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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating, charming double bio
Frederick Nolan tells the story of Rodgers and Hammerstein both as a team and as separate people. Indeed there is a good deal of space allotted to their careers BEFORE they ever worked together. But after they team up the narrative becomes more lively and a real page turner, at least partly because Nolan's style is graceful and charming in itself. He seems to have read...
Published on November 8, 2002 by J Scott Morrison

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3.0 out of 5 stars Good for a history buff
I was expecting more of a book about the colaborations of Rodgers & Hammerstein. Yes there is some of that - the first chapter is great talking about Oklahoma! But, from there it goes way too deep for my tastes into every little detail of their lives before they ever got together. Then it sort of skims over what I really wanted to read, which was some of the backstage...
Published 3 months ago by P. Willis


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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating, charming double bio, November 8, 2002
Frederick Nolan tells the story of Rodgers and Hammerstein both as a team and as separate people. Indeed there is a good deal of space allotted to their careers BEFORE they ever worked together. But after they team up the narrative becomes more lively and a real page turner, at least partly because Nolan's style is graceful and charming in itself. He seems to have read everything written about them, even going so far as to watch TV kinescopes of them from the 1950s, and he talked to many people who knew them, worked with them.
It's the backstage stories that make the book sing. Practically every page has a at least one fascinating anecdote. And he doesn't sugar-coat their personalities--Rodgers's curtness, even cruelty, and Hammerstein's insecurity, tendency to swallow his pride.
It's hard to read the book without singing to yourself. My God, what songs these two wrote! But more than that, what dramatists they were; they broke convention again and again and mostly successfully.
Pull out your recordings of Oklahoma!, Carousel, South Pacific and start reading!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I haven't got Oscar Hammerstein's gift for words, but..., April 17, 2012
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I bought this book on a whim and couldn't put it down. What a fabulous look into the private and public lives of two of the most gifted artists of the 20th century. As a boomer, I grew up with the Beatles and rock and heavy metal. Reading this book and my limited exposure to the music of R&H has inspired me to buy some of their beautifully written music and lyrics.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Their Music, September 6, 2012
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Jerry (Ft. Myers, FL) - See all my reviews
Lots of ol older names I didn't recall. But a well written chronical of the plays and the songs I'll never forget. Makes me want to seek other books about this great team.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Their Sound of Music, July 7, 2013
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Donald Nakano (Las Vegas, NV United States) - See all my reviews
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I enjoyed reading the story of these two great musical geniuses. There aren't too many books about Oscar Hammerstein II. I didn't know that Mr. Hammerstein was one who loved all people, no matter their race. Great reading to see how music is created
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good for a history buff, May 10, 2014
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I was expecting more of a book about the colaborations of Rodgers & Hammerstein. Yes there is some of that - the first chapter is great talking about Oklahoma! But, from there it goes way too deep for my tastes into every little detail of their lives before they ever got together. Then it sort of skims over what I really wanted to read, which was some of the backstage stories about their big shows.
Overall, although it was interesting, I found it rather boring and it took me a long time to get through it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Everything I wanted to know, December 19, 2012
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True Reviewer "Mike D." (Michigan-United States) - See all my reviews
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This detailed bio provided everything I wanted to know about R and H. Any fan would be well served to spend time with this well-written and detailed bio.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two Words Say I ALL! Rogers and Hammerstein!, July 5, 2013
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Love the back stories in this volume. I'm a lifelong lover of their music, and hadvthenhonor of meeting Richard Rogers later in his career (post Hammerstein). I was present in the studio when they were recording the demos of "Two By Two" and as the singers, conductor and orchestra were running through the songs for the first time. It was real hush-hush so NO ONE had even seen the score until that day. Well, the conductor, Arnold Goland and soprano Anita Darian were my friends, so there ai was, safely seated in the controll room. After the third song I felt a tap on my shoulder and a question, "How do you know these songs?". "Oh, I don't," I said, as I turned around and looked straight into the eyes of Richard Rogers! (OMG, had I been singing along?!!!). Suffice to say that I fumfered around, with my teeth caught in my tongue...BUT when RR discovered I didn't read music, but could pick it up quickly if it was "catchy.". He turned around and shouted to Marty Charnin, "Marty, we have a hit!". Really not. However, one song made it to Tony Bennt who proclaimed "I Do Not Know A Day I Did Not Love You" his favorite recording. Wish everyone could also hear Anita Darian's version from that demo session. It, too, hits the spot.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, July 26, 2014
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This review is from: The Sound of Their Music: The Story of Rodgers and Hammerstein (Applause Books) (Hardcover)
Person I bought this for was very pleased.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Oh the Lessons They Taught Us!, March 6, 2013
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This review is from: The Sound of Their Music: The Story of Rodgers and Hammerstein (Applause Books) (Hardcover)
Good book giving background on both members of the team...a little too much on their previous associations. Will be using it in a course I am teaching.
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The Sound of Their Music: The Story of Rodgers and Hammerstein (Applause Books)
The Sound of Their Music: The Story of Rodgers and Hammerstein (Applause Books) by Frederick W. Nolan (Hardcover - September 1, 2002)
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