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From Conception to Completion

What New Stages Participation Has Meant to its Playwrights By Thomas Connors In the theater—as in so many professions—it’s all about getting that break, the chance to show what you’re made of. And from there, who knows? But in a business where one is never sure where or when the next job will appear, a…

A Conversation with Playwright Dave Harris

In Dave Harris’ dark new tragicomedy Incendiary, Tanya is a mother dead-set on breaking her son out of death row. A few weeks before rehearsal began, production dramaturg Jonathan L. Green talked with Harris about the play and his inspirations. JONATHAN L. GREEN: In reading this play, and some of your others, one theme that…

A Conversation with Playwright Rajiv Joseph

Pulitzer Prize finalist Rajiv Joseph collaborates with the Goodman for the first time with his newest play, In the Sick Bay of the Santa Maria. His works include Guards at the Taj, Gruesome Playground Injuries, Animals Out of Paper, The North Pool and Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, which starred Robin Williams in a…

The Real Hanky-Panky

The Goodman's Hanky-Panky expertly mixed by Lounge Lead Sean Grosshans Over a hundred years ago a pioneering woman was taking on new roles, breaking cultural barriers and leaving her mark on history. No, we are not talking about Sarah Bernhardt this time; we are talking about Ada Coleman, the inventor and inspiration behind the Goodman’s…

“The Sublime is Even Better”—Sarah Bernhardt, Actress/Entrepreneur

“There are five kinds of actresses: bad actresses, fair actresses, good actresses, great actresses—and then there is Sarah Bernhardt.” — Mark Twain Few figures of the 19th century allured the public as much as actress and entrepreneur Sarah Bernhardt. While many actors struggled to gain employment, Bernhardt created her own opportunities and eventually opened her…

76 Trombones, 62 Years Ago: The Debut of “The Music Man”

"The Music Man" creator Meredith Willson, a flautist and piccolo player, composer, conductor and musical arranger, seemed on the surface an unlikely candidate to create Broadway’s next hit, given his lack of experience in the medium....In the late 1940s, Willson began working on the first of his three autobiographies, "And There I Stood with My Piccolo." This lighthearted book explores Willson’s turn-of-the-20th-century childhood in Mason City, Iowa, where he adroitly honed the skills that enabled his professional career in music while also wholeheartedly participating in small town misadventures.

Falling in Love with the Stage Musical

From Leonard Bernstein’s "Candide" to the Damon Runyan-inspired "Guys and Dolls," to her own adaption of "The Jungle Book," Tony Award-winning director Mary Zimmerman has brought her unique style to this beloved American entertainment. She’s long exercised her chops on the Goodman stage and now returns with "The Music Man," the 1957 classic about a smooth-talking swindler and the small Midwestern town he wraps around his little finger.

Making Meaning of Shakespeare’s Title

“A sad tale’s best for winter,” asserts the young Sicilian prince Mamillius when asking for a bedtime story. Indeed, many of our bedtime fairy tales, myths, stories and legends have a dark undertone to them. Consider the collection of Jakob and Wilhelm Grimm’s Fairy Tales, originally published under the name Children’s and Household Tales in…

Clothes “Oft Proclaim the Man”

Robert Falls and Ana Kuzmanic's Shakespearean Collaboration Wardrobe certainly helps a performer get into character, and the costume an actor wears is equally important to the audience. This is especially true in contemporary productions of Shakespeare, where doublets and ermine-trimmed robes may not make an appearance, but power and status are almost always in play.…