ON THE RECORD: Everybody Rise! The Essential Elaine Stritch Show Recordings, Part One

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07 Apr 2013

The failure of Goldilocks and Sail Away more or less scuttled Stritch's chances at musical comedy stardom. She returned to Broadway in 1963 with Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Uta Hagen only played six performances a week — one a day was more than enough — so the producers hired separate actors to play Martha and George at the matinees. Stritch came in when the original matinee Martha left. It is said that she was very good, and I would expect she was. She soon left for a new play, which folded on the road. From 1963 through the rest of the century, she would return to Broadway only thrice.

Next week: Stritch's indelible tracks from Company onward. Click here to read Part Two!

(Steven Suskin is author of "Show Tunes," "The Sound of Broadway Music: A Book of Orchestrators and Orchestrations," "Second Act Trouble," the "Broadway Yearbook" series and the "Opening Night on Broadway" books. He also pens Playbill.com's Book Shelf and DVD Shelf columns. He can be reached at Ssuskin@aol.com.)

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