I'd Rather Be Right
I'd Rather Be Right
Music by Rodgers, Richard | Lyrics by Lorenz Hart | Book by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart
The unique collaboration of Rodgers & Hart and Kaufman & Hart brought George M. Cohan back to Broadway after an absence of ten years, resulting in the largest advance sale in Broadway history. This Depression-era political satire, set in NYC's Central Park, poses the question, 'What's a young couple to do when they can't get married until he gets a raise, and his boss won't give him a raise until the President balances the budget?' Who should come strolling through the park but FDR himself, and soon he is determined to resolve the country's economic crisis on behalf of his young new friends. The ensuing machinations bring on the entire cabinet, the Supreme Court, the Chief Justice, the Federal Theatre's production of 'Spring in Vienna,' and the President's mother. No one escapes unscathed in this hilarious political sent-up which, over half a century after its creation, still plays as if inspired by last week's headlines.
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About The Show

History for I'd Rather Be Right

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Trivia for I'd Rather Be Right

In 1904, Moss Hart was born; playwright, director, and producer. Hart collaborated with Irving Berlin on the shows FACE THE MUSIC and AS THOUSANDS CHEER, created LADY IN THE DARK with Ira Gershwin and Kurt Weill, and also worked with Lorenz Hart and Richard Rodgers on the musical satire I'D RATHER BE RIGHT.
In 1937, Rodgers & Hart's musical I'D RATHER BE RIGHT opened at the Alvin Theatre in New York. The show ran for 290 performances.
The birthday of George S. Kaufman, book writer for THE COCOANUTS and I'D RATHER BE RIGHT. Kaufman was born in 1889.

 Press for I'd Rather Be Right

  • Quotes
"Rich in amiable monkeyshines...it applies a droll and delightful slapstick to the seat of government and amounts to as happy a sport as the theatre has provided in some time." — Newsweek
"Provides quite a bit of amusement for persons well-versed in American history. The jokes come fast and furious." — Taoyue

Musical Numbers for I'd Rather Be Right

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From lorenzhart.org Joy Hodges on the show:

Never before had the advance sale for a musical been $67,000. Never before had anyone offered an automobile for four tickets to opening night (and been refused). Never before had a musical presented the President of the United States, the Supreme Court and the entire Cabinet as song and dance men all trying to accomplish one goal: to balance the budget so Peggy Jones' boy friend could get a raise and they could get married. Even the President's mother got into the act.

Never before had a little girl from Iowa made her stage debut playing opposite the grand old man of the theatre, George M. Cohan, on Broadway. But it all did happen in 1937.

When I auditioned for the part of the simple naive Peggy Jones (" Have You Met Miss Jones?" was the hit song from the show), I asked George Kaufman and Richard Rodgers who had been searching for me after seeing me at a Sunday afternoon benefit two weeks before, "Is this part the girl lead in the show?" You see, I was movie struck and did not really want to leave California just then. Mr. Kaufman smiled and quietly said, "My dear, you never leave the stage." And I didn't for one solid year. It was the most fun year I have ever experienced, hearing gales of laughter night after night. I am sure every audience can relate it all to the political scene going on today. History keeps repeating itself. I introduced Ronald Reagan, my friend from radio days, to my agent in California, who introduced him to Warner Brothers and who, as President of the United States, is still trying to balance the budget for Peggy Jones and all her friends, young and old.


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Writers Notes for I'd Rather Be Right


Written By: Joy Hodges (Original Cast Member)

Never before had the advance sale for a musical been $67,000. Never before had anyone offered an automobile for four tickets to opening night (and been refused). Never before had a musical presented the President of the United States, the Supreme Court and the entire Cabinet as song and dance men all trying to accomplish one goal: to balance the budget so Peggy Jones' boy friend could get a raise and they could get married. Even the President's mother got into the act.

Never before had a little girl from Iowa made her stage debut playing opposite the grand old man of the theatre, George M. Cohan, on Broadway. But it all did happen in 1937.

When I auditioned for the part of the simple naive Peggy Jones ('Have You Met Miss Jones?' was the hit song from the show), I asked George Kaufman and Richard Rodgers who had been searching for me after seeing me at a Sunday afternoon benefit two weeks before, 'Is this part the girl lead in the show?' You see, I was movie struck and did not really want to leave California just then. Mr. Kaufman smiled and quietly said, 'My dear, you never leave the stage.' And I didn't for one solid year. It was the most fun year I have ever experienced, hearing gales of laughter night after night. I am sure every audience can relate it all to the political scene going on today. History keeps repeating itself.


Performance Tools for I'd Rather Be Right

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MAKE YOUR OWN PLAYBILL! Playbill VIP allows you to create your very own Playbill Program. We have provided Playbill with all of the credits, song listings, musical numbers and more so that most of the work is already done for you. Just add your productions details, photos of the cast and share it with all of your friends. Learn more: www.playbillvip.com


Rental Materials for I'd Rather Be Right

STANDARD

  • Rehearsal Set (22 Books)
    • 20 – Libretto-Vocal Books
    • 1 – Logo CD
    • 2 – Piano Conductor Scores
    • Digital Logo

ADDITIONAL

  • Libretto/Vocal Books 10 pack
    • 10 – Libretto-Vocal Books
  • I'D RATHER BE RIGHT - PRE-PRODUCTION PACKAGE
    • 1 – Libretto-Vocal Books
    • 1 – Piano Conductor Scores

Cast Requirements for I'd Rather Be Right

PRINCIPALS
1 Woman
2 Men

FEATURED
4 Women
6 Men

ENSEMBLE
Large singing-dancing Ensemble with numerous small roles

CHARACTERS
Peggy Jones
Phil Barker
The President of the United States
His Secretary
The Postmaster General
The Secretary of the Treasury
The Secretary of State
The Secretary of Labor
The Secretary of the Navy
The Secretary of Commerce
The Secretary of Agriculture
The Secretary of War
The Secretary of the Interior
The Attorney-General
The Chief Justice
James B. Maxwell
Federal Theatre Director
Social Securities Messenger
The President's Mother
A Butler
The Judge's Girl
Sistie
Buzzie
Tony
Joe
The Acrobats (2)

Set Requirements for I'd Rather Be Right

I'D RATHER BE RIGHT takes place in Central Park, New York City, during the Roosevelt Administration.

SPECIFIC LOCATIONS
Central Park, New York, dusk of a summer evening
Central Park, later that evening

Materials Notes

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