The Encyclopedia of the New York Stage, 1940-1950

The Encyclopedia of the New York Stage, 1940-1950

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The most reliable source for data on productions of the New York stage, both Broadway and Off Broadway, is now complete from 1920 through 1950 with the publication of this third volume devoted to the 1940s. The volumes for 1920-1930 and 1930-1940 have been called invaluable, indispensable, essential, and other superlatives by reviewers, widely utilized by theatre scholars and researchers, consulted by companies producing revivals, and quoted by Playbill magazine in answering readers' queries. The continuing series represents a remarkable achievement for theatre historian Samuel Leiter, who singlehandedly has set out to provide such detailed coverage of New York theatre in the twentieth century.

Like its predecessor volumes, The Encyclopedia of the New York Stage, 1940-1950 provides a description of every legitimate production--play, musical, revue, or revival; English-language or foreign-language, domestic or import--staged in the New York professional theatre and reviewed by the press during the decade: in this case, nearly 1150 productions. Each listing begins with genre designation and subject categorization and proceeds to writing and production credits, theatre, opening dates, and run. The narrative text that follows, provides, along with plot summary, a lively account of background, anecdotal commentary from biographies and autobiographies, and critical responses to play and production with reference to and quotes from reviews. Ten appendixes offer listings of plays chronologically and in categories as well as play sources, awards, information on theatres, institutional theatres, foreign companies, reviewers, and various statistics. A selected bibliography and indexes of proper names and titles complete the work. The volume introduction is itself a history of New York theatre in the period of World War II and its aftermath. It deals with the hazardous business of theatre, both commercial and nonprofit, with the critical establishment of the day, with the increasing professionalism of Off Broadway, with ethnic theatre and visiting companies, and provides a fascinating overview of production highlights. Although the 1940s is not regarded as a landmark era in American theatre, it did see first productions of such classics as Tennessee Williams's A Streetcar Named Desire, Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman, and Rodgers and Hammerstein's breakthrough musical Oklahoma! This volume and the predecessor volumes of this encyclopedia series are indispensable reference tools.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 1000 pages
  • 155.96 x 233.93 x 52.32mm | 1,555.82g
  • Greenwood Press
  • Westport, United States
  • English
  • 0313275106
  • 9780313275104
  • 2,806,564

Table of contents

Preface Introduction The New York Stage, 1940-1950 Appendix 1: Calendar of Productions Appendix 2: Play Categories Appendix 3: Awards Appendix 4: Sources of Plays Appendix 5: Institutional Theatres Appendix 6: Foreign Companies and Stars Appendix 7: Longest Running Shows of the 1940s Appendix 8: List of Review Source Abbreviations Appendix 9: Seasonal Statistics Appendix 10: Theatres Selected Bibliography Index of Proper Names Index of Titles
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Review quote

?One could not ask for a more informative volume on the New York stage of the 1940s.?-Reference Book Review
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About Samuel Leiter

SAMUEL L. LEITER is a Professor of Theatre at Brooklyn College, City University of New York. His theatre publications for Greenwood Press include Kabuki Encyclopedia: An English-Language Adaptation of Kabuki Jiten (1979), Ten Seasons: New York Theatre in the Seventies (1986), Shakespeare Around the Globe: A Guide to Notable Postwar Revivals (1986), volumes of The Encyclopedia of the New York Stage for 1920-1930 and 1930-1940 (1985, 1989), From Belasco to Brook: Representative Directors of the English-Speaking Stage and From Stanislavsky to Barrault: Representative Directors of the European Stage (both 1991). He is the editor of Asian Theatre Journal and he has published widely in journals such as Educational Theatre Journal, Players, and Drama Survey.
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