I've been listening to a lot of musical theater lately, and have become curious about the process of writing songs where different people are the composer/lyricist (for example, Rogers and Hammerstein, Webber and Rice, Menken and Ashman, etc). This also occurs outside of musical theater, but it's what I'm most interested in.
I want to ask a question in the vein of:
What is the typical process of writing songs (particularly for musial theater) where one person/team writes the lyrics and a different person/team writes the melody? Do either the lyrics or melody get written fully first and then sent to the other? Does the composer write the basics of the lyrics and then give them to the lyricist for fleshing out--or vice versa? Is it a full collaboration the entire time?
Ex: Rogers and Hammerstein, Webber and Rice, Menken and Ashman
I'm asking because the lyrics and melody of most musical theater songs seem extremely intertwined, and I have no idea how one would be written before the other--but on the other hand, constant collaboration seems like it would really slow down the process. So: how does this work?
I'm posting on meta because I'm not sure a) if this question is on topic for this site, and b) even if it's on topic, if it's too broad. If it is too broad, is there a way I could narrow it down--maybe by restricting it to a single composer/lyricist pair? Would it still be on topic for this site then?