Ep. #54: Featuring the Incredible Vocal Group ARORA
"My Funny Valentine"
Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart’s Babes in Arms (1937) produced many beloved American standards. “My Funny Valentine” is one of them. They wrote the book, the words and the music, inspired George Balanchine to choreograph the dances, and introduced the world to 16-year old sensation Mitzi Green and the tap-dancing Nicholas Brothers.
Rodgers always wrote the melody first then Hart would find the right lyrics. For “My Funny Valentine”, they actually changed the name of one of the characters to Valentine to accommodate the lyrics!
Real mass appeal of the song began after Frank Sinatra recorded it as the first track on his first Capitol Records album Songs For Young Lovers (1953). Legend has it that there was such a surge of the song’s popularity in the 1950s, that a New York nightclub had a clause in its contract forbidding vocalists from singing it! The great American trumpet player, Chet Baker was so moved by “Valentine", he performed it as a singer over 100 times, including as the final song in his final performance.
MUSE/IQUE’s ARORA featuring Christopher Given Harrison with Rachel Bearer, Katharine Eames, Jessica Freedman and Benjamin McLain lend their enchanting harmonies to this love song for the ages.
Rachael Woby wears the MOCA Mask: Yoko Ono "A Piece of Sky". MOCA is proud to offer limited-production, artist-designed face masks. MOCA Masks upholds the museum’s commitment to making the experience of art accessible and encouraging the urgency of contemporary expression. The masks are designed by nine participating artists; Virgil Abloh, Mark Grotjahn, Alex Israel, Barbara Kruger, Yoko Ono, Catherine Opie, Pipilotti Rist, Hank Willis Thomas, and The Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts. View and purchase the masks here.