Rodgers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific opened in 1949 and ran for 1,945 performances, nabbing 10 Tony awards (including all four for acting) and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1950.
Here’s a 15-minute medley of many of the great songs from the movie, including “Some enchanted evening,” and “You’ve got to be carefully taught.” The latter song (starts at 10:45) has an interesting history, as recounted in Theatre Journal:
In the second act of South Pacific, Lieutenant Joe Cable sings “You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught,” a song about racial prejudice. Rodgers and Hammerstein were counseled repeatedly in tryouts to remove the song, which was considered by many to be too controversial, too preachy, or simply inappropriate in a musical. They resisted the pressure, James Michener (author of the book on which the play was based) later recalled: “The authors replied stubbornly that this number represented why they had wanted to do this play, and that even if it meant the failure of the production, it was going to stay in.” During a touring production of the show in Atlanta in 1953, the song again raised hackles, this time offending some Georgia legislators who introduced a bill to outlaw entertainment having, as they stated, “an underlying philosophy inspired by Moscow.” State Representative David C. Jones claimed that a song justifying interracial marriage was implicitly a threat to the American way of life. Hammerstein replied that he was surprised by the idea that “anything kind and humane must necessarily originate in Moscow.”
Mitzi Gaynor in the movie, singing “Wonderful Guy.” It’s the only song I know that contains the word “bromidic”!
Oh, go ahead: sing along. You know you want to!