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Show Tunes S4 EP 1: Damn Yankees (1956)

"Damn Yankees" Original Broadway Cast, 1955
Album artwork
"Damn Yankees" Original Broadway Cast, 1955

We'll drop the needle on the devilishly catchy musical by Richard Adler & Jerry Ross.

A regular Joe Schmoe (Joe Hardy) wants his baseball team (the Washington Senators) to win the Pennant and says he's willing to make a deal with the devil to do so. The devil, with the help of succubus Lola, gets the schmoe to sell his soul for a new baseball-star body and he becomes "Shoeless Joe from Hannibal, MO."

Spoiler alert: The Senators win, Joe Schmoe wins his soul back. Happy ending!

Biggest Hits:
"Whatever Lola Wants"

Tony Awards (1956):

  • Best Musical
  • Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical (Ray Walston as Mr. Applegate)
  • Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical (Gwen Verdon as Lola)
  • Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical (Russ Brown as Van Buren)
  • Best Conductor and Musical Director (Hal Hastings)
  • Best Choreography (Bob Fosse)
  • Best Stage Technician (Harry Green)

Musical Numbers:

  1. Overture/Six Months Out of Every Year
  2. Goodbye, Old Girl
  3. Heart
  4. Shoeless Joe from Hannibal MO
  5. A Little Brains, a Little Talent
  6. A Man Doesn't Know
  7. Whatever Lola Wants
  8. Heart (reprise)
  9. Who's Got the Pain?
  10. The Game
  11. Near to You
  12. Those Were the Good Old Days
  13. Two Lost Souls
  14. A Man Doesn't Know (reprise)
  15. Finale

Kate Botello is a host and producer at Classical IPR.