Synopses & Reviews
Ben Brantley, drama critic of The New York Times
relives unforgettable Broadway and off-Broadway moments. Witness the night a star was born, a director's brilliant debut, a play that broke new ground, a musical that redefined the genre, and even a terrible play that ran for years. This entertaining, essential volume for anyone who loves Broadway will include a foreword from a major actor, a full introduction by Ben Brantley, drama critic of The Times
, and his choice of 100 other most important plays of the twentieth century. Each of the best 100 will include the full, original New York Times
review by the critic of the day such as Frank Rich, Brooks Atkinson, Walter Kerr, George S. Kaufman, Alexander Woolcott and others. Cast boxes, lavish photos and statistics about the productions will complete this authoritative volume about classic Broadway theater.
"The New York Times,
the national newspaper of record for politics and current events, plays a still more crucial role, that of final arbiter, for the New York theater. Not all shows it pans close early, and every show it praises doesn't become a big hit, but enough of both do. These reviews, collected by current chief theater critic Brantley, will probably only enhance the Times'
reputation, for the list of shows the paper lauded that then had long runs is pretty lengthy and honorable . . . Amounts to a fascinating panorama of the taste of America's most important theatrical opinion maker."--Jack Helbig, Booklist
"This is an engaging collective look at the past century of drama as seen through the eyes of the New York Times theater critics."--J. Sara Paulk, Coastal Plain Regional Library, Tifton, Georgia, Library Journal
About the Author
became chief theater critic of The New York Times in September 1996 after having served as its drama critic since 1993. Prior to joining The Times, Mr. Brantley was a staff writer at The New Yorker
, Vanity Fair
, and the European editor, publisher and Paris bureau chief for Women's Wear Daily
. Born in Durham, N.C., Mr. Brantley received a B.A. degree in English from Swarthmore College. He received the George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism for 1996-1997.