George M. Cohan
George M. Cohan (1978-1942) rose to the top of his field as an entertainer, songwriter, playwright, and producer with virtually no formal education. No one is theatrical history ever did as many different things as well as George M. Cohan. In the early 20th century, he dominated American theater to a degree that has never been matched by anyone else. Cohan is the father of the modern Broadway musical. He grew up in the business, touring with his family, “The Four Cohans.” In his 20s, Cohan conquered Broadway, writing, directing, and starring in fast-paced shows that made America— not Europe— the standard-setter for musical theater. Cohan’s songs— from “Give My Regards to Broadway” to “Mary”— are pure Americana. He was honored with a Congressional Medal for his contributions to the American spirit. His life inspired the film biography Yankee Doodle Dandy.