The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

The Art of the Stage #2


Street Scene
(The Playwright's Company; 1947)

4 comments :

SomeNYGuy said...

Is it a musical? Is it an opera? Either way, I love it -- plenty of beautiful, powerful musical scenes. (I'm pretty sure Billie Holiday recorded the gorgeous "What Good Would the Moon Be" from this.)

Nice poster, too. But now I'm wracking my brain; what became of the Adelphi Theatre? Is it Studio 54?

swac said...

From Wikipedia:
"The Adelphi Theatre (1934-1940 and 1944-1958), originally named the Craig Theatre, opened on December 24, 1928. The Adelphi was located at 152 West 54th Street in New York City, with 1,434 seats..[1] The theater was taken over by the Federal Theater Project in 1934 and renamed the Adelphi. The theater was renamed the Radiant Center by The Royal Fraternity of Master Metaphysicians in 1940. It was then the Yiddish Arts Theater (1943), and renamed the Adelphi Theater on April 20, 1944, when it was acquired by the Shuberts. It became a DuMont Television Network studio in the 1950s. The "classic 39" episodes of The Honeymooners were filmed in this facility by DuMont using their Electronicam system for broadcast on CBS at a later date during the 1955-56 television season. The theater returned to legitimate use in 1957, was renamed the 54th Street Theater in 1958, and finally the George Abbott Theater in 1965. The building was razed in 1970, after hosting several expensive flops, and is the current location of the Hilton New York."

Vanwall said...

The wonderfully ageless Anne Jeffreys, one of my favorite film gals, first performed the role of 'Rose' and sang "What Good Would The Moon Be?" in this production. Wish I'd seen that. Boy, I sure liked her - not the usual H'wood babe. Ever seen "Riffraff", directed by Teddy Tetzlaff? Cracker jack little tongue-in-cheek adventure, with Pat O'Brien and Percy Kilbride, a laconic Ms. Jeffreys steals every scene she gets, and sings a weird little number: "Money is the root of all evil!!

SomeNYGuy said...

Thanks, swac! Of course! I was thinking WEST of Broadway when the poster clearly says EAST.

But wait: 7th Avenue is east of Broadway, and the Hilton is east of 7th Avenue. So I'm still confused.

Maybe I'll distract myself by looking up the "The Radiant Center" and "The Royal Fraternity of Master Metaphysicians" -- sounds fascinating!