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Alfred Drake


Along with his deep, baritone, vocals, Alfred Drake (given birth to: Alfred Capurro) reigned over Broadway through the 1940s and ‘50s. Most widely known for his portrayal of Curly in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s 1943 musical, Oklahoma, he debuted such traditional tunes as “Oh, JUST WHAT A Gorgeous Morning hours”, “Surrey HAVING A Fringe AT THE TOP”, “People Will State We’re In Like” as well as the name tune. Drake made an appearance in some from the era’s most important productions. Producing his stage debut in Mikado, in 1935, he starred, with Mitzi Green and Ray Heatherton, in Babes In Hands, two years later on. With music made up by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart, and choreographed by George Balanchine, Babes In Hands was among few musicals to become successfully staged in the height from the Depressive disorder. The 1930s provided just a hint of Drake’s flexibility. Within the 1940s, he co-starred, with Burl Ives, inside a folk musical, Sing Out Nice Property”, in 1944, portrayed a union organizer inside a revival of Marc Blitzstein’s The Cradle Will Rock and roll in 1947 and made an appearance in an up to date version from the Beggar’s Opera, made up by Duke Ellington. He capped the 10 years as superstar of Cole Porter’s Kiss Me Kate. Drake continuing to get interesting jobs in the 1950s and early-60s. Although he rejected an give to portray the business lead in The Ruler And I, in 1951, he demonstrated his strength within the function when he substituted for Yul Brynner for many weeks. He received a Tony award for his portrayal of Hadji, a road poet who turns into Wazir of Baghdad, within the 1953 folktale, Kismet, and produced his tv debut, in 1957, within a Hallmark Hall Of Popularity creation of Gilbert and Sullivan’s operetta, Yeomen FROM THE Guard. He made an appearance, with Richard Burton, in John Gielgud’s Hamlet, in 1964. Producing his last Broadway appearance, within a 1973 revival of Gigi, Drake continuing to make periodic appearances in movies, including Trading Areas in 1983, and tv for the rest of his lifestyle. With his transferring on July 25, 1992, Broadway dropped among its ideal leading men.

Quick Facts

Full Name Alfred Drake
Died July 25, 1992, New York City, New York, United States
Profession Actor, Singer
Education Brooklyn College
Nationality American
Spouse Esther Harvey Brown, Alma Tollefsen
Children Samantha Drake, Candace Olmsted
Awards Tony Award for Best Lead Actor in a Musical, Tony Honors for Excellence in Theatre, Grammy Hall of Fame
Music Songs Oh, What a Beautiful Morning, People Will Say We're in Love, The Surrey With the Fringe on Top, And This Is My Beloved, Where Is the Life That Late I Led?, Oklahoma, I've Come to Wive it Wealthily in Padua, Were Thine That Special Face, Lonely Room, Kiss Me, Kate, So in Love, Pore Jud Is Daid, I Remember It Well, Finale - Sands of Time, Song Of Vagabonds, Love Me Tonight, Kiss Me Kate - Were Thine That Special Face, Kismet - Gesticulate, The Fog and the Grog, Gesticulate, I'm Glad I'm Not Young Anymore, Queue at Drury Lane / Penny Plain, Twopence Colored / King of London / To Look Upon My Love, Rahadlakum, Kiss Me, Kate: We Open in Venice, The Touch of Your Hand, Kiss Me Kate - Where Is The Life That Late I Led?, Man and Shadow / Mayfair Affair, Kiss Me Kate: Wunderbar, Swept Away, Let's Improvise, Finale, Civilized People
Albums Kiss Me, Kate (1948 original Broadway cast), Oklahoma! (1943 original Broadway cast), The Adventures of Marco Polo, Sing Out, Sweet Land, Oklahoma, South Pacific & Oklahoma (Original Broadway Casts), Porter: Kiss Me, Kate (Original Broadway Cast) (1949) / Let's Face It (1941), Kean, Down in the Valley, Best Of Broadway, From this Day On, Kismet: A Musical Arabian Night, Almost Like Being In Love, The Broadway Cast Collection, Vol. 7: Alfred Drake in Sing Out, Sweet Land & Down in the Valley, Four Hit Tunes from Brigadoon
Movies The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus, Trading Places, Hamlet, Strange Victory, Tars and Spars, Your Money or Your Wife, Naughty Marietta, Visit From a Dead Man

