Charles Strouse

Decades: 1990s 2000s


7 June 1928, New York City, New York, USA. A composer who has experienced the sweet taste of Broadway success - but not for some considerable time. When Strouse graduated from the Eastman School of Music he intended to make a career in the classical field, and studied for a time with Aaron Copland. After meeting lyricist Lee Adams in 1949 he changed course, and during the early 50s they contributed songs to revues at the popular Green Mansions summer resort, and in 1956 they had some numbers interpolated into the Off Broadway shows The Littlest Revue and Shoestring ’57. Their big break came in 1960 with Bye Bye Birdie, which is often cited as the first musical to acknowledge the existence of rock ‘n’ roll. It starred Dick Van Dyke and Chita Rivera and ran for 607 performances. The witty and tuneful score included ‘Kids!’, ‘A Lot Of Livin’ To Do’, and ‘Put On A Happy Face’. Ironically, two years earlier, Strouse,...

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