You Fascinate Me So: The Life and Times of Cy Coleman
You Fascinate Me So:
The Life and Times of Cy Coleman
by Andy Propst
He penned the mega hits “Witchcraft,” “Big Spender,” and “The Best Is Yet to Come.” He wrote classical musicals, such as Sweet Charity, City of Angels, Barnum, and The Will Rogers Follies. Everyone can hum his music, but few know the man behind these timeless tunes, until now. In You Fascinate Me So: The Life and Times of Cy Coleman (Applause Theatre & Cinema Books Hardcover; April 15, 2015, $32.99), music and theater journalist Andy Propst takes readers into the world and work of this amazing Tony, Grammy, and Emmy Award-winning composer/performer. Propst explores Cy Coleman’s days as a child prodigy in the 1930s, his time as a hot jazz pianist and early television celebrity in the 1950s, and his life as one of Broadway’s preeminent composers up until his death in November 2004.
Propst received full cooperation from the Cy Coleman estate, and as a result, this premiere biography of Coleman is filled with previously unknown details about his body of work. Additionally, interviews with colleagues and friends, including Marilyn and Alan Bergman, Ken Howard, Michele Lee, James Naughton, Phyllis Newman, Hal Prince, Chita Rivera, and Tommy Tune, provide insight into Coleman’s dynamic personality and amazing career.
“I don’t believe there was any separation between Cy’s everyday life and music,” says Coleman’s widow, Shelby. “Upon landing in Paris, Cy told me to be very quiet and listen to the beat of the city. ‘It’s very different than New York. Do you feel it?’ He heard music and rhythms everywhere.”
To further highlight Cy Coleman’s musical genius, Harbinger Records will release a companion CD showcasing 28 songs as played and sung by the man himself. CY COLEMAN: You Fascinate Me So (May 15, 2015, $16.99) spans Coleman’s entire career as a composer, with hits like “Hey, Look Me Over” and “I’ve Got Your Number.”
In You Fascinate Me So, Andy Propst has written a beguiling biography that provides a window into the world of a musical genius who deeply influenced American music and its legendary performers, including Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, Shirley MacLaine, Sammy Davis Jr., and Dame Shirley Bassey.
Praise for You Fascinate Me So:
“Cy did everything his ‘own’ way. He was unique. Unorthodox. I worked with and was friends with him. I thought I knew pretty much everything about him. Boy, was I wrong. This book is ‘one hell of a ride.'”
—Michele Lee, actress
“The great composer Cy Coleman deserves this comprehensive, well-written, and fascinating account of an important career in the musical theater.”
—Hal Prince, Tony Award-winning producer and director
6″ x 9″
Applause Theatre & Cinema Books, an imprint of Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Andy Propst is a journalist and author living in New York City. His career has encompassed work with New York Shakespeare Festival founder Joseph Papp and Tony Award-winning director George C. Wolfe, as well as five years on-air at XM Satellite Radio’s XM 28 On Broadway channel. His writing has appeared in The Village Voice, Time Out/NY, Backstage, and The Sondheim Review, and online at the site he founded, AmericanTheaterWeb.com, as well as TheaterMania.com. In addition, he is curator and chief content officer for BwayTunes.com and is at work on a biography of pop songwriter and Broadway tunesmith Bob Merrill.