About the Exhibit
Poster from Oklahoma! Courtesy of Photofest.
When and Where
A Fine Romance: Jewish Songwriters, American Songs, 1910–1965
Using images from Broadway musicals, classic films, and personal collections, "A Fine Romance" tells the story of Jewish artists who created songs of wit, sophistication and optimism through America's ups and downs during the 20th century. The best songwriters combined a genius for melody, a talent for pairing it with the perfect words, and an ability to connect with a wide audience. A high percentage of them were Jewish, from families that had immigrated to America in the 1800s or fled pogroms and persecution in Europe at the turn of the century. Their witty and romantic songs—"Body and Soul", "Over the Rainbow", "Thou Swell", "That Old Black Magic", "It Had to Be You"—became beloved classics that remain enduring elements of American popular culture.
"A Fine Romance" was developed by Nextbook, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting Jewish literature, culture, and ideas, and the American Library Association Public Programs Office. The national tour of the exhibit has been made possible by the Charles H. Revson Foundation, the Righteous Persons Foundation, the David Berg Foundation, an anonymous donor, and Tablet: A New Read on Jewish Life. A Fine Romance is also a book by David Lehman, published by Nextbook/Schocken.