Monthly Archives: November 2019

That’s Entertainment!

I recently saw for the first time the 1953 movie musical “The Band Wagon” where the song “That’s Entertainment” is from (this song subsequently became the title of the mid 1970s documentary “That’s Entertainment” that highlighted the late 1920s – late 1950s era of the Hollywood musical).

I wasn’t aware that there was actually a song that the documentary film title was based on.  This song’s lyrics, to a large extent, seem to speak to the love of theater in terms of plot scenarios…

“That’s Entertainment” by songwriter, Arthur Schwartz

Anything that happens in life
Can happen in a show
You can make ’em laugh
You can make ’em cry
Anything, anything can go

The clown
With his pants falling down
Or the dance
That’s a dream of romance
Or the scene
Where the villain is mean
That’s entertainment!

The lights
On the lady in tights
Or the bride
With the guy on the side
Or the ball
Where she gives him her all
That’s entertainment!

The plot
Could be hot
Simply teeming with sex
A gay
Divorcee
Who is after her ex
It could be Oedipus Rex
Where a chap kills his father
And causes a lot of bother

The clerk
Who is thrown out of work
By the boss
Who is thrown for a loss
By the skirt
Who is doing him dirt

The world is a stage
The stage is a world
Of entertainment!

That’s entertainment!

That’s entertainment!

The doubt
While the jury is out
Or the thrill
When they’re reading the will
Or the chase
For the man with the face
That’s Entertainment!

The dame
Who is known as the flame
Of the king
Of an underworld ring
He’s an ape
Who won’t let her escape
That’s entertainment!

It might
Be a fight
Like you see on the screen
A swain
Getting slain
For the love of a queen
Some great Shakespearean scene
Where a ghost and a prince meet
And everyone ends in mincemeat

The gag
Might be waving the flag
That began
With a Mr. Cohan
Hip hooray
The American way!

The world is a stage
The stage is a world
Of entertainment!