Something for Long Islanders to remember the good old days!
The most successful and popular patriotic show of World War II and one of the most unique productions in the history of entertainment was Irving Berlin’s This Is the Army, which originally began as a Broadway musical. General George C. Marshall gave Berlin permission to stage a morale-boosting revue early in 1942 to raise money for the military.
Rehearsals were held at Camp Upton, New York, beginning in the spring of 1942 in an old Civilian Conservation Corps barracks called T-11. At one end was a large recreation room with a stone fireplace, where Berlin placed his special piano. It was next to a latrine, which had a hot water tank. Berlin liked to lean against the tank to warm his back.
Berlin completed most of the score by the end of April. The show was then auditioned on Governor’s Island in New York…
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