The Cole Porter Story    (Richard G. Hubler)
Item# B1553
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The Cole Porter Story    (Richard G. Hubler)
B1553. RICHARD G. HUBLER. The Cole Porter Story. Cleveland, World Publishing, 1965. 140pp. Bibliography of Porter Songs; Photos; DJ.


“Cole Albert Porter was an American composer and songwriter. Born to a wealthy family in Indiana, he defied the wishes of his domineering grandfather and took up music as a profession. Classically trained, he was drawn towards musical theatre. After a slow start, he began to achieve success in the 1920s, and by the 1930s he was one of the major songwriters for the Broadway musical stage. Unlike most successful Broadway composers, Porter wrote both the lyrics and the music for his songs.

After a serious horseback riding accident in 1937, Porter was left disabled and in constant pain, but he continued to work. His shows of the early 1940s did not contain the lasting hits of his best work of the 1920s and 30s, but in 1948 he made a triumphant comeback with his most successful musical, KISS ME, KATE. He was noted for his sophisticated, suggestive lyrics, clever rhymes and complex forms.

Porter maintained a luxury apartment in Paris, where he entertained lavishly. His parties were extravagant and scandalous, with ‘much gay and bisexual activity, Italian nobility, cross-dressing, international musicians, and a large surplus of recreational drugs’. In 1918, he met Linda Lee Thomas, a rich, Louisville, Kentucky-born divorcée eight years his senior, whom he married the following year. She was in no doubt about Porter's homosexuality, but it was mutually advantageous for them to marry: for Linda it offered continued social status and a partner who was the antithesis of her abusive first husband; for Porter it brought a respectable heterosexual front in an era when homosexuality was not publicly acknowledged. They were, moreover, genuinely devoted to each other and remained married from 1919 until Linda's death in 1954.”

- Zillah Dorset Akron