Podcast Episode 55 – James Lapine


What a story.

You’d think that those who have reached the apex of their specific careers were focused on doing just that since they came out of the womb.  Well, wait until you hear what James Lapine was doing before he started directing . . . and before he started writing.

From those “graphic” beginnings (hint, hint), James went on of course to become one of our industry’s most celebrated book writers and directors with shows like Sunday in the Park with George, Falsettos, Into the Woods and so many others on his CV.  And he ain’t done yet for sure.

Listen in to today’s Podcast to hear this Master Theater Artist talk about everything from:

  • How not worrying about whether his first show would “make or break” his career is what led to its success.
  • Why Sunday in the Park with George made be the best evidence we have for the legalization of marijuana.
  • Why he doesn’t do outlines.
  • The difference between collaborating with Stephen Sondheim and William Finn . . . and which one he prefers.
  • How he comes up with ideas for shows.

Oh, and listen . . . you have got to hear the Sunday story he tells about the preview period . . . with no microphones, hardly any light . . . and no 2nd Act score.   It’s incredible.  And how that show managed to come together and then win a freakin’ Pulitzer (!) is a testament to the genius of James.

Enjoy this Master-cast!

Click above to listen.

Listen to it on iTunes here.  (And give me a rating, while you’re there!)

Download it here.

Click here to read the transcript.
  • Joseph Giglio says:

    I have to confess that I too second acted Falsetto’s but I at least had seen the original production of March of the Falsetto’s so I did not have to see act 1.

    March of the Falsetto’s was a unique theater experience for me. I have never been, nor think I shall ever be again, in a theater where, at the end of the show, there was an instantaneous standing ovation for the work of the actors on stage and the show they just performed. It remains in my mind as vivid as the day I saw it decades ago.

    Thank you for the interview with Mr Lapine I loved hearing about his arc from school to Broadway.

    Thank you Mr Lapine for many of my live theater highlights. The theater is richer for your talent and vision.

    Ken I hope that you are running to be a producer on the Falsetto’s revival.

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