New Moon (1930 film)

New Moon is a 1930 black-and-white American, pre-Code romantic/drama/melodrama musical film version of the operetta The New Moon, with music by Sigmund Romberg and book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II and others. The original stage version premiered on Broadway in 1928. The 1930 film is also known as Komissa Strogoff in Greece, Nymånen in Denmark and Passione cosacca in Italy. A second adaptation, also titled New Moon, was released in 1940.

New Moon
Directed byJack Conway
Produced byPaul Bern
Written byBook of musical play:
(The New Moon)
Oscar Hammerstein II
Frank Mandel
Laurence Schwab
Sylvia Thalberg
Frank Butler
Cyril Hume (dialogue)
StarringLawrence Tibbett
Grace Moore
Adolphe Menjou
Roland Young
Gus Shy
Emily Fitzroy
Music byWilliam Axt
CinematographyOliver T. Marsh
Edited byMargaret Booth
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
  • December 1930 (1930-12) (U.S.)
Running time
78 minutes
CountryUnited States

The 1930 film, directed by Jack Conway, starred Grace Moore and Lawrence Tibbett. Its plot is entirely different from the original play and is set in Russia. This version added new songs not by Romberg.


New Moon is the name of a ship crossing the Caspian Sea. A young man named Lt. Petroff meets Princess Tanya and they have a ship-board romance. Upon arriving at the port of Krasnov, Petroff learns that Tanya is engaged to Governor Brusiloff.

Petroff, disillusioned, crashes the ball to talk with Tanya. When the couple are found by Brusiloff, they invent a story about her lost bracelet. To reward him, and remove him, Brusiloff sends Petroff to the remote, and deadly, Fort Darvaz. Soon, the big battle against overwhelming odds will begin.



Music by Sigmund Romberg
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Played during the opening credits
Sung by Lawrence Tibbett at the tavern
Reprised by him and Grace Moore at the fort
  • "Farmer's Daughter"
Music by Herbert Stothart
Lyrics by Clifford Grey
Played by the band on the ship and sung in a gypsy language by Lawrence Tibbett
Reprised by him with an English translation
Played on piano and sung in the gypsy language by Grace Moore
  • "Wanting You"
Music by Sigmund Romberg
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Sung a cappella by Lawrence Tibbett on the ship
Reprised by him and Grace Moore on the ship
  • "One Kiss"
Music by Sigmund Romberg
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Played on piano (and studio orchestra) and sung by Grace Moore
  • "What Is Your Price Madam?"
Music by Herbert Stothart
Lyrics by Clifford Grey
Played by the orchestra at the ball and sung by Lawrence Tibbett
  • "Stout Hearted Men"
Music by Sigmund Romberg
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Sung by Lawrence Tibbett and soldiers at the fort
Reprised by the men returning from the battle

Background and production

  • The operetta The New Moon opened on Broadway in New York City on 19 September 1928 and closed on 14 December 1929 after 519 performances. The leads were played by Robert Halliday and Evelyn Herbert, and the supporting cast included Gus Shy, who also in this film.
  • Some production charts included Hale Hamilton and Marie Mosquini in the cast, but they were not seen in the movie.
  • Modern sources include in this film the songs "Marianne", "Funny Little Sailor Man" and "Softly, As in a Morning Sunrise" (all from the original stage production), but they were not heard.
  • The credits list New Moon as the title of the original operetta, but its title was The New Moon.
  • The production dates were from 22 July 1930 until 3 October 1930.

Film Connections

  • A second film version of New Moon was remade in 1940 also titled New Moon and the Public Broadcasting Services (PBS) TV Series Great Performances: The New Moon (#17.2)" (1989), are all considered to be based on the stage play The New Moon.
  • New Moon is featured in the 1954 film Deep in My Heart – the Romberg written production number.
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