Marty (1955), is a low budget romance film directed by Delbert Mann, based on a teleplay by Paddy Chayefsky.
Sidney Aaron Chayefsky (January 29, 1923 – August 1, 1981) known as Paddy Chayefsky was an acclaimed dramatist who transitioned from the golden age of American live television in the 1950s to have a successful career as a playwright and screenwriter for Hollywood.
An enormous sleeper hit, the film enjoyed national and international success, winning the 1955 Academy Award for Best Picture and becoming the first American film to win the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. Marty and The Lost Weekend are the only two films to win both awards.
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Paddy Chayefsky was born in the Bronx, New York in 1923 to Russian Jewish parents. He studied at the City College of New York and Fordham University and served in the U.S. Army during World War II, for which he was awarded a Purple Heart. While recovering from injuries sustained in service, he penned the book and lyrics to a musical called No T.O. for Love, which was first produced by the Special Services Unit in 1945, and toured Army bases all over Europe over the next two years. The show was brought to London, where it opened at the Scala Theatre in the West End and marked the beginning of Chayefsky's theatrical career.
His work on Marty, first as a live production for television featuring Rod Steiger in 1953 and then for film two years later, gave him his first major success. The film, starring Ernest Borgnine, won the Academy Award for Best Picture. Chayefsky's work on that and other teleplays inspired comparisons with Arthur Miller, and he received an Academy Award for his work on the screenplay. He focused on screenplays after the success with Marty, with films such as The Goddess (for which he received an Oscar nomination) and The Bachelor Party. In the 1960s his writing credits included The Americanization of Emily, which featured James Garner, and Paint Your Wagon, a screen vehicle for Lee Marvin. He went on to win two more Oscars for his work on The Hospital (1971) and the film for which he is best known, Network, for both of which he also received Golden Globe awards. His last screenplay was based on his novel Altered States, though on the film he was credited under his real first and middle name, Sidney Aaron, because of disputes with the director Ken Russell. Chayefsky continued to write for the stage as well as the screen until the late 1960's. A theatrical version of Middle of the Night opened on Broadway in 1956 starring Edward G. Robinson and Gena Rowlands. Its success lead to a national tour. The Tenth Man, which opened in 1959, marked Chayefsky's second Broadway success, garnering Tony nominations in 1960 for Best Play, Best Director (Tyrone Guthrie), and Best Scenic Design. Guthrie received another nominiation for Chayefsky's Gideon, as did actor Frederic March. Chayefsky's final Broadway production, a play based on the life of Josef Stalin called The Passion of Josef D was poorly received and ran for only 15 performances. He is known for his comments during the 1978 Oscar telecast after Vanessa Redgrave made a controversial speech denouncing Zionism while accepting her award for Best Supporting Actress in Julia. Chayefsky made a comment during the program immediately after hers stating that he was upset by her using the event to make an irrelevant political viewpoint during a film award program. He said, "I would like to suggest to Miss Redgrave that her winning an Academy Award is not a pivotal moment in history, does not require a proclamation and a simple 'Thank you' would have sufficed." He received thunderous applause for his riposte to Redgrave. Paddy Chayefsky died in New York City of cancer in 1981 at the age of 58, and was interred in Kensico Cemetery in Valhalla, Westchester County, New York.
