African Americans are an ethnic group of Americans with total or partial ancestry from any of the black racial groups of Africa. The term refers to descendants of enslaved black people who are from the United States. Black and African Americans constitute the third largest racial and ethnic group in the United States. Most African Americans are descendants of enslaved peoples within the boundaries of the present United States. On average, African Americans are of West/Central African and European descent, some have Native American ancestry. According to U. S. Census Bureau data, African immigrants do not self-identify as African American; the overwhelming majority of African immigrants identify instead with their own respective ethnicities. Immigrants from some Caribbean, Central American and South American nations and their descendants may or may not self-identify with the term. African-American history starts in the 16th century, with peoples from West Africa forcibly taken as slaves to Spanish America, in the 17th century with West African slaves taken to English colonies in North America.
After the founding of the United States, black people continued to be enslaved, the last four million black slaves were only liberated after the Civil War in 1865. Due to notions of white supremacy, they were treated as second-class citizens; the Naturalization Act of 1790 limited U. S. citizenship to whites only, only white men of property could vote. These circumstances were changed by Reconstruction, development of the black community, participation in the great military conflicts of the United States, the elimination of racial segregation, the civil rights movement which sought political and social freedom. In 2008, Barack Obama became the first African American to be elected President of the United States; the first African slaves arrived via Santo Domingo to the San Miguel de Gualdape colony, founded by Spanish explorer Lucas Vázquez de Ayllón in 1526. The marriage between Luisa de Abrego, a free black domestic servant from Seville and Miguel Rodríguez, a white Segovian conquistador in 1565 in St. Augustine, is the first known and recorded Christian marriage anywhere in what is now the continental United States.
The ill-fated colony was immediately disrupted by a fight over leadership, during which the slaves revolted and fled the colony to seek refuge among local Native Americans. De Ayllón and many of the colonists died shortly afterwards of an epidemic and the colony was abandoned; the settlers and the slaves who had not escaped returned to Haiti, whence. The first recorded Africans in British North America were "20 and odd negroes" who came to Jamestown, Virginia via Cape Comfort in August 1619 as indentured servants; as English settlers died from harsh conditions and more Africans were brought to work as laborers. An indentured servant would work for several years without wages; the status of indentured servants in early Virginia and Maryland was similar to slavery. Servants could be bought, sold, or leased and they could be physically beaten for disobedience or running away. Unlike slaves, they were freed after their term of service expired or was bought out, their children did not inherit their status, on their release from contract they received "a year's provision of corn, double apparel, tools necessary", a small cash payment called "freedom dues".
Africans could raise crops and cattle to purchase their freedom. They raised families, married other Africans and sometimes intermarried with Native Americans or English settlers. By the 1640s and 1650s, several African families owned farms around Jamestown and some became wealthy by colonial standards and purchased indentured servants of their own. In 1640, the Virginia General Court recorded the earliest documentation of lifetime slavery when they sentenced John Punch, a Negro, to lifetime servitude under his master Hugh Gwyn for running away. In the Spanish Florida some Spanish married or had unions with Pensacola, Creek or African women, both slave and free, their descendants created a mixed-race population of mestizos and mulattos; the Spanish encouraged slaves from the southern British colonies to come to Florida as a refuge, promising freedom in exchange for conversion to Catholicism. King Charles II of Spain issued a royal proclamation freeing all slaves who fled to Spanish Florida and accepted conversion and baptism.
