Something Wonderful: Top Ten Songs by Rodgers & Hammerstein

By Ben Rimalower
01 Feb 2014

 

 

3. "If I Loved You" from Carousel

The complete 12-minute "If I Loved You" as it appears in Carousel (commonly referred to as the "bench scene") was another landmark achievement for Rodgers & Hammerstein in its extensive sequencing of continuous music and lyrics to play out a dramatic situation, a reinvention of opera for modern American storytelling. What sold this technique was the song at is core, a classic Oscar Hammerstein pretending-not-to-love-someone number (along the lines of "People Will Say We're In Love" from Oklahoma! or Hammerstein and Jerome Kern's "Make Believe" from Show Boat), set to one of Richard Rodgers' most lush melodies.

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