Tuesday, June 2, 2015


"It is better to make a piece of music than
  to perform one, better to perform one than
  to listen to one, better to listen to one than
  to misuse it as a means of distraction,
  entertainment, or acquisition of 'culture.'"
AUTHOR: John Cage

"Music is an important form of communication
  that is at its most potent  state when it is initially
  created and as the message becomes farther re-
  moved from its original source has less impact."

The 1958 Broadway musical "Goldilocks"
(which earned two Tony awards) was
composed by the famous classical/pop
genius Leroy Anderson (Blue Tango,
Sleigh Ride, etc.) and the book and lyrics
written by the celebrated author/
playwright team
("Please Don't Eat The Dasies")
and her equally famous
husband Walter Kerr
(a sharply perceptive 
drama critic for the New York
Herald Tribune) and Joan Ford.
Silent Movie
Focusing on the very early era of silent movies
(circa 1913) the main character, Maggie Harris
(played by the legendary Elaine Stritch
from the original cast), a woman leaving the
theatrical life to get married to a high society
millionaire, must put her wedding on hold
because she forgot that she was contracted to
film a silent movie called "Frontier Woman" for
an irascible producer named Max Grady
(performed by the talented actor Don Ameche).
Don Ameche and Elaine Stritch
The two battle and slapstick situations ensue as
the movie evolves into an epic about Ancient Egypt
and filming extends well beyond the amount of time
Grady promised it would take to make the movie.
There does not seem to be much connection to the
classic children's story of "Goldilocks"
Margaret Evans Price: Goldilocks
except for the title character's
blonde hair,
another character who
dresses as a bear,
and a song with the the title,
"Who's Been Sitting In My Chair."
Even though the show only ran 161 performances
the score is treasured for it's wonderfully melodic
songs and witty lyrics with many of those songs
arranged by Anderson to be performed by symphonic
or concert bands. Anderson never wrote another
musical and concentrated on composing in his
popular orchestral miniature style.
Performed by Elaine Stritch

No One'll Ever Love You
Performed by Elaine Stritch and Don Ameche


Who's Been Sitting in My Chair?
Performed by Elaine Stritch


There Never Was a Woman
Performed by Don Ameche


The Pussy Foot
Performed by Pat Stanley


Pirate Dance
Performed by The London "Pops" Orchestra
Frederick Fennell, Conductor
It is 1913, and the finale of the last New York
performance of the musical comedy Lazy Moon is
in progress. The show is moving on to Chicago, but
its leading lady, Maggie Harris, will not be travelling
with it. Maggie has decided to give up the theatre for
marriage to millionaire George Randolph Brown; she
declares that she has no regrets about leaving the
world of draughty dressing rooms. Enter film producer/
director Max Grady, who punctures Maggie's euphoria
by reminding her that she's under contract to begin
shooting Frontier Woman for him tomorrow morning.
When Max threatens a lawsuit, Maggie reluctantly
agrees to honour the contract. George arrives back-
stage, and Maggie expresses doubts about her
ability to please the blue bloods of George's
family. He silences her qualms.

At the vacant New York City lot that is Max Grady's
studio, Maggie endures Max's insults and begins to
shoot the film. Max, tired of directing ten-minute
quickies, has secretly been using the profits from his
films to purchase (then hide) the elaborate scenery
he intends to use in a long-planned, full-length
Egyptian spectacle. Max tells Maggie that he believes
she is drawn to his magnetism. Maggie counters by
offering her own analysis of the situation.

Shooting on the picture ends but Max, without funds
to hire a new leading lady for his next film, tricks
Maggie into staying on the lot to shoot "flashback"
sequences for Frontier Woman. In reality the
sequences will constitute his next picture. Maggie
protests, but George says she must do the honorable
thing and stay on. Maggie wistfully confides in an actor
in a bear suit, her co-star in the "flashbacks" . When
Max makes advances to Maggie, she calls him
"a common, on-the-make hustler."
Max is stung, but also challenged.

At the Fat Cat, a downtown roof garden jazz spot, Lois,
a studio hanger-on attracted to Max, entertains. Max
confesses to Maggie that he tricked her into staying and
that he is attracted to her. When he tells her that he
owes the studio thousands of dollars for the scenery
he's been purchasing, she volunteers to stay on and
shoot a pirate picture to help Max stall the studio.

While shooting the new picture on Huckleberry Island,
Maggie admits to Max that she returns his feelings. But
when she learns that George has been summoned by
Max's studio cohorts, Bessie and Pete, to supply the
money Max owes the studio, Maggie, believing that
Max wooed her only for the money, storms out. She
is forcibly brought back to finish the pirate film,
and George, attempting to rescue her, is
injured in the ensuing mêlée.

Lady in Waiting
Performed by Pat Stanley,
Ballet Music from "Goldilocks"
The Beast in You
Performed by Elaine Stritch
Shall I Take My Heart and Go?
Performed by Russell Nype
Bad Companions
Performed bNathaniel Frey, Margaret Hamilton,
Richard Armbruster, and Gene Varrone

The Town House
Maxixe Dance
(No Example)
Two Years in the Making
Performed by Nathaniel Frey, 
Performed by Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
In a hospital room on the mainland, Lois comforts the
injured George. She tells him that she never seems
to be able to find the sheikhs and princes she
always dreamed one day would carry her off.

Maggie appears, and, when George defends Max's
motives, Maggie is outraged. George presents Maggie
with a portfolio as a wedding gift: He has bought her
movie, and thus Max now works for Maggie. Maggie
runs off to find Max, and George, left alone,
ponders Maggie's feelings for him.

At Bessie's barn on the Hudson, Max and his cohorts
load the Egyptian scenery on a truck and prepare to
skip town with it to California. Bessie suggests that
Max's feelings for Maggie are serious, and he is upset.
Maggie arrives and gloats, but, when Max makes an
impassioned speech about the value of movies,
Maggie lets Max keep what is now, in effect, her
scenery. Max's friends are jubilant that they don't
have to leave town after all and remind themselves
how important they are to their boss.

George throws a party at his town house following the
wedding rehearsal. When Max arrives, he tells Maggie
that he loves her and that she's only marrying George
because "he happens to fit in with your idiot dream of
yourself." Alone in the empty ballroom, Maggie
acknowledges that she must face the truth
about her feelings for George.

At dawn on a chilly April 23, with the Egyptian sets in
place, Max's long-dreamed-of epic is about to become
a reality. Shooting begins with a sacrificial pyramid
dance and choral chant. Lois, Max's new leading lady,
quickly proves a disaster in the scenes. Maggie
and George arrive, having decided to
"send back an awful lot of salad bowls."

A relieved Lois lets Maggie take her place in the picture,
and this time George comforts Lois. But Maggie
declares that only a sign from heaven would persuade
her to marry Max. Although it's April, snow begins to
fall in what is supposed to be a scene of intense
Egyptian heat: Maggie interprets this as the heavenly
sign, and she and Max embrace as the curtain falls.