Synopses & Reviews
The musical theatre of Stephen Sondheim probes deeply into the most disturbing issues of contemporary life. By challenging his audience with intricate music, biting wit, and profound themes, he flouts the traditional wisdom of the musical theatre. Tracing Sondheim's career from his initial success as lyricist for "West Side Story" and "Gypsy" to his most recent work - "Into the Woods" and "Assassins" - Joanne Gordon emphasizes not only the disturbing content of Sondheim's work, but his innovative use of form. In shows such as "A Little Night Music", "Sweeney Todd", and "Sunday in the Park with George", Sondheim's music and lyrics are inextricably woven into the fabric of the entire work.
Gordon explicates the works of Sondheim to repudiate the common perception of musical theater as mere escapist entertainment, showing how Sondheim tackles real, complex subjects, without fear of introducing pain, trauma, and difficult ideas onto the Broadway stage.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 349-354) and index.
About the Author
Joanne Gordon is Head of the Directing Program at California State University. Art Isn't Easy, writeen with the full cooperation of Sondheim himself, is her first book.