Women in American Musical Theatre

Essays on Composers, Lyricists, Librettists, Arrangers, Choreographers, Designers, Directors, Producers and Performance Artists

Women in American Musical Theatre

"These essays examine the history of women in musical theatre, providing biographical descriptions; interpretations of their productions; and several accounts of how being a woman affected their careers"--Provided by publisher.

Her Turn on Stage

The Role of Women in Musical Theatre

Her Turn on Stage

Audiences for musical theater are predominantly women, yet shows are frequently created and produced by men. Onstage, female characters are depicted as victims or sex objects and lack the complexity of their male counterparts. Offstage, women are under-represented among writers, directors, composers and choreographers. While other areas of the arts rally behind gender equality, musical theater demonstrates a disregard for women and an authentic female voice. If musical theater reflects prevailing societal attitudes, what does the modern musical tell us about the place of women in contemporary America, the UK and Australia? Are women deliberately kept out of musical theater by men jealously guarding their territory or is the absence of women a result of the modernization of the genre? Based on interviews with successful female performers, writers, directors, choreographers and executives, this book offers a unique female viewpoint on musical theater today.

Women in the Arts in the Belle Epoque

Essays on Influential Artists, Writers and Performers

Women in the Arts in the Belle Epoque

This collection of new essays explores the role played by women practitioners in the arts during the period often referred to as the Belle Epoque, a turn of the century period in which the modern media (audio and film recording, broadcasting, etc.) began to become a reality. Exploring the careers and creative lives of both the famous (Sarah Bernhardt) and the less so (Pauline Townsend) across a remarkable range of artistic activity from composition through oratory to fine art and film directing, these essays attempt to reveal, in some cases for the first time, women's true impact on the arts at the turn of the 19th century.

Changed for Good

A Feminist History of the Broadway Musical

Changed for Good

Highlights the women of American theater from the beginning of the Cold War to the present, addressing assumptions about gender that were held to be true in each decade as well as key aspects of popular plays as they related to women.

Notable Women in the American Theatre

A Biographical Dictionary

Notable Women in the American Theatre

This reference book has entries for some 300 women in American theater, ranging from actors, directors, choreographers, playwrights, and designers, to critics, agents, and managers, and should provide focus for future scholars of women's studies and theater. . . . . The volume will prove valuable to scholars and the curious. Library Journal The current and thoughtful treatment of this book will be valuable for academic and large public libraries, especially those that support research in women's studies, theater, American studies, and biography. Booklist From Mrs. Lewis Hallam, the first known professional actress in America to outstanding women of the present era, this biographical dictionary alphabetically examines some 300 notable women who had distinguished careers in the American theatre. Not simply a list of names and activities, the volume--to the extent possible--narrates and evaluates the women's lives and accomplishments providing not only relevant biographical information and bibliographical materials but also describing the women's professional contributions. In representing the careers of theatre artists from actors, directors, and designers, to choreographers, managers, playwrights, educators, critics, variety performers, and agents, this first reference of its kind devoted exclusively to women also serves as a unique survey of the history of American theatre. Notable Women in the American Theatre documents the widespread activities of women in the American theatre. As many of them functioned in more than one capacity, one of the two appendixes lists names in the various professional categories. Each entry describes the pertinent facts of biography and contains a descriptive narrative relating to the individual's career with a special notation of her distinguished role in the American theatre. A bibliography of the featured woman, including sources to be found in books, magazines, and newspapers, is also part of the alphabetical entry. To aid readers and researchers, 2 separate appendixes contain listings by place of birth and by profession and collate the interrelatedness of the careers of many of the women. Compiled primarily as a reference for college and university libraries, the volume would be a useful supplement to courses in women's studies, American studies, drama courses taught in English and theatre departments, courses in the history of the theatre, American history, and biography.

Shakespeare and the American Musical

Shakespeare and the American Musical

Irene G. Dash explores the influence of Shakespeare on American musical theater through analyses of five important productions from 1938 through 1971 -- The Boys from Syracuse (The Comedy of Errors), Kiss Me, Kate (Taming of the Shrew), West Side Story (Romeo and Juliet), Your Own Thing (Twelfth Night), and Two Gentlemen of Verona. Dash argues that adaptations of Shakespeare were instrumental in the alteration of the musical theater formula from the stock plots and song forms of the 1930s musical comedy to the more organic ""integrated musical,"" where songs and dance sequences were used to advance the plot rather than break the action. In bringing together these well-known works, Dash offers a fresh look at the development of American musical theater and a new understanding of Shakespeare in the modern American context.

Irving Berlin's American Musical Theater

Irving Berlin's American Musical Theater

From patriotic "God Bless America" to wistful "White Christmas," Irving Berlin's songs have long accompanied Americans as they fall in love, go to war, and come home for the holidays. Irving Berlin's American Musical Theater is the first book to fully consider this songwriter's immeasurable influence on the American stage. Award-winning music historian Jeffrey Magee chronicles Berlin's legendary theatrical career, providing a rich background to some of the great composer's most enduring songs, from "There's No Business Like Show Business" to "Puttin' on the Ritz." Magee shows how Berlin's early experience singing for pennies made an impression on the young man, who kept hold of that sensibility throughout his career and transformed it into one of the defining attributes of Broadway shows. Magee also looks at darker aspects of Berlin's life, examining the anti-Semitism that Berlin faced and his struggle with depression. Informative, provocative, and full of colorful details, this book will delight song and theater aficionados alike as well as anyone interested in the story of a man whose life and work expressed so well the American dream.

Our Musicals, Ourselves

A Social History of the American Musical Theatre

Our Musicals, Ourselves

Our Musicals, Ourselves is the first full-scale social history of the American musical theater from the imported Gilbert and Sullivan comic operas of the late nineteenth century to such recent musicals as The Producers and Urinetown. While many aficionados of the Broadway musical associate it with wonderful, diversionary shows like The Music Man or My Fair Lady, John Bush Jones instead selects musicals for their social relevance and the extent to which they engage, directly or metaphorically, contemporary politics and culture. Organized chronologically, with some liberties taken to keep together similarly themed musicals, Jones examines dozens of Broadway shows from the beginning of the twentieth century to the present that demonstrate numerous links between what played on Broadway and what played on newspapersÕ front pages across our nation. He reviews the productions, lyrics, staging, and casts from the lesser-known early musicals (the ÒgunboatÓ musicals of the Teddy Roosevelt era and the ÒCinderella showsÓ and Òleisure time musicalsÓ of the 1920s) and continues his analysis with better-known shows including Showboat, Porgy and Bess, Oklahoma, South Pacific, West Side Story, Cabaret, Hair, Company, A Chorus Line, and many others. While most examinations of the American musical focus on specific shows or emphasize the development of the musical as an art form, JonesÕs book uses musicals as a way of illuminating broader social and cultural themes of the times. With six appendixes detailing the long-running diversionary musicals and a foreword by Sheldon Harnick, the lyricist of Fiddler on the Roof, JonesÕs comprehensive social history will appeal to both students and fans of Broadway.

American Musical Theatre

A Chronicle

American Musical Theatre

Covers more than 250 years of musical theatre in the United States, from a 1735 South Carolina production of Flora to The Addams Family in 2010.