Theater: Legs Diamond Shoots Blanks

In a season of misery, Broadway seeks a new American musical

When composer Frederick Loewe looked back on a career with lyricist Alan Jay Lerner that included Brigadoon, My Fair Lady and Camelot, he reportedly said he could not get over how easy he and his partner made it all seem. Loewe was right, but in retrospect the most startling thing about the team's success is that their creativity was far from unique. In the heyday of Broadway musicals, nearly every season brought a landmark production, often two or three. The 1946-47 season that introduced Brigadoon, for example, also provided Finian's Rainbow. The 1956-57 season of My Fair Lady was, in addition,...

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