Kiss Me, Kate
Original Broadway Production
A Musical Play in Two Acts
Music and Lyrics by Cole Porter
Book by Sam and Bella Spewack, loosely based on Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew
Tryouts began December 2, 1948 at the Shubert Theatre, Philadelphia
Opened December 30, 1948 at the New Century Theatre, NYC
Transferred on July 41, 1950 to the Sam S. Shubert Theatre
Closed July 28, 1951
Ran for 1077 performances
Produced by Saint Subber and Lemuel Ayers
Production staged by John C. Wilson
Choreography by Hanya Holm
Settings and costumes by Lemuel Ayers
Musical Director: Pembroke Davenport
Orchestrations by Robert Russell Bennett
Incidental ballet music arranged by Genevieve Pitot
While cast members of a musical version of The Taming of the Shrew
celebrate "Another Op'nin', Another Show", the show's stars,
Fred Graham and Lilli Vanessi, celebrate the first anniversary of their
divorce. They take time from their bickering to recall they had once
sung "Wunderbar" in a long-forgotten operetta. Lilli receives
a bouquet from Fred, leading her to believe he still loves her, and she
confesses she is still "So in Love" with him, but when she learns
the flowers are meant for Lois, the show's ingenue, she determines to be
revenged. Fred's problems are compounded when Lois' boyfriend, Bill
Calhoun, signs Fred's name to a gambling debt. Opening night is peppered
by warfare between Fred and Lilli, and by demands from two comic hoods
for payment of the debt. In the course of the evening Fred
and Lilli recognize they still do love each other.
Alfred Drake (Fred Graham / Petruchio)
Patricia Morison (Lilli Vanessi / Katherine)
Harold Lang (Bill Calhoun / Lucentio)
Lisa Kirk (Lois Lane / Bianca)
Annabelle Hill (Hattie), Thomas Hoier (Harry Trevor /
Baptista), Don Mayo (Ralph), Lorenzo Fuller (Paul),
Bill Lilling (Stage Doorman), Harry Clark (First Man), Jack
Diamond (Second Man), Denis Green (Harrison Howell), Edwin
Clay (Gremio), Charles Wood (Hortensio), John
Castello (Haberdasher), Marc Breaux (Tailor),
Fred Davis and Eddie Sledge (Specialty Dancers)
Note: Italicized roles are characters in the "Taming of the Shrew" portion of the show
Replacement Cast [at the Sam S. Shubert Theatre (1950)]
Ted Scott (Fred Graham / Petruchio)
Anne Jeffreys (Lilli Vanessi / Katherine)
Danny Daniels (Bill Calhoun / Lucentio)
Betty Ann Grove (Lois Lane / Bianca)
Helen Dowdy (Hattie), Thomas Hoier (Harry Trevor / Baptista), Angus Cairns (Ralph), Lorenzo Fuller (Paul), Dan Brennan (Stage Doorman), Harry Clark (First Man), Jack Diamond (Second Man), Don Mayo (Harrison Howell), Edwin Clay (Gremio), Charles Wood (Hortensio), Marc Breaux (Haberdasher), Fred Davis and Eddie Sledge (Specialty Dancers)
Musical Numbers and Scenes
Cole Porter appears on the cover of
the January 31, 1949 issue of Time
Scene 1: Stage of Ford Theatre, Baltimore.
Scene 2: The Corridor Backstage.
- "Another Op'nin', Another Show" - Hattie, Company
Scene 3: Fred and Lilli's Dressing-rooms.
- "Why Can't You Behave?" - Lois
Scene 4: "The Taming of the Shrew": Padua
- "Wunderbar" - Lilli, Fred
- "So in Love" - Lilli
Scene 5: "The Taming of the Shrew": Street Scene, Padua
- "We Open in Venice" - Katherine, Petruchio, Bianca,
Scene 6: Backstage.
- Dance (End Padua Street Scene) (Dancing Ensemble)
- "Tom, Dick or Harry" - Bianca, Lucentio, Hortensio, Gremio
- Rose Dance (Lucentio)
- "I've Come to Wive It Wealthily in Padua" - Petruchio, Men's Chorus
- "I Hate Men" - Katherine
- "Were Thine That Special Face" - Petruchio
Scene 7: Fred and Lilli's Dressing-rooms.
Scene 8: "The Taming of the Shrew": Exterior Church.
- "I Sing of Love" - Bianca, Lucentio, Company
- Tarantella (Bianca, Lucentio and Dancing Ensemble)
- "Finale Act I - So, Kiss Me Kate" - Petruchio, Katherine, Company
Scene 1: Theatre Alley.
Scene 2: Before the Curtain.
- "Too Darn Hot" - Paul, Specialty Dancers
Scene 3: "The Taming of the Shrew": Petruchio's House.
Scene 4: The Corridor Backstage.
- "Where is the Life That Late I Led?" - Petruchio
Scene 5: Fred and Lilli's Dressing-rooms.
- "Always True to You in My Fashion" - Lois
Scene 6: The Corridor Backstage.
Scene 7: Before the Asbestos Curtain.
- "Bianca" - Bill
- "So in Love" (reprise) - Fred
Scene 8: "The Taming of the Shrew": Baptista's Home.
- "Brush Up Your Shakespeare" - Gangsters (First Man, Second Man)
- "I Am Ashamed That Women Are So Simple" - Katherine
- Pavanne (Dancing Ensemble)
- "Finale Act II - So, Kiss Me Kate"- Petruchio, Katherine, Company
- "It Was Great Fun the First Time" [dropped during rehearsals; intended for Fred and Lilli]
- "If Ever Married I'm" [dropped during rehearsals; intended for Bianca]
- Harlequin Ballerina [instrumental; deleted section of the Padua Street Scene dance]
- "We Shall Never Be Younger" [unused; intended for Lilli]
- "A Woman's Career" [unused; intended for Lilli and Fred]
- "What Does Your Servant Dream About?" [unused]
- "I'm Afraid, Sweetheart, I Love You" [unused]
Original Cast Recording
Produced for records by Mitchell Ayres
Recording engineer: Harold Chapman
Recorded January 13, 1949 at the CBS 30th Street Studios, NYC
All releases are mono
- 78 RPM [6 discs], 1949 [Columbia C-200 (55042-55047)]
- LP, 1949 [Columbia 4140]
- Compact Disc, 1989 [Columbia CK 4140]
- Compact Disc (remastered), 1998 [Sony 60536]
"So in Love" - Patti Page
- 78 RPM, 1949 [Mercury 5230] Charted on February 12, 1949; peaked at #13
"So in Love" - Gordon MacRae
- 78 RPM, 1949 [Capitol 15357] Charted on March 5, 1949; peaked at #20
"So in Love" - Dinah Shore
- 78 RPM, 1949 [Columbia 38399] Charted on March 19, 1949; peaked at #20
"So in Love" / "Why Can't You Behave" - Bing Crosby with Vic Schoen and his orchestra
- 78 RPM, 1949 [Decca 24559]
Go to the 1951 London Production of Kiss Me, Kate
Go to the Film Version of Kiss Me, Kate
Go to Recordings of Kiss Me, Kate
Go to the 1999 Broadway Revival of Kiss Me, Kate
Go to the 2001 London Revival of Kiss Me, Kate