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CD de cette production

1950-10-Original Cast Members

Date de sortie:
Type de CD:
Stage Cast •
Nombre de CD:
1 pour un total de 23 tracks
Ralph Chambers, Pat Harrington, Paul Lucas, Russell Nype, Dinah Shore, Galina Talva, Jay Velie
01. Overture - The Orchestra
02. Mrs. Sally Adams - Chorus
03. Hostess With the Mostes' on the Ball - Dinah Shore
04. Washington Square Dance - Dinah Shore
05. Welcome to Lichtenburg
06. Can You Use Any Money Today? - Dinah Shore
07. Marrying for Love - Dinah Shore
08. Ocarina
09. It's a Lovely Day Today
10. Best Thing for You - Dinah Shore
11. Something to Dance About - Dinah Shore, Chorus
12. Once Upon a Time Today
13. They Like Ike - Pat Harrington, Jay Velie
14. You're Just in Love (I Wonder Why) - Dinah Shore
Bonus Tracks (Dinah Shore)
15. Blue Skies
16. Outside Of that I Love You (with Dick Todd)
17. How Deep Is The Ocean?
18. You Can't Brush Me Off (with Dick Todd)
19. Remember
20. You Keep Coming Back Like A Song
21. I Got Lost In His Arms
22. Better Luck Next Time
23. Steppin' Out With My Baby

1950-10-Studio Cast

Date de sortie:
Type de CD:
Studio Cast •
Nombre de CD:
1 pour un total de 16 tracks
Dick Haymes, Gordon Jenkins, Ethel Merman, Eileen Wilson
01.The Hostess With the Mostes'
02. Washington Square Dance
03. Lichtenburg (Cosmo's Opening)
04. Can You Use Any Money Today?
05. Marrying for Love
06. The Ocarina
07. It's a Lovely Day Today
08. The Best Thing for You
09. Something to Dance About
10. Once Upon a Time Today
11. They Like Ike
12. (I Wonder Why) You're Just in Love
13. My Mother Would Love You [Panama Hattie] [Panama Hattie - 1940 Studio Cast]
14. I've Still Got My Health [Panama Hattie] [Panama Hattie - 1940 Studio Cast]
15. Let's Be Buddies [Panama Hattie] [Panama Hattie - 1940 Studio Cast]
16. Make It Another Old Fashioned, Please [Panama Hattie] [Panama Hattie - 1940 Studio Cast]
Call Me Madam, a fictionalized account of the life of Washington hostess and ambassador to Luxembourg Pearl Mesta, was Irving Berlin's final hit Broadway musical. It was also his second collaboration with Ethel Merman, who had starred in his most successful show, Annie Get Your Gun. Opening October 12, 1950, Call Me Madam settled in for a run that eventually totaled 644 performances, making the commercial prospects of a cast album bright. Unfortunately, there was a glitch. The show had been financed by RCA Victor Records, who claimed the cast album. But Merman was an exclusive recording artist for Decca, one of RCA's major rivals. The result was two albums: RCA replaced Merman with Dinah Shore, while Decca replaced the rest of the original cast with Dick Haymes, Eileen Wilson, and a chorus. The Decca album got out of the gate first and, featuring the show's star, was bound to be the more successful anyway; it just missed topping the charts. Merman is, of course, the recording's chief asset, as she belts out half of the album's songs (the original EP and 10" LP versions had only eight tracks, but they were quickly superseded by a 12-track 12" LP), including "Marrying for Love" and "The Best Thing for You." Her duet with Haymes, "You're Just in Love," was the hit of the show, reaching the Top 40. Haymes was in typically good voice on his solo, "Once Upon a Time Today." ~ William Ruhlmann, Rovi All Music Guide


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Généralités: Histoire, thèmes et particularités


Sally Adams becomes Ambassador of Lichtenburg and charms Cosmo Constanstine with her undiplomatic manner. Meanwhile, her press attache, Keneth Gibson, falls in love with Princess Maria.

