It’s Double Take December at Musical Cyberspace! Every musical pretty much has something one likes and something one doesn’t in it. This month I’ll be listing one of each for a range of musicals, a different one each day.
Something I Like: I like that it gave us one of the greatest behind-the-scenes stories in musical theatre. After the original production, it was thought that the score was lost because it was assumed that it was accidentally sent along with the set to be burned. More than 30 years after that, the score was discovered in a trunk at the Library of Congress, leading to a starry studio recording of the show. Isn’t that just something?
Something I Don’t Like: The reputation of Sherry! is based on the popularity of the starry cast recording made when the score was re-discovered and with those great performances comes a inflated sense of how well the show works. The problem is that James Lipton and Laurence Rosenthal’s.songs get in the way of the action contrived by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart for their play, The Man Who Came to Dinner. One wonders how the show might have ended up with a more well-established team crafting the score, or perhaps a team that avoided “opening up” the play too much. There’s also the title: Sherry! makes the show sound like its going to be one of those 1920s Cinderella musicals, when it should be so much more.
Feel free to share your “double take” on Sherry in the comment box!