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People from The Bronx: A-M
People from the Bronx: O-Z
People from NewYorkCity

In the first year of the Academy Awards (1927/28, awarded in 1929), there was no "Best Picture" award. Instead, there were two separate awards, one called "Most Outstanding Production," won by the epic Wings, and one called "Most Artistic Quality of Production," won by the art film Sunrise. The awards were intended to honor different and equally important aspects of superior filmmaking, and in fact the judges and the studio bosses who sought to influence their decisions paid more attention to the latter - MGM head Louis B. Mayer, who had disliked the realism of King Vidor's The Crowd, pressured the judges not to honor his own studio's film, and to select Sunrise instead. The next year, the Academy instituted a single award called "Best Production," and decided retrospectively that the award won by Wings had been the equivalent of that award, with the result that Wings is often erroneously listed as the winner of a sole "Best Picture" award for the first year. The title of the award was eventually changed to Best Picture for the 1931 awards. Since 1944, the Academy has restricted nominations to five Best Picture nominees per year. As of the 79th Academy Awards ceremony held in 2007 and honoring films of 2006, there have been 458 films nominated for the Best Picture award. No Best Picture winner is lost, though a few such as All Quiet on the Western Front and Lawrence of Arabia exist only in a form altered from their original, award-winning release form, usually having been edited for reissue (and subsequently partly restored by archivists). Other winners and nominees such as Tom Jones and Star Wars are widely available only in subsequently altered versions. The 1928 film The Patriot is the only Best Picture nominee that is lost; The Racket was believed lost for many years but a print existed in producer Howard Hughes's archives and it has since been shown on Turner Classic Movies. The Grand Staircase columns at the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles, where the Academy Awards ceremonies have been held since 2002, showcase every movie that has won the Best Picture title since the first Academy Awards in 1928.
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Act I: The story revolves around the activities of New York petty criminals and professional gamblers. Nathan Detroit runs an (illegal) "floating craps game", despite constant encouragement to "go straight" by Miss Adelaide, a nightclub singer to whom he has been engaged for fourteen years but will not marry. When a surge of "high-rollers" comes to town, Nathan is pressured to find a place to hold his floating crap game. Due to strong police activity, namely Lieutenant Brannigan, he can only find one spot, the Biltmore Hotel garage. The owner's requirement, however, is a $1,000 deposit for security, money Nathan does not have. Trying to obtain the money, Nathan comes across Sky Masterson, a high-rolling gambler willing to bet on virtually anything. Nathan proposes a bet which seems impossible to lose: take a doll of Nathan's choice to dinner Havana, Cuba. Specifically, Miss Sarah Brown, a straight-walking sergeant at the Save-a-Soul Mission, a local Salvation Army-like organization. Sarah resists Sky, but her Mission is in trouble, and when he promises to fill her prayer meeting with a dozen sinners, Sky manages to get Sarah to agree to the date, putting Nathan in an even worse position. Over the course of their date, Sky manages to break down Sarah's social inhibitions, and they begin to fall in love with one another.
Act II: Nathan is also struggling with his relationship with his fiancée of fourteen years, Adelaide, who has come down with a psychosomatic cold due to lack of a wedding band. Tired of his habitual lying, she walks out on him. Meanwhile Sky is having problems of his own with Sarah as their conflicting lifestyles clash. Convinced that his love for Sarah is true, Sky makes good on a bet he made with Sarah to fill her failing mission with a dozen sinners. Also, he lies about succeeding on his original bet with Nathan and pays him the $1,000. At the same time, Sky wins a bet with the guys at Nathan's crap game that results in them having to appear at Sarah's mission. Nathan also attends, but doing so nearly ruins his relationship with Adelaide. Sarah fatefully runs into Adelaide to where the two realize that they cannot fight love any longer. Adelaide is relieved when Sarah mentions that Nathan had attended a service earlier in the night, which Adelaide thought he had been lying about. The show ends happily with Nathan and Adelaide's long-awaited wedding, Nathan having gone (almost) straight. They are joined by Sarah and Sky, who has joined the mission and married Sarah.
