Oscar Hammerstein II snagged his second Best Original Song Oscar for his lyrics to “It Might As Well Be Spring,” the only original cinematic musical he and Richard Rodgers ever wrote. (It was later both remade for film and adapted for the stage.)
Between the Iowa Caucus and the Iowa State Fair, I’ve had Rodgers & Hammersteni’s State Fair on the brain all weekend. Naturally, that means I’m stuck with a conundrum about which version to watch today. And then I remembered this clip with Ann-Margret from the remake.
After the disc was in the DVD player and I had started the movie, I remembered that the remake moved the action from Iowa to Texas, but I was already swept up with Bobby Darrin, Pat Boone and the rest, so I’m sticking with it.
May I also add that I felt a huge moment of relief when the credits announced that additional songs had lyrics by Richard Rodgers. Last night, when listening to the cast album from the stage version, I had a moment of wondering how in hell Oscar Hammerstein wrote such a lousy song as the serenade to a pig “More Than Just a Friend.” Turns out he didn’t. I never should have doubted OH2.
It’s hard to pick a favorite Oscar Hammerstein song, but this one might be it. Hell, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences agreed. (My favorite rendition is Nancy Lamott’s, but I can’t find that anywhere to share and I’ve already used up my daily upload.)