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 restore a vocational school in a small village in Uganda with the non-profit Children Waiting Everywhere. The concert will feature another local musician, Alanna Boudreau. July 29, 2017 at 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).
Richard Skipper will be joined by Karen Oberlin, Leslie Orofino, Maureen Kelley Stewart, Anita Gillette and members of the cast and jazz ensemble of Harlem Repertory Theatre‘s current production of The Wizard of Oz to celebrate Yip’s 121st birthday on Apr. 8, 2017 at 1pm at The Laurie Beechman Theatre’s West Bank Cafe.
The Harlem Repertory Theatre will present Jamaica, the musical show in which Lena Horne made her Broadway debut 60 years ago (1957). Featuring a book by Yip Harburg and Fred Saidy, lyrics by Harburg and music by Harold Arlen, this production is directed and choreographed by Keith Lee Grant with a book adaptation by Art Perlman. Performances begin July 29, 2017 at the Tato Laviera Theatre, 240 E. 123rd St., NYC on and will continue until Mar. 2018.
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 “No Room For Humbugs At The Rainbow Room” (Huffington Post, Sept 28, 2016) Nancy Cohen compares Hillary Clinton to a feisty Dorothy and Donald Trump to the Wizard as she notes the thematic similarities between Dorothy’s signature song “Over the Rainbow” (lyric by Yip Harburg, music by Harold Arlen) and John Lennon’s “Imagine.”
For Yip’s son Ernie Harburg, Hillary Clinton is the feisty girl named Dorothy. and the song “Over the Rainbow” is a mantra for social justice, immigration, anti-bigotry and for believing in the right of home to be anywhere you land. The rest, including Trump, is all humbug. Read all about it in Nancy Cohen’s “The Song – ’Over The Rainbow’ with Hillary – One Son’s Dream” in the Huffington Post.
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 NiteLife Exchange, Stage Buddy, The Broadway Blog, Huffington Post and Times Square Chronicles. The show has been extended through 2017. Visit the Harlem Repertory Theatre web site for details. 240 E 123rd St., New York, NY.