Most went to the area around St. Augustine, but escaped slaves reached Pensacola. St. Augustine had mustered an all-black militia unit defending Spain as early as 1683. One of the Dutch African arrivals, Anthony Johnson, would own one of the first black "slaves", John Casor, resulting from the court ruling of a civil case; the popular conception of a race-based slave system did not develop until the 18th century. The Dutch West India Company introduced slavery in 1625 with the importation of eleven black slaves into New Amsterdam. All the colony's slaves, were freed upon its surrender to the British. Massachusetts was the first British colony to recognize slavery in 1641. In 1662, Virginia passed a law that children of enslaved women took the status of the mother, rather than that of the father, as under English common law; this principle was called partus sequitur ventrum. By an act of 1699, the colony ordered all free blacks deported defining as slaves all people of African descent who remained in the c
Oscar Hammerstein II
Oscar Greeley Clendenning Hammerstein II was an American librettist, theatrical producer, e director of musicals for 40 years. He won 4 Tony Awards and two Academy Awards for Best Original Song. Many of his songs are standard repertoire for vocalists and jazz musicians, he co-wrote 851 songs. Hammerstein was the playwright in his partnerships. Hammerstein collaborated with numerous composers, such as Jerome Kern, with whom he wrote Show Boat, Vincent Youmans, Rudolf Friml, Richard A. Whiting, Sigmund Romberg, but he is best known for his collaborations with Richard Rodgers, as the duo Rodgers and Hammerstein, whose collaborations include Oklahoma!, South Pacific, The King and I, The Sound of Music. Oscar Greeley Clendenning Hammerstein II was born in New York City, the son of Alice Hammerstein and theatrical manager William Hammerstein, his grandfather was the German theatre impresario Oscar Hammerstein I. His father was from a Jewish family, his mother was the daughter of Scottish and English parents.
He attended the Church of the Divine Paternity, now the Fourth Universalist Society in the City of New York. Although Hammerstein's father managed the jorgeotto Theatre for his father and was a producer of vaudeville shows, he was opposed to his son's desire to participate in the arts. Hammerstein attended Columbia University and studied at Columbia Law School until 1917; as a student, he engaged in numerous extracurricular activities. These included playing first base on the baseball team, performing in the Varsity Show and becoming an active member of Pi Lambda Phi, a Jewish fraternity; when he was 19, still a student at Columbia, his father died of Bright's disease, June 10, 1914, symptoms of which doctors attributed to scarlet fever. On the train trip to the funeral with his brother, he read the headlines in the New York Herald: "Hammerstein's Death a Shock to the Theater Circle." The New York Times wrote, "Hammerstein, the Barnum of Vaudeville, Dead at Forty." When he and his brother arrived home, they attended their father's funeral with their grandfather, more than a thousand others, at Temple Israel in Harlem, took part in the ceremonies held in the Jewish tradition.
Two hours "taps was sounded over Broadway," writes biographer Hugh Fordin. After his father's death, he participated in his first play with the Varsity Show, entitled On Your Way. Throughout the rest of his college career, Hammerstein performed in several Varsity Shows. After quitting law school to pursue theatre, Hammerstein began his first professional collaboration, with Herbert Stothart, Otto Harbach and Frank Mandel, he went on to form a 20-year collaboration with Harbach. Out of this collaboration came his first musical, Always You, for which he wrote the book and lyrics, it opened on Broadway in 1920. In 1921 Hammerstein joined The Lambs club. Throughout the next forty years, Hammerstein teamed with many other composers, including Jerome Kern, with whom Hammerstein enjoyed a successful collaboration. In 1927, Kern and Hammerstein had their biggest hit, Show Boat, revived and is still considered one of the masterpieces of the American musical theatre. "Here we come to a new genre — the musical play as distinguished from musical comedy.
Now... the play was the thing, everything else was subservient to that play. Now... came complete integration of song and production numbers into a single and inextricable artistic entity." Many years Hammerstein's wife Dorothy bristled when she heard a remark that Jerome Kern had written "Ol' Man River." "Indeed not," she retorted. "Jerome Kern wrote'dum, dum-dum.' My husband wrote'Ol' Man River'."Other Kern-Hammerstein musicals include Sweet Adeline, Music in the Air, Three Sisters, Very Warm for May. Hammerstein collaborated with Vincent Youmans, Rudolf Friml, Sigmund Romberg. Hammerstein's most successful and sustained collaboration began when he teamed up with Richard Rodgers to write a musical adaptation of the play Green Grow the Lilacs. Rodgers' first partner, Lorenz Hart planned to collaborate with Rodgers on this piece, but his alcoholism had become out of control, he was unable to write. Hart was not certain that the idea had much merit, the two therefore separated; the adaptation became the first Rodgers and Hammerstein collaboration, entitled Oklahoma!, which opened on Broadway in 1943.
