Rosie enters to learn that 1) Albert has plotted to have them both miss the train; 2) they’re moving to Pumpkin Falls, Iowa, to teach junior high; and 3) they’re engaged. (West Side Story? The teenagers of America may be attractive after all,” allowed Walter Kerr in the Herald Tribune. But this surprise, comic, tuneful hit by Charles Strouse, Lee Adams and Michael Stewart – and let’s put the producer, Edward Padula, in there, too – brought us real American teens; parents groping across the Generation Gap; songs that spoofed the dread rock ‘n’ roll; and, towering above them like some goofy, lusty redwood, a satiric vision of the Rock God himself, Elvis Presley. Birdie, meanwhile, had the usual growing pains, going through directors (Fred Astaire!) The attendant media circus at the Brooklyn, N.Y., Army Terminal, included a stagey “one last kiss” for Elvis from a specially selected WAC named Mary Davies. ), while evolving from the story of a teenage girl’s quest to lose her virginity, into a vehicle, briefly, for the Elvis-spoofing comedian Dick Shawn. (Album) 22 versions. Digesting the plot of Bye Bye Birdie – the show, not the movie – requires a leap back to what was, remember, a simpler time. Filming & Production Stewart took note, and our Birdie was born. ... Albert F. Peterson. And now Birdie’s been drafted, removing Albert’s chance to make the money he needs. KOS 2025. ... Rosie DeLeon. Bye Bye Birdie‘s is the best kind of Broadway story: a show from nowhere, created by unknowns, sneaking into town – “We had something like $200 in advance sales,” Adams recalls – and knocking ’em dead. Albert tries to cheer her up with a song and tap dance – “Put On a Happy Face.” Birdie (Dick Gautier) finally appears, and the media pack descends. Shawn split, but Elvis lingered. But just when those legendary lips are about to be applied – “Okay, brace yourself, chick!” – Birdie is knocked down by Hugo, who (stay with me here) has been sneaked on stage by Rosie, to get back at Albert for flirting with another woman. Ed Padula did, anyway. Who knew?
| Ensemble/Other Roles. Cast (in credits order) complete, awaiting verification. Rosie comes in wanting the same. Click here.
“The funniest, most captivating and most expert musical comedy one could hope to see in several seasons of showgoing,” said John Chapman of the Daily News.
Downstairs, Birdie’s feeling the same way – “A Lot of Livin’ To Do.” They all head out on the town, leaving Mr. MacAfee fuming again, and completely fed up with “Kids.” Down at Maude’s Roadside Retreat – a “low dive” – many of our characters now converge. . No sooner had he signed on than the real-life Elvis saga took a dramatic turn. As historic dates go, it doesn’t rank with Magna Carta or D-Day, but on April 14, 1960 – thanks to Bye Bye Birdie – Broadway discovered teenagers, and the world trembled. And on and on it goes. All Rights Reserved. (uncredited), Penelope Ann Hankle All those things people say about him aren’t true, Albert and Rosie insist; he’s just a Normal American Boy. ), had no rock ‘n’ roll background, but were game for anything.
Before they were done – 607 performances on Broadway and a hit movie, plus amateur productions that will go on forever – they had crystallized a watershed moment in our history: the dawn of youth culture, before Innocence got jilted by experience. Live on national TV, Rosie walks out on Albert, as the first-act curtain comes down. Dick Van Dyke. Those kids sang like Caruso, danced like Nureyev, and seemed, well, foreign.) Find Sheet Music for Bye Bye Birdie at Musicnotes.com.
(The creators were in fact scared that, by taking so long in development, they’d missed the boat; Elvis was home from the army before Birdie opened.) Teen Trio. But his long-suffering secretary and not-quite-fiancée, Rosie Alvarez (Chita Rivera), dreams he’ll get out of this and become – “An English Teacher.” (Dated, sure, but how can you not love a song with the lyric, “A man who’s got his Masters is really someone!”) The obstacles are Albert’s cracked, clinging, bigoted mother, Mae (Kay Medford), and the fact that Albert somehow owes Birdie fifty grand (don’t ask, it keeps the plot going) and so can’t quit. All the crowd wants, though, is to hear Conrad sing, and he obliges: “Honestly Sincere,” which lays waste to the town’s female population. Strouse and Adams went on to write more songs for the 1963 George Sidney film, including, finally, the title song that introduced Ann-Margret and indelibly scorched the mind of at least one eleven-year-old boy. Songs no one had ever heard before – “Put On a Happy Face,” “A Lot of Livin’ To Do,” “Kids” – became instant standards. . When Albert’s mother shows up, too, he puts her on the train with Birdie, and the train pulls out. Deborah Sue. Strouse played him “Happy Face,” and Brown wrote them a check on the spot–drawn on his own bank.
Their only “name” was Chita Rivera, the fiery dancer-actress who had won acclaim as Anita in West Side Story‘s Broadway and London casts. Jumping into the research, Strouse – conservatory-trained, articulate, soft-spoken – made like Margaret Mead out in the jungle, parting the weeds and glimpsing a strange tribal culture.
Broadway Rewind: Something Wicked This Way Comes When MACBETH Returns to Broadway, Randy Rainbow Wants to Know How You Will Vote on Tuesday. Off they’ve gone, but just to a local trysting place called the Ice House; Kim gets no further than sharing a (tobacco) cigarette with Conrad before other teens arrive, followed by their parents and the police. But Rosie has an idea: Albert will write a song called “One Last Kiss,” which will be sung by Birdie to a specially selected fan club member–with actual kiss–before he leaves for the army. But Kim, with some help from Rosie, reassures him: all she wants is “One Boy.” Cut to the steps of the Sweet Apple courthouse, where the town’s mayor is trying to present Birdie the key to the city. Jessica Albright.
. Bye Bye Birdie Original Broadway Cast With Chita Rivera, Dick Van Dyke (2), Paul Lynde, Dick Gautier, Michael J. Pollard, Susan Watson And Kay Medford - Bye Bye Birdie. Theatre Stars Share Broadway Memories on THE TODAY SHOW, Kristin Chenoweth Directs a Fake TIGER KING Musical, Exclusive: Watch Andy Karl Sing from THANKFUL: An Album for Jerad Bortz, Laura Osnes & Aaron Tveit Sing 'Winter Wonderland', Julie Andrews Shares Grand Tales From The Stage. These kids are fun, people like Elvis are fun–we just wanted to poke fun at it, in a gentle way.” Thus we are presented with one Albert Peterson (Dick Van Dyke), 33, who dropped out of NYU to manage and write songs for the rock icon Conrad Birdie. without Albert, who tears up Conrad’s contract.
Columbia Masterworks. But his mother shows up, too, needling Rosie again about her Spanish name, and Rosie is left to her own soliloquy (“Spanish Rose”) about the joys of being treated like a foreigner even though “I come from Allentown, PA.” We end back at the Sweet Apple train station, where Conrad is departing for New York and the army. With a run of 607 performances, 1960's Bye Bye Birdie was the first Broadway success for songwriters Charles Strouse (music) and Lee Adams (lyrics), and it also elevated Dick Van Dyke to stardom while consolidating the success of Chita Rivera, who was coming off a lengthy stint with West Side Story. and writers (Mike Nichols and Elaine May!
Champion insisted on using real teens – crucial to the tone of the show – and his staging of “The Telephone Hour” may be Birdie‘s most memorable moment. Then the MacAfees arrive, with the startling news that Kim and Hugo aren’t just back together, they’re engaged! Again in search of a writer, Strouse and Adams brought Padula a colleague from stock, Michael Stewart.
A 1995 TV adaptation with Vanessa Williams and Jason Alexander earned top ratings. |
If there was a turning point during the Philadelphia tryout, it was Champion’s decision to enliven “Happy Face” with a tap solo by Dick Van Dyke, taking advantage of his great skills as a physical comedian, and arguably making his career in one coup.
Technical Specs, See agents for this cast & crew on IMDbPro, Production Crew Member Innocence and high-mindedness may have left town, butBye Bye Birdie lets us visit whenever we want. The press conference ends and Birdie goes, leaving Kim with Hugo (Michael J. Pollard), who’s not happy about his steady kissing some rock star. Albert will collect his royalties, and they’ll be free of Birdie, free to marry. The show opened on April 14, 1960 at the Martin Beck Theater, and had a run of 607 performances.
Type the title into your Internet search engine today, and you’ll be treated to websites for flocks of Birdies. Official Sites © 2020 Sony Music Entertainment. Richard Watts, Jr., of the Post was the first of many to be taken with the show’s ending: “Rare intelligence and taste were shown by closing the show, not on an elaborate chorus number, but on a simple and romantic song [“Rosie”] sung by Van Dyke and Rivera.” On and on it went, for a year and a half, then on tour. Then, the story goes, Padula turned up “a pigeon from Texas,” an oilman named L. Slade Brown, much shrewder than he first appeared. Release Dates “Do you know something?
newly 15, who soliloquizes, “How Lovely To Be a Woman” – until Rosie’s phone call sends her back into childish frenzy. (uncredited), Leader of Fireman's Band The musical – about a teenager in a small Midwestern town who has been chosen to receive “one last kiss” from a rock’n’roll star, Conrad Birdie, before he goes into the Army, in what will be a television special – also made a star of Dick Van Dyke, as Birdie’s manager, who performed “Put On A Happy Face,” an all-time pop standard. The lucky girl is Kim MacAfee of Sweet Apple, Ohio, who has just been “pinned” by her boyfriend, Hugo Peabody, as we learn from her friends in “The Telephone Hour.” Now we meet Kim (Susan Watson). Company Credits Act II opens in Kim’s bedroom, where she and Rosie, fed up with Hugo and Albert respectively, ask themselves, “What Did I Ever See in Him?” and declare themselves free, single, and out to have some fun. .
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