Monday, July 20, 2015
You name it, I've seen many outstanding plays in my day - comedies, dramas and musicals.

There were times when I couldn't afford the price of a "good seat" but for the price of $2.00, climbed those stairs at the theatre and sat in the second balcony, it didn't matter as long as I got to see the show!

Still going to the theatre every chance I get!

As soon as I was notified that tickets were available to see "Hershey Felder as Irving Berlin" my friend and I signed up. It's a good thing because the tickets that Brooksby had were sold out pronto.

Hershey Felder in "Hershey Felder as Irving Berlin" at ArtsEmerson. (88 Entertainment)

When they offer a trip, it includes transportation, which is a big deal, especially if it's going into Boston.

Hersey Felder did an amazing job as Irving Berlin. He told the story of his coming from Czarist Russia to New York's Lower East Side. He got to be known as "the singing waiter." That's how he earned some money.

Several times during the performance Felder gestured to the audiences as he played a tune, inviting us to sing along! We knew the words, we knew the melodies.

As he told the remarkable composer's story, the more he became alive to me. By the last scene, I really felt I was seeing Irving Berlin in the flesh!

It was a two hour show, no intermission.

He spoke about Berlin's ups and downs, his happy marriage, and love of his family.

He died in his sleep at the age of 101.

According to Berlin's obituary in the New York Times he has written a staggering 1,500 songs.

Some songs by Irving Berlin in no particular order:

God Bless America
White Christmas
What'll I do
Blue Skies
Puttin on the Ritz
There's No Business Like Show Business
Let's Face the Music and Dance

"Annie Get Your Gun"
"Call Me Madam"
"As Thousands Cheer"

It's hard to pick a favorite but right now I feel like it's "Puttin on the Ritz."


In order of appearance:
00:00 Shirley MacLaine opens with - "I'm Happy"
03:28 Opening title and performers are announced.
04:24 Walter Cronkite introduces Maureen McGovern & Jerry Orbach.
06:30 Maureen McGovern & 06:57 Jerry Orbach - medley
11:54 Michael Feinstein - "I Love A Piano"
14:50 Nell Carter - "Alexander's Ragtime Band"
18:13 Isaac Stern - talks about Berlin's piano, which is there on stage.
19:30 Irving Berlin singing in 1968
23:06 Willie Nelson - "Blue Skies"
25:45 Ray Charles - "How Much Do I Love You" & "What Will I Do"
32:52 Old clips of Mary Martin & John Raitt
33:40 Beatrice Arthur, MaryAnn Plunkett & Barry Bostwick - medley
44:46 Jerome Robbins
45:06 Garrison Keillor speaks about Berlin & "sing/talks" song "All Alone"
47:30 Natalie Cole - "Supper Time"
51:11 Frank Sinatra - "Always" & "When I Lost You"
54:56 Members of the United States House of Representatives & the Senate (standing on steps of the Capitol building) sing Happy Birthday to Berlin.
55:26 (Teri Garr in one of the ads I didn't take out-wish she was in the show!)

56:00 Very short clip of Irving Berlin singing "Easter Parade"
56:28 Morton Gould talks about Berlin's prodigious output of music
58:15 Old clips of Al Jolson, Ginger Rogers, Fred Astaire, Marilyn Monroe, Ethel Merman & Rosemary Clooney.
1:01:29 Rosemary Clooney - "White Christmas"
Published on Aug 30, 2012
1:05:44 Shirley MacLaine - introduces Tommy Tune
1:06:36 Tommy Tune - "Putting On The Ritz"
1:11:22 Bob Hope talks about Irving Berlin.
1:12:45 Madelyn Kahn - "You'd Be Surprised"
1:16:19 Movie clip of Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers.
1:17:00 Billy Eckstine, Joe Williams & Diane Schuur - medley
1:20:42 Tony Bennett - "Shaking The Blues Away"
1:23:24 Walter Cronkite - talking about movie "This Is The Army"
1:25:05 Irving Berlin singing "Oh, How I Hate To Get Up In The Morning"
1:26:00 Ronald Reagan movie clip & military singing and marching into the show.
1:30:00 Marilyn Horne - "God Bless America"
1:33:57 Berlin receiving medal in 1954 for "God Bless America"
1:34:40 Shirley MacLaine - "There's No Business Like Show Business"
1:35:50 Grand Finale

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