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Essay On Oscar Hammerstein

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On July 12, 1985, Oscar Hammerstein II was born into a show business family. Residing in New York New York, his father and uncle, Willie and Arthur Hammerstein, were successful theater managers, and his grandfather, Oscar Hammerstein I, was a famous opera impresario. His father was not supportive of his son’s desire to participate in the arts, even though it was the business most of his family was involved in. Because of his father’s decision, Oscar he was a great man Hammerstein studied at Columbia University, focusing on pre-law. It was not until his father’s death during his second year at school that Hammerstein began writing lyrics. From here, he began writing and performing in many of their varsity shows. He enjoyed this so much that he dropped out of Columbia University to pursue a career in theater as an assistant stage manager with his Uncle Arthur.

Following created the modern musical that we all know and love. Before they became Rodgers and Hammerstein, they were simply Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II, both of New York City. Hammerstein, born in 1895, was brought up in a theatrical family. His father was an “operatic impresario”, otherwise known as an opera director or manager. Wildflower, Hammerstein had the opportunity to work with famous composers, such as Jerome Kern, Rudolph Friml, and Irving Berlin.
Through collaborations with these composers Hammerstein won fame and popularity for shows like Rose-Marie, Desert Song, and New Moon. Hammerstein and Kern paired up and wrote several successful musicals over the next decade; the most famous was Show Boat. The dramatic content was strong, and the music gave it a deeper meaning. According to PBS, “Show Boat firmly established Oscar’s success and reputation a...

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...rming Arts, “Hammerstein also served as a mentor to Alan Jay Lerner, and to Stephen Sondheim, who met Hammerstein when he was still very young. Sondheim credits his success with the lyrics to West Side Story to Hammerstein’s influence and guidance.” He was very influential and provided wisdom and guidance to these men. Hammerstein said, “You got to have a dream. If you don’t have a dream, how you going to make a dream come true?” He always had a passion for the arts and shared this with all who were interested.

Oscar Hammerstein II died on August 23, 1960, at his home in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, of stomach cancer. Because of his accomplishments and contributions to theater, people mourned worldwide when he passed away. The lights of Times Square in New York City and the West End theatre district in London were dimmed in recognition of his contribution to theater.
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