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re: Actually, something of a tradition.
Posted by: AlanScott 12:47 pm EDT 08/13/22
In reply to: Actually, something of a tradition. - tmdonahue 08:37 am EDT 08/13/22

"Buddie, Beware" (that's not a typo, it is spelled "Buddie" in the title) doesn't fit here, at least not as an example of the practice in the old-fashioned musical. This is because it was written for Merman to sing, and she sang it, or at least she sang it out of town and for the first one to three weeks of the Broadway run. Even though it seems she liked the song a lot, by three weeks into the Broadway run it was replaced by a reprise of "I Get a Kick Out of You," and it has been said this was at her request. You may know the story that Porter wanted "I Get a Kick Out of You," which was a trunk song, up front because all his rich friends habitually came fashionably late to the theatre, just as the folks in Dinner at Eight are going to do. He wanted the song he and everyone thought would be a hit up front so that they had to come on time or they would miss it. But people were coming late anyway, and Merman wanted them to hear her sing it, or so the story goes, so "Buddie, Beware" was dropped in favor of a reprise of "Kick."

Because it was dropped, it was not in the licensed version. The orchestration disappeared, and the song was virtually unknown until the Lincoln Center version created the character Erma and gave her the number. And shortly thereafter the John McGlinn recording was done, recreating the original score as closely as they could. Since the orchestration for that song was lost, Russell Warner did a new orchestration for the recording.
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