Legendary Broadway impressario and lyricist
His theaters launched many Broadway careers
Legendary Broadway producer and lyricist, Billy Rose, was born in New York City on September 6, 1899.
After graduating from the High School of Commerce in New York, Rose was trained in shorthand by John Robert Gregg and at age 16, won a high speed dictation contest. In 1917, Rose worked as the shorthand reporter for the War Industries Board during World War I.
After the War, Rose returned to New York and began working on Broadway. He collaborated with composers such as Ray Henderson, Mort Dixon, Dave Dreyer, Al Jolson, Vincent Youmans, Harold Arlen, Dana Suesse, Mabel Wayne and Harry Warren on scores for Broadway productions like Harry Delmar’s Revels and Great Day!. He also produced several plays and musicals including Sweet and Low, Crazy Quilt, Jumbo, Clash by Night, Carmen Jones and Seven Lively Arts.
Rose also wrote and produced for several expositions including the Ft. Worth Centennial (1936) and Aquacade, which appeared in Great Lakes, Cleveland (1937), World’s Fair New York (1939) and Golden Gate, San Francisco (1940). He owned and operated the Diamond Horseshoe nightclub in New York City as well as the Ziegfeld and Billy Rose Theatres, wrote a syndicated column “Pitching Horseshoes” and was the co-founder of AGAC, which he served as President for 3 years.
Highlights from the extensive Billy Rose catalog include such hits as “You Tell Her, I Stutter”, “You’ve Got to See Momma every Night”, “Barney Google”, “Come On, Spark Plug”, “That Old Gang of Mine”, “Does the Spearmint Lose Its Flavor on the Bedpost Overnight?”, “Follow the Swallow”, “Too Many Parties and Too Many Pals”, “I Found a Million Dollar Baby (In a Five and Ten Cent Store)”, “Clap Hands, Hear Comes Charley”, “Don’t Bring Lulu”, “A Cup of Coffee, a Sandwich and You”, “Me and My Shadow”, “Fifty Million Frenchmen Can’t Be Wrong”, “Here Comes the Show Boat”, “Four Walls”, “Tonight You Belong to Me”, “Golden Gate”, “It Happened in Monterey”, “Happy Days and Lonely Nights”, “Back in Your Own Back Yard”, “There’s a Rainbow “Round My Shoulder”, “If You Want the Rainbow (You Must Have the Rain)”, “I’ve Got a Feeling I’m Falling”, “I Got a Code id By Doze”, “More Than You Know”, “Great Day”, “Without a Song”, “Happy Because I’m In Love”, “Cooking Breakfast for the One I Love”, “When a Woman Loves a Man”, “Overnight”, “Cheerful Little Earful”, “Would You Like to Take a Walk?”, “It’s Only a Paper Moon”, “I Wanna Be Loved”, “Suddenly”, “The House is Haunted”, “The Night is Young and You’re So Beautiful”, “Yours for a Song” and “The Sun Will Shine Tonight.”
Billy Rose died in Jamaica, BVI on February 10, 1966.