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The Shuberts and Their Passing ShowsThe Untold Tale of Ziegfeld's Rivals$
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Jonas Westover

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190219239

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190219239.001.0001

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America’s Foremost Musical Institution

America’s Foremost Musical Institution

The Shuberts, Ziegfeld, and Their Battle for Supremacy

(p.201) 8 America’s Foremost Musical Institution
The Shuberts and Their Passing Shows

Jonas Westover

Oxford University Press

This chapter deals with the relationship between the Shuberts and Florenz Ziegfeld and their respective annual revue series. The myth that The Passing Show was an idea copied by the Shuberts from their rival is refuted, with special attention paid to the performing venues for each show. Ziegfeld’s connections to the theatrical Syndicate of Klaw and Erlanger and how this affected his interactions with the Shuberts is explored. The focus of the chapter, however, is the slow transformation of the relationship with the Shuberts from neutral to spiteful. The intense competition for stars, staff, and even theatrical techniques led to a powerful feud between the two camps, and the examination of a wide range of personal, legal, and professional documents brings this debate vividly back to life.

Keywords:   Rath Brothers, contract disagreements, Marilynn Miller, legal loopholes, court battles, Producers and Managers Association, theatrical agents

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