Tea for Two was written by Vincent Youmans and Irving Caesar in 1924.
Youman’s first wrote the melody while serving in the Navy during World War I. Later, he used the introductory passage for another song.
He played the melody for Irving Caesar and asked for him to write the lyrics. Caesar jotted down a “mock-up lyric” intending to revise it later. Youman loved it and felt it was “just right” for the melody.
Louise Groody and John Barker first introduced the song in the Braodway musical No, No, Nanette.
“The phrase ‘Tea for Two’ was originally shouted by hawkers on the streets of 18th century England who wanted to attract business by lowering the price of a pot of tea from thruppence to tuppence.”
Doris Day and Gordon MacRae stared in the 1950 film Tea for Two. The film is a flashback to the 1920s and the struggle to produce the show No, No Nanette.