Love Song: The Lives of Kurt Weill and Lotte Lenya

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Macmillan, Oct 16, 2012 - Biography & Autobiography - 334 pages

Noted historian of the Broadway musical chronicles the braided lives of two of the twentieth century's most influential artists


For the first time, Ethan Mordden chronicles the romance of Kurt Weill and Lotte Lenya in Love Song, a dual biography that unfolds against the background of the tumultuous twentieth century, scored to music from Weil's greatest triumphs: Knickerbocker Holiday, Lost in the Stars, Lady in the Dark, Happy End, One Touch of Venus and The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny. The romance of Weill, the Jewish cantor's son, and Lenya, the Viennese coachman's daughter, changed the history of Western music. With Bertolt Brecht, they created one of the definitive works of the twentieth century, The Threepenny Opera, a smash that would live on in musical theatre history. Weill, the jazz Mozart, was the creator whose work is backstage, unseen. Lenya, his epic-theatre femme fatale, was the performer who put the work into view. They heard the same unique music, but he gave it form while she gave it life. Love Song is ultimately the story of a great romance scored to some of the twentieth century's greatest music.

 

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LOVE SONG: The Lives of Kurt Weill and Lotte Lenya

User Review  - Kirkus

They were some couple: artist and muse, Jewish and Catholic, owlish composer and flighty songbird. She was unfaithful to him, he was only faithful to his music, and neither could live without the ... Read full review

Love Song: The Lives of Kurt Weill and Lotte Lenya

User Review  - Book Verdict

Mordden, your go-to guy about anything having to do with the musical theater, here offers what must inevitably be a dual biography of the cantor's son and the coachman's daughter who joined forces to ... Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Ethan Mordden is the author of dozens of books, both fiction and nonfiction, including the Buddies cycle (beginning with I've a Feeling We're Not in Kansas Anymore); standalone novels such as How Long Has This Been Going On? and One Last Waltz; and seven volumes spanning the history of the Broadway Musical. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The New Yorker and numerous other magazines and journals. He lives in Manhattan.

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