Interesting Questions, Facts, and Information
Rodgers and Hammerstein
|The life of Maria von Trapp was the inspiration for Rodgers and Hammerstein's final collaboration, "The Sound of Music". In which country does this musical take place?||Rodgers and Hammerstein
Austria. Considering how many millions of dollars "The Sound of Music" has made over the years, Maria made one of the worst deals in show business history when she sold the rights to her story for less than ten thousand dollars.
|In 1957 Rodgers and Hammerstein wrote a musical directly for television which was based on a well known fairy tale. What is the name of this production?||Rodgers and Hammerstein
Cinderella. "Cinderella", starring Julie Andrews, attracted a huge audience. It was remade in 1965 and again in 1997 with a cast featuring Whitney Houston, Bernadette Peters and Whoopi Goldberg.
|"The King and I" is a great favorite that has been performed all over the world. However, one country has banned this musical from being performed and possession of any item relating to it is forbidden. Which country is this?||Rodgers and Hammerstein
Thailand. "The King and I" is based on Anna Leonowens' memoirs of her experiences in Siam (known today as Thailand) teaching the King's children. The Thai government feels the story shows disrespect to the monarchy.
|"South Pacific" ran for over five years on Broadway and won all nine of the Tony awards it was nominated for. Which song is not from this show?||Rodgers and Hammerstein
Dames at Sea. This musical was based on two of the stories from James A. Michener's "Tales of the South Pacific".
|"Carousel" features such songs as "If I Loved You" and "You'll Never Walk Alone". Which play inspired this musical?||Rodgers and Hammerstein
Liliom. Hammerstein kept the basic plot but smoothed over some of the more depressing elements in Ferenc Molnar's play.
|"Oklahoma!", the first Rodgers and Hammerstein musical, premiered in 1943. What was the original title of this show before it opened on Broadway?||Rodgers and Hammerstein
Away We Go!. Before teaming up, both Rodgers and Hammerstein wanted to do a musical version of Lynn Riggs' play "Green Grow the Lilacs", which "Oklahoma!" is based on, but their respective partners rejected the idea.
Theodore Bikel. Christopher Plummer played the role in the movie.
II (Second). Along with Rodgers, he wrote some of the most memorable music in American Broadway musical history.
Dites-moi. The English translation of "Dites-moi pourquoi la vie est belle" is "Tell me why life is beautiful."
Whistles a happy tune. Deborah Kerr and Yul Brynner created a magical couple in this tale of Siam.
Grant Avenue. Grant Avenue is the main street in San Francisco's Chinatown.
Carousel. This bittersweet play was Richard Rodger's personal favorite.
Isinglass. "....with Isinglass curtains you can roll right down in case there's a change in the weather." Isenglass was used as a window pane only for a short period of time. It was soon replaced by synthetic materials.
|("Pipe Dream") The one major flop of Rodgers and Hammerstein's careers was this story adapted from a novel by a famous American author. Who was he?||Rodgers and Hammerstein, Part 2
John Steinbeck ("Cannery Row"). The story about lives and loves on Monterey's 'Cannery Row' just didn't lend itself to typical R & H music and lyrics.
Her teeth were permanently stained by the juice of the betel nut. "Bloody Mary's chewing betel nuts, she is always chewing betel nuts, Bloody Mary's chewing betel nuts, and she don't use Pepsodent!"
Tonkinese. The love between the beautiful native girl and Lt. Cable could never survive outside. Cable and Emile DeBecque sing that "You Have To Be Taught To Hate and Fear, It's Got To Be Drummed In Your Dear Little Ear."
|("South Pacifc") Luther Billis --the consumate con man ---wanted to get his hands on something that could only be found on Bali Hai. What was it?||Rodgers and Hammerstein, Part 2
A boar's tooth, used in a mysterious ceremony. He eventually gets his hands on the Boar's Tooth, only to find that it brings him nothing but bad luck.
|("The King And I") Anna sings to the ladies of the court, "Hello, Young Lovers." She mentions her late husband in the song. What is his name?||Rodgers and Hammerstein, Part 2
Tom. "When I think of Tom, I think about a night when the earth smelled of summer and the sky was streaked with light." Deborah Kerr did not sing her own songs in the movie; her voice was dubbed by Marnie Nixon.
It was the only song they wrote first for a movie and then for a play. Songs originally written for plays and then adapted to the movie versions are not eligible for an Oscar.
Little Rock, Arkansas. The lyrics to one of her songs includes the following: "How far away, Little Rock, A-R-K."
|In "Carousel", Billy Bigelow is certain his child will be a boy. He begins dreaming about what his son will do when he grows up: "He can haul a scow along a canal, run a cow around a corral." But since Billy works with a carnival, perhaps his son could do the same thing he does. What does Billy do to attract people to his carousel?||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
bark. "Carousel" features a wonderful Soliloquy by Billy Bigelow in which he imagines being a father to a boy named Bill. Halfway through the song, the awful thought hits him: what if "he" is a "she?" Billy knows that "you can have fun with a son, but you've got to be a father to a girl." The rest of the Soliloquy exquisitely deals with Billy's determination to bring up his daughter the right way.
|One would think that being stationed on a beautiful tropical island where the effects of World War Two have been minimal would be a good thing. But the sailors in "South Pacific" are restless because one teeeeeny little aspect of normal life is missing. "We got volleyball and ping-pong and a lot of dandy games." What ain't we got? "We ain't got ________"||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
dames. In the midst of their moaning and groaning, the sailors watch Nellie Forbush and the nurses jog by. Stopping long enough to thank Luther Billis for doing her laundry, Nellie and the girls continue their run...and the sailors continue their lamentations.