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Although there are detail differences between the stage and movie versions, the plot is essentially based around the activities of New York petty criminals and professional gamblers. Gambler Nathan Detroit (Frank Sinatra) is under pressure from all sides: he has to organise an unlicensed crap game but the police, led by Lieutenant Brannigan (Robert Keith), are "putting on the heat". All the places where Nathan usually holds his games refuse him entry due to Brannigan's intimidating pressure. The owner of the Biltmore garage does agree to host the game provided Nathan pays him $1000 in cash in advance. The garage owner will not even accept a "marker" or IOU, he insists on having the money itself. To add to Nathan's problems, his fiancée, Miss Adelaide (Vivian Blaine), a nightclub singer, wants to bring an end to their 14-year engagement and actually tie the knot. She also wants him to go straight, but organising illegal gambling is the only thing he's good at. Trying to obtain the money for the garage, Nathan meets an old acquaintance, Sky Masterson (Marlon Brando), a gambler willing to bet on virtually anything and for high amounts. Nathan proposes a $1000 bet by which Sky must take a girl of Nathan's choosing to dinner in Havana, Cuba. The bet seems impossible for Sky to win when Nathan nominates Sergeant Sarah Brown (Jean Simmons), a straight-walking sister at the Save a Soul Mission (based on the Salvation Army) which opposes gambling. Sarah herself has problems. She has been in charge of the Broadway branch of the Mission for some time now and no drunks or gamblers have come in to repent or reform. It's "a store full of repentance and no customers". To approach Sarah, Sky makes out that he is a gambler who wants to change. Sarah knows of his reputation and is suspicious: "It's just so unusual for a successful sinner to be unhappy about sin." Hearing that Sarah's superiors are threatening to close down the Mission in order to concentrate their activities in other places, Sky suggests a bargain: he will get the sinners into the Mission in return for her having dinner with him in Havana. With little choice left Sarah agrees. Confident of his victory, Nathan has gathered together all the gamblers, among who is Big Jule (B.S. Pulley), a Chicago mobster. But when he sees the Save a Soul Mission band passing by and that Sarah is not amongst them, he collapses on the realisation that he has lost the bet. He has no money and nowhere to play the game and he is now committed to actually marrying Adelaide. (Nathan does love Adelaide, but their disagreements in how he should run his life is probably what makes him so reluctant to take the final step.) Over the course of their short stay in Cuba, Sky manages to break down Sarah's social inhibitions, and they begin to fall in love with one another. He even confesses that the whole thing was part of a bet but she forgives him as she realises that his love for her is sincere. They return to Broadway at dawn and meet the Save a Soul Mission band which, on Sky's advice, has been parading all night. At that moment police sirens can be heard and before they know it the gamblers led by Nathan Detroit are hurrying out of a back room of the Mission! They took advantage of the empty premises to hold the game! The police arrive too late to make any arrests but Lieutenant Brannigan finds the absence of Sarah and the other Save a Soul members too convenient to have been a coincidence, and implies that it was all Sky's doing: "Masterson, I had you in my big-time book. Now I suppose I'll have to reclassify you — under shills and decoys". His suspicions are passed on to Sarah who dumps Sky there and then, refusing to accept his denials. In the meantime Sky has to make good his arrangement with Sarah to provide sinners to the Mission. Sarah would rather forget the whole thing, but Uncle Arvide Abernathy (Regis Toomey), who acts as a kind of father figure to her, warns Sky that "If you don't make that marker good, I'm going to buzz it all over town you're a welsher." (A "marker" is slang for a debt that has to be paid off, while a "welsher" means someone who fails to repay that debt.) Feeling that he has little to lose anyway, Sky lies to Nathan about succeeding in the original bet and pays him the $1000. Nathan has continued the game in a sewer. With his revolver at his side, Big Jule won't let the game break up until he has recovered all his losses, which seems unlikely since "Big Jule cannot make a pass to save his soul". Sky overhears this and makes a bold bet: he will play and if he loses he will give all the other gamblers $1000 each; if he wins they are all to attend a prayer meeting at the Mission. The Mission is near to closing when suddenly the gamblers come parading in taking up most of the room. Sky won the roll! They grudgingly confess their sins, though they show little sign of repentance: "Well... I was always a bad guy. I was even a bad gambler. I would like to be a good guy and a good gambler. I thank you." Even Big Jule declares: "I used to be bad when I was a kid. But ever since then I've gone straight, as I can prove by my record — 33 arrests and no convictions." When Nathan tells Sarah that Sky denied winning the Cuba bet (which she knows he won), she hurries off in order to make up with him. It all ends with a street double wedding, with Sky marrying Sarah, and Nathan marrying Adelaide (who is given away by Lieutenant Brannigan). They arrive in a food delivery van and leave in police cars, though this just seems to be an attempt at humour since Brannigan has been unable to find any witnesses against Sky and Nathan and their activities.
