Anything Goes by Ethan MorddenAfter six volumes on the musical's history, decade by decade from the 1920s through the 1970s, Ethan Mordden takes an entirely fresh look at the musical, from The Beggar's Opera to Wicked. Looking at the Star Comic, the Sweetheart Heroine, the war between musical comedy and operetta, the riseof the sexy story in the 1920s, the wedding of ballet and hoofing in the 1930s, the Oklahoma! and Carousel "musical play" in the 1940s, the Novelty Star in the 1950s, and other developments, Mordden takes us from George Gershwin to Ethel Merman to Jerome Robbins to the director-choreographer and theoffbeat contemporary show: Porgy and Bess, Gypsy, Fiddler on the Roof, Chicago, A Chorus Line, Grand Hotel, Grey Gardens, Rent. In his trademark style that is at once scholarly, witty, and conversational, Mordden emphasizes not only the writing of musicals but the performing of them, taking the reader virtually into the theatre to experience what a great show is like, whether Victor Herbert's The Red Mill or StephenSondheim's Follies. Considering the development of dance, the author follows it from zany hoofing in the nineteenth century through the tap "combinations" of the 1920s and the injection of ballet and modern dance in the 1930s and 1940s. Fred Astaire, George Balanchine, Agnes de Mille, Michael Kidd,Bob Fosse, Gwen Verdon: theirs was a time when dance seemed as crucial as music by Richard Rodgers or lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green. Mordden examines also the changing role of the star, noting how such early-twentieth-century headliners as Fred Stone seldom varied their portrayals, whether as the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz or Little Red Ridinghood's fatherly guardian in The Stepping Stones. But Ethel Merman turned stardominside out in Gypsy, acting her way through a character who was selfish, fierce, and destructive, and today's stars are versatile as a rule. From "ballad opera" and burlesque to the sometimes indescribable titles of today, Anything Goes tells where the musical came from and where it has been headingever since.A special feature of the book is the extremely detailed discographical essay, a guide for aficionado and student alike in exploring the recorded archives.
Call Number: ML1711 .M732 2013
Broadway to Main Street by Laurence MaslonThe music of Broadway is one of America's most unique and popular calling cards. In Broadway to Main Street: How Show Tunes Enchanted America, author Laurence Maslon tells the story of how the most beloved songs of the American Musical Theater made their way from the Theater District to living rooms across the country.The crossroads where the music of Broadway meets popular culture is an expansive and pervasive juncture throughout most of the twentieth century--from sheet music to radio broadcasts to popular and original cast recordings--and continues to influence culture today through television, streaming, and the Internet. The original Broadway cast album--from the 78 rpm recording of Oklahoma! to the digital download of Hamilton--is one of the most successful, yet undervalued, genres in the history of popular recording. The challenge of capturing musical narrative with limited technology inspired the imagination of both the recording industry and millions of listeners: between 1949 and 1969, fifteen different original cast albums hit number one on the popular music charts, ultimately tallying more weeks at number one than all of the albums by Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, and The Beatles combined. The history of Broadway music is also the history of American popular music; the technological, commercial, and marketing forces of communications and media over the last century were inextricably bound up in the enterprise of bringing the musical gems of New York's Theater District to living rooms along Main Streets across the nation.The story of this commercial and emotional phenomenon is told here in full from the imprimatur of sheet music from Broadway in the early 20th century to the renaissance of Broadway music in the digital age, folding in the immense impact of show music on American culture and in the context of the recording industry, popular tastes, and our shared national identity. A book which connects cherished cultural artifacts to the emotional narratives at the core of American popular music, Broadway to Main Street: How Show Tunes Enchanted America is an ideal companion for all fans of American Musical Theater and popular music.
Call Number: ML1711.8 .N3 M372 2018
A Critical Companion to the American Stage Musical by Elizabeth L. Wollman; Kevin G. Wetmore (Series edited by); Patrick Lonergan (Series edited by)This Critical Companion to the American Stage Musical provides the perfect introductory text for students of theatre, music and cultural studies. It traces the history and development of the industry and art form in America with a particular focus on its artistic and commercial development in New York City from the early 20th century to the present. Emphasis is placed on commercial, artistic and cultural events that influenced the Broadway musical for an ever-renewing, increasingly broad and diverse audience: the Gilded Age, the Great Depression, the World War II era, the British invasion in the 1980s and the media age at the turn of the twenty-first century. Supplementary essays by leading scholars provide detailed focus on the American musical's production and preservation, as well as its influence on daily life on the local, national, and international levels. For students, these essays provide models of varying approaches and interpretation, equipping them with the skills and understanding to develop their own analysis of key productions.
Call Number: ML1711.8 .N3 W6 2017
Musicals by Dorling Kindersley Publishing Staff; Elaine Paige (Foreword by)Musicals: The Definitive Illustrated Story showcases the complete history of the musical on stage and screen, from its origins in ancient Greece to early twentieth century dance halls and vaudeville to the golden age of cinema productions to the record-breaking Broadway musicals of today. Packed with historical insights, memorabilia, behind-the-scenes gossip, and artifacts, Musicals: The Definitive Illustrated Story takes you on the ultimate behind-the-scenes tour of the best-loved musicals, such as Chicago, Les Misérables, The Lion King, The Phantom of the Opera, The Sound of Music, and many more. In all, Musicals: The Definitive Illustrated Story features more than 140 notable stage and film productions and the stories of the people who created them. Throughout, clear infographics, rich black-and-white and color photography, and a clever, informative design make this comprehensive overview of musical theater and movie musicals a true showstopper.
