Fred Saidy

Fred Saidy

b. Fareed Milhelm Saidy, 11 February 1907, Los Angeles, California, USA, d. 14 May 1982, Santa Monica, California, USA. By profession a journalist, Saidy wrote sketches for revues before venturing upon full-scale works. He wrote the book for Bloomer Girl in collaboration with Siegfried Herzig, with music by Harold Arlen and choreography by Agnes De Mille. The show, which opened on 5 October 1944 and featured Celeste Holm and Joan McCracken in the cast, was very successful, running until 27 April 1946. Saidy followed this with another hit, collaborating this time with E.Y. ‘Yip’ Harburg on the book for Finian’s Rainbow (1947), with music by Harburg and Burton Lane. This show ran for 725 performances. Saidy’s next show, for which he wrote the book and was also director, was the flop Flahooley, which ran from 14 May to 16 June 1951. After a one-week revival of Finian’s Rainbow, Saidy then wrote the book for Jamaica (1957), which starred Lena Horne and did considerably better, running from 31 October 1957 to 11 April 1959. There was another weeklong revival of Finian’s Rainbow in 1961 and then he wrote the book for The Happiest Girl In The World (1961). Another failure, the show ran only from 3 April to 24 June. Saidy’s son, Anthony Saidy, is a famous chess player.

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