New Faces of 1952
New Faces of 1952 is a musical revue with songs and comedy skits. It ran on Broadway for nearly a year in 1952 and was then made into a motion picture in 1954. It helped launch the careers of several young performers including Paul Lynde, Alice Ghostley, Eartha Kitt, Robert Clary, Carol Lawrence, Ronny Graham, performer/writer Mel Brooks (as Melvin Brooks), and lyricist Sheldon Harnick.
The revue opened on Broadway at the Royale Theatre on May 16, 1952 and ran for 365 performances. It was produced by Leonard Sillman, directed by John Murray Anderson and John Beal with choreography by Richard Barstow. The sketches were written by Graham and Brooks. The songs were composed by, among others, Harnick, Graham, Murray Grand and Arthur Siegel. The cast featured Graham, Kitt, Clary, Virginia Bosler, June Carroll, Virginia De Luce, Ghostley, Patricia Hammerlee, Lawrence, Lynde and Bill Milliken. De Luce and Graham won the 1952 Theatre World Award. The revue marked Kitt's Broadway debut, singing a "sultry rendition" of "Monotonous", about how boring a life of luxury was.
The Equity Library Theater, New York City, presented an Off-Broadway revival in 1982, directed by Joseph Patton and featuring comedic performances by Lillian Graff, Philip Wm. McKinley and Alan Safier in the roles originated by Ghostley, Lynde and Graham, respectively. Kitt joined the cast late in the run to re-create her original role.
Another New Faces, the New Faces of 1956 ran on Broadway from June 14, 1956 through December 22, 1956. It was also conceived and produced by Sillman, with direction by David Tihmar and Paul Lynde (sketches). There were five other "New Faces" in all: 1934, 1936, 1943, 1962, and 1968. According to Kay Green, of the seven "New Faces" revues, the 1952 revue was the "most admired, both for the talent of the performers and the cleverness of the writing.
"Of Fathers and Sons", written by Mel Brooks, was a parody of the Clifford Odets drama, Golden Boy with characters Mae, Harry, Stanley and Policeman; a pickpocket is angry with his son for not wanting to join the family business. In "Oedipus Goes South", Ronny Graham parodies Truman Capote. Paul Lynde, wrapped in bandages, bemoans his African safari. The narrative ballad "Guess Who I Saw Today" has June Carroll telling her husband that she saw him with another woman. In "The Bard and the Beard" the characters- Miss Leigh, Sir Laurence, Call Boy and Maid- try to remember what play they are supposed to be in.
Film New Faces
Retitled New Faces, the film version was directed by Harry Horner in Cinemascope and Eastmancolor, and released by Twentieth Century Fox on March 6, 1954. Ronny Graham, Eartha Kitt, Robert Clary, Alice Ghostley, June Carroll, Virginia De Luce, Carol Lawrence, Patricia Hammerlee, Paul Lynde, and Bill Millikin repeated their stage roles. The film was basically a reproduction of the stage revue with a thin plot added. The plot involved a producer and performer (Ronny Graham) in financial trouble on opening night. A wealthy Texan offers to help out, on the condition that his daughter be in the show.
The song order was changed and expanded to include:
- "Crazy, Man!" (Lynde, Graham)
- "Time for Tea" (Carroll, Siegel)
- "He Takes Me Off his Income Tax" (de Luce)
- "Convention Bound" (Graham)
- "Uska Dara" (Kitt)
- "C'est si bon" (Kitt)
- "Santa Baby" (Kitt)
However, some songs were omitted, or had their lyrics updated. The song "Nanty Puts her Hair Up" was omitted. However an abridged version was used as an instrumental in a dance routine. The song "Don't Fall Asleep" was omitted. The song "Love is a Simple thing" omitted the final verse, being the Charles Addams character verse, because it was too outdated. Also, an extra verse was added to "Lizzie Borden". Some of the lines in "Monotonous" were replaced and updated, omitting the line "Ike Likes Me", and being replaced with writing the "Dragnet" theme instead.
|Leonard Sillman's New Faces Of 1952|
|Cast recording by |
|Released||1952 or 1953|
55:20 (CD 2009 re-issue)
Leonard Sillman's New Faces Of 1952 (Original Cast) was the official release of the cast recording of the Broadway revue New Faces of 1952. The album was originally released on 12" Long-play gramophone record by RCA Victor, LOC-1008. It excluded some material as not all songs could fit on the record. In 1977, the album was reissued on the RCA Red Seal label, catalog number CBM1-2206.
The cast recording, like the play, was produced by Leonard Sillman. The orchestral conductor for the album and play was Anton Coppola. Orchestral arrangements were by Ted Royal. Alice Ghostley, Allen Conroy, Bill Mullikin, Carol Lawrence, Carol Nelson, Eartha Kitt, Jimmy Russell, Joseph Lautner, June Carroll, Michael Dominico, Patricia Hammerlee, Paul Lynde, Robert Clary, Ronny Graham, Rosemary O'Reilly, Virginia Bosler, and Virginia de Luce all perform on the album, and are cited in doing so. The LP also lists some credits for the play itself, John Beal is cited as the plays director, and the primary sketch writers as Melvin Brooks and Ronny Graham.
The first official release of the cast recording album on compact disc was in 2003 by Jasmine Records, featuring the original LP track listing. However, in 2009 Sony Music, which now owns the RCA Victor archive, reissued the recording on the Masterworks Broadway label on CD and digital download, this time including the previously unreleased song "Time For Tea" performed by June Carroll and Alice Ghostley. Masterworks released the album with the catalog number Arkiv RCA-04441.
- 12" Long Play
|1.||"Opening"||Ronny Graham and Company||2:11|
|2.||"Lucky Pierre"||Ronny Graham||3:20|
|3.||"Boston Beguine"||Sheldon Harnick||Alice Ghostley Introduced by Virginia de Luce||4:42|
|4.||"Love Is A Simple Thing"|
Introduced by Virginia de Luce
|5.||"Nanty Puts Her Hair Up"|
Introduced by Virginia de Luce
|6.||"Guess Who I Saw Today"||June Carroll||2:20|
|7.||"Bal, petit bal"||Francis Lemarque||Eartha Kitt Introduced by Robert Clary||2:58|
- 2009 re-issues
|CD and Digital release|
|3.||"Guess Who I Saw Today"||June Carroll||2:20|
|4.||"Love Is A Simple Thing"||5:08|
|6.||"Nanty Puts Her Hair Up"||4:42|
|7.||"Time For Tea"||5:14|
|8.||"Bal, petit bal"||2:58|
|9.||"Three For The Road"||5:23|
|10.||"Don't Fall Asleep"||Rosemary O'Reilly||2:10|
|12.||"I'm In Love With Miss Logan"||3:57|
|13.||"Penny Candy"||June Carroll||3:26|
|15.||"He Takes Me Off His Income Tax"||Virginia de Luce||1:05|
- Peterson, Bernard. A century of musicals in black and white (1993), Greenwood Publishing Group, ISBN 0-313-26657-3, p. 249
- Wilson, John."Stage:New Faces Of 1952 Revived" The New York Times, November 2, 1982
- New Faces of 1956 Internet Broadway Database, accessed August 11, 2009
- Green, Kay. Broadway musicals, show by show (1996), Hal Leonard Corporation, ISBN 0-7935-7750-0, p. 154
- Parish, James Robert. It's Good to Be the King, (2008), John Wiley and Sons, ISBN 0-470-22526-2, p. 89
- Green, Stanley. Encyclopedia of the Musical Theatre (1980), Da Capo Press, ISBN 0-306-80113-2, p. 165
- Atkinson, Brooks. "At the Theatre", The New York Times, May 17, 1952, p. 23
- Plot and production information, 'New Faces' tcm.com, accessed August 11, 2009
- Original soundtrack, Discogs, retrieved June 22, 2014
- Original soundtrack Jasmine Records re-issue, Discogs, retrieved June 22, 2014
- Original soundtrack 2009 re-issue, Amazon.com, retrieved June 22, 2014
- Suskin, Steven."ON THE RECORD: New Faces of 1952 and New Faces of 1956" playbill.com, May 17, 2009
- "I'm in Love with Miss Logan" (from Robert Clary Sings at the Jazz Bakery), Allmusic, retrieved June 22, 2014
- "I'm in Love with Miss Logan" (from New Faces of 1952 (Original Broadway Cast)), Allmusic, retrieved June 22, 2014
- "He Takes Me Off His Income Tax" (from Arthur Siegel Sings Arthur Siegel), Allmusic, retrieved June 22, 2014