Lady in the Dark is a Broadway musical written by Kurt Weill (music), Ira Gershwin (lyrics), and Moss Hart (book and direction). The protagonist is the unhappy female editor of a fashion magazine who is undergoing psychoanalysis, said to be based on Hart's own experiences. All the music in the play is heard in three extended dream sequences: the Glamour Dream, the Wedding Dream, and the Circus Dream.
The musical opened at the Alvin Theatre (now the Neil Simon) on January 23, 1941 and closed on May 30, 1942 after 467 performances. The original production starred Gertrude Lawrence, Danny Kaye, Macdonald Carey, and Victor Mature. Kaye's performance as a gay fashion photographer, and particularly his literally showstopping performance of the patter song Tschaikovsky and Other Russians in which he dashes through the names of 50 Russian composers in 39 seconds, made him a star.
(With adjustments to Gershwin's spelling, here are the Russian composers mentioned in the song, in order: Maliszewski, Rubinstein, Arensky, Tchaikovsky, Sapellnikoff, Dmitriev, Tscherepnin, Kryjanovsky, Godowsky, Artiboucheff, Moniuszko, Akimenko, Soloviev, Prokofiev, Tiomkin, Korestchenko, Glinka, Winkler, Bortniansky, Rebikoff, Ilyinsky, Medtner, Balakirev, Zolotarev, Kvoschinsky, Sokolov, Kopyloff, Dukelsky, Klenovsky, Shostakovich, Borodin, Glière, Nowakowsky, Lyadov, Karganoff, Markevitch, Pantschenko, Dargomyzhsky, Stcherbatcheff, Scriabin, Vassilenko, Stravinsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Mussorgsky, Gretchaninoff, Glazunov, César Cui, Kalinnikov, Rachmaninov, and Rumshinsky.)
The 1944 film version starred Ginger Rogers and Ray Milland, and cut all but one and a half songs from the score ("Jenny" remains, and part of "This Is New" is played by a nightclub band in the background).