Welcome to a new Musical Theatre Monday! This month, we’re celebrating the anniversary of George Gershwin’s birth — I’ll look for any excuse to feature something by this talented composer — and also remembering Gertrude Lawrence, who passed away 70 years ago, in September 1952. One of the shows on which their careers intersected was the marvelous Oh, Kay! (1926). It’s among the Gershwin brothers’ most classic scores — with gems like “Someone To Watch Over Me,” “Do, Do, Do,” and “Maybe” — and has been formally recorded several times, recently receiving a heavy revisal as Nice Work If You Can Get It (2012).
However, until September 26 (George Gershwin’s birthday anniversary), I’m offering — for subscribers who comment below to alert me of their private non-commercial interest — access to two rare audios of forgotten Oh, Kay! productions. The first is a songs-only recording from the 1978 Pre-Broadway tour of a revival that never officially opened. It’s a fun one. As a sample, here’s Jane Summerhays with the darling “Someone To Watch Over Me.”
Additionally, I’m also offering an audio of the short-lived 1990 Broadway revival, which featured an all-Black cast including Angela Teek and Brian Stokes Mitchell. Here they both are with “Maybe” — it’s soaring. (This was an interesting production, interpolating a lot of other lesser known Gershwin songs. I highly recommend this recording — don’t miss it!)
Come back next month for another musical rarity! And stay tuned tomorrow for The Nanny!