Irving Berlin comes to Yaphank

Middle Island Mail

May 28, 1941

It May Be “Yip, Yip, Yaphank” Again After Irving Berlin Visits Camp Upton

   Visiting the surroundings that were so familiar to him during the World war, Songwriter Irving Berlin was personally escorted on a tour of the new Camp Upton by Col. C. W. Baird, commanding officer, and Col. R. T. Snow, executive officer, last Monday.

   A former sergeant at Camp Upton, Mr. Berlin remarked enthusiastically about the many changes at Camp Upton since he was here in 1918, pointing out the new wooden barracks, the all-electric kitchens and the better-fitted, up-to-date uniforms now being issued.

   Mr. Berlin holds a particularly warm spot in his heart for CampUpton, for it was here that he wrote “Oh, How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning,” “God Bless America,” “Yip, Yip Yaphank,” and a dozen other hit songs and shows which helped entertain the soldiers back in 1918.

   Now Mr. Berlin is thinking of swinging back into the Army saddle again, not as a soldier, of course, but as a guiding hand in reviving the play, “Yip, Yip, Yaphank.”  He discussed with Col. Baird the possibilities of staging the show again, both for the entertainment of the soldiers at Camp Upton and possibly other posts in the country.

   While Mr. Berlin was at camp, Col. Baird announced that additional funds have been appropriated for the enlarging and remodeling of the “Opry house,” where the amateur entertainment shows have been held the last month.  Mr. Berlin stated he would be very happy to assist in any way toward getting material, scripts, music and other incidentals for staging a play.

   Mr. Berlin felt right at home in his old stamping grounds.  During a visit to the Recreation hall he sat down at the piano and rattled off “Oh, How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning” as soldiers stood around and joined in the chorus.

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