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High Society is a 1956 musical film made by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in VistaVision with music and lyrics by Cole Porter. It was directed by Charles Walters and produced by Sol C. Siegel from a screenplay by John Patrick, based on the play The Philadelphia Story by Philip Barry. The cinematography was by Paul Vogel, the art direction by Cedric Gibbons and Hans Peters and the costume design by Helen Rose. The film stars Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly, Frank Sinatra, Celeste Holm with John Lund, Louis Calhern, Sidney Blackmer and Margalo Gilmore. Louis Armstrong and his jazz band sang the title song. The film and musical were based upon the 1940 classic film The Philadelphia Story. It was also the last film Grace Kelly acted in before she became Princess of Monaco. At the time, Sinatra and Holm were all over forty and Crosby was fifty-three. Kelly, however, was only twenty-six. There are also some very interesting issues of class in the movie, as Kittridge, the coal magnate, is shown to have worked his way up from being a miner, and to clearly not understand the confusing workings of the upper class. The film has some fairly racy parts for 1956; Crosby's character sings a love song to an eleven-year-old, the father of the bride discusses the attractiveness of his daughter's body, and several cases of extramarital sex (real and imagined) feature in the plotline. When Tracy awakens on her wedding day, she believes she has had sex with Mike the reporter (as played by Sinatra) and discusses it at length with her ex-husband.
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High Society is a musical with a book by Arthur Kopit and music and lyrics by Cole Porter. Based on the Philip Barry play The Philadelphia Story and the musical screen adaptation it inspired, High Society, the plot centers on pretentious Long Island socialite Tracy Lord, who is planning a June 1938 wedding to an equally pretentious executive when ex-husband Dexter Haven arrives to disrupt the proceedings. Additional comic complications arise when tabloid reporter Mike Connor, who is there to cover the wedding, also falls for the bride-to-be. The score's songs were compiled from various Porter musicals; in some instances, updated or new lyrics were provided by Susan Birkenhead. After 27 previews, the Broadway production, directed by Christopher Renshaw, opened on April 27, 1998 at the St. James Theatre, where it ran for 144 performances. The opening night cast included Stephen Bogardus, Melissa Errico, Daniel McDonald, John McMartin, Randy Graff, Lisa Banes, Marc Kudisch, Betsy Joslyn, and Anna Kendrick. On October 1, 2005, a West End production starring Katherine Kingsley, Graham Bickley, Paul Robinson, and Jerry Hall opened at the Shaftesbury Theatre.
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The Philadelphia Story is a 1940 romantic screwball comedy starring Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, and James Stewart. Based on a Broadway play of the same name by Philip Barry, the film is about a bride-to-be whose plans are complicated by the simultaneous arrival of her ex-husband and a handsome journalist. It is considered one of the best examples of a comedy of remarriage, a genre popular in the 1930s and 1940s, in which a couple divorce, flirt with outsiders and then remarry - a useful ploy at a time when depicting extra-marital affairs was banned in American film. The film was a great success. The play was Hepburn's first great triumph after several movie flops (including the classic Bringing Up Baby), which had led to her being labeled "box office poison". Howard Hughes bought the rights to the film as a gift to Hepburn. When Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer decided to make a movie out of it, she stipulated in her contract that the film could not be made unless she was allowed to reprise her stage role. Hepburn initially wanted Clark Gable and Spencer Tracy for the male leads but they were not available. It was remade in 1956 as a musical titled High Society, starring Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly, and Frank Sinatra.
....Tracy Lord (Hepburn) is a wealthy Main Line Philadelphia socialite who had divorced C.K. Dexter Haven (Cary Grant) and is about to marry nouveau riche George Kittredge (John Howard). Wedding preparations are complicated when she is blackmailed by publisher Sidney Kidd (Henry Daniell) into granting an exclusive story to tabloid reporter Macaulay "Mike" Connor (James Stewart) and photographer Elizabeth "Liz" Imbrie (Ruth Hussey). In exchange, Spy magazine agrees to refrain from exposing the antics of Tracy's philandering father Seth (John Halliday). As the wedding nears, Tracy finds herself torn between Mike, Dexter and George. The night before the wedding, Tracy gets drunk for only the second time in her life and takes an impromptu, innocent swim with Mike. When George sees Mike carrying an intoxicated Tracy into the house afterwards (both of them wearing only bathrobes), he thinks the worst, that his bride-to-be has disgraced herself. The next day, Tracy takes exception to his lack of faith in her and breaks off the engagement. Then she realizes that all the guests have arrived and are waiting for the ceremony to begin. Mike volunteers to marry her (much to Elizabeth's distress), but Tracy graciously declines. At this point, Dexter makes his successful bid for her hand.....