Call Number: Oversize ML2054 .M87 2015
The Secret Life of the American Musical by Jack ViertelANew York TimesBestseller For almost a century, Americans have been losing their hearts and losing their minds in an insatiable love affair with the American musical. It often begins in childhood in a darkened theater, grows into something more serious for high school actors, and reaches its passionate zenith when it comes time for love, marriage, and children, who will start the cycle all over again. Americans love musicals. Americans invented musicals. Americans perfected musicals. But what, exactly, is a musical? InThe Secret Life of the American Musical, Jack Viertel takes them apart, puts them back together, sings their praises, marvels at their unflagging inventiveness, and occasionally despairs over their more embarrassing shortcomings. In the process, he invites us to fall in love all over again by showing us how musicals happen, what makes them work, how they captivate audiences, and how one landmark show leads to the next--by design or by accident, by emulation or by rebellion--fromOklahoma! toHamilton and onward. Structured like a musical,The Secret Life of the American Musical begins with an overture and concludes with a curtain call, with stops in between for "I Want" songs, "conditional" love songs, production numbers, star turns, and finales. The ultimate insider, Viertel has spent three decades on Broadway, working on dozens of shows old and new as a conceiver, producer, dramaturg, and general creative force; he has his own unique way of looking at the process and at the people who collaborate to make musicals a reality. He shows us patterns in the architecture of classic shows and charts the inevitable evolution that has taken place in musical theater as America itself has evolved socially and politically. The Secret Life of the American Musical makes you feel as though you've been there in the rehearsal room, in the front row of the theater, and in the working offices of theater owners and producers as they pursue their own love affair with that rare and elusive beast--the Broadway hit.
Call Number: ML1711 .V37 2016
Hamilton by Lin-Manuel Miranda; Jeremy McCarterWinner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and Eleven Tony Awards, including Best Musical Lin-Manuel Miranda's groundbreaking musical Hamilton is as revolutionary as its subject, the poor kid from the Caribbean who fought the British, defended the Constitution, and helped to found the United States. Fusing hip-hop, pop, R&B, and the best traditions of theater, this once-in-a-generation show broadens the sound of Broadway, reveals the storytelling power of rap, and claims our country's origins for a diverse new generation. HAMILTON: THE REVOLUTION gives readers an unprecedented view of both revolutions, from the only two writers able to provide it. Miranda, along with Jeremy McCarter, a cultural critic and theater artist who was involved in the project from its earliest stages--"since before this was even a show," according to Miranda--traces its development from an improbable performance at the White House to its landmark opening night on Broadway six years later. In addition, Miranda has written more than 200 funny, revealing footnotes for his award-winning libretto, the full text of which is published here. Their account features photos by the renowned Frank Ockenfels and veteran Broadway photographer, Joan Marcus; exclusive looks at notebooks and emails; interviews with Questlove, Stephen Sondheim, leading political commentators, and more than 50 people involved with the production; and multiple appearances by President Obama himself. The book does more than tell the surprising story of how a Broadway musical became a national phenomenon: It demonstrates that America has always been renewed by the brash upstarts and brilliant outsiders, the men and women who don't throw away their shot.
Call Number: ML50 .M6736 H3 2016
Wonder of Wonders by Alisa SolomonA sparkling and eye-opening history of the Broadway musical that changed the world In the half-century since its premiere,Fiddler on the Roof has had an astonishing global impact. Beloved by audiences the world over, performed from rural high schools to grand state theaters,Fiddler is a supremely potent cultural landmark. In a history as captivating as its subject, award-winning drama critic Alisa Solomon traces how and why the story of Tevye the milkman, the creation of the great Yiddish writer Sholem-Aleichem, was reborn as blockbuster entertainment and a cultural touchstone, not only for Jews and not only in America. It is a story of the theater, following Tevye from his humble appearance on the New York Yiddish stage, through his adoption by leftist dramatists as a symbol of oppression, to his Broadway debut in one of the last big book musicals, and his ultimate destination--a major Hollywood picture. Solomon reveals how the show spoke to the deepest conflicts and desires of its time: the fraying of tradition, generational tension, the loss of roots. Audiences everywhere found inFiddler immediate resonance and a usable past, whether in Warsaw, where it unlocked the taboo subject of Jewish history, or in Tokyo, where the producer asked how Americans could understand a story that is "so Japanese." Rich, entertaining, and original,Wonder of Wonders reveals the surprising and enduring legacy of a show about tradition that itself became a tradition. Wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles.
Call Number: ML410 .B661 S65 2013
Changed for Good by Stacy Ellen WolfFrom Adelaide in "Guys and Dolls" to Nina in "In the Heights" and Elphaba in "Wicked," female characters in Broadway musicals have belted and crooned their way into the American psyche. In this lively book, Stacy Wolf illuminates the women of American musical theatre - performers, creators,and characters - from the start of the cold war to the present day, creating a new, feminist history of the genre. Moving from decade to decade, Wolf first highlights the assumptions that circulated about gender and sexuality at the time. She then looks at the leading musicals to stress the keyaspects of the plays as they relate to women, and often finds overlooked moments of empowerment for female audience members. The musicals discussed here are among the most beloved in the canon - "West Side Story," "Cabaret," "A Chorus Line," "Phantom of the Opera," and many others - with special emphasis on the blockbuster "Wicked." Along the way, Wolf demonstrates how the musical since the mid-1940s has actually beendominated by women - women onstage, women in the wings, and women offstage as spectators and fans.