By Ernio Hernandez
and Robert Viagas and Sam Maher
21 Sep 2012
1917 Variety reports that producer George Tyler has found the new star for his upcoming production of Pollyanna in Rochester, New York. It is Helen Hayes. The headline reads, "Tyler's 17-Year-Old 'Find'" and the article itself states that, "[H]er present manager proclaims her as one of the stars within a very few seasons."
1938 In mid-September 1999, New York experienced the effect of a hurricane storm on Broadway. Ethel Barrymore had a similar experience in 1938 on this date. It took her 45 minutes to get from her hotel to the theatre, which was only seven blocks away, because of the great New England hurricane. She was performing in Whiteoaks at the Plymouth Theatre in Boston. Even after her unsteady arrival, the show was still delayed for an hour because the gap on the roof from which the skylight had blown off had to be covered. The Producer's Credo, "The show must go on!" (which, by the way, belongs solely to the producer, not to the actor as history has it) probably didn't ring any more true than on this date in theatre history.
1999 The United States Postal Service honors nine Broadway composers and/or lyricists by unveiling the Broadway Songwriters postage stamp series today at New York City's Broadhurst Theatre. The six stamp designs include composer Richard Rodgers and lyricist Oscar Hammerstein II (pictured together), lyricist Alan Jay Lerner and composer Frederick Loewe (together), composer George Gershwin and lyricist Ira Gershwin (together), lyricist Lorenz Hart, composer-lyricist Meredith Willson and composer-lyricist Frank Loesser.
2001 The John Kander & Fred Ebb musical The Visit opens a tryout at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, starring Chita Rivera and John McMartin. Plans for a Broadway and then an Off-Broadway production will subsequently be put on hold.