Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Anything Goes is a musical with music and lyrics by Cole Porter. The "book" was a collaborative effort by Guy Bolton, P.G. Wodehouse, Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse. It introduced such songs as "You're the Top" and "Anything Goes".
Anything Goes was based on an idea by a producer, Vinton Freedley , who was living on a boat in Panama, having left the USA to avoid his debts. He selected the writing team, and the star, Ethel Merman. As the show was in preparation, a passenger ship, the SS Morro Castle, sank and over 125 passengers were drowned. The plot, which concerned a shipwreck, was deemed insensitive, and the show was largely rewritten.
The resulting story was that of a nightclub singer, Reno Sweeney, played by Merman. The show opened at the Alvin Theatre , New York City, on 21 November, 1934 and became the fourth longest-running musical of the 1930s. It was filmed in 1936, starring Ethel Merman and Bing Crosby.
The song "Anything Goes" achieved a minor revival when it was used in the famous Monty Python's Flying Circus "Courtroom sketch". The Pythons also introduced a completely different (no pun intended) song called "Anything Goes" by "the other Cole Porter". ("Anything goes in, anything goes out, fish, bananas, old pyjamas, mutton, beef and trout...")
According to the title song, "In olden days a glimpse of stocking was looked on as something shocking, but now God knows, anything goes"
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