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Sophisticated Ladies is a musical revue based on the music of Duke Ellington. After fifteen previews, the Broadway production, conceived by Donald McKayle, directed by Michael Smuin, and choreographed by McKayle, Smuin, Henry LeTang, Bruce Heath, and Mercedes Ellington, opened on March 1, 1981 at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, where it ran for 767 performances. The original cast included Gregory Hines, Judith Jamison, Phyllis Hyman, Hinton Battle, Gregg Burge, and Mercer Ellington. Hines' older brother Maurice joined the cast later in the run. The score includes "Mood Indigo," "Take the A Train", "I'm Beginning To See the Light", "Hit Me With a Hot Note and Watch Me Bounce", "Perdido", "It Don't Mean a Thing (If You Ain't Got That Swing)", "I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart", "Old Man Blues", "In a Sentimental Mood", "Sophisticated Lady", "Don't Get Around Much Anymore", "Satin Doll", and "I Got It Bad and That Ain't Good", among many others.
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Lounge music refers to music played in the lounges and bars of hotels and casinos, or at standalone piano bars. Generally, the performers include a singer and one or two other musicians. The performers play or cover songs composed by others, especially pop standards, many deriving from the days of Tin Pan Alley. The term can also refer to laid-back electronic music, also named downtempo, because of the reputation of lounge music as low-key background music. Lounge music can also specifically refer to a form of "hip" (not "hip-hop") generally easy listening music that was popular during the 50's and 60's, yet distinct from what was "pop rock" of that era. This is considered to be the golden age of lounge music. At this time, while pop rock music was more popular with younger folks, lounge music was more popular with older folks. Typically, teenagers of the time would listen to pop rock, while their older siblings or parents would listen to lounge. However, the phrase lounge does not appear in textual documentation of the period, such as Billboard magazine or long playing album covers. While some of the lounge music during this period was truly slow, easy listening, a lot of the music was uptempo, with the distinction being sometimes blurred. While pop music was generally country, blues, or rock and roll, lounge music was anything that wasn't strictly of those genres (or a mix of them), but which still was meant for popular consumption (and indeed, was popular with most folks who weren't interested in pop music.) One interesting subgenre of lounge music was swinging music, which was nothing more than a schmaltzy continuation of the swing jazz era of the 1930's and 40's, but with more of an emphasis on the vocalist. The legendary Rat Pack of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis Jr., along with similar artists such as Jackie Gleason, Wayne Newton, Louis Prima and Sam Butera, are a prime example of this subgenre. Such artists performed mainly at featured lounges in Las Vegas casinos. A good deal of lounge music was pure instrumental (i.e., no main vocal part, although there could be minor vocal parts.) Sometimes, this music would be theme music from movies or TV shows, although such music could be produced independently from other entertainment productions. These instrumentals could be produced with an orchestral arrangement, or from an arrangement of instruments very similar to that found in jazz, or even rock and roll such as the Hammond Organ or Electric Guitar. Another subset of lounge music was exotica, showcasing music that was popular outside the USA, such as various Latin genres (e.g., Bossa Nova, Cha-Cha-Cha, Mambo), Polynesian, French, etc. Such music could have some instruments exaggerated (e.g., a Polynesian song might have an exotic percussion arrangement using bongos, and vocalists imitating wild animals.) Many of these recordings were portrayed as originating in exotic foreign lands, but in truth were recorded in Hollywood recording studios by veteran session musicians. One of the exotica subgenres could be called space age pop music, which attempted to give the feeling of zooming into outer space, which is an activity that had high public interest at the time (see space exploration.) (Here, consult the oeuvre of Esquivel.) When much of this music was originally made, particularly the instrumental music of Les Baxter or Arthur Lyman, the word lounge was not used. (These performers specialized in the exotic theme, as mentioned in the previous paragraph.) "Lounge" emerged in the late 1980s as a label of endearment by young adults whose parents had played such music in the 1960s. A label used for the instrumental music of this genre in the 1950s or 1960s was exotica. Vocal music was simply labeled pop, which of course included artists ranging from Pat Boone to the Everly Brothers. In the early 1990s a lounge revival lead by groups like Love Jones, The Coctails, Pink Martini, and Combustible Edison was a direct contradiction to the Grunge music that dominated the period. These groups wore suits and played music inspired by earlier works by Antonio Carlos Jobim, Louis Prima, and many others. Lounge music and musicians are a common theme in popular culture. The 1989 film