Monday, August 6, 2012

Dark Monday • Young Liza


Dark Monday offers me the opportunity to feature the music of Broadway, something near and dear to my heart. There was a time when Broadway seem to have a direct conduit to Popular music, for songs from the stage became Pop standards, and populate the Great American Songbook. Such is the case in this post, when a young Liza Minnelli appeared on her mother's television show to start out her career. Mama, of course, was the great Judy Garland. First we will visit a clip of Minnelli from December of 1963, preforming with Broadway veteran Tracy Everitt. They took on the music from The Pajama Game, with a score written by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross. Here they sing and dance to "Steamed Heat".

The next clip was actually from the first appearance by Liza on The Judy Garland Show in July of 1963. That is the same year Liza logged her first role on the New York stage, off-Broadway in a revival of the musical Best Foot Forward. This was two years before she won the Tony Award for her performance in Flora The Red Menace, the youngest woman to be named Best Leading Actress in a Musical. So here is Liza with a medley of show tunes starting with "Put On A Happy Face" from Bye Bye Birdie.

Liza also got to sing with Mama on that same episode. It was not the first time, as Judy would bring out Liza, as well as siblings Joey and Lorna Luft, at some shows. That would include a triumphant show at the London Palladium. But here is Liza and Judy singing "Together" from Gypsy, with music by the great Jule Styne and lyrics by the brilliant Stephen Sondheim.


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