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[Interview with Al Hirschfeld : raw footage]

Author: Al Hirschfeld; Michael Kantor; Buddy Squires
Publisher: New York, 2002.
Edition/Format:   VHS video : VHS tape   Visual material : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Raw interview footage used for the documentary Broadway, the American musical. Caricaturist Al Hirschfeld, known for his satirical, black and white line portraits of celebrities and Broadway stars, speaks about his experiences in the theater. Topics include the hit musical My fair lady; the Depression era anthem by E.Y. (Yip) Harburg "Brother, can you spare a dime?"'; the Great Depression, during which he sojourned  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: Documentaries and factual works
Musicals
Unedited footage
Interviews
Named Person: Al Hirschfeld; Bert Williams; Bill Robinson; Bert Lahr; Bobby Clark; Paul McCullough; Zero Mostel
Material Type: Videorecording
Document Type: Visual material
All Authors / Contributors: Al Hirschfeld; Michael Kantor; Buddy Squires
OCLC Number: 123505456
Notes: Copy of transcript available.
This interview is one of a group of interviews with 90 individuals used in making the documentary Broadway, the American musical. The completed production is available on NCOX 2058.
Credits for completed production from pbs.org: A film by Michael Kantor ; produced by Jeff Dupre, Michael Kantor and Sally Rosenthal ; written by Marc Fields, Michael Kantor, Laurence Maslon, and JoAnne Young ; directed by Michael Kantor.
Time code on frame.
Contains various takes, at occasional brief intervals, audio continues without sound.
Credits: Cameraman: Buddy Squires.
Performer(s): Interviewer: Michael Kantor. Interviewee: Al Hirschfeld.
Event notes: Videotaped at Al Hirschfeld's residence in New York, N.Y. on February 11, 2002.
Description: 2 videocassettes (VHS) (51 min.) : sound, color SP ; 1/2 in.
Other Titles: Broadway, the American musical
Broadway film project :
Responsibility: [directed by Michael Kantor].

Abstract:

Raw interview footage used for the documentary Broadway, the American musical. Caricaturist Al Hirschfeld, known for his satirical, black and white line portraits of celebrities and Broadway stars, speaks about his experiences in the theater. Topics include the hit musical My fair lady; the Depression era anthem by E.Y. (Yip) Harburg "Brother, can you spare a dime?"'; the Great Depression, during which he sojourned in Bali for a year; burlesque and Vaudeville era comics like Bobby Clark and Paul McCullough, and the differences between the styles of these performers and present day actors; the songwriting team George and Ira Gershwin, creators of Girl crazy and the political satire Of thee I sing; the singing of Broadway siren Ethel Merman; the emotional quality of blues singer Ethel Waters; the breakthrough musical Pins and needles by Harold Rome; the prevalence of left leaning politics among his peers during the 1930s; the shows of the 1920s in comparison with the 1930s; Pal Joey, which addresses the war between the sexes; tap dancer Bill "Bojangles" Robinson and comic actor Bert Lahr, both of whom he saw perform; the lyrics of Cole Porter; Oscar Hammerstein II and his profound influence on the theater; showing Hammerstein his films from Siam which Hammerstein used as research for The king and I; his views on the musical Hair; the musical theater currently, and the prevalence of shows with fairy tale themes; the significance of the show The producers; opening night at the theater during the 1930s; his portraits of Ray Bolger and Carol Channing, and his subjects' reactions; going out of town to draw theatrical caricatures; performer Zero Mostel, an aspiring painter who played the lead role of Tevya in Fiddler on the roof; Harold Rome's discovery of Barbra Streisand while conducting auditions for I can get it for you wholesale; comedian Bert Lahr, and the training opportunities for comedians available in Lahr's time, in comparison with today; his bewilderment at the success of the musical Cats; popular comedian Bert Williams, the preeminent Black entertainer of his time and and Al Jolson, both of whom performed in blackface and whose performances he saw; Shuffle along, one of the first African American hit musicals; visiting Harlem speakeasies during the 1920s to hear jazz, and the corruption he witnessed and the behavior of gangsters whom he encountered; theatrical showman Billy Rose.

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