The Complete Lyrics of P. G. Wodehouse

The Complete Lyrics of P. G. Wodehouse

by Barry Day


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Although he wrote hundreds of songs and was a key figure in the birth of the American stage musical, P. G. Wodehouse's (1881-1975) long and influential career as a lyricist has been almost completely forgotten and unheralded - until now. Highly regarded by literati for his rich, sardonic Wooster and Jeeves books (among his more than ninety novels and volumes of short stories), Wodehouse broke new ground by writing songs that were cohesively integrated into the narrative action of musicals rather than presented as a string of unrelated tunes, which was the then-standard format. Particularly in the shows he wrote with Guy Bolton and Jerome Kern, Wodehouse transformed the musical from a poor man's Gilbert and Sullivan-style operetta into a more idiomatic and respectable form based on contemporary life. This book sets the lyrics from his nearly forty theatrical productions within the context of each individual show, providing incisive and informative commentary for each. Lavishly illustrated with photos and memorabilia, Barry Day establishes why, throughout the 1920s and 1930s, Wodehouse was considered a top-tier theatrical figure on both sides of the Atlantic.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780810849945
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 04/15/2004
Pages: 544
Product dimensions: 8.80(w) x 11.20(h) x 1.37(d)

About the Author

Barry Day is the author or editor of numerous books and plays. In June 2004 he was awarded the O.B.E. in the Queen's birthday Honours List.

What People are Saying About This

Richard Rodgers

Before Larry Hart, only P. G. Wodehouse has made any assault on the intelligence of the song-listening public. . . . Larry always said he was 'inspired' by Wodehouse.

Michael Feinstein

Wodehouse is the father of the modern theatre lyric, and it is a true delight to read as well as sing his marvelous creations. Ira Gershwin idolized him, and it is easy to understand why.

Johnny Mercer

One day, in fifty, a hundred years' time, the words of Porter, Hart, Wodehouse, Gershwin, Coward, maybe a few of my own, will be published, recited, analyzed, codified.

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