Lionel Bart Biography ((?)-)



See index for CTFT sketch: Born August 1, 1930, in London, England; died of cancer on April 3, 1999, in London, England. Composer, lyricist, and playwright. Bart was well known as the lyricist and composer of the popular musical Oliver! which premiered in 1960, ran for several years, and was revived years later. Bart also was recognized as a person who brought the English musical back to British stages at a time when American plays dominated theatrical offerings. According to Eric Pace of the New York Times, Andrew Lloyd Webber referred to Bart as "the father of the modern British musical." Bart was frustrated in his attempts to re-create the success of Oliver; some of his subsequent work failed even though he financed it with the proceeds from Oliver! The composer lost much of his fortune when he signed away the rights to Oliver! to finance Twang! a musical thatfailed. Bart grew up in London and received no formal musical training. Composing credits by Bart included The Londoners(1972) and Costa Packet(1972). Film scores included Sparrows Can't Sing(1963) and From Russian With Love(1963).

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