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08 October 2019

The Letters of Cole Porter

The Letters of Cole Porter by King’s Professor of Music, Cliff Eisen and Dr Dominic McHugh from the University of Sheffield is published today by Yale University Press.

The Letters of Cole Porter
The Letters of Cole Porter

In their new book, The Letters of Cole Porter, Professor Cliff Eisen from the Department of Music at King’s College London and Dr Dominic McHugh from the University of Sheffield collate the first complete collection of letters by Cole Porter, one of the greatest American songwriters of the twentieth century.  

The book features a compilation of letters by the renowned artist, most of which were previously unpublished, and date back to the first decade of the twentieth century. Alongside the letters, the book explores Porter’s relationship with friends, lovers and stars including Irving Berlin, Ethel Merman, and Orson Welles through his early correspondence.   

Professor Cliff Eisen and Dr Dominic McHugh also include lively commentaries which piece together Porter’s life and offer an insight into Porter’s private and public existence.

The book received favourable reviews among critics who say the “letters offer fascinating glimpses into some previously unseen corners” of Porter’s life.

Cole Porter was considered one of the greatest songwriters of his time, and the originality, wit, and artistry, of both his music and his lyrics, have lost none of their lustre in the ensuing years. Yet his personal life has been clouded in mystery and gossip, much of it exaggerated or simply untrue. This new book offers the perfect solution: by reproducing a rich selection of Porter's letters from across his life and activities, the editors have allowed him to speak in his own words.”

Kevin Kline, Actor and Singer (Source: Yale)

An absolute must for any fan of the golden age, musical theater, or the incredible Porter himself."

Matthew Shaftel, Editor of A Cole Porter Companion (source: Yale)

A magnificently researched, compulsively readable, and delightfully “de-lovely” volume.”

Geoffrey Block, Author of Richard Rodgers (source: Yale)

About Professor Cliff Eisen

Professor Cliff Eisen joined the Department of Music at King's College London in 1997. His research interests include Mozart, eighteenth-century music and Broadway musicals of the golden era. He is currently working on an edition of the complete letters of Mozart and, together with Dr. McHugh, the letters of Frank Loesser and George Gershwin. 

For more detail, please see his full research profile


Professor Cliff Eisen
Professor Cliff Eisen

The book is available to purchase online at Yale University Press.