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Also Known As: Lorenz Milton Hart Died: November 22, 1943
Born: May 2, 1895 Cause of Death: complications from pneumonia
Birth Place: New York City, New York, USA Profession: lyricist, librettist

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Music aficionados are generally divided into two camps when discussing the work of composer Richard Rodgers. There are those who feel his best work was written in collaboration with Oscar Hammerstein II, especially as the pair are credited with re-inventing and re-structuring the musical comedy form from the early 1940s through the 1950s. Then, there are the partisans of Rodgers' work with lyricist Lorenz Hart, a partnership that yielded songs noted more for their emotional content than for psychological depth.

Music aficionados are generally divided into two camps when discussing the work of composer Richard Rodgers. There are those who feel his best work was written in collaboration with Oscar Hammerstein II, especially as the pair are credited with re-inventing and re-structuring the musical comedy form from the early 1940s through the 1950s. Then, there are the partisans of Rodgers' work with lyricist Lorenz Hart, a partnership that yielded songs noted more for their emotional content than for psychological depth.

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

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Milestones close milestones

1908:
Made first stage appearances as actor at Weingart Institute, a summer camp in the Catskills
1911:
Earliest surving verse, a poem written in honor of his parents twenty-fith wedding anniversary
1912:
Made first visit to Europe
1916:
Wrote first lyrics for a show; adapted German songs into English for Gustave Amberg
1917:
Met Richard Rodgers (date approximate)
1919:
Contributed to first Columbia University varsity show
1919:
Collaborated with Arthur Schwartz; wrote camp songs
1919:
Wrote first song with Rodgers, "Any Old Place With You"; performed in Broadway show "A Lonely Romeo"
1920:
First professional show, "Poor Little Ritz Girl"; show opened in Boston but was substantially revised before it moved to Broadway; Rodgers and Hart's score was supplemented by works by Sigmund Romberg and Alex Gerber
1925:
With Rodgers, co-wrote score for the "Garrick Gaieties"; had first hit song "Manhattan"
1927:
Had big success with stage musical "A Connecticut Yankee"
1929:
Contributed four songs to the feature "Follow Thru" (1930); only one, "I'm Hard to Find", used in final film
1930:
First feature film adaptation of a Rodgers and Hart show, "Leathernecking" (based on "Present Arms")
:
Contracted to write scores for three films for First National; first film "The Hot Heiress" (1931) was box-office failure; contract subsequently cancelled by mutual consent
1932:
Hired by Paramount to score "Love Me Tonight", starring Maurice Chevalier and Jeanette MacDonald
1933:
Wrote songs for second Paramount feature, "The Phantom President", starring George M Cohan
1933:
Moved to United Artists to score "Hallelujah, I'm a Bum!"
1933:
Worked with Moss Hart on unproduced musical film "I Married an Angel"
1935:
Had Broadway success with score for Billy Rose's "Jumbo", starring Jimmy Durante
:
Had two hits on Broadway, "On Your Toes" and "Babes in Arms"
1938:
Stage version of "I Married an Angel" premiered
1938:
"The Boys From Syracuse" opened
1941:
Final feature score, "They Met in Argentina"
1943:
Last feature work, contributed song "The Girl I Love to Leave Behind" to "Stage Door Canteen"
1943:
Final collaboration with Rodgers, oversaw Broadway revival of "A Connecticut Yankee"; wrote new songs including "To Keep My Love Alive", which is believed to be their last completed collaboration
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Education

De Witt Clinton High School: New York , New York -
Columbia University School of Journalism: New York , New York -
Columbia Grammar School: New York , New York -

Notes

"Unfortunately, I never knew Larry Hart--I never met him--but when I I was growing up, I became aware of the tremendous impact of this man on lyric writing. A lot of people thought he overrhymed. I don't think he did. I think he invented some of the most fantastic new rhymes I have ever heard. The psychology of analyzing this man in his lyrics convinces me he was the minstrel of masochism.

Part of it is that in the twenties and thirties it was not what it is today, which is the Age of the Uglies ... Larry was a little gnome and consequently he thought--and this is just a theory--but certainly in all his work was 'I hate me.' It was 'beat me.' It was 'I'm no good.' ... These were the theme songs of this man's life. ... Every lyric has some masochism, every single one." --Jerome Lawrence quoted in "Rodgers and Hart: Bewitched, Bothered and Bedeviled" by Samuel Marx and Jan Clayton (New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1976).

Family close complete family listing

father:
Max Meyer Hertz. Held various jobs; emigrated to America from Hamburg in 1878 at age 12; Anglicized surname to Hart; married Hart's mother on November 6, 1886; died October 9, 1928.
mother:
Frieda Hertz. German; died April 23, 1943.
brother:
James Hart. Born 1892; died in infancy.
brother:
Theodore van Wyck Hart. Actor. Married to the former Dorothy Lubow; had son named Lorenz.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"Rodgers and Hart: Bewitched, Bothered and Bedeviled" G.P. Putnam's Sons
"Thou Swell, Thou Witty: The Life and Lyrics of Lorenz Hart" Harper & Row
"The Lyrics of Lorenz Hart" Alfred A. Knopf
"Lorenz Hart: A Poet on Broadway" Oxford University Press
VIEW COMPLETE BIBLIOGRAPHY

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