Lorenz Hart

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Lorenz "Larry" Milton Hart (May 2, 1895 – November 22, 1943) was the lyricist half of the famed Broadway songwriting team Rodgers and Hart. Some of his more famous lyrics include, "Blue Moon", "Isn't It Romantic?", "Mountain Greenery", "The Lady Is a Tramp", "Manhattan", "Where or When", "Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered", "Falling in Love with Love", "I'll Tell The Man In The Street" and "My Funny Valentine".

Contents

Life and career

Hart was born in Harlem, the older of two sons, to Jewish immigrant parents, Max M. and Frieda (Isenberg) Hart, of eastern Europe and German descent. A business promoter, his father sent Hart and his brother Teddy to private schools. (His brother Teddy Hart also went into theatre and became a musical comedy star. His wife Dorothy Hart wrote a biography of Lorenz Hart.)[1]

Hart attended Columbia University School of Journalism for two years.[1] A friend introduced him to Richard Rodgers, and the two joined forces to write songs for a series of amateur and student productions. [1]

By 1918, Larry Hart was working for the Shubert brothers, partners in theatre, translating German plays into English.[1] In 1919, his and Rodgers' song "Any Old Place With You" was included in the Broadway musical comedy A Lonely Romeo. They were hired to write the score for the 1925 Theatre Guild production, The Garrick Gaieties, which success brought them acclaim.

Rodgers and Hart subsequently wrote the music and lyrics for 26 Broadway musicals during a more than 20-year partnership that ended only with Hart's early death. Their "big four" were Babes in Arms, The Boys From Syracuse (the first adaptation of a Shakespeare play for musical theatre), Pal Joey and On Your Toes. The Rodgers and Hart songs have been described as intimate and destined for long lives outside the theater.[2] They created scores for a series of hit shows and made a substantial contribution to the Great American Songbook. Notable singers who have performed and recorded their songs have included Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday, and Carly Simon.[2] Hart has been called "the expressive bard of the urban generation which matured during the interwar years".[1]

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