The Fabulous Baker Boys, starred Jeff Bridges, Beau Bridges, and Michelle Pfeiffer as a successful lounge act. The film Swingers was set during the late '90s lounge and swing revival in Los Angeles, featuring legendary performers like Dean Martin, Louis Jordan and Tony Bennett, as well as modern lounge acts like Love Jones, Joey Altruda and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. In the movie The Blues Brothers, most of the members of the band were reduced to performing as "Murph and the Magictones" (headlining at a Ramada Inn) when bandleader Jake Blues went to prison. Interestingly, when the band takes a break to speak with Jake and his brother Elwood, Murph switches on a Muzak version of "Just The Way You Are", performed by Billy Joel, once a former lounge musician himself. Incidentally, Joel's 1973 hit "Piano Man" was based on his experiences as a lounge singer. Comedians have long lampooned lounge acts or lounge singers. Perhaps the most famous character was the loathsome Tony Clifton, portrayed by Andy Kaufman. A parody of show biz entitlement and excess, Clifton is untalented, lazy (often not bothering to remember the words to the songs), and abusive to his audiences. Bill Murray also portrayed a particularly bad lounge singer on Saturday Night Live, best known for providing his own lyrics to John Williams' theme from Star Wars and performing an over-the-top version of the Morris Albert hit "Feelings". Later, Will Ferrell and Ana Gasteyer portrayed a goofy married duo of lounge-style musicians, but in incongruous venues such as high school dances. British comedians Mel Smith and Griff Rhys Jones appeared as a cheesy keyboard and bass duo during the end credits of one series of their long-running sketch show. The Circle Jerks perform as a very poor lounge act in the 1984 cult film, Repo Man directed by Alex Cox. Rapper Eminem's album, The Slim Shady LP, featured a track called 'Lounge', in which a group of people sing a Lounge version of the next song, 'My Fault'. Musician Richard Cheese and his band Lounge Against the Machine have achieved a cult following by playing comedic lounge covers of popular Rock, Metal, and Rap songs, particularly ones with lyrics containing great amounts of profanity. He is most famous for his lounge cover of Disturbed's Down With The Sickness.
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Pianobar: A piano bar (also known as a piano lounge) consists of a piano or electronic keyboard played by a professional musician, located in a cocktail lounge, bar, hotel lobby, or office building lobby. Usually the pianist receives tips in a jar or basket on or near the piano, especially from patrons requesting a song. Some piano bars feature a baby grand or grand piano surrounded by stools for patrons (or, somewhat humorously, an upright piano covered by a counter that makes it appear to be a grand piano). Others have a bar surrounding the piano or keyboard. There are different types of piano bars: * "instrumental only": the professional piano/keyboard player plays strictly instrumental music, which is usually classical, semi-classical, or "easy listening"; this type of piano bar is often found in hotel lobby lounges or "fine dining" restaurants; * "only the musician sings": the professional piano/keyboard player sings to his/her accompaniment, usually on microphone, but no other singers are generally allowed; * "the musician and waitpersons sing": the professional musician sings and also invites waitpersons to sing solos; * "sing-along": patrons surrounding the piano/keyboard sing as a group, usually without any microphones, often preferring "standards" and "show tunes", or very old songs like "Down By The Old Mill Stream", "Bicycle Built For Two", etc., but in some cases pop or rock; * "dueling pianos": usually on stage with two grand pianos, each played by a professional player who sings and entertains; humor and audience participation are prevalent; usually these types of piano bars have substantial sound systems, and most of the songs performed are rock and roll, "classic rock", blues, R&B, or country, played at very high volume. Howl at the Moon Piano Bar, Shout House Dueling Pianos, Pete's Dueling Pianos, Rum Runners, Jellyrolls and Sing, Sing are popular chains of this type of piano bar; * "open mic": individual patrons sing (on microphone) to the accompaniment of the professional musician; in some ways, this type of piano bar is like karaoke, except that the music is live and dynamic, and there are usually no lyrics available (although some piano bar players do supply some lyrics); like karaoke, the songs performed may cover a wide, eclectic range ("show tunes", "standards" from the 1920's forward, jazz, country, R&B, rock'n'roll, blues, folk, soul, disco, hip-hop, etc.); the patron singers are usually called to the microphone in a rotating order; often, each singer is allowed 2 or 3 songs each time he/she is called to perform; and * "combination": some piano bars include the characteristics of two or more of the above, either on different nights or combined on the same night. For instance, at a "sing along" piano bar, a patron or wait person might sing a solo from time to time. Before becoming famous, Billy Joel sometimes worked as a piano bar performer. His classic hit "Piano Man" is based on his experiences as a piano bar player.
