Singer Ariana Grande chose Yip Harburg and Harold Arlen’s song of hope, “Over the Rainbow,” as the finale of her June 4, 2017 “One Love” benefit in Manchester, England to help the victims of the terror bombing following her May 22nd concert in that city. At least $1.19 from each sale of the $1.29 track on iTunes will go to the “We Love Manchester Emergency Fund.”
Yip’s great grandson Dave Harburg will perform contemporary versions of Yip’s more famous works, such as “Over the Rainbow,” “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” “Old Devil Moon” and “April in Paris.” The proceeds from the concert will help build a vocational school in Kyakatara, Uganda with the non-profit Children Waiting Everywhere. The concert will feature another local musician, Alanna Boudreau. Venue: 7:30 PM. Towsley Auditorium, Washtenaw Community College 4800 E. Huron River Dr. Ann Arbor, MI 48105. Tax deductible donation $10 individual or $25 for families. 734 255-2924.
The Irish Repertory Theatre‘s smash hit encore production of the Yip Harburg-Burton Lane-Fred Saidy musical classic Finian’s Rainbow was honored by the Outer Critics Circle with a nomination for Best Revival of a Musical (Broadway or Off Broadway) for the 2016-17 theatrical season (Hello, Dolly! won).
The Harlem Repertory Theatre will present Jamaica, the musical show that made Lena Horne a Broadway star, at The Theater Center in New York City. This year, 2017, also happens to be the show’s 60th anniversary. Featuring a book by Yip Harburg and Fred Saidy, lyrics by Harburg and music by Harold Arlen. This production will be directed by Keith Lee Grant. Performances begin July 22, 2017 and will continue on Saturdays at 3PM until November 25. For more information, see Harlem Rep’s web site.
Deena Rosenberg Harburg has taken over from Ernie Harburg as President of The Yip Harburg Foundation effective January 1, 2017. Ernie, who recently turned 90, will still be involved with the Foundation as President Emeritus.
In fall 2016 Harlem Repertory Theatre and The Yip Harburg Foundation premiered a jazzy new stage adaptation of THE WIZARD OF OZ. The response has been enthusiastic. See the reviews at Stage Buddy, The Broadway Blog and Huffington Post and Times Square Chronicles. The show has been extended into summer 2017 with upcoming performances July 8th, 15th and 30th and Aug. 20th. Visit the Harlem Repertory Theatre web site for details. 240 E 123rd St., New York, NY.
Walter Rimler’s biography of Harold Arlen, The Man That Got Away: The Life and Songs of Harold Arlen, was published by University of Illinois Press in August 2015. The book contains extensive material about Yip Harburg, who, over a span of nearly fifty years, wrote more than 100 songs with Arlen , including “Over the Rainbow” and “It’s Only a Paper Moon.”
Over the Rainbow: The Life and Rhymes of Yip Harburg by Stuart Stotts was released in paperback in September 2015 by Big Valley Press. It is also available as a Kindle book.
On Aug. 6, 2015 the Huffington Post published “Lyricist Yip Harburg’s Son Ernie: How My Dad Inspired Me to Become a Scientist” by Mike Sigman based on an essay by Ernie entitled “Yip and I.”
The Yip Harburg Songbook. Piano/vocal sheets to 34 songs including “Over the Rainbow,” “It’s Only a Paper Moon,” “April in Paris,” “Lydia, the Tattooed Lady,” “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” “Old Devil Moon,” and an illustrated introductory essay by Stephen Holden. Hal Leonard Publishers, 2009.