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A Song in the DarkThe Birth of the Musical Film$
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Richard Barrios

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195377347

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195377347.001.0001

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Of Viennese Nights and Golden Dawns

Of Viennese Nights and Golden Dawns

(p.269) 12 Of Viennese Nights and Golden Dawns
A Song in the Dark

Richard Barrios

Oxford University Press

Filmed operettas were more prominent in the early sound era than they would ever be again. The first, The Desert Song, showed both the advantages and pitfalls of putting these works on film. Opera star Lawrence Tibbett scored with The Rogue Song, as did director Ernst Lubitsch with The Love Parade. Others could be pompous (The Vagabond King), trivial (The Lottery Bride), or horrendously racist (Golden Dawn). With Viennese Nights, Sigmund Romberg and Oscar Hammerstein II created a viable operetta especially for the screen, although not with financial success.

Keywords:   operetta, Lawrence Tibbett, Lubitsch, Maurice Chevalier, Jeanette MacDonald, Vagabond King, Golden Dawn, Technicolor, Romberg, Victor Herbert

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