Charles Strouse was born in New York City on June 7, 1928. He began taking piano lessons at the age of ten and at age 15 he entered the Eastman School of Music. After graduating in 1947, he won two scholarships to Tanglewood, where he studied under Aaron Copland and had his pieces played by the orchestra. After that, he had various music-related jobs, such as scoring and composing music for Twentieth Century-Fox newsreels, playing piano for the character Rosalie in "The Goldbergs" on television, and writing dance music for various mediums.

He then spent time in Paris studying with Nadia Boulanger, and returned to the United States to study with Copland and David Diamond.” In 1949 he met lyricist Lee Adams at a party, which was the beginning of a long and successful musical partnership. The duo began contributing songs to revues at the Green Mansions summer resort in the Adirondacks.” This experience led to their writing tunes for numerous revues, including Catch a Star (1955), Shoestring Revue (1956), The Littlest Revue (1956), and Kaleidoscope (1957), as well as special materials for performers such as Kaye Ballard, Carol Burnett, Jane Morgan, and Dick Shawn.

In 1958 producer Edward Padula auditioned writing teams for a new musical about United States teenagers, which in 1960 was produced on Broadway as Bye Bye Birdie. Adams and Strouse won in the third tryout round, and were hired at one hundred dollars a month. Within a year, they wrote over 50 possible songs for the show and performed at over 75 auditions for financial backers. The show, which starred Dick Van Dyke, Chita Rivera, and…

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Collaboration

Discography Highlights

TOMORROW Martin Charnin, Charles Strouse
Edwin H. Morris & Co., Inc./Strouse Charles Publishers

BYE, BYE BIRDIE Lee Adams, Charles Strouse
Strada Music Co.

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