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When Broadway Went to Hollywood$
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Ethan Mordden

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780199395408

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199395408.001.0001

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(p.139) Chapter 8 Operetta
When Broadway Went to Hollywood

Ethan Mordden

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on Hollywood's operettas. These include MGM's Naughty Marietta (1935), which featured soprano Jeanette MacDonald and baritone Nelson Eddy. The film was a tremendous hit, prompting MGM to follow up with Rose Marie (1936), Maytime (1937), and The Firefly (1937). Sweethearts (1938) allowed MGM to revel in operetta's exotic costuming and swelling choruses while constantly stepping back from them in a modern-dress Technicolor comedy about big-city characters. By the 1950s, Hollywood's interest in operettas had already waned, but the phenomenal success of The Sound of Music in 1965 inspired Andrew L. Stone to attempt two imitations that tilted toward operetta: Song of Norway (1970) and The Great Waltz (1972).

Keywords:   Hollywood musicals, operettas, Broadway, MGM, Naughty Marietta, Andrew L. Stone

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