My fourth book is out and available.

Until they figure out how to make megabytes look pretty on a shelf, books will never go out of style.  It might be cooler, cheaper and easier to read a blog on a computer, but it ain’t tangible.  And sometimes people just want to own something.

That’s why I publish The Producers Perspective in book form every year.  And shockingly enough, we’re on volume/year #4.

The book is available here, as are the other 3 volumes, in case you missed entries from years passed.  All proceeds from the book(s) go to funding our reading series, so the up-and-coming authors that we work with thank you.

Get the book here.

And get the eBook here.

 

(Got a comment?  I love ’em, so comment below!  Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

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FUN STUFF

– Come to the 4th Annual Producer’s Perspective Social on 12/15!  RSVP today.

– Seminar Alert:  How to Invest in a Broadway Show on 12/10!  Click here for info.

– Win two tickets to see Burning at The New Group.  Click here.

If there is such a thing as a book club . . . then why not . . .

Yep.  Finish it with me . . .

Why not a play club . . . or a musical club.  Right?

My mission as a theater professional is to amplify the conversation about the theater.  More people talking about it gets more people interested, which gets more people going, which gets more people telling their children about it . . . and repeat cycle.

Yesterday, WOMMA helped remind us that a good chunk of the precious resource known as word-of-mouth occurs offline.  So, our challenge in promoting our products/shows and the theater in general is to find ways for our customers to have these conversations.

Hence the idea of a Play Club . . . or a Musical Club.

It’s simple really.  7 easy steps.  Ready?

  1. Declare yourself the organizer.
  2. Invite friends . . .  1, 2, 10, doesn’t matter . . .  to your place to discuss a play/musical/cast recording of your choice (bonus if it is running on Broadway now)
  3. Have food, drinks . . . especially the liquor-ish kind.
  4. Discuss the play/musical/cast recording.  Read some scenes/sing some songs aloud.
  5. At end of night pick next play/musical/cast recording and set next day/time to discuss (best to make it the same time every week/month)
  6. Congratulate yourself, because you just helped create WOM.
  7. Repeat from the beginning.

Seriously, these clubs should be all over creation, especially in cities and counties that are far away from the Broadway.  This is a way for you to keep in touch with what’s going on here (and regional theaters and touring houses that are trying to teach their audiences to keep current – this is a fun, low cost way of doing just that).

So start one today.  You’ll be helping the theater tomorrow.

(Need a better guide to starting a club? Check out Oprah’s guide on how to start a book club and just replace book for play, musical, cast recording, or whatever you’d like!)

 

Got a comment?  I love ’em, so comment below!  Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

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FUN STUFF

– Win 2 tickets to see Lysistrata Jones on Broadway.  Click here!

– Only 3 spots left in Davenport Theatrical Director of Online Marketing Steven Tartick