|"Cinderella" was a minor success in Rodgers and Hammerstein's career. It follows the well-known fairy tale, but pictures Cinderella as a dreamer who wants to escape from the tyranny of her stepmother and see the world. She pretends "I'm a young Norwegian princess or a milkmaid. I'm the greatest prima donna in ____________ I'm an heiress who has always had her silk made by her own flock of silkworms in Japan." Where does she want to be a prima donna?||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
Milan. The outcome of "Cinderella" ---pumpkin coach, magical mice, and a slightly dotty fairy godmother---is well known to children of all ages. I doubt whether Prince Charming ever took her to Milan, however.
|In the 1962 remake of "State Fair", lovesick Margy Frake (played by Pamela Tiffin) sings the beautiful song "It Might As Well Be Spring" in which she laments "I keep wishing I were somewhere else, walking down a strange new street, hearing words that I have never heard from a man I've yet to meet." Why is this song unique among all other Rodgers and Hammerstein melodies?||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
This was the only Rodgers and Hammerstein song to win an Oscar.. "State Fair" first appeared in 1933 as a non-musical drama which received a "Best Picture" nomination. In 1945, Rodgers and Hammerstein took over, and wrote some great songs, including "It Might As Well Be Spring." It was the only Rodgers and Hammerstein song to receive a "Best Song" Oscar since it was written for a movie, not adapted from a Broadway musical.
|The Chinatown Association has spoken: Sammy must marry Mei Li, his mail order bride. But things always work out in a Rodgers and Hammerstein musical and Sammy ends up marrying his sweetheart, Linda. Formerly a confirmed bachelor who warned women "Don't Marry Me", Sammy sings this song to his new bride: "Sunday. sweet Sunday, with nothing to do, lazy and ___________, my one day with you." The missing word is?||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
lovely. In "Flower Drum Song", Rodgers and Hammerstein returned to the topic of culture clash, but this time is was between generations, not races. Mei Li is beautiful, but Sammy wants his wife to have a little more...spunk. Linda more than fills the bill.
|The nuns are frustrated with Maria when she fails to show up (again!) for evening prayers. Some of them lament how she is lazy and forgetful, but the Mother Superior knows that Maria's heart is in the right place. She sings to the other nuns: "How do you solve a problem like Maria, how do you take a ___________ and pin it down?" What is Maria being compared to?||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
cloud. In "The Sound of Music", it's obvious to the Mother Superior that Maria's talents can best be fulfilled outside the convent walls. She sends her to the home of Captain Von Trapp to care for his eclectic covey of children.
|In "Carousel", after the clambake, Jigger and his friends are getting ready to go back to the mainland and carry out their robbery plans. Before they leave, they sing a sarcastic song to a God-fearing man who finds Jigger behaving improperly with the woman he is about to marry. The man stomps off in anger with Jigger jeering : "Stonecutters cut it on stone, woodpeckers peck it on wood, there's nothin' so bad for a woman than a man who thinks he's good." Who is this stalwart soul they are mocking?||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
Enoch Snow. When Jigger and the gang leave, the ladies at the clambake sing the same song to Carrie about how men--good or bad--can be the downfall of women.
|"Because I'm a woman, you think like every woman, I have to be your slave or ________________, you conceited, self-indulgent libertyne....libertine." In her rush to pack up and leave Siam for good, Anna sings this angry song to herself and scolds herself when she mispronouces words like 'libertine.' Fortunately for Rodgers and Hammerstein, her mistake provides them with a chance to make a clever lyric. What is it?||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
concubine. During the "Shall We Dance?" number, Anna and the King realize that a bond has formed between them...something close to love. When the guards bring in Tuptim who has tried to run away, the King orders her to be placed in jail and Anna believes that he will never change his autocratic ways. Little does she know that while she is vocalizing her anger, he is in another room dying.
|In "Oklahoma!", Jud Fry is the town bully. To teach him a lesson, Curly sings a song to him in which he tells Jud that when he dies "The daisies in the dell will give out a different ______ because poor Jud is 'neath the ground." What effect will Jud have on the daisies?||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
smell. Rod Steiger played the small, but significant role of malicious Jud Fry in the movie version of "Oklahoma!" In the patois of the prairie, Curly tells Jud that the townspeople will weep and wail for miles around when they hear that Jud is 'daid.'
|In "South Pacific", Lt. Joe Cable sings a sad and bitter song when he realizes he has lost the love of Liat due to his prejudice. What is it that "You've got to be taught before it's too late, before you are six or seven or eight, to ____________ all the people your relatives ___________, you've got to be carefully taught?"||Rodgers and Hammerstein 3
Hate. The lyrics were very daring for the period of time in which they were written. Come to think of it, they are still pretty powerful today.
|Finally, Rodgers and Hammerstein's ninth and final stage collaboration: "The Sound Of Music". Everyone is very familiar with the film version with Julie Andrews, but not quite as many are as familiar with the stage show as they may think. There are marked differences between the two. For example, in the stage version the baroness actually sings! One of the songs she sings is called "No Way To Stop It" and is a trio sung with Max and the Captain. What is the "obvious and simple fact of science" mentioned in the song?||The Musicals Of Rodgers And Hammerstein
The earth revolves around the sun.. Another interesting fact about the film version of "The Sound Of Music" is the juggling around of some of the songs. On stage, "My Favorite Things" is sung at the abbey by Maria and the Mother Superior. In the film it is sung during the thunderstorm. On stage, the song sung during the thunderstorm is "The Lonely Goatherd", which is sung in the film during a sequence with a puppet show. "Do Re Mi" basically retained its original spot in the score for the film, but was done on stage as an indoor song in the Von Trapp home and in the film as an outdoor song in various locations throughout Salzburg.