  • Facts
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  • Quotes
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1 He died of heart failure after a long fight with cancer.
2 He had 2 daughters with his wife, Esther: Candace and Samantha.
3 His salary of $5000 per week for the 1954 Broadway production of "Kismet" made him the highest-paid leading man in Broadway history, until Jackie Gleason demanded (and was given) $5,050 per week in the 1959 production of "Take Me Along".
4 Won Broadway's 1954 Tony Award as Best Actor (Musical) for "Kismet," as well as a Special Tony Award in 1990 "for excellence in the Theatre." Was also nominated two other times for Best Actor (Musical) Tony Awards: in 1962 for "Kean" and in 1974 for "Gigi."
5 He was first choice for the role of the King in the original 1951 Broadway production of "The King and I", but turned down the role because of a full schedule. This was before Yul Brynner auditioned and was immediately selected for the role.
6 Brother of Metropolitan Opera baritone Arthur Kent.
7 Created the roles of Curley in "Oklahoma", Fred in "Kiss Me Kate" and the Beggar Poet in "Kismet" in the original Broadway productions.



The Life & Adventures of Santa Claus 1985 TV Movie The Great Ak (voice)
Spenser: For Hire 1985 TV Series Roman St. George
Trading Places 1983 President of Exchange
Hamlet 1964/I Claudius
The DuPont Show of the Week 1963 TV Series Loui Zakin
Play of the Week 1960 TV Series Mosca, Volpone's servant
The Voice of Firestone 1959 TV Series
Kiss Me, Kate 1958 TV Movie Frederick Graham (Petruchio)
The Yeoman of the Guard 1957 TV Movie Jack Point
The Alcoa Hour 1956 TV Series King
The Adventures of Marco Polo 1956 TV Movie Marco Polo
The Edge of Night 1956 TV Series Dwight Endicott (1982)
Max Liebman Presents: Naughty Marietta 1955 TV Movie Capt. Dick Warrington
Cameo Theatre 1952 TV Series
Celanese Theatre 1951 TV Series George Simon
The Billy Rose Show 1950 TV Series
The Philco-Goodyear Television Playhouse 1949 TV Series Captain Brown
Tars and Spars 1946 Howard Young



Brows Held High 2014 TV Series performer - 1 episode
The Adventures of Marco Polo 1956 TV Movie performer: "Beyond the Sunrise", "Market Day", "Population", "The Tartar Song", "Who, Me?", "Is It You", "You'll Be Seeing Me" Reprise, "Epilogue"



The Voice of Firestone 1963 TV Series Himself
The Bell Telephone Hour 1959-1962 TV Series Himself - Singer / Himself - Host
The Ed Sullivan Show 1960-1961 TV Series Singer / Himself - Singer
Showtime 1959-1960 TV Series Himself
First Night 1960 TV Movie Himself
The Dinah Shore Chevy Show 1959 TV Series Himself
The Garry Moore Show 1959 TV Series Himself
The Big Record 1957 TV Series Himself
The Steve Allen Plymouth Show 1956 TV Series Himself - Singer
Max Liebman Spectaculars 1956 TV Series Himself - Narrator
The Arthur Murray Party 1953 TV Series Himself - actor-singer
Strange Victory 1948 Documentary Narrator
Diary of a Sergeant 1945 Documentary short Harold Russell (voice, uncredited)
American Masters 1990 TV Series documentary Himself
The 44th Annual Tony Awards 1990 TV Special Himself - Winner: Tony of Honor
Hanya: Portrait of a Pioneer 1988 Documentary Narrator
Rodgers & Hammerstein: The Sound of American Music 1985 TV Movie documentary Himself
Night of 100 Stars 1982 TV Special Himself
Watch Your Mouth 1978 TV Series Himself
Dinah! 1975 TV Series Himself
The 28th Annual Tony Awards 1974 TV Special Himself
Your Money or Your Wife 1972 TV Movie Himself
The 26th Annual Tony Awards 1972 TV Special Himself - Performer
The 25th Annual Tony Awards 1971 TV Special Himself - Performer
Today 1965 TV Series Himself

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

Michael Grade's Stars of the Musical Theatre 2014 TV Movie documentary
Great Performances 2005 TV Series Himself - Performer
Broadway: The American Musical 2004 TV Mini-Series documentary Curly McLain (in 'Oklahoma!') / Petruchio (in 'Kiss Me Kate')
Biography 1999 TV Series documentary President of Exchange

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