Musical Theatre: A History / Edition 1

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When I was a teenager, aging theatre buffs insisted that the Broadway musical's "golden age" ended in the 1950s. Recent books and documentaries speak of that era extending into the mid-1960s, and an upcoming generation of writers is pushing that "Golden Age" into the 1970s. Within a decade, someone will push it further, always pretending that the really good stuff happened about thirty years ago. Theatre is very much an art form of the now, here one moment and gone the next, so it is no surprise that many fans and professionals seem to think that the only theatrical events of any importance are those that have occurred within their theatre-going lifetime. Musical Theatre: A History is an attempt to sidestep this trend. The fact is that musical theatre has enjoyed several golden ages, stretching back more than two thousand years to well before the time of Christ. Those golden ages are not relegated to the distant past, and the odds are that more are to come - why, a new one may be starting already.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826430137
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 3/18/2010
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 424
  • Sales rank: 347,761
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

A native New Yorker and life-long fan of the Musical, John Kenrick is widely regarded as an expert on the subject. He runs the popular website and he currently teaches a course on musical theatre history at New York University's Steinhardt School.

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Table of Contents




Introduction: "Let's Start at the Very Beginning . . ."

CHAPTER 1: ANCIENT TIMES TO 1850 — "Playgoers, I Bid You Welcome!"

CHAPTER 2: CONTINENTAL OPERETTA (1840-1900) — "Typical of France"

CHAPTER 3: AMERICAN EXPLORATIONS (1624-1880) - "The Music of Something Beginning"

CHAPTER 4: GILBERT &SULLIVAN (1880-1900) — "Object All Sublime"

CHAPTER 5: THE BIRTH OF MUSICAL COMEDY (1880-1899) — "It Belong'd To My Father Before I Was Born"

CHAPTER 6: A NEW CENTURY (1900-1913) — "Whisper of How I'm Yearning"

CHAPTER 7: AMERICAN ASCENDANCE (1914-1919) — "In a Class Beyond Compare"

CHAPTER 8: AL JOLSON — "The World's Greatest Entertainer"

CHAPTER 9: THE JAZZ AGE (1920-1929) — "I Want to Be Happy"

CHAPTER 10: DEPRESSION ERA MIRACLES (1930-1940) — "Trouble's Just a Bubble"

CHAPTER 11: A NEW BEGINNING (1940-1950) — "They Couldn't Pick a Better Time"

CHAPTER 12: BROADWAY TAKES STAGE (1950-1963) — "The Street Where You Live"

CHAPTER 13: ROCK ROLLS IN (1960-1970) — "Soon It's Gonna Rain"

CHAPTER 14: NEW DIRECTIONS (1970-1979) — "Vary My Days"


CHAPTER 16: MUSICAL COMEDY RETURNS (The 2000s) — "Where Did We Go Right?"

Suggested Reading: An Annotated Bibliography

Recommended Web Resources

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