“May Your Days Be Merry and Bright: the Unlikely Story of America’s Christmas Anthem” will be the topic for author Michael Lasser’s presentation on Tuesday, December 13, 7:00 pm, at the Fairport Museum (18 Perrin Street). Those in attendance will join members of the Perinton Historical Society for their annual Holiday Party (PHS members are requested to bring a dessert to share.) and will have their FINAL opportunity to submit bids for the trees, wreaths, gift baskets and more in the Society’s annual “Yuletide Traditions’ silent auction fundraiser. Bidding will open at 6:00 pm and end promptly at 7:00 when the program begins. Winners will be announced at the end of Mr. Lasser’s presentation.
In this holiday-themed presentation Michael Lasser will tell the story of how Irving Berlin came to write “White Christmas” and the unlikely way it became a hit. For a songwriter who usually kept his own feelings hidden, what he thought would be a conventional Christmas song became one of the great hits of World War II, the most valuable copyright in all of American music, and one of Berlin’s most personal songs. Since “White Christmas” permanently set America’s Christmas in a snowy New England and also established the habit of writing new hit songs every Christmas season, Lasser also will talk about some of the other classic Christmas songs written during the next few years. Among them are “The Christmas Song,” “Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow,” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.”
Michael Lasser is a lecturer, writer, broadcaster, critic, and teacher. He is the co-author of America’s Songs: The Stories Behind the Songs of Broadway, Hollywood and Tin Pan Alley, and the author of America’s Songs II: From the 1890s to the Post-War Years. Last month, he completed 36 years as host of the nationally syndicated public radio show, Fascinatin’ Rhythm, winner of a 1994 Peabody Award. A graduate of Dartmouth College, he is the former theater critic for The Rochester Democrat & Chronicle and City, and speaks often at museums and universities around the country. In 2010, he was named a Thomas P. Johnson Distinguished Visiting Scholar at Rollins College. He recently finished his third book, City Songs: The American Popular Song, 1900-1950.
Mr. Lasser will be on hand from 6 – 7 pm and also after his presentation to sign copies of his books which will be available for purchase (cash or check accepted).
All December 13 activities are free and open to the public. For more information, visit: www.perintonhistoricalsociety.org
Image source: http://www.perintonhistoricalsociety.org