On February 8, 2010, I had the great pleasure of volunteering for the Drama League at their annual gala - this one in particular was celebrating the career of Angela Lansbury. The entire show was comprised of loving renditions of showstoppers from productions that Angela had performed in. The 11 o'clock number of the evening was a fabulous send off to Angie - opened by Bernadette Peters who was joined by a number of Broadway's young leading men.
The "new" lyrics to Mame, the title song to Jerry Herman's 1966 that provided Angela a vehicle to stardom, were written by Stephen Cole especially fo the occasion of the Drama League Gala. The men were dressed in top hats and tails and were joined at the end by the entire cast, including Ms. Lansbury. It was thrilling!
In honor of Angela's birthday - today, October 16th - I am sharing (after the Theatre Aficionado especially procured them at my bidding) Stephen's terrific "new" lyrics. They sum up how I - how we all - feel about her! So Happy Birthday, Angie!
Do you hear that vamp, Angie? For over two years at the Winter Garden theater, a large group of amorous men serenaded you with this great Jerry Herman song eight times a week. They called you Mame then, but tonight, we wanted to personalize it a little bit...
Special Material Lyric by Stephen Cole
Music by Jerry Herman
YOU SET THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD ON ITS EAR
YOU'VE HAD A SEVEN DECADE CAREER
(IT’S STILL GOIN’ ON)
Angie, the leading men of Broadway salute you!
(She exits as Cheyenne enters. Each man enters on his line until all ten are assembled)
YOUR TEEN WERE SPENT IN HOLLYWOOD
FAMOUS WERE THE ELBOWS THAT YOU RUBBED
YOU SANG WITH JUDY GARLAND
BUT THAT WAS MGM, SO YOU WERE DUBBED
YOUR MRS. LOVETT MADE CRITICS RISE
THEY’D BETTER, OR YOU’LL BAKE ‘EM IN PIES
YOU ONLY HAVE TO SHOW AND A TONY WILL BE WAITING AT YOUR DOOR
IN RAGS OR DRAPED IN ERMINE WHO
SANG SONDHEIM, STYNE AND HERMAN?
...OUTBELTED ETHEL MERMAN?
ALL FIVE: YOU!
WELL FERME MY BOUCHE
AND SLAPPA MY THIGHS
YOU SURE MAKE THE GROSSES AND AUDIENCE RISE YOU WALK ON A STAGE AND YOU TURN EVERY HEAD
ALL SIX: ANGIE
WELL, STRIKE ME SILLY
AND HERE’S A QUOTE
“YOU KILLED ALL THE PEOPLE WITH “MURDER SHE WROTE’”
YOU WALKED IN THE ROOM
AND SOMEBODY’S DEAD!
ALL SEVEN: ANGIE
YOU WERE ELVIS’S MOTHER
THO YOU WERE TOO YOUNG
BUT THAT’S NOT THE CAUSE OF YOUR FAME
NO, YOU HAD TO WAIT FOR YOUR ULTIMATE FATE
WHEN YOU SLID DOWN THE BANNISTER AS MAME (DANCE SECTION)
YES, WE’RE ALL GLAD YOU’RE BACK ON BROADWAY ANGIE AND, WE ALL PRAY THAT YOU’RE GONNA STAY ANGIE
(Two of the men go down to bring Lansbury to the stage)
WE LOVE TO CALL YOU MADAM
THAT’S MADAM ARMFELT
ALSO MADAM ROSE
PRODUCERS LOVE TO CALL YOU
CAUSE THEY KNOW IF YOU SIGN
THEY’LL NEVER CLOSE
YOU MAKE US GIDDY AND ALL AT SEA
YOU MAKE US MODULATE UP A KEY
LET’S FACE IT, WE’RE ALL CRAZY
YES, CRAZY FOR YOU AND YOU ARE TO BLAME
WE MADE THIS ROOM DELUXE FOR YOU
I SQUEEZED INTO MY TUX FOR YOU
THEY PAID NINE HUNDRED BUCKS FOR YOU
ALL (+ WOMEN):
VELVETA TURNS TO BRIE FOR YOU
BLUE STATES AND RED AGREE FOR YOU
LOOK HERE, I’M ON ONE KNEE FOR YOU
ANGIE! ANGIE! ANGIE!!!
From an exuberant attendee at the Drama League Gala - not me!
MAME - from the 1983 Broadway Revival