Synopsis complet


Historique du musical

Génèse du musical

The lead character is based on Washington, D.C. hostess and Democratic Party fundraiser Perle Mesta, who was appointed the Ambassador to Luxembourg in 1949. The Playbill distributed at each performance humorously noted that "neither the character of Mrs. Sally Adams nor Miss Ethel Merman resemble any person living or dead."
In 1949, Merman and her family were vacationing at the Hotel Colorado in Glenwood Springs with Howard Lindsay and his wife Dorothy Stickney. Watching Merman poolside while reading a magazine article about Mesta, Lindsay was struck by how typically "American" she was and immediately envisioned her portraying a colorful character similar to the newly appointed ambassador. When he proposed the idea to Merman, who had little interest in either society or political news, she responded, "Who's Perle Mesta?"
Although Merman had announced she was interested in playing a dramatic role in her next project, Lindsay and Russel Crouse approached Irving Berlin and began working on the book for Call Me Madam when he expressed interest in composing the score. Berlin's last production, Miss Liberty, had failed to recoup its investment, and he was determined to repeat the success he had had with Annie Get Your Gun. The three collaborators agreed they needed to treat their subject with care to avoid any legal action by Mesta. As the work progressed, Merman conceded she would be willing to sing two or three songs, but eventually accepted the fact she was going to star in a full-scale musical comedy instead of the drama she preferred.
Producer Leland Hayward budgeted the production at $250,000. In exchange for the original cast recording and television broadcast rights, he arranged to have it financed 100% by RCA Records and NBC, with the two sharing 35% of the net earnings. In order to increase the profits, Hayward decided to charge an all-time high of $7.20 for orchestra seats.
Hayward hired George Abbott to direct, and Abbott and casting director Harold Prince auditioned thousands of actors for the twenty speaking roles and twenty-nine chorus members. Raoul Pene du Bois was hired to design sets and costumes, although the wardrobe worn by Merman was the responsibility of Mainbocher.
Once the script was completed, everyone agreed that while it was little more than standard situation comedy material it was a perfect vehicle for Merman, and that Berlin's score, although far from his best, was tuneful and memorable. It included the comic song "Mr. Monotony", which originally was written for and dropped from the film Easter Parade. Berlin had then included it in Miss Liberty, but it was dropped from that as well. In this instance, the third time was not the charm; during out-of-town tryouts, Merman insisted it be dropped. (In 1989, Sarah Brightman recorded it for her CD The Songs That Got Away.) To fill the hole its omission left in the second act, Berlin wrote "Something to Dance About" to give the second act a lively opening. When the star requested a duet with Russell Nype playing her lovestruck press attache Berlin responded by writing the counterpoint tune "You're Just in Love" and it ultimately became a showstopper at every performance.

Directed by George Abbott and choreographed by Jerome Robbins, the musical premiered at the Shubert Theatre in New Haven, Connecticut on September 11, 1950. Reviews were mixed - Variety said it "inspires warm applause rather than cheer"—and Berlin wrote two new songs to bolster the sagging second act. It opened in Boston on September 19, and while The Boston Record thought it offered "only an occasional flash of inspirational fire", it played to standing-room-only audiences throughout the run.
With a record advance sale of $2 million, the Broadway production opened on October 12 at the Imperial Theatre, where it ran for 644 performances and grossed more than $4 million. In addition to Merman and Nype, the cast included Paul Lukas, Pat Harrington, Sr., Lilia Skala, and Richard Eastham. Brooks Atkinson of The New York Times thought it offered one of Berlin's "most enchanting scores: fresh, light, and beguiling, and fitted to lyrics that fall out of it with grace and humor", and the New York Post called Merman "indescribably soul-satisfying", "a comedienne of rare skill", and "one of the joys of the world." She remained with the show for the entire run and appeared in the limited four-week engagement staged to celebrate the reopening of the National Theatre in Washington, D.C., but her understudy Elaine Stritch starred in the national tour.
The musical opened in the West End at the London Coliseum on March 15, 1952 where it ran for 486 performances and starred Billie Worth.
The New York City Center Encores! semi-staged concert version starring Tyne Daly was presented in February 1995.[3] A regional production ran at the Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn, New Jersey, in April–May 1996 and starred Leslie Uggams.



Liste des chansons

Acte I
Overture - Orchestra
Mrs. Sally Adams - The Company
Hostess with the Mostes' on the Ball, The - Sally
Washington Square Dance - Sally & Company
Lichtenburg - Cosmo & Singers
Can You Use Any Money Today? - Sally
Marrying for Love - Cosmo & Sally
Ocarina, The - Princess Maria, Dancers, 'Potato Bug' & Company
It's a Lovely Day Today - Kenneth & Princess Maria
It's a Lovely Day Today (reprise) - Kenneth, Dancers & Company
Best Thing for You, The - Sally & Cosmo

Acte II
Entracte - Orchestra
Lichtenburg (reprise) - Cosmo & Singers
Something to Dance About - Sally, Principal Dancers & Company
Once Upon a Time Today - Kenneth
They Like Ike - Congressman Wilkins, Senator Gallagher & Senator Brockbank
You're Just in Love - Sally & Kenneth
Best Thing for You, The (reprise) - Sally & Cosmo
It's a Lovely Day Today (reprise) - Kenneth & Princess Marie
Mrs. Sally Adams (reprise) - The Company
Finale - The Company & Sally

Textes disponibles on-line

Texte des chansons

 1950 Original Broadway

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Versions du musical

Versions majeures de Call Me Madam

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Principaux CD du musical

1) 1950-10-Original Cast Members

2) 1950-10-Studio Cast

3) 1952-03-Original London Cast

4) 1953-04-Film Soundtrack

5) 1995-02-New York Concert Cast

Liste détaillée des principaux CD