awards, winning for Best Costume Design (Alvin Colt), and the musical is still occasionally produced, as with [http://www.42ndstmoon.com/Schedule/pipedream2002.html 42nd Street Moon's presentation in 2002] .

In his autobiography, Richard Rodgers intimated that if anything had doomed "Pipe Dream", it was the casting of Traubel. Rodgers himself took blame for miscasting her in the role of Fauna. Another factor that may have been decisive was that Rodgers himself was absent due to cancer surgery during much of the rehearsal/tryout period before the Broadway opening. Other reasons given for the musical's failure include the artistic incompatibility between the morally conservative Hammerstein and the cheerful amorality of Steinbeck's characters.

According to the sleevenotes on the CD re-release of the original cast recording, Julie Andrews auditioned for "Pipe Dream", but was told by Richard Rodgers that she should pursue the other show she was being courted for at the time, i.e., "My Fair Lady". (Andrews did, and the role of Eliza Doolittle subsequently made her a star.)

In 1989, a few months before the death of Jim Henson, it was announced that a film version of "Pipe Dream" was being considered as a vehicle for the Muppets. This wildly implausible decision (ultimately abandoned) was clearly prompted by the only Muppet-worthy detail of the show's original libretto: the fact that the main character lives inside a pipe.

Plot

"Pipe Dream" is a story about friendship and romance among people living around Cannery Row in Monterey, California shortly after World War II. The main characters are Fauna (owner of the Bear Flag Cafe); Doc, a marine biologist and Suzy, a runaway. With the help of the Mac and the boys (who live in the Palace Flophouse) and the other girls of the brothel, Suzy and Doc are brought together at the end by Fauna.

Hammerstein in his libretto toned down the directness of Steinbeck's portrayal of the sexually "low" aspects of the story (and, of course, the language), but the import is still there. For instance, the first scene makes clear that females stay overnight at Doc's; the Bear Flag Cafe is still a brothel -- albeit not one presented explicitly.

Musical numbers

;Act I
* All Kinds of People - Doc and Hazel
* The Tide Pool "To Suzy" - Doc, Hazel and Mac
* Everybody's Got a Home But Me - Suzy
* All Kinds of People (Reprise) - Jim Blaikey
* A Lopsided Bus - Mac, Hazel, Kitty, Sonya and the Flophouse Gang
* Bums' Opera - Fauna, Joe, Pancho and the Flophouse Gang
* The Man I Used To Be - Doc and danced by Slim
* Sweet Thursday - Fauna
* Suzy Is a Good Thing - Fauna and Suzy
* All At Once You Love Her - Doc, Suzy and Esteban ;Act II
* The Happiest House on the Block - Fauna and Girls
* The Party That We're Gonna Have Tomorrow Night - Mac and the people of Cannery Row
* I am a Witch - Fauna, Agnes, Marjorie, Beulah and Mable
* Will You Marry Me? - Suzy, Fauna and Doc
* Thinkin - Hazel
* All At Once You Love Her (Reprise) - Fauna
* How Long? - Fauna, Doc, Flophouse Boys and Bear Flag Girls
* The Next Time It Happens - Suzy and Doc
* Sweet Thursday (Reprise) - Entire Company
* Finale - Entire Company

Primary Bibliography

*Story
**Steinbeck, John. "Cannery Row" [and] "Sweet Thursday." Original illustrations by Peter Whiteman. Distributed by Heron Books. Published by arrangement with William Heineman, Ltd. Geneva, 1971.
*Libretto
**"Pipe Dream". Music by Richard Rodgers. Book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. New York: Viking Press, 1956.
*Vocal score
**"Pipe Dream": a musical play. Music by Richard Rodgers; book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein 2nd; based on the novel, "Sweet Thursday" by John Steinbeck; orchestrations by Robert Russell Bennett; vocal score, edited by Albert Sirmay. New York: Williamson, 1956.
*Recording
**"Pipe Dream": an original cast recording. Recorded on Dec. 4, 1955. Compact disc. BMI Classics / RCA Victor CD 09026-61481-2, 1993.

* McLellan, Dennis. (2005, July 27). "George D. Wallace, 88; Actor With Baritone Voice Had Film, TV and Broadway Roles". The Los Angeles Times

External links

* [http://www.ibdb.com/production.asp?ID=2560 Internet Broadway Database listing]
* [http://rnh.com/show_detail.asp?id=PD Web page for the musical] at the [http://rnh.com Rodgers and Hammerstein Organization]
* [http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/steinbeck_studies/v015/15.2newfield.html Pipe Dream Memories] , by Anthony Newfield, in the journal " [http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/steinbeck_studies/ Steinbeck Studies] "
* [http://www.42ndstmoon.org/Schedule/pipedream.html Background on "Pipe Dream" on the 42nd Street Moon site]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Pipe dream — A pipe dream is a fantastic hope or plan that is generally regarded as being nearly impossible to achieve. It is implied that the smoker of the pipe is smoking a substance that alters their perceptions to make something fantastical seem… …   Wikipedia

  • pipe — pipe1 W3S2 [paıp] n ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ 1¦(tube)¦ 2¦(for smoking)¦ 3¦(music)¦ 4 pipe dream 5 put/stick that in your pipe and smoke it ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ [: Old English; Origin: pipa, from Vulgar Latin, from Latin pipare to make a high sound ] …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • pipe — 1 noun (C) 1 TUBE a tube through which a liquid or gas flows, often under the ground: A pipe had burst in the kitchen and flooded the floor. | Workmen were laying pipes under the road. | The pipe s blocked again! | a gas pipe 2 FOR SMOKING a… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • pipe — I (New American Roget s College Thesaurus) n. passage, tube, main; briar, corncob, meerschaum; flute, fife, bagpipe, flageolet. See music, opening, cry. pipe down pipe dream pipe up II (Roget s IV) n. 1. [A tube] Syn. pipeline, drain pipe, sewer …   English dictionary for students

  • Musical ensemble — This article is about musical groups. For the video game series, see Rock Band (game). For other uses, see Music group (disambiguation). The King Carter Jazzing Orchestra photographed in Houston, Texas, January 1921 …   Wikipedia

  • South Pacific (musical) — This article is about the 1949 Broadway musical. For the 1958 film, see South Pacific (film). For the 2001 film, see South Pacific (2001 film). South Pacific Original Cast Recording Music Richard Rodgers …   Wikipedia

  • Tony Award/Bestes Musical — Seit 1949 wird bei den Tony Awards der Preis für das Beste Musical vergeben. Bis 1970 wurden neben den Produzenten auch die Autoren und Komponisten für das beste Musical ausgezeichnet, ab 1971 nur noch die Produzenten. Statistik Meiste… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • State Fair (musical) — Infobox Musical name= State Fair caption= State Fair 1996 Cast Recording music= Richard Rodgers lyrics= Oscar Hammerstein II book= Tom Briggs Louis Mattioli basis= Phil Stong s book State Fair and the 1945 Film productions= 1996 Broadway awards=… …   Wikipedia

  • Carousel (musical) — Carousel Original Broadway Cast Album Music Richard Rodgers Lyrics Oscar Hammerstein II Book Oscar Hammerstein II …   Wikipedia

  • Spectacle musical — Comédie musicale La comédie musicale est un genre théâtral, mêlant comédie, chant et généralement danse. Apparue au XXe siècle, elle se situe dans la lignée du mariage du théâtre et de la musique classique qui avait donné naissance aux… …   Wikipédia en Français


We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.