Scene from the musical Pal Joey

Scene from the musical Pal Joey

Pal Joey, with music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics by Lorenz Hart, was based on a series of short stories by John O'Hara about Joey Evans, a small-time, fast-talking Chicago entertainer. Starring an unknown called Gene Kelly, it opened on Broadway in 1940, but didn't run, although many of the songs became standards with the big bands of the time. Not until 1952 did it become a hit when a new production played on Broadway for 540 performances, sparked a twelve-city national tour, and went on to win the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award for 'Best Musical'.