Bizarre vintage ‘Industrial Musicals’ show coming to Seattle Thursday, July 21


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“The Lost World of Industrial Musicals” – celebrating the little-known genre of internal corporate musical propaganda – is coming to Seattle on Thursday, July 21. 

Steve Young, author/collector/historian and former “Letterman” writer, hosts this hilarious evening of startling entertainment featuring lost gems like GE’s “Silicones, Silicones” and American-Standard’s “My Bathroom.”

The one-night-only show takes place Thursday, July 21, at 7 p.m. at the Grand Illusion Cinema (1403 NE 50th Street, Seattle).

Tickets are just $12, and be ordered online here.

The show is an outgrowth of “Everything’s Coming Up Profits: The Golden Age of Industrial Musicals,” the book co-authored by Steve Young.  From roughly the 1950’s to the 1980’s, corporate America commissioned tremendous numbers of lavish Broadway-style shows for conventions and sales meetings, not open to the public.  This mutant showbiz genre was all but unknown until Steve began collecting the rare souvenir albums while gathering material for the “Dave’s Record Collection” segment on the Letterman show.  Twenty years and one book later, he owns hundreds of scarce records and has met and interviewed many veterans of the industrial musical scene.  And now, the next frontier: industrial musicals on film.

Among the excruciatingly rare films Steve Young will present, which can be seen nowhere else:122_img

  • A 1965 Citgo convention musical medley with a celebrity host
  • A 1967 Purina dog food song and dance stage show
  • A 1973 General Electric film using songs to promote the industrial uses of silicones
  • A 1970 Hamm’s beer sales meeting film animated by Hanna-Barbera
  • And the crown jewel: the film version of the legendary 1969 American-Standard distributor musical, “The Bathrooms Are Coming”!

Here’s a clip from Steve on Letterman:

And a wonderful music sample that will raise your temperature:

Steve Young has presented this unique show in New York, Boston, Los Angeles, Chicago, Minneapolis, and other cities. He’s appeared several times as a guest on the Letterman show, NPR’s “Fresh Air” with Terry Gross (goo.gl/qwYG4p), and at theater festivals and business conventions introducing audiences to a slice of Americana that’s unexpected, weird, funny, and ultimately even inspiring.

More info here:

About the Host
Steve Young is a 25 year veteran of the “Late Night” and “Late Show with David Letterman” writing staff.  He has also written for “The Simpsons” and has most recently been writing for NBC’s “Maya & Marty.”  With Sport Murphy, he co-authored “Everything’s Coming Up Profits: The Golden Age of Industrial Musicals” (goo.gl/IAm8RU), published in 2013 by Blast Books.  He is part of an industrial musicals documentary now in production, with David Letterman as an executive producer.

About the Venue
The Grand Illusion Cinema, Seattle’s oldest continuously running movie theater, has become a landmark of the film community and proudly presents classics, rarities, and truly independent cinema from around the world.  For more information about the Grand Illusion, visit grandillusioncinema.org.  Tickets to “The Lost World of Industrial Musicals” are $12 and can be purchased at the door or through the Grand Illusion Cinema website.


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