Noel Coward (1899-1973)

Crisp, brilliant, outrageous, boundlessly entertaining, Noel Coward was the reigning monarch of International Cafe Society from the moment he burst onto the theatrical scene in the mid-1920´s as London´s own enfant terrible, Destiny’s Tot.

Through the next four decades, few denizens of the Theatre could boast his extraordinary resume: playwright, composer, lyricist, director, actor, producer, completely self-created personality, Star of Stars!

The underlying depth and substance of Coward´s work have often been misunderstood and underestimated. He wrote often of superficiality and human folly, but never superficially or frivolously. Through his plays, he described recognizable humanity with both great humor and deep pathos. Among the plays still successfully revived: PRIVATE LIVES, DESIGN FOR LIVING, HAY FEVER, PRESENT LAUGHTER.

In later life when neither film nor stage work was plentiful, Coward moved effortlessly into the first rank of International Cabaret/Supper Club stars, handily drawing upon his always-growing repertoire of matchless song standards: “Someday I´ll Find You,” “If Love Were All,” “I´ll Follow My Secret Heart,” “Mad About the Boy,” “Mad Dogs and Englishmen,” “A Room With A View,” “London Pride,” “Uncle Harry,” “A Bar on the Piccola Marina,” “I Went To A Marvelous Party,” “Sail Away.”

An evening devoted to the singular personality and achievements of Noel Coward is a guarantee of pure delight, the logical consequence of a man who, with no modesty intended, described his own bountiful gifts as A Talent To Amuse!

If you would like to engage Fred Miller for one of his Lectures-in-Song, please contact him directly at any time. For a full listing of all Lectures, click here.

Fred Miller’s Lectures-In-Song comprise a series of solo programs, each an historical, anecdotal and musical profile of some great personality or important aspect of American Popular Song. These Lectures are delivered by singer/pianist/narrator Miller at the piano, and each reflects his lifetime passion and appreciation for great music. He studied classical piano in his hometown of Albuquerque from ages 7-15 but early on gave up any notion of music as a profession. At that time, Fred assumed a musical career was either one devoted to the rigid discipline of classical music or being a freewheeling rock star, and he accurately decided he had no aptitude for either. However, at age 22, upon hearing Ella Fitzgerald sing Cole Porter, he found his calling and life’s mission.

Through the Seventies and Eighties, Miller studied and absorbed in minute detail the life and times and songs of nearly all the great American composers and lyricists who thrived during Broadway & Hollywood’s Golden Age between the two World Wars. In 1987, he founded Silver Dollar Productions in order to produce operettas, dramas, musicals and small cabarets. Silver Dollar Productions required ensemble casts, props, costumes and, most significantly, the challenges of publicity and selling tickets, and for a dozen busy years, the company presented an unbroken string of varied and highly lauded performances.

In 1999, Miller was simultaneously underwritten by both his local Hunterdon County Library and the Art Alliance of Philadelphia to present a series of six solo Lectures-In-Song, each devoted to one of the premiere Broadway/Hollywood songwriters: George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, Richard Rodgers, Jerome Kern, and Harold Arlen.

In presenting history, biography and psychology while sitting at a piano singing the superlative songs of his heroes, Miller has found a single performing medium that utilizes most of his intellectual and musical passions.The list of Lectures-In-Song that began with six in 1999 is now more than seventy(and growing!), a joyful tribute to the boundlessly rich field of American Popular Song.