A Theater of Our Own

Author: Richard Christiansen
Publisher:
ISBN:
Format: PDF
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The former chief critic of the "Chicago Tribune" uses historical records, interviews, and personal memories to chronicle Chicago's theater world from the 1830s to the present day.

Rise Up

Author: Chris Jones
Publisher: Methuen Drama
ISBN: 9781350071933
Format: PDF, Docs
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Penned by one of America's best-known daily theatre critics and organized chronologically, this lively and readable book tells the story of Broadway's renaissance from the darkest days of the AIDS crisis, via the disaster that was Spiderman: Turn off the Dark through the unparalleled financial, artistic and political success of Lin-Manuel Miranda's Hamilton. It is the story of the embrace of risk and substance. In so doing, Chris Jones makes the point that the theatre thrived by finally figuring out how to embrace the bold statement and insert itself into the national conversation - only to find out in 2016 that a hefty sector of the American public had not been listening to what it had to say. Chris Jones was in the theatres when and where it mattered. He takes readers from the moment when Tony Kushner's angel crashed (quite literally) through the ceiling of prejudice and religious intolerance to the triumph of Hamilton, with the coda of the Broadway cast addressing a new Republican vice-president from the stage. That complex performance - at once indicative of the theatre's new clout and its inability to fully change American society for the better - is the final scene of the book.

Bigger Brighter Louder

Author: Chris Jones
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022609071X
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The first known Chicago Tribune theater review appeared on March 25, 1853. An anonymous notice, it shared the page with two other announcements—one about a pair of thousand-pound hogs set to be slaughtered and another trumpeting the largest load of lumber ever to leave Chicago. “And thus Chicago’s priorities were starkly laid out right there on that page,” begins Chris Jones in the introduction to this eyewitness cultural history. “Hog butcher for the world and windy self-promoter, specializing in commerce-driven superlatives. The arts came a poor third. Critics, and the artists they covered, would rail against that perceived set of civic priorities for years.” The Chicago of today, on the other hand, is regarded as one of the world’s premier cities for theater, and no one has had a more consistent front-row seat to its ascendance than the Chicago Tribune theater critics. Bigger, Brighter, Louder weaves together more than 150 years of Tribune reviews into a compelling narrative, pairing full reviews with commentary and history. With a sharp eye for telling details and a keen sense of historical context, Jones, longtime chief Tribune theater critic, takes readers through decades of highs and lows, successes and failures. The book showcases fascinating early reviews of actors and shows that would go on to achieve phenomenal success, including a tryout of A Raisin in the Sun with newcomer Sidney Poitier and the first major review of The Producers. It also delves into the rare and the unusual, such as a previously unpublished Tennessee Williams interview and a long conversation with Edward Albee’s mother. With reviews from Claudia Cassidy, Peregine Pickle, William Leonard, and more, many never collected before, Bigger, Brighter, Louder offers a unique lasting record of an ephemeral art and a riveting look at the history behind Chicago’s rise to theatrical greatness.

American Buffalo

Author: David Mamet
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
ISBN: 0802191800
Format: PDF, Docs
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American Buffalo, which won both the Drama Critics Circle Award for the best American play and the Obie Award, is considered a classic of the American theater. Newsweek acclaimed Mamet as the “hot young American playwright . . . someone to watch.” The New York Times exclaimed in admiration: “The man can write!” Other critics called the play “a sizzler,” “super,” and “dynamite.” Now from Gregory Mosher, the producer of the original stage production, comes a stunning screen adaptation, directed by Michael Corrente and starring Dustin Hoffman, Dennis Franz, and Sean Nelson. A classic tragedy, American Buffalo is the story of three men struggling in the pursuit of their distorted vision of the American Dream. By turns touching and cynical, poignant and violent, American Buffalo is a piercing story of how people can be corrupted into betraying their ideals and those they love.

Black Theater is Black Life

Author: Harvey Young
Publisher:
ISBN: 9780810129429
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Black Theater Is Black Life fills a critical gap in the history of African American culture in Chicago. Through interviews with prominent producers, directors, choreographers, designers, dancers, and actors, Young and Zabriskie create a portrait of a diverse, dynamic artistic community between 1970 and 2010. They frame this history with helpful guides, including a chronology of key events, a glossary of names, and an appendix of leading performing arts institutions in Chicago.

Marc Blitzstein

Author: Howard Pollack
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199977089
Format: PDF, ePub
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A composer and lyricist of enormous innovation and influence, Marc Blitzstein remains one of the most versatile and fascinating figures in the history of American music, his creative output running the gamut from films scores and Broadway operas to art songs and chamber pieces. A prominent leftist and social maverick, Blitzstein constantly pushed the boundaries of convention in mid-century America in both his work and his life. Award-winning music historian Howard Pollack's new biography covers Blitzstein's life in full, from his childhood in Philadelphia to his violent death in Martinique at age 58. The author describes how this student of contemporary luminaries Nadia Boulanger and Arnold Schoenberg became swept up in the stormy political atmosphere of the 1920s and 1930s and throughout his career walked the fine line between his formal training and his populist principles. Indeed, Blitzstein developed a unique sound that drew on everything contemporary, from the high modernism of Stravinsky and Hindemith to jazz and Broadway show tunes. Pollack captures the astonishing breadth of Blitzstein's work--from provocative operas like The Cradle Will Rock, No for an Answer, and Regina, to the wartime Airborne Symphony composed during his years in service, to lesser known ballets, film scores, and stage works. A courageous artist, Blitzstein translated Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill's The Threepenny Opera during the heyday of McCarthyism and the red scare, and turned it into an off-Broadway sensation, its "Mack the Knife" becoming one of the era's biggest hits. Beautifully written, drawing on new interviews with friends and family of the composer, and making extensive use of new archival and secondary sources, Marc Blitzstein presents the most complete biography of this important American artist.

A History of Popular Culture

Author: Raymond F. Betts
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 0415674360
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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This lively and informative survey provides a thematic global history of popular culture focusing on the period since the end of the Second World War. A History of Popular Culture explores the rapid diffusion and 'hybridization' of popular culture as the result of three conditions of the world since the end of World War Two: instantaneous communications, widespread consumption in a market-based economy and the visualization of reality. Betts considers the dominance of American entertainment media and habits of consumption, assessing adaptation and negative reactions to this influence. The author surveys a wide range of topics, including: the emergence and conditions of modern popular culture the effects of global conflict the phenomenon and effects of urbanization the changing demography of the political arena and the work place the development of contemporary music culture film, television and visual experience the growth of sport as a commercial enterprise. Now updated, by Lyz Bly, to include major developments such as blogs and social networks, YouTube.com, and enhanced technologies such as the iPhone, iPod, and iPad as well as the way in which the internet has reshaped the ways we consume media. The book provides an engaging introduction to this pervasive and ever-changing subject.

Theatre History Studies 2014 Vol 33

Author: Elizabeth Reitz Mullenix
Publisher: University of Alabama Press
ISBN: 0817358072
Format: PDF, ePub
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"Theatre History Studies 2014, Volume 33, " brings together an original collection of essays that explore a topic of growing interesttheatre and war. "

Media and the American Mind

Author: Daniel J. Czitrom
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 0807899208
Format: PDF, Docs
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In a fascinating and comprehensive intellectual history of modern communication in America, Daniel Czitrom examines the continuing contradictions between the progressive possibilities that new communications technologies offer and their use as instruments of domination and exploitation.