Luther Davis

Luther Davis


Luther Davis, who won a Tony Award for his book to the musical Kismet, died July 29, 2008, in the Bronx, The New York Times reported. He was 91 and lived in Manhattan and West Palm Beach, FL. A prolific writer who forged careers in film, television and theatre, he achieved his most notable credit when he teamed with co-librettist Charles Lederer and composer-lyricists Robert Wright and George Forrest to create Kismet, an exotic, high-brow musical, set in ancient Baghdad and adapted from the symphonic scores of Alexander Borodin. The critics did not love it, complaining of its creaky, old-fashioned quality. But audiences liked the melodic score and lavish stets. The unlikely venture proved a durable hit, running one-and-a-half years, winning the Best Musical Tony Award (shared by Mr. Davis and his collaborators) and spawning the standards "Stranger in Paradise" and "Baubles, Bangles and Beads." The show also had a successful London run.

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  • Born: Aug 29, 1926
  • Death: Jul 29, 2008 in Bronx, New York


Tony Award
1990 Book of a Musical Grand Hotel Nominee
1954 Author of a Musical Kismet Winner