Welcome to the Yale Club of Houston - MFAH Artful Thursday: Cole Porter

MFAH Artful Thursday: Cole Porter

Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Caroline Wiess Law Building
Thursday, July 14, 6:30 pm


Yale Club of Houston members with a fondness for Cole Porter classics Bulldog Bulldog and Bingo Eli Yale (aka Bingo, That's The Lingo!) won't want to miss this special MFAH lecture about Cole Porter's life and style.

Cole Porter attended Yale University beginning in 1909 and sang both in the Yale Glee Club, of which he was elected president his senior year, and in the original line-up of the Whiffenpoofs. Porter wrote 300 songs while at Yale, before beginning a Broadway career spanning classics from Anything Goes to Kiss me Kate.

Alongside renowned names such as George Gershwin and Richard Rodgers, Cole Porter (1891–1964) ranked as one of the most successful composers of Broadway musicals for more than three decades. Born to a wealthy Midwestern family, Porter began to write songs while he was still in prep school. His first Broadway show, See America First (1916), was a flop. Soon thereafter, Porter moved to Paris, a city that—like New York—he would celebrate over and over in song. The musical Fifty Million Frenchmen, Porter’s first big hit, debuted in 1929, marking the beginning of his prolific Broadway career.

Porter wrote comic songs that underscored his ingenuity and irreverence, and love songs that throbbed with a heady mix of eroticism and romance. His sophisticated, suggestive lyrics, clever rhymes, and complex musical forms stood in marked contrast to the sentimentality of most American popular music in the first half of the 20th century.

At the MFAH Artful Thursday, Michael Lasser talks about what makes Porter’s style so distinctive and why the forgotten songs are often as good as Porter's most famous.


Presented by Michael Lasser, host of the nationally syndicated public radio show Fascinatin’ Rhythm, with singers Alan Jones and Cindy Miller.

This event is open to the public, and admission is free. Reception to follow. 

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