House of Flowers (musical)
name= House of Flowers
Truman Capote's novella
"House of Flowers"
productions= 1954 Broadway
New York Cityconcert
"House of Flowers" is a musical by
Harold Arlen(music and lyrics) and Truman Capote(lyrics and book), based on his own novella. This was Capote's only musical.
After a Philadelphia tryout, the show opened on Broadway on
December 30, 1954at the Alvin Theatreand played for 165 performances. The director was Peter Brook. The cast included Pearl Bailey, Diahann Carroll, Juanita Hall, Ray Walston, and Geoffrey Holder. Although the show received generally poor reviews, the dance-rhythm infused score has been praised for its mix of blues and calypso. Most of the original orchestral score for "Flowers" has been lost, but the piano score survives. [ [http://theater2.nytimes.com/mem/theater/treview.html?_r=2&html_title=&tols_title=HOUSE%20OF%20FLOWERS%20(PLAY)&pdate=20030215&byline=By%20BEN%20BRANTLEY&id=1077011430252&oref=slogin&oref=login NY Times review of the Encores! production] ] Oliver Messel won the Tony Awardfor Best Scenic Design, the show's only nomination.
The story concerns two neighboring
bordellos that battle for business in an idealized West Indiessetting. One of the prostitutes, Ottilie, turns down a rich lord to marry a poor mountain boy named Royal. Her madam plots to keep her by having Royal sealed in a barrel and tossed into the ocean. Royal escapes the watery death by taking refuge on the back of a turtle. The lovers are eventually married and live happily ever after.
There was an unsuccessful
Off-Broadwayrevival in 1968 at Theater de Lys. In 2003, there was an Encores!production, starring Tonya Pinkinsand Armelia McQueenas the battling bordello madams and Maurice Hinesas Captain Jonas, the smuggler. The virginal Ottilie was played by Nikki M. James, and the mountain boy, Royal, was played by Brandon Victor Dixon. Roscoe Lee Browneplayed the voodoo priest, Houngan.
Columbia Masterworksreissued the original cast recording. In addition to such tunes as “A Sleepin’ Bee” and “Don’t Like Goodbyes,” the CD also included bonus tracks of “Mardis Gras Waltz” ( Percy Faithand His Orchestra), “Two Ladies in the Shade” (Enid Mosier), “Ottilie and the Bee” (Truman Capote) and “A Sleepin’ Bee” (a demo recording by Harold Arlen).
* Waitin' — Pansy, Tulip and Gladiola
* One Man Ain't Quite Enough — Madame Fleur
* Madame Tango's Tango — Madame Tango and Tango Belles
* A Sleepin' Bee — Ottilie alias Violet, Pansy, Tulip and Gladiola
* Bamboo Cage — The Champion, the Steel Band, Do, Don't, Pansy, Tulip, Gladiola, Madame Tango, Chief of Police and the Ensemble
* House of Flowers — Royal and Ottilie
* Two Ladies in de Shade of de Banana Tree — Pansy, Gladiola, Carmen, Tulip and the Ensemble
* What Is a Friend For? — Madame Fleur
* A Sleepin' Bee (Reprise) — Ottilie and Royal
* Mardi Gras — Mother, Carmen, Alvin and the Ensemble
* I Never Has Seen Snow — Ottilie;Act II
* Husband Cage — Pansy, Tulip, Gladiola and the Ensemble
* Has I Let You Down? — Madame Fleur, Pansy, Tulip and Gladiola
* Voudou — Houngan and the Ensemble
* Slide, Boy, Slide — Madame Tango, Alvin and the Ensemble
* Don't Like Goodbyes — Madame Fleur
* Turtle Song — Royal, Ottilie and the Ensemble
* Bamboo Cage (Reprise) - The Company
* Two Ladies in de Shade of de Banana Tree (Reprise) - The Company
* [http://theater2.nytimes.com/mem/theater/treview.html?html_title=&tols_title=HOUSE%20OF%20FLOWERS%20(PLAY)&pdate=20030215&byline=By%20BEN%20BRANTLEY&id=1077011430252 Detailed review of the Encores! production]
* [http://www.musicals101.com/houseflw.htm Scathing review at the Musicals101.com site]
* [http://www.answers.com/topic/house-of-flowers-original-broadway-cast-bonus-tracks More positive review of the album at Answers.com]
* [http://www.stageagent.com/shows.php?id=1552 Information about the musical, including roles, plot]
* [http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,844405,00.html Time Magazine review of the 1968 Off-Broadway revival]
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