There are two sets of limitations on any review: those of the work under consideration, and those of the writer reviewing it. Whatever the merits or lack of them of my biography of Lerner and Loewe ("Inventing Champagne"), Stefan Kanfer in his review of it in the Nov. 18 issue displays a remarkably full set of limitations, including arrogance, ignorance, inability to spell, and inability to read.
Mr. Kanfer writes that out of the differences of character between Lerner and Loewe "arose a creative tension that produced 'Brigadoon' and the lesser 'Love Life' before the team crested with 'My Fair Lady.' "
Fritz Loewe had nothing to do with "Love Life." See page 57 of the book: "Lerner's next musical was written not with Fritz but with another composer born in Berlin: Kurt Weill." The collaboration with Weill on "Love Life" is then discussed in some detail. One is forced to wonder if Mr. Kanfer read that chapter. In any case, the comment instantly establishes his ignorance of the work of Lerner and Loewe, as well as Weill's.
Mr. Kanfer says with an airy affectation of scholarship that it would "come as a surprise to Lerner and Loewe, to say nothing of Thomas Malory, who started the whole thing by writing 'La Mort d'Arthur' (sic) in the 15th Century," that the love affair of two men with the same woman in "Camelot" is perceived as a projected symbol of homosexuality.