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Bagley, Ben
Bagley, Ben

BEN BAGLEY (1933-1998), was one of the true innovators of American Musical Theatre in the second half of the 20th century. Born in Vermont during the Great Depression, Bagley's grandmother introduced him to the theatre with annual treks to Broadway. In 1955 at age 22 he produced his first hit, SHOESTRING REVUE, featuring the songs of Charles Strouse, Lee Adams, Sheldon Harnick and June Carroll. The following year he produced THE LITTLEST REVUE, written by the same team along with Ogden Nash and Vernon Duke. In 1957 Bagley presented SHOESTRING '57 with a score by Strouse and Adams, Carolyn Leigh and the pre-FANTASTICKS team of Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt, among others. In 1965 Bagley turned to the lesser known songs of Cole Porter to create one of the most successful revues of all time, THE DECLINE AND FALL OF THE ENTIRE WORLD AS SEEN THROUGH THE EYES OF COLE PORTER. The show ran for 15 months in New York, and toured thereafter. On his own record label, Painted Smile Records, Ben Bagley produced an astounding 48 albums including his legendary "Revisited" series featuring the songs of Rodgers & Hart, Oscar Hammerstein II, Jerome Kern, Irving Berlin, Kurt Weill, Cole Porter, Leonard Bernstein, Harold Rome, Dietz & Schwartz and many others.

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      The birthday of Ben Bagley, known for his iconic musical theater revues including SHOESTRING REVUE, THE LITTLEST REVUE, and THE DECLINE AND FALL OF THE ENTIRE WORLD AS SEEN THROUGH THE EYES OF COLE PORTER.