As the International Puppet Festival begins its New York run, another puppet piece, the radical musical satire Flahooley, gets a rare revival, Sept. 10-26, at the theatre at St. Clement's.
A flop when it opened in 1951, Flahooley had lyrics by E.Y. "Yip" Harburg (The Wizard Of Oz, Finian's Rainbow and the classic, "Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?") and music by Sammy Fain, an Oscar winner and veteran of numerous Disney films including Alice In Wonderland, Peter Pan, and Sleeping Beauty. The book was written by Harburg and his sometime collaborator, Fred Saidy.
The musical, which introduced Barbara Cook to the stage, contained political commentary on McCarthy-esque witch hunts, corporate exploitation, atomic energy, racial intolerance, and excesses of consumer culture -- much of which was eventually cut for Broadway audiences. For this Flahooley, that missing material has been restored.
Musical satire historian Alisa Roost adapted and directed Flahooley, with Peter E. Jones as orchestrator and musical director. The musical staging is by Al Joyal and Poko Puppets provide the puppetry.
Tickets are $20 with $15 tickets for seniors and students. For more information and reservations, call (212) 246-7277, ext. 32. The theatre at St. Clement's is located at 423 West 46th Street. -- By Christine Ehren