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Dance a Little Closer

Dance a Little Closer

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Dance a Little Closer is a musical
Musical theatre
Musical theatre is a form of theatre combining songs, spoken dialogue, acting, and dance. The emotional content of the piece β€“ humor, pathos, love, anger β€“ as well as the story itself, is communicated through the words, music, movement and technical aspects of the entertainment as an...

 with a book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner
Alan Jay Lerner
Alan Jay Lerner was an American lyricist and librettist. In collaboration with Frederick Loewe, he created some of the world's most popular and enduring works of musical theatre for both the stage and on film...

 and music by Charles Strouse
Charles Strouse
Charles Strouse is an American composer and lyricist.-Life and career:Strouse was born and raised in New York City, the son of Ira and Ethel Strouse...

. The story is an updated version of Robert E. Sherwood
Robert E. Sherwood
Robert Emmet Sherwood was an American playwright, editor, and screenwriter.-Biography:Born in New Rochelle, New York, he was a son of Arthur Murray Sherwood, a rich stockbroker, and his wife, the former Rosina Emmet, a well-known illustrator and portrait painter known as Rosina E. Sherwood...

's 1936 antiwar comedy Idiot's Delight
Idiot's Delight
Idiot's Delight is a 1939 MGM comedy film, with a screenplay adapted from the 1936 Robert E. Sherwood play of the same name, by Sherwood himself. The movie stars Norma Shearer and Clark Gable. It is notable as the only film where Gable sings and dances, performing a version of the Irving Berlin...


Plot overview

The musical is set on New Year's Eve
New Year's Eve
New Year's Eve is observed annually on December 31, the final day of any given year in the Gregorian calendar. In modern societies, New Year's Eve is often celebrated at social gatherings, during which participants dance, eat, consume alcoholic beverages, and watch or light fireworks to mark the...

 "in the avoidable future" in the grand Alpine
The Alps is one of the great mountain range systems of Europe, stretching from Austria and Slovenia in the east through Italy, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and Germany to France in the west....

 Barclay Palace Hotel, where the guests find themselves in the midst of a potential nuclear
Nuclear weapon
A nuclear weapon is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reactions, either fission or a combination of fission and fusion. Both reactions release vast quantities of energy from relatively small amounts of matter. The first fission bomb test released the same amount...

Armageddon is, according to the Bible, the site of a battle during the end times, variously interpreted as either a literal or symbolic location...

. The characters are American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

Crooner is an American epithet given to male singers of pop standards, mostly from the Great American Songbook, either backed by a full orchestra, a big band or by a piano. Originally it was an ironic term denoting an emphatically sentimental, often emotional singing style made possible by the use...

 Harry Aikens and Cynthia Brookfield-Bailey, who may have had a romantic fling years earlier. Among the others present are Cynthia's current paramour, Henry Kissinger
Henry Kissinger
Heinz Alfred "Henry" Kissinger is a German-born American academic, political scientist, diplomat, and businessman. He is a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. He served as National Security Advisor and later concurrently as Secretary of State in the administrations of Presidents Richard Nixon and...

-like diplomat
A diplomat is a person appointed by a state to conduct diplomacy with another state or international organization. The main functions of diplomats revolve around the representation and protection of the interests and nationals of the sending state, as well as the promotion of information and...

 Dr. Josef Winkler, a gay
Gay is a word that refers to a homosexual person, especially a homosexual male. For homosexual women the specific term is "lesbian"....

 couple, a minister, and a freedom fighter.


The musical opened on Broadway
Broadway theatre
Broadway theatre, commonly called simply Broadway, refers to theatrical performances presented in one of the 40 professional theatres with 500 or more seats located in the Theatre District centered along Broadway, and in Lincoln Center, in Manhattan in New York City...

 at the Minskoff Theatre
Minskoff Theatre
The Minskoff Theatre is a legitimate Broadway theatre, located at 1515 Broadway in midtown-Manhattan. It is now showing the musical The Lion King, based on the Disney animated film of the same name....

 on May 11, 1983, where it closed after one performance and twenty-five previews. Directed by Lerner and choreographed by Billy Wilson, the cast included Len Cariou
Len Cariou
Leonard Joseph β€œLen” Cariou is a Canadian actor, best known for his portrayal of Sweeney Todd in the original cast of Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street...

, Liz Robertson
Liz Robertson
Liz Robertson is an English actress and singer. She is the widow of Playwright and lyricist Alan Jay Lerner.Robertson began training at the Finch Stage School at the age of three. Her first professional employment was as a cabaret dancer at London's Savoy Hotel at the age of sixteen...

, George Rose
George Rose (actor)

, Don Chastain
Don Chastain
Don Chastain was an American actor and screenwriter.He worked in television in Los Angeles and New York and toured the United States and Canada with major productions...

, Brent Barrett
Brent Barrett
Brent Barrett is an American actor and tenor who is mostly known for his work within American theatre. Barrett has performed in musicals and in concerts with theatres, symphony orchestras, opera houses, and concert halls internationally...

, and Alyson Reed
Alyson Reed
Alyson Reed is an American dancer and actress.Reed grew up in Anaheim, California and attended Anaheim High School, where she graduated in 1976. She was a varsity songleader for two years, and was ASB President as a senior. She began performing in high school, and one of her major roles was as...

. Showbusiness insiders dubbed it "Dance a Little Faster...Close a Little Sooner."

In his New York Times review Frank Rich
Frank Rich
Frank Rich is an American essayist and op-ed columnist who wrote for The New York Times from 1980, when he was appointed its chief theatre critic, until 2011...

 described it as "a huge, extravagant mishmash . . . that seems to have taken on a rampaging, self-destructive life of its own," a sentiment similar to those expressed by the other critics.

An original cast recording is available on CD
Compact Disc
The Compact Disc is an optical disc used to store digital data. It was originally developed to store and playback sound recordings exclusively, but later expanded to encompass data storage , write-once audio and data storage , rewritable media , Video Compact Discs , Super Video Compact Discs ,...


Song list

Act I
  • It Never Would've Worked
  • Happy, Happy New Year
  • No Man is Worth It
  • What are You Going to Do About It?
  • A Woman Who Thinks I'm Wonderful
  • Pas de Deux
  • There's Never Been Anything Like Us
  • Another Life
  • Why Can't the World Go and Leave Us Alone?
  • He Always Comes Home to Me
  • I Got a New Girl
  • Dance a Little Closer
  • There's Always One You Can't Forget

Act II
  • Homesick
  • Mad
  • I Don't Know
  • Auf Wiedersehen
  • I Never Want to See You Again
  • On Top of the World
  • I Got a New Girl (Reprise)
  • Dance a Little Closer (Reprise)

External links