Lot 801: TLS, one page, 8.75 x 9.75, personal letterhead, November 15, 1932. Letter to Irving E. Meishel, sending a delayed thank-you for birthday wishes, in part: "For the past two months I have been in and out of New York working on a new production which is to have its premiere in two weeks, and in consequence my correspondence has been rather badly neglected." In fine condition, with central vertical and horizontal folds. Gershwin must be referring to the musical Pardon My English, a farcical piece with a book by Herbert Fields and Morrie Ryskind, lyrics by Ira Gershwin, and music by George. It premiered in Philadelphia on December 2, 1932-just over two weeks after this letter-where it was panned by the critics. By the time of its Broadway premiere in January 1933 it was practically unrecognizable, with a rewritten plot, edits and additions to characters, and changes to the cast. Received poorly by critics and at the box office, Pardon My English ran for just 46 performances and has gone down in Broadway history as the shortest run for a Gershwin musical. Still, Gershwin's score has stood the test of time and remains generally well-liked.
RR Auction's Fine Autographs & Artifacts
Friday, 23rd October 2015
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