Dancing In the Dark


Dancing In the Dark (m. Arthur Schwartz, w. Howard Dietz)


Dancing In the Dark…was first introduced by John Barker in the 1931 revue The Band Wagon. The 1941 recording by Artie Shaw and His Orchestra earned Shaw one of his eight gold records at the height of the Big Band era of the 1930s and 1940s.

It was subsequently featured in the classic 1953 MGM musical The Band Wagon and has since come to be considered part of the Great American Songbook. In the film it is given a ‘sensual and dramatic’[1] orchestration by Conrad Salinger for a ballet performance by Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse.


Waring's-Pennsylvanians-in Paris-Ambassadeurs-1928

(above) Waring’s Pennsylvanians photographed in front of Les Ambassadeurs in Paris, 1928

Fred Waring’s Pennsylvanians — recorded on 18 May 1931; issued as the B-side of the 78 rpm single Victor 22708, “High and Low (I’ve Been Looking For You)” (Schwartz, Dietz). The chorus is initially sung by a male vocal group, and then the B-section or bridge is sung by a female group, the “Three Waring Girls”, followed by an instrumental break (the third A section). The two groups share the vocals in an abbreviated final section.


Jacques Renard and his Orchestra, vocal: Frank Munn — recorded on 3 June 1931; issued on the 78 rpm single Brunswick 6136, b/w “High and Low (I’ve Been Looking For You)”


Bing Crosby — recorded on 19 August 1931 and issued in 1931 on Brunswick 6169, c/w “Stardust” — Bing Crosby (voc), Victor Young (dir), Joe Venuti (vln)

audio file, MP3 (2.4 MB), from the page Bing Crosby – A Collection of Early Recordings Volume Two, at archive.org — The page features an album, released in 1944 (Brunswick B-1015), that is a compilation of the eight sides of four early Bing Crosby singles, issued 1931-1932. This audio file, which is marked “restored,” has better quality than all other files of the recording that I’ve found.


audio file, MP3 (4.8 MB), from the page Dancing in the Dark at archive.org:


Victor Salon Orchestra, conducted by Nathaniel Shilkret — recorded on 15 October 1931; issued on the 78 rpm single Victor 22848, as the B-side of “Stardust”


Ben Selvin and his Orchestra — 1931



Ambrose and his Orchestra at the May Fair Hotel, London, vocal: Sam Browne — recorded on 11 January 1932


Nelson Eddy — date unknown


Bea Wain 2

Larry Clinton and his Orchestra, with vocal by Bea Wain, and dancing by Gower and Jeanne — in the 1940 short film The Dipsy Doodler


Artie Shaw and his Orchestra — recorded on 23 January 1941; released 14 February 1941 on the 78 rpm single Victor 27335, b/w “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes” (recorded by Artie Shaw and his Gramercy Five)


Artie Shaw and his Orchestra — The same 23 January 1941 recording (mx. PBS-055256-1) that appeared on Victor 27335 was issued, or reissued, on 5 September 1941 on the 4-disc compilation album Four Star Favorites, Victor P 85, where it appeared on disc 3 (sides 5 and 6) of the set, bearing catalog number Victor 27548, b/w “Traffic Jam.”


Tommy Dorsey and his Orchestra — date unknown


Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse, Band Wagon (1953) Dancing In the Dark (1) Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse, Band Wagon (1953) Dancing In the Dark (3)-hx26

Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse — dance number in the 1953 MGM musical comedy film The Band Wagon


Ray Anthony and his Orchestra — issued on the 1953 single Capitol Records ‎ 2562 (78 rpm), F2562 (45rpm), as the B-side of “Dragnet”


Ray Conniff — from the 1956 LP S’Wonderful, Columbia CL 925



Sarah Vaughan — from the 1957 LP “Great Songs from Hit Shows”


1957 Motion Picture Soundstage, Gordon MacRae

Gordon MacRae — from the 1957 LP “Motion Picture Soundstage”


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Donald Murphy
    Nov 22, 2014 @ 07:51:10

    Precious treasures for future song and dance fans to enjoy

    Liked by 1 person


  2. Donald Murphy
    Nov 22, 2014 @ 07:52:21


    Liked by 1 person


  3. doc
    Mar 19, 2016 @ 01:52:50

    Thanks, for the kind words.
    Regards, doc



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