It furthered the revolution begun by Show Boat, by integrating all the aspects of musical theatre, with the songs and dances arising out of and further developing the plot and characters. William A. Everett and Paul R. Laird wrote that this was a "show, like'Show Boat', became a milestone, so that historians writing about important moments in twentieth-century theatre would begin to identify eras according to their relationship to'Oklahoma.'" After Oklahoma!, Rodgers and Hammerstein were the most important contributors to the musical-play form – with such masterworks as Carousel, The King and I and South Pacific. The examples they set in creating vital plays rich with social thought, provided the necessary encouragement for other gifted writers to create musical plays of their own"; the partnership went on to produce these and other Broadway musicals such as Allegro, Me and Juliet, Pipe Dream, Flower Drum Song, The Sound of Music, as well as the musical film State Fair, the television musical Cinderella, all featured in the revue A Grand Night for Singing.
Hammerstein wrote the book and
Harry Belafonte is an American singer, songwriter and actor. One of the most successful Jamaican-American pop stars in history, he was dubbed the "King of Calypso" for popularizing the Caribbean musical style with an international audience in the 1950s, his breakthrough album Calypso is the first million-selling LP by a single artist. Belafonte is best known for singing "The Banana Boat Song", with its signature lyric "Day-O", he has recorded in many genres, including blues, gospel, show tunes, American standards. He has starred in several films, most notably in Otto Preminger's hit musical Carmen Jones, Island in the Sun, Robert Wise's Odds Against Tomorrow. Belafonte was an early supporter of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950s and 1960s, one of Martin Luther King Jr.'s confidants. Throughout his career, he has been an advocate for political and humanitarian causes, such as the Anti-Apartheid Movement and USA for Africa. Since 1987, he has been a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. In recent years, he has been a vocal critic of the policies of the George W. Bush presidential administrations.
Harry Belafonte now acts as the American Civil Liberties Union celebrity ambassador for juvenile justice issues. Belafonte has won three Grammy Awards, including a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, an Emmy Award, a Tony Award. In 1989, he received the Kennedy Center Honors, he was awarded the National Medal of Arts in 1994. In 2014, he received the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the Academy's 6th Annual Governors Awards. In March 2014, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Berklee College of Music in Boston. Belafonte was born Harold George Bellanfanti Jr. at Lying-in Hospital on March 1, 1927, in Harlem, New York, the son of Melvine, a housekeeper, Harold George Bellanfanti Sr. who worked as a chef. His mother was born in the child of a Scottish white mother and a black father, his father was born in Jamaica, the child of a black mother and Dutch Jewish father of Sephardi origins. Belafonte has described his grandfather, whom he never met, as "a white Dutch Jew who drifted over to the islands after chasing gold and diamonds, with no luck at all".
From 1932 to 1940, he lived with one of his grandmothers in her native country of Jamaica, where he attended Wolmer's Schools. When he returned to New York City, he attended George Washington High School after which he joined the Navy and served during World War II. In the 1940s, he was working as a janitor's assistant in NYC when a tenant gave him, as a gratuity, two tickets to see the American Negro Theater, he fell in love with the art form and met Sidney Poitier. The financially struggling pair purchased a single seat to local plays, trading places in between acts, after informing the other about the progression of the play. At the end of the 1940s, he took classes in acting at the Dramatic Workshop of The New School in New York with the influential German director Erwin Piscator alongside Marlon Brando, Tony Curtis, Walter Matthau, Bea Arthur, Sidney Poitier, while performing with the American Negro Theatre, he subsequently received a Tony Award for his participation in the Broadway revue John Murray Anderson's Almanac.
Belafonte started his career in music as a club singer in New York to pay for his acting classes. The first time he appeared in front of an audience, he was backed by the Charlie Parker band, which included Charlie Parker himself, Max Roach and Miles Davis, among others. At first, he was a pop singer, launching his recording career on the Roost label in 1949, but he developed a keen interest in folk music, learning material through the Library of Congress' American folk songs archives. With guitarist and friend Millard Thomas, Belafonte soon made his debut at the legendary jazz club The Village Vanguard. In 1952, he received a contract with RCA Victor. Belafonte's first released single, which went on to become his "signature" song with audience participation in all his live performances, was "Matilda", recorded April 27, 1953, his breakthrough album Calypso became the first LP in the world "to sell over 1 million copies within a year", Belafonte said on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's The Link program on August 7, 2012.
