Scenes and Monologues from Steinberg/ATCA New Play Finalists

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Read any good plays lately? I have a confession to make. I can’t read a play and come away with anything approaching the emotional satisfaction I get from the experience in the theater. Some people can. I can’t. It takes the skills of actors, directors and designers to bring the stories to life for me […]

Nothing Like a Dame: Conversations with the Great Women of Musical Theater


Who is this Eddie Shapiro? How did he get to spend all this quality time with twenty (or twenty-one – more on this later) Tony Award winning leading ladies of Broadway fame including the likes of Chita Rivera, Angela Lansbury, Carol Channing and Elaine Stritch (to name four in their eighties or nineties) or Kristin […]



Quick. Without looking at the title of this column, who was the only person to win the Tony Award for Best Director of a Musical on Broadway, the Oscar for the Best Director of a Movie and the Emmy for the Best Director of a Television Special … and do it all in one year? […]

Before Sound of Music and Smash – TV musicals, 1944 – 1996


The success of NBC’s live telecast of The Sound of Music last December has sparked interest in the televising of musicals. That interest may only increase now that NBC has announced it is going to do another one next December – this time it will be the venerable Peter Pan, a show that many associate […]

A Ship Without a Sail


How many biographies open with the reading of the subject’s will? Gary Marmorstein choses to open his biography of Lorenz Hart one week after Hart’s death as his younger brother Teddy (best remembered as “Dromio of Ephesus” in The Boys from Syracuse) and his wife discover that the will excludes any children of theirs from […]

Holiday Gifts for Theatre Lovers


Suggestions from Brad Hathaway  

Backstage Pass to Broadway, True Tales from a Theatre Press Agent


The name Susan L. Schulman probably doesn’t mean much to many of my readers, but it jumps off the page for me and for many of my fellow theater journalists. She’s one of the legion of press reps that we deal with to get access to the information about which we write. There’s a symbiotic […]

Arena Stage featured in An Ideal Theater


Todd London, artistic director of New Dramatists, has compiled a family Bible for the modern American theater. In the letters, speeches, and reflections collected in An Ideal Theater: Founding Visions for a New American Art, American drama’s founding spirits share their visions for 50 theaters from Los Angeles to the Lower East Side. This book […]

Anything Goes: A History of American Musical Theatre


My theater shelves are already groaning with books about the history of musical theater. Some are well researched but terribly dry reference works. Some are entertaining but hardly definitive source documents. Many of them bear the imprint “OUP” as in Oxford University Press. Today OUP releases another one, and I’m just going to have to […]

Beating Broadway – How to Create Stories for Musicals That Get Standing Ovations


Writing a musical is a task that takes both talent and training. No one textbook can give you all you need even if you have all the talent in the world. However, while there are many textbooks in print on how to write specific kinds of products – novels, movies, television series, poetry, songs, plays […]

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