The 92nd Street YMCA continues its lauded "Lyrics & Lyricists" concert/seminar series with five new segments on the topic, "Broadway Songs Of The Sixties," beginning in December and ending June 1997.
Next up is "Broadway Musicals From Plays," hosted by Kitty Carlisle Hart, playing 4 performances Feb. 1-Feb. 3.
Shows covered will include 110 In The Shade, Hello, Dolly!, Dear World, Man Of La Mancha, Do I Hear A Waltz?, The Girl Who Came To Supper and Golden Rainbow.
Performing will be Mimi Hines, George Dvorsky, Christine Pedi (Forbidden Broadway Strikes Back), Sarah Pfisterer, M. Kathryn Quinlan, Peter Slutsker (Off-Broadway's recent Cocoanuts) and Martin Vidnovic (Olympus On My Mind, Baby. Fred Wells will serve as music director and pianist.
A mix of entertainment and education, presentations generally offer songs, biographical material, film clips and archival recordings. In the early years, the evening was structured around an interview with a living lyricist (such as Sammy Cahn, Yip Harburg and Johnny Mercer). Later on, the series turned to themes, such as "The Glory Days Of Tin Pan Alley" and entire seasons devoted to Cole Porter and Jerome Kern. The first segment this season was "Broadway Musicals From Novels And Short Stories" (Dec. 14-16), hosted and narrated by Werner Klemperer (TV's "Hogan's Heroes"; Broadway revival of Cabaret). Pat Suzuki and Spiro (Most Happy Fella) Malas are the special guests, along with company members Rebecca Baxter, Trisha Gorman, Gary Lyons, Jan Neuberger, Ryan Perry and Martin (Baby) Vidnovic. Pamela Sousa staged the evening, which comprises songs from Camelot, Mame, Oliver! and Fiddler On The Roof.
The Plays-into-Musicals theme will continue March 8-10, 1997 with songs from She Loves Me, Take Me Along, Cabaret and I Do! I Do! Performed by Anna Bergman and Nancy Dussault.
"Off-Broadway Musicals" will theme the fourth segment, April 12-14. Shows include The Fantasticks, Dames At Sea, Jacques Brel Is Alive And Well And Living In Paris, and Hair.
Last up (June 7-June 9, 1997) will be "Broadway Musicals From Original Concepts," featuring tunes from Stop The World, I Want To Get Off, George M!, Sail Away and 1776. Karen Mason and KT Sullivan will do the honors.
Further casting hasn't been nailed down yet, but scheduled to appear this season are such talents as Steven Brinberg, Nancy Dussault, Rex Reed, Rebecca Luker and Carol Woods.
The series is scripted, directed and cast by artistic director, Maurice Levine, who co-initiated the project with Arthur Cantor in 1970. "The overarching goal of our 27th season," Levine wrote, "is to explore this rich decade of American song. The beginning of the 60's saw the last of the great `romantic' musicals with Lerner & Loewe's Camelot. The end of the decade ushered in the first `concept' musical with Stephen Sondheim's Company. Between the two landmarks lies a vast expanse of theatre songs from more than 200 Broadway and Off-Broadway musicals."
For tickets ($33-$38 single tix, $155-$180 subscriptions) and information on the "Lyrics & Lyricists" series, call (212) 996-1100.
-- By David Lefkowitz