Text Box: COMPOSER autographs
Text Box: HARMONIE AUTOGRAPHS AND MUSIC INC.

MUSIC AUTOGRAPHS & ANTIQUARIAN
Text Box: MUSIC AUTOGRAPHS AND EPHEMERA BOUGHT AND SOLD

Phone: 212-860-5541  *  Fax: 917-677-8247

 

Price: $125.00

MINT CONDITION

HAROLD ROME - COMPOSER

Autographed 8” x 10” photograph of the Broadway and film composer, 1973.  The photograph bares a stamp of Rome’s musical adaptation of “Gone With the Wind” which was commissioned by a Japanese producer and also had a run in London and finally made it to Los Angeles where it ran from August 28 - October 20, 1973, produced by the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera at the Dorothy Chandler Pavillion.

Rome (1908-1993) studied at Yale to be an architect and a lawyer.  Finding that work unfulfilling he turned to his love, music.  Rome had been a successful amateur pianist and even played with several dance bands whilst in school.

Rome while an architect began writing socially conscious shows for Summer entertainment in the Catskills.  His Broadway debut was in 1937 with a review entitled “Pins and Needles”.  The show which centered in the garment trade had a three year run on Broadway, a big hit at the time.  His next show, “Sing Out the News” only lasted 5 months from September, 1938 to January, 1939, but for that period he had two shows going at the same time, rare for your first two efforts.  He ran several shows until his next big hit, “Call Me Mister” which ran from 1946-1948.  “Wish You Were Here” ran for over a year 1953-1954, followed by one of his most important works, “Fanny” which ran for 1954-1956 and starred retired Metropolitan Opera bass Ezio Pinza.  “Call Me Mister” and “Fanny” were turned into feature films, though Rome’s music was limited in each. 

His musical adaptation of “Gone With the Wind” was written at the request of Kazuo Kikuta Chairman of the entertainment company Toho Corporation who owned the rights to Mitchell’s book in Japan.  “Gone With the Wind” was perennially a Japanese best seller in print and shown regularly in its’ film form and thus Kikuta thought it naturally should be adapted for the stage.  He blocked $1.0 million dollars for the production and enlisted his 900 employees in the project. A play script was written and a Japanese cast was hired and the play opened to packed houses at the new Imperial Theater in 1966 and ran for a month, the typical run there. (It was a 9 hour show!)  Of course, the success went to their heads and therefore a musical was the next generation for the stage.  He had already staged Japanese language versions of “Fiddler on the Roof”, “Man of Lamancha” and “My Fair Lady” each a big success.  Kikuta wrote the book for the show himself and travelled to New York City to engage Harold Rome to write the music and lyrics and Koe Layton to direct the show.  Layton insisted on 2 months of rehearsal time which was unheard of in Japan.  They engaged massive rehearsal space in a film studio.  The work which was trimmed down from the 9 hours to 4 for the musical.  The show ran in 1970 for a year in 2 parts for a 6 month run each and was entitled “Scarlett”. 

British producer Henry Fielding brought the rights and an English adaptation was written and the Drury Lane Theater was hired in 1972 with the same team in place.  The work was slightly shortened, but was still close to 4 hours.  The work was strong enough in London for Fielding to pursue a Broadway run which never happened.  That said The Los Angeles Civic Light Opera produced the work at the Dorothy Chandler Pavillion for 2 months in the Fall of 1973 starring Leslie Ann Warren and Pernell Roberts.