Song Of Norway - 1958 Jones Beach Revival Cast
Lyricist: Wright & Forrest
The original production of Song of Norway opened in New York on August 21, 1944, and ran for 860 performances. “Strange Music,” one of the outstanding ballads in the operetta, swiftly became a popular hit and remains one of the most-played favorites of today. When the original production finally closed, a lengthy list of revivals was produced in summer theaters and music tents throughout the country, culminating in the spectacularly lavish presentation at the Jones Beach Marine Theatre. There, with a glittering expanse of water between the audience and the stage, it was possible to show the fishing fleets of the town of Bergen in Norway, where the first act occurs. There too could be shown an authentic Viking ship, a floating iceberg for a skating ballet, and an enormous barge on which various other scenes are set, one of them including a waterfall. Here, under the stars, cooled by the soft winds of summer, Song of Norway found a setting expansive enough to match its wide-ranging story and to enhance the lovely melodies of Edvard Grieg.
The music of Edvard Grieg was adapted for Song of Norway by ROBERT WRIGHT and GEORGE FORREST. Long residents of Hollywood, where they worked on such films as Maytime Sweethearts, The Firefly and The New Moon, they spent ten months of research on the composer’s works before making their adaptations. The long run of Song of Norway was followed by the impressive but less successful Magdalena with music by Heitor Villa-Lobos, and, in 1953, by the memorable Kismet, for which they employed themes by Alexander Borodin. Among their other productions were Gypsy Lady, The Carefree Heart and At the Grand, and among their outstanding songs, in addition to “Strange Music,” have been “The Donkey Serenade,” written for Allan Jones and Jeanette MacDonald after a theme by Rudolf Friml, and “Stranger in Paradise,” “Baubles, Bangles and Beads” and “And This Is My Beloved,” all from Kismet.
1. Prelude/The Legend
2. Hill of Dreams
3. Freddy and His Fiddle
5. Strange Music
6. Hymn of Betrothal/Finale, Act 1
7. Bon Vivant
8. Three Loves
9. Nordraak's Farewell/Finaletto
10. I Love You