He added that it was the first million-selling album in England. The album is number four on Billboard's "Top 100 Album" list for having spent 31 weeks at number 1, 58 weeks in the top ten, 99 weeks on the U. S. charts. The album introduced American audiences to calypso music, Belafonte was dubbed the "King of Calypso", a title he wore with reservations since he had no claims to any Calypso Monarch titles. One of the songs included in the album is the now famous "Banana Boat Song", which reached number five on the pop charts, featured its signature lyric "Day-O", his other smash hit was "Jump in the Line". Many of the compositions recorded for Calypso, including "Banana Boat Song" and "Jamaica Farewell", gave songwriting credit to Irving Burgie. While known for calypso, Belafonte has recorded in many different genres, including blues, gospel, show tunes, American standards, his second-most popular hit, which came after "The Banana Boat Song", was the comedic tune "Mama Look at Bubu" known as "Mama Look a Boo-Boo", in which he sings humorously about misbehaving and disrespectful children.
It reached number eleven on the pop chart. In 1959, he starred in Tonight With Belafonte, a nationally televised special that featured Odetta, who sang "Water Boy" and wh
A libretto is the text used in, or intended for, an extended musical work such as an opera, masque, cantata or musical. The term libretto is sometimes used to refer to the text of major liturgical works, such as the Mass and sacred cantata, or the story line of a ballet. Libretto, from Italian, is the diminutive of the word libro. Sometimes other language equivalents are used for libretti in that language, livret for French works and Textbuch for German. A libretto is distinct from a synopsis or scenario of the plot, in that the libretto contains all the words and stage directions, while a synopsis summarizes the plot; some ballet historians use the word libretto to refer to the 15–40 page books which were on sale to 19th century ballet audiences in Paris and contained a detailed description of the ballet's story, scene by scene. The relationship of the librettist to the composer in the creation of a musical work has varied over the centuries, as have the sources and the writing techniques employed.
In the context of a modern English language musical theatre piece, the libretto is referred to as the book of the work, though this usage excludes sung lyrics. Libretti for operas and cantatas in the 17th and 18th centuries were written by someone other than the composer a well-known poet. Pietro Trapassi, known asMetastasio was one of the most regarded librettists in Europe, his libretti were set many times by many different composers. Another noted, he who wrote the libretti for three of Mozart's greatest operas, for many other composers as well. Eugène Scribe was one of the most prolific librettists of the 19th century, providing the words for works by Meyerbeer, Bellini, Donizetti and Verdi; the French writers' duo Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy wrote a large number of opera and operetta libretti for the likes of Jacques Offenbach, Jules Massenet and Georges Bizet. Arrigo Boito, who wrote libretti for, among others, Giuseppe Verdi and Amilcare Ponchielli composed two operas of his own; the libretto is not always written before the music.
Some composers, such as Mikhail Glinka, Alexander Serov, Rimsky-Korsakov and Mascagni wrote passages of music without text and subsequently had the librettist add words to the vocal melody lines. Some composers wrote their own libretti. Richard Wagner is most famous in this regard, with his transformations of Germanic legends and events into epic subjects for his operas and music dramas. Hector Berlioz, wrote the libretti for two of his best-known works, La Damnation de Faust and Les Troyens. Alban Berg adapted Georg Büchner's play Woyzeck for the libretto of Wozzeck. Sometimes the libretto is written in close collaboration with the composer. In the case of musicals, the music, the lyrics and the "book" may each have their own author. Thus, a musical such as Fiddler on the Roof has a composer, a lyricist and the writer of the "book". In rare cases, the composer writes everything except the dance arrangements – music and libretto, as Lionel Bart did for Oliver!. Other matters in the process of developing a libretto parallel those of spoken dramas for stage or screen.
There are the preliminary steps of selecting or suggesting a subject and developing a sketch of the action in the form of a scenario, as well as revisions that might come about when the work is in production, as with out-of-town tryouts for Broadway musicals, or changes made for a specific local audience. A famous case of the latter is Wagner's 1861 revision of the original 1845 Dresden version of his opera Tannhäuser for Paris; the opera libretto from its inception was written in verse, this continued well into the 19th century, although genres of musical theatre with spoken dialogue have alternated verse in the musical numbers with spoken prose. Since the late 19th century some opera composers have written music to prose or free verse libretti. Much of the recitatives of George Gershwin's opera Porgy and Bess, for instance, are DuBose and Dorothy Heyward's play Porgy set to music as written – in prose – with the lyrics of the arias, duets and choruses written in verse; the libretto of a musical, on the other hand, is always written in prose.
