On April 3, 1958, the ANTA Theater in New York City set the stage aglow with the debut of “Say, Darling,” a comedic tour de force that provided an intimate glimpse into the whirlwind world of Broadway. This production, while not earning major awards, garnered critical acclaim and earned nominations for its exceptional contributions.

Co-written by Abe Burrows, Richard Bissell, and Marian Bissell, “Say, Darling” featured a stellar cast including David Wayne, Vivian Blaine, and Robert Morse. The play’s exploration of the trials and triumphs of show business was heightened by its memorable songs, composed by the legendary team of Betty Comden, Adolph Green, and Jule Styne.

Critics lauded the play for its sharp wit and insightful commentary on the theater industry. Walter Kerr of the New York Herald Tribune wrote, ” ‘Say, Darling’ is a delightful romp through the trials and tribulations of show business, punctuated by memorable tunes that enhance its storytelling.” The New York Times’ Brooks Atkinson noted, “The musical numbers add depth and charm to an already captivating narrative, showcasing the talents of Comden, Green, and Styne.”

While “Say, Darling” did not win any major awards, it received nominations that underscored its impact. David Wayne earned a Tony Award nomination for Best Actor in a Musical or Play for his standout performance. The production also received nominations for Best Direction and Best Scenic Design, highlighting its overall excellence.

“Say, Darling” illuminated the backstage antics and creative fervor of Broadway, delighting audiences with its humor and heart. Its incorporation of memorable songs by Comden, Green, and Styne added a layer of musical brilliance to an already stellar production, solidifying its place as a beloved theatrical masterpiece.

Sources:

“Say, Darling (Play),” On This Day (onthisday.com)

“Say, Darling,” Playbill Vault (playbill.com)

Reviews from Walter Kerr (New York Herald Tribune) and Brooks Atkinson (The New York Times);

Written by ChatGPT

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