Sondheim's earliest Broadway credits include lyrics for the classic musicals West Side Story and Gypsy. In 1962 he made his debut as both composer and lyricist with A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, a musical farce based on the plays of Plautus.
With a book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart and directed by George Abbott, the production opened May 8, 1962, at the Alvin Theatre. Zero Mostel starred as Pseudolus, a role he would later reprise in the 1966 film version. The musical won six Tony Awards, including Best Musical and Best Actor in a Musical for Mostel, and enjoyed a 964-performance run.
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