The libretto of a musical, if the musical is adapted from a play, may borrow their source's original dialogue liberally – much as Oklahoma! used dialogue from Lynn Riggs's Green Grow the Lilacs, Carousel used dialogue from Ferenc Molnár's Liliom, My Fair Lady took most of its dialogue word-for-word from George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion, Man of La Mancha was adapted from the 1959 television play I, Don Quixote, which supplied most of the dialogue, the 1954 musical version of Peter Pan used J. M. Barrie's dialogue; the musical Show Boat, different from the Edna Ferber novel from which it was adapted, uses some of Ferber's original dialogue, notably during the miscegenation scene. And Lionel Bart's Oliver! Uses chunks of dialogue from Charles Dickens's novel Oliver Twist, although it bills itself
Carmen Jones (film)
Carmen Jones is a 1954 American musical film starring Dorothy Dandridge and Harry Belafonte and directed by Otto Preminger. The screenplay by Harry Kleiner is based on the lyrics and book by Oscar Hammerstein II, from the 1943 stage musical of the same name, set to the music of Georges Bizet's 1875 opera Carmen; the opera was an adaptation of the 1845 Prosper Mérimée novella Carmen by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy. Carmen Jones was a CinemaScope motion picture that had begun shooting within the first 12 months of Twentieth Century Fox's venture in 1953 to CinemaScope Technicolor as its main production mode. Carmen Jones was released in October 1954 one year and one month after Fox's first CinemaScope venture, the Biblical epic The Robe, had opened in theatres. In 1992, Carmen Jones was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally or aesthetically significant". Set during World War II, the story focuses on Carmen Jones, a vixen who works in a parachute factory in North Carolina.
When she is arrested for fighting with a co-worker who reported her for arriving late for work, the leader of the Army guards, Sgt. Brown assigns handsome Corporal Joe to deliver her to the civilian authorities over 50 miles away; this is much to the dismay of Joe's fiancée Cindy Lou, who had agreed to marry him during his leave prior to his reporting for flight school and an eventual officer's commission. While en route, Joe wishes to deliver his prisoner as soon to return to his leave, he decides to save time by taking his jeep over a road warned unsuitable for motor vehicles, half the distance to the town where he is taking Carmen. Carmen suggests she and Joe stop for a meal and a little romance, his refusal intensifies her determination to seduce him, their army jeep ends up hopelessly stuck in a river. Carmen suggests they spend the night at her grandmother's house nearby and continue their journey by train the following day, that night Joe succumbs to Carmen's advances; the next morning he awakens to find a note in which she says although she loves him she is unable to deal with time in jail and is running away.
Joe is locked in the stockade for allowing his prisoner to escape. Cindy Lou arrives for a visit just as a rose from Carmen is delivered to him, prompting her to leave abruptly. Having found work in a Louisiana nightclub, Carmen awaits his release. One night champion prizefighter Husky Miller enters with an entourage and introduces himself to Carmen, who expresses no interest in him. Husky orders his manager Rum Daniels to offer her jewelry, an expensive hotel suite if she and her friends Frankie and Myrt accompany him to Chicago, but she declines the offer. Just Joe arrives and announces he must report to flying school immediately. Angered, Carmen decides to leave with Sgt. Brown, who has appeared on the scene, Joe beats him. Realizing he will be sentenced to a long prison term for hitting his superior, Joe flees to Chicago with Carmen. While Joe remains hidden in a shabby rented room, Carmen secretly visits Husky's gym to ask Frankie for a loan, but she insists she has no money of her own. Carmen returns to the boarding house with a bag of groceries, Joe questions how she paid for them.
The two argue, she goes to Husky's hotel suite to play cards with her friends. When she draws the nine of spades, she interprets it as a premonition of impending doom and descends into a quagmire of drink and debauchery. Cindy Lou arrives at Husky's gym in search of Carmen just before Joe appears. Ignoring his former sweetheart, he orders Carmen to leave with him and threatens Husky with a knife when he tries to intervene. Carmen helps Joe escape the military police, but during Husky's big fight, after he wins the match, Joe finds Carmen in the crowd and pulls her into a storage room, where he begs her to return to him; when she rebuffs him, Joe strangles Carmen to death just before the military police arrive to apprehend him for desertion. The Broadway production of Carmen Jones by Billy Rose opened on December 2, 1943 and ran for 503 performances; when he saw it, Otto Preminger dismissed it as a series of "skits loosely based on the opera" with a score "simplified and changed so that the performers who had no operatic training could sing it."
