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A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the…
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A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Applause Musical Library) (edition 2000)

by Stephen Sondheim, Burt Shevelove (Author), Larry Gelbart (Author)

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1151150,107 (3.9)2
Member:grunin
Title:A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Applause Musical Library)
Authors:Stephen Sondheim
Other authors:Burt Shevelove (Author), Larry Gelbart (Author)
Info:Applause Books (2000), Paperback, 184 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:Libretto, read

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A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Libretto) by Burt Shevelove

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One of the best Broadway librettos ever, of course, and the only successful musical farce. One of the few scripts that repeatedly makes me laugh out loud.

This edition (Applause) includes lyrics from cut songs, a few of which have found a life outside the show: "Invocation," "Love is in the Air," "Farewell," "The House of Marcus Lycus," "Your Eyes Are Blue," "I Do Like You," "There's Something About a War," "Echo Song," "The Gaggle of Geese." ( )
  grunin | Jun 3, 2009 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Shevelove, Burtprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sondheim, Stephenmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Gelbart, LarryIntroductionsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hirschfield, AlIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
PlautusAuthor of related worksecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com (ISBN 0792844815, DVD)

"Something familiar, something peculiar, something for everyone: a comedy tonight!" Those words from the opening song pretty much describe the menu in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, a frantic adaptation of the stage musical by Larry Gelbart and Burt Shevelove. The wild story, set in ancient Rome, follows a slave named Pseudolus (Zero Mostel, snorting and gibbering) as he tries to extricate himself from an increasingly farcical situation; Mostel and a bevy of inspired clowns, including Phil Silvers, Jack Gilford, and Buster Keaton, keep the slapstick and the patter perking. The cast also includes the young Michael Crawford as a love-struck innocent. This project landed in the lap of Richard Lester, then one of the hottest directors in the world after his success with the Beatles' films. Lester telescoped the material through his own joke-a-second sensibility, and also ripped out some of the songs from Stephen Sondheim's Broadway score. The result is a pixilated romp and very close to the vaudeville spirit suggested by the title--though anyone with a low tolerance for Zero Mostel's overbearing buffoonery may be in trouble. Oddly enough, amidst all the frenzy, Lester creates a grungy, earthy Rome that seems closer to the real thing than countless respectable historical films on the subject. --Robert Horton

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:47 -0400)

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