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List of Musicals by the year

The backdrop for Meet Me in St. Louis is St. Louis, Missouri on the brink of the 1904 World's Fair. The story centers on the middle-class Smith family, who lead a comfortable and happy life. The family has four daughters, Rose, Esther, Agnes and Tootie and a son, Lon. Esther, the 2nd eldest daughter (Judy Garland), is taken with the boy next door, John Truett (Tom Drake), although he does not notice her at first. The film starts out with Mrs. Smith (Mary Astor) and Katie the maid (Marjorie Main) making ketchup. Esther Smith then walks in and asks Katie to ask Mrs. Smith if dinner can be an hour early because Rose (Lucille Bremer) is expecting a long distance phone call from Warren Sheffield (Robert Sully). Esther then leaves and Katie askes Mrs. Smith if dinner can be an hour early. Mrs. Smith agrees, but when Mr. Smith comes home, he refuses to have dinner an hour early. Everybody is eating when the telephone rings. Mr. Smith answers but says he will not accept the long distance call. Rose starts crying and that is when Mr. Smith finds out about Warren Sheffield. The phone then rings again, and Mr. Smith lets Rose answer it. The whole family is expecting Warren to propose to Rose. Instead, Rose endures a humiliating phone call, in which she and Warren talk mainly about the weather. The film has a notable sequence which occurs on Halloween, in which unsupervised children make a bonfire. The sequence is an interlude of some length that involves a rite of passage for Tootie (Margaret O'Brien), in which she is charged with "killing" a neighbor. Rather than be a saccharine cutesy take on childhood, it actually revolves around the issues that disturb children, death, mean adults, etc. Life seems perfect for the family until Mr. Smith (Leon Ames) reveals that he has earned a position at a law firm in New York and the whole family will have to leave St. Louis before the Fair. Act II opens in late October at Halloween - the windows are lit with an eerie yellowish light and there is a pumpkin on the front porch. Agnes and Tootie are getting costumed for trick-or-treating for Tootie's favorite holiday (Tootie is always morbidly obsessed with death and murder). Their plan is to gleefully take revenge on an allegedly-mean and hateful St. Louis neighbor. The two girls set the mood for the scary night. They frighten Katie with their suitably gruesome costumes. When someone answers the doorbell during trick-or-treating, the girls' goal is to 'kill' the 'victim' by throwing flour in the flustered person's face. Back at the Smith residence on the same evening, the family is interrupted by Tootie's screams off-screen down by the trolley. Frightened and injured, she arrives home bloodied and sobbing. She is carried into the house and surrounded by the concerned family, as she whimpers and wails: "He tried to kill me." Mrs. Smith decides to summon the doctor rather than the head of the household, declaring "What could he do?" Tootie alleges that John Truitt attacked her. A close-up of Esther's face reveals her horror and shock and she first reacts that it's "a monstrous falsehood." Esther then runs next door to confront John. When Esther returns home, Tootie has already been attentively pampered and cared for. Then Agnes and Tootie discuss what really had happened down at the trolley, where they had both stuffed an old dress to look like a body, and laid it on the trolley tracks to sabotage the trolley car. Tootie gleefully exclaims: "It looked just like a body, a live body too." Rose is upset with Agnes: Rose: You're nothing less than a murderer. You might have killed dozens of people. Agnes: Oh Rose, you're so stuck-up. So John had fought with Agnes and Tootie only to try to hide them from the police. Tootie thinks John's precautionary concerns were unnecessary: "No police men ever pay attention to girls." Esther is enraged at Tootie for fooling her: "You're the most deceitful, horrible, sinful creature I ever saw, and I don't ever want to have anything to do with you again." Esther