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Lorenz "Larry" Hart (May 2, 1895 – November 22, 1943) was the lyricist half of the famed Broadwaymarker songwriting team Rodgers and Hart. Some of his more famous lyrics include, "Blue Moon", "Isn't It Romantic?", "Mountain Greenery", "The Lady Is a Tramp", "Manhattanmarker", "Where or When", "Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered", "Falling in Love with Love", "I'll Tell The Man In The Street" and "My Funny Valentine".

Hart was born in Harlemmarker to Jewish immigrant parents. He attended Columbia University, where a friend introduced him to Richard Rodgers, and the two joined forces to write songs for a series of amateur and student productions. In 1919, the team's song "Any Old Place With You" was included in the Broadway musical comedy A Lonely Romeo. The great success of their score for the 1925 Theatre Guild production, The Garrick Gaieties, brought them great acclaim.

They continued working together until Hart's death in 1943, along the way producing scores for a series of hit shows and making a substantial contribution to the Great American Songbook. Hart also translated plays for the Shubert brothers while continuing to collaborate with Rodgers (who later collaborated with Oscar Hammerstein).

As a lyricist, Hart was an advocate of internal rhyme and multisyllabic rhyming, and his lyrics have often been praised for their wit and technical sophistication.

He struggled with alcoholism, which contributed to his death.

Hart also suffered great emotional turmoil towards the end of his life. His personal problems, including his struggle with being homosexual, were often the cause of friction between him and Rodgers; in fact this led to a brief breakup in 1943, at which time Rodgers started working with Oscar Hammerstein II, a school friend of Hart. Hart's life was heavily sanitized and romanticized for the 1948 MGM biopic Words and Music.

Rodgers and Hart teamed a final time in the fall of 1943 for a revival of A Connecticut Yankee. Five days after this show opened, Hart died in New York City of pneumonia from exposure. He is believed to have died alone. He is buried in Mount Zion Cemetery in Queens Countymarker, New Yorkmarker.

Selected list of works



Notable songs



Further reading

  • Hart, Dorothy. Thou Swell, Thou Witty: The Life and Lyrics of Lorenz Hart. New York: Harper & Row, 1976.
  • Nolan, Frederick W. Lorenz Hart: A Poet on Broadway. New York: Oxford University Press, 1994.
  • Marx, Samuel, and Jan Clayton. Rodgers & Hart: Bewitched, Bothered, and Bedeviled : an Anecdotal Account. New York: Putnam, 1976.
  • Friends of the USC Libraries. The Hart of the Matter: A Celebration of Lorenz Hart, September 30, 1973. [Los Angeles]: Friends of the USC Libraries, University of Southern California, 1973.


References

  • Nolan, Frederick. Lorenz Hart: A Poet on Broadway. New York: Oxford University Press (1994). ISBN 0-19-510289-4


External links





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