Bogardus and Boone Sing Harburg in Brother, Can You Spare a Dime? Nov. 26
By Adam Hetrick
The classic Yip Harburg song "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?" turns 75 this year, and in honor of the great lyricist's seminal song of the Great Depression, the Yip Harburg Foundation will present an evening celebrating Harburg's life and work Nov. 26.
The evening, entitled Brother Can You Spare a Dime?, will feature performances by songstress Catherine Russell, Broadway's Stephen Bogardus (Falsettos, Man of La Mancha) and Sherry Boone (Marie Christine, Ragtime). Members of the Yip Harburg Foundation's Rainbow Troupe — featuring Genevieve D'Santo, Anthony Ortiz, Jenna Vega and Nereida Vega —will also participate in the performance.
Harburg will be represented in his own words with video culled from interviews and period footage. On hand to discuss his legacy will be Harburg's son and grandson, Ernie and Ben Harburg, respectively, as well as special guest Sheldon Harnick, lyricist of Fiddler on the Roof and She Loves Me.
Brother, Can You Spare a Dime? is co-conceived by Ernie and Deena Harburg and features musical direction by David Brunetti. The Yip Harburg Foundation and the Gotham Center for New York City History present the evening.
Yip Harburg collaborated with such composers as Harold Arlen, Vernon Duke, Jerome Kern, Jule Styne and Burton Lane. He won an Academy Award in 1940 for penning "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" with Harold Arlen for the beloved film "The Wizard of Oz." Among Harburg's contributions to the American songbook are "Down With Love," "Happiness Is Just a Thing Called Joe," "April in Paris," "How Are Things in Glocca Morra?" "It's Fun to Be Fooled," "Only a Paper Moon," "When I'm Not Near the Girl I Love," "Paris Is a Lonely Town," "Old Devil Moon" and "Right As the Rain."
Brother, Can You Spare a Dime? will take place at 6:30 PM at CUNY's Baisley Powell Elebash Recital Hall, located at 365 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. The evening is free, and audiences will be admitted on a first-come first-serve basis. For further information call (212) 343-9668.