again rushes next door to John's front porch to reconcile with him - he accepts her apology. Papa arrives with a present for his wife, and the news that he will be sent to New York on business. The family doesn't at first understand the implication. Grandpa promises to protect everyone in his absence, but Mr. Smith makes it clear that he will be sent permanently. He has received a promotion and will be head of a new office there. The family is shocked by the news. The entire family will have to move to New York City right after Christmas. Tootie contemplates what the uprooting means. The family is stunned, entirely disrupted and upset the news of the move, especially Rose and Esther, whose romances with beaux, friendships, and educational plans are threatened. And Esther is also depressed and aghast because they have to go away before the St. Louis fair. Tootie and Agnes will lose their playmates, Katie will lose her job, and Mrs. Smith's home will be uprooted. The threatening move also hints at the loss of an uncomplicated way of life or the end of an era of innocence in American life. Mr. Smith defends his firm decision to move in a few months. Mr. Smith still has an appetite to eat the cake that Katie made - he is the only one in the family who can eat during this traumatic time. Rose is appalled by the thought of living in a New York apartment rather than a house: "Rich people have houses. People like us live in flats, hundreds of flats in one building." And Tootie tells everyone with a wavering voice: "I'd rather be poor if we could only stay here. I'd rather go with the orphalins at the orphalins home." After everyone has excused themselves from the table, only Mr. and Mrs. Smith are left. Having incurred the wrath of the entire family, he looks over at his wife, and reproves her for ingratitude: "Aren't you afraid to stay here alone with a criminal? That's what I'm being treated like." In the parlor, Mrs. Smith sympathetically stands by her husband and accepts his decision. In a touching and moving scene expressing their family unity, inseparability and loyalty, she joins him and singing "You and I" The next scene takes place at Christmas time. The older children, Lon, Esther, and Rose discuss their preparations for the big Christmas Ball that evening (their "last Christmas dance in St. Louis,") arguing over their lack of dates. They insult an "Eastern snob," Lucille Ballard, who is escorting Rose's beau Warren. Rose is left without a date and doesn't wish to be ignominiously escorted by her brother - that would make her "the laughing stock of St. Louis." But eventually, Lon is coerced into taking his sister to the dance. Rose and Esther vow to wreck Lucille's evening. John arrives at the door with "some bad news" for Esther - he arrived too late at the tailor shop to pick up his tuxedo, and it was locked up. He is unable to escort her to the dance. Esther is heartbroken: "This is ghastly!" Esther is left dateless and breaks into tears, explaining that she will stay home to pack for their move from St. Louis. Grandpa gallantly offers to escort her, instead of having brother Lon take the two of them, and Esther accepts. The elegant ball takes place on Christmas Eve. Everyone soon pairs off with his/her desired partner, Lon with Lucille Ballard and Rose with Warren Sheffield. When Esther's sabotage of Lucille Ballard's dance card is no longer necessary, Esther is left stranded with a dance-card list of motley losers. After many waltzes, Esther is finally rescued by her Grandpa: "You're the first human being I've danced with all evening." Grandpa also surprises her with John's attendance at the ball. She is nostalgic, sad, and painfully reminded of her family's impending departure. The emotional climax of the movie occurs when Tootie cannot cope with the disruption of her social world, and experiences a violent breakdown in a yard full of snowmen. Mr. Smith then decides after seeing this that the family would not move. The movie ends when all of the family attends the World's Fair.
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