In adapting it for the screen, he wanted to make "a dramatic film with music rather than a conventional film musical," so he decided to return to the original source material - the Prosper Mérimée novella - and hired Harry Kleiner, whom he had taught at Yale University, to expand the story beyond the limitations imposed upon it by the Bizet opera and Hammerstein's interpretation of it. Preminger realized no major studio would be interested in financing an operatic film with an all-black cast, so he decided to produce it independently, he anticipated United Artists executives Arthur B. Krim and Robert S. Benjamin, who had supported him in his censorship battles with The Moon Is Blue, would be willing to invest in the project, but the two felt it was not economically viable and declined. Following the completion of his previous film, River of No Return, Preminger had paid 20th Century Fox $150,000 to cancel the remainder of his contract, so he was surprised when Fox head Darryl F. Zanuck contacted him and offered to finance the film while allowing him to operate as a independent filmmaker.
In December 1953, he began what became a prolonged preproduction period. He hired cinematographer Sam Leavitt as director of photography, Herschel Burke Gilbert as musical director, Herbert Ross as choreographer and began to scout locations. On April 14, 1954, six weeks before principal photography was scheduled to begin, Preminger was contacted by Joseph Breen
Hubert Edward Hassard Short known as Hassard Short, was an actor, stage director, set designer and lighting designer in musical theatre who directed over 50 Broadway and West End shows between 1920 and 1953. Theatre historian Ken Bloom called him "one of Broadway's greatest directors and lighting designers", while theatre writer John Kenrick described him as a "groundbreaking director and choreographer". After 25 years acting on stage and in films, Short turned to directing and designing in 1920, he made many innovations in stage lighting and design, including the first permanent lighting bridge and first the use of a revolving stage in a Broadway musical. He continued to direct until 1952. Short was born in Edlington, Lincolnshire into the English landed gentry, the elder son of Edward Hassard Short and Geraldine Rachel Blagrave, he left school aged fifteen to seek a career on the stage. He made his first acting appearance in London in 1895 before being brought to New York City by producer Charles Frohman in 1901, where he continued to appear on stage until 1919.
He acted in five silent films between 1917 and 1921, the last being Woman's Place. Short's first experience of directing was the 1908 hit. Alongside his acting work, he directed The Lambs Club Gambols, annual benefit productions, from 1911 to 1913. During the 1919 Actors' Equity Association strike he staged a series of four all-star fundraising shows, which were so well received that he decided his future lay in directing and stagecraft. In this production an electrician operated overhead spotlights above the stage from a bosun's chair, the first of Short's many innovations in stage lighting, his first major hits as a stage director came with the series of Music Box Revues from 1921–23, which showcased Irving Berlin's songs. As well as innovative lighting, he included mechanical effects such as moving stages and elevators, though these were not received with universal approval: the critic Gilbert Seldes complained that "Hassard Short, confusing the dynamics of the theatre with mere hoisting power, moves everything that can be moved except the audience."
In 1921 he staged a historic Shakespearean pageant with many of Broadway's leading men and women in a fundraiser for Actor's Equity. Short adapted well to the more limited budgets of the 1930s by staging revues, including many collaborations with producer Max Gordon and choreographer Albertina Rasch. In Three's a Crowd, he dispensed with footlights for the first time on the New York stage by attaching lights to the balcony railing, he staged the groundbreaking 1931 revue The Band Wagon on double revolving turntables, allowing rapid scene changes. His opulent staging of The Great Waltz, financed by John D. Rockefeller, was an exception to the tightened purse-strings of the time and confounded many critics by becoming a hit in both New York and London, his wartime hits included Lady in the Dark, Something for the Boys and Carmen Jones, for which he won the first Donaldson Award for best musical direction. Short continued to work into his seventies: he staged a successful revival of Show Boat in 1948, the last show he worked on was My Darlin' Aida, which opened in 1952.
A homosexual in a closeted era, Short enjoyed a long-lasting relationship with Billy Ladd, a former chorus dancer. Short retired to the South of France in 1952, died there in 1956. Among the more notable productions that Short staged are the following: Jack Paul; the musical directing career and stagecraft contributions of Hassard Short, 1919-1952. ETD Collection for Wayne State University. Paper AAI7513386
Carmen is a novella by Prosper Mérimée, written and first published in 1845. It has been adapted into a number of dramatic works, including the famous opera of the same name by Georges Bizet. According to a letter Mérimée wrote to the Countess of Montijo, Carmen was inspired by a story she told him on his visit to Spain in 1830, he said, "It was about that ruffian from Málaga who had killed his mistress, who consecrated herself to the public.... As I have been studying the Gypsies for some time, I have made my heroine a Gypsy."An important source for the material on the Romani people was George Borrow's book The Zincali. Another source may have been the narrative poem The Gypsies by Alexander Pushkin, which Mérimée would translate into French prose; the novella comprises four parts. Only the first three appeared in the original publication in the October 1, 1845, issue of the Revue des deux Mondes (Review of the Two Worlds. Mérimée tells the story as if it had happened to him on his trip to Spain in 1830.
Part I. While searching for the site of the Battle of Munda in a lonely spot in Andalusia, the author meets a man who his guide hints is a dangerous robber. Instead of fleeing, the author befriends the man by sharing cigars and food, they stay in the same primitive inn that night. The guide tells the author that the man is the robber known as Don José Navarro and leaves to turn him in, but the author warns Don José, who escapes. Part II. In Córdoba, the author meets Carmen, a beautiful Romani woman, fascinated by his repeating watch, he goes to her home so she can tell his fortune, she impresses him with her occult knowledge. They are interrupted by Don José, although Carmen makes throat-cutting gestures, José escorts the author out; the author finds. Some months again in Córdoba, a friend of the author's tells him that Don José Navarro is to be garrotted the next day; the author hears the story of his life. Part III; the robber's real name is José Lizarrabengoa, he is a Basque hidalgo from Navarre.
He had to flee. In Seville he joined a unit of soldiers with police functions. One day he met Carmen working in the cigar factory he was guarding; as he alone in his unit ignored her, she teased him. A few hours he arrested her for cutting x's in a co-worker's face in a quarrel, she convinced him by speaking Basque that she was half Basque, he let her go, for which he was imprisoned for a month and demoted. After his release, he encountered her again and she repaid him with a day of bliss, followed by another when he allowed her fellow smugglers to pass his post, he looked for her at the house of one of her Romani friends. In the ensuing fight, José killed the lieutenant, he fled to Carmen's outlaw band. With the outlaws, he progressed from smuggling to robbery, was sometimes with Carmen but suffered from jealousy as she used her attractions to further the band's enterprises. After her husband joined the band, José killed him. Carmen became José's wife. However, she told him she loved him less than before, she became attracted to a successful young picador named Lucas.
José, mad with jealousy, begged her to live with him. She said that she knew from omens that he was fated to kill her, but "Carmen will always be free," and as she now hated herself for having loved him, she would never give in to him, he stabbed her to death and turned himself in. Don José ends his tale by saying. Part IV; this part consists of scholarly remarks on the Romani: their appearance, their customs, their conjectured history, their language. According to Henri Martineau, editor of a collection of Mérimée's fiction, the etymologies at the end are "extremely suspect"; as the above summary and that of Bizet's opera indicate, the opera is based on part III of the story only and omits many elements, such as Carmen's husband. It increases the role of other characters, such as the Dancaïre, only a minor character in the story; the opera's female singing roles other than Carmen—Micaëla, Mercédès—have no counterparts in the novella. Carmen knows her fate not from reading cards but from interpreting such omens as a hare running between José's horse's legs.
Other adaptations of the novella include the following: Carmen Carmen A Burlesque on Carmen Carmen Carmen Carmen Carmen Carmen Carmen Carmen Jones Carmen Jones The Loves of Carmen The Loves of Carmen La Tragédie de Carmen Briggs, A. D. P. "Did Carmen come from Russia?", in Andrew, Joe. A History of Russian Literature of the Romantic Period, Volume 3. Ardis. P. 238. ISBN 0-88233-938-9. Retrieved 3 March 2009. Mérimée, Prosper. Les Âmes du Purgatoir