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St. Paul, Minn. —
The year 1939 was a bountiful one for Hollywood. It was the year that gave us Stagecoach, Wuthering Heights and Gone with the Wind, among other enduring titles.
Meanwhile, over at MGM studios on Culver Boulevard, a production fraught with difficulties, injured stars and migrating directors was being made.
The Wizard of Oz was not an initial success at the box office, but it has since become a classic thanks to a television-fueled revival that many Baby Boomers may recall.
One of the film's hallmarks is its musical selections and soundtrack. The music and lyrics were by Harold Arlen and E.Y. "Yip" Harburg, who won the Academy Award for Best Original Song for "Over the Rainbow." In addition, Herbert Stothart, who composed the instrumental underscore, won the Academy Award for Best Original Music Score.
This year marks the 75th anniversary of the release of this beloved classic.
No serenity means no Muti for Rome Opera
Riccardo Muti quits as the Rome Opera's lead conductor after six years of ongoing funding, management and labor strife. Muti says he needs "serenity" to do his job effectively.