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Publisher's Summary

A revelatory portrait of the creative partnership that transformed musical theater and provided the soundtrack to the American Century 

They stand at the apex of the great age of songwriting, the creators of the classic Broadway musicals Oklahoma!, Carousel, South Pacific, The King and I, and The Sound of Music, whose songs have never lost their popularity or emotional power. Even before they joined forces, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II had written dozens of Broadway shows, but together they pioneered a new art form: the serious musical play. Their songs and dance numbers served to advance the drama and reveal character, a sharp break from the past and the template on which all future musicals would be built. 

Though different in personality and often emotionally distant from each other, Rodgers and Hammerstein presented an unbroken front to the world and forged much more than a songwriting team; their partnership was also one of the most profitable and powerful entertainment businesses of their era. They were cultural powerhouses whose work came to define postwar America on stage, screen, television, and radio. But they also had their failures and flops, and more than once they feared they had lost their touch. 

Todd S. Purdum's portrait of these two men, their creative process, and their groundbreaking innovations will captivate lovers of musical theater, lovers of the classic American songbook, and lovers in general. He shows that what Rodgers and Hammerstein wrought was truly something wonderful. 

©2018 Todd S. Purdum (P)2018 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Terrific story that captures important American era

This is a wonderfully researched and told story that details the amazing partnership of Rogers and Hammerstein. It shows how together they both reinvented musical theater but even more importantly captured and pushed America at its best. The narration by Todd Purdum is excellent. The author’s clear passion for his subject comes shining through and makes the book that much more special. Highly recommend this both for yourself and as a gift for others.

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magnificemt!

Indispensible for lovers of R&H
author's narration is spot on. This is a must read.

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very interesting

Enjoyed it immensely. I knew the music but the background to the creation and development of the musicals that have become so well known was enlightening.

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Rediscovery of an innovative team of artists

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Highly recommend. This book is a terrific description of R&H’s journey individually and as a team.

What did you like best about this story?

I think some modern audiences may approach R&H’s work with a dismissive attitude. This book provides plenty of evidence of their continued importance and relevance. There’s no Hamilton without Oklahoma.

What about Todd S. Purdum’s performance did you like?

He’s clearly passionate about his subject matter, and his voice, pace, and cadence are pleasant.

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Background creation story for fave musicals

Where does Something Wonderful rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

The author does a great job reading his very interesting book. I didn't know the background story of these musicals that I've seen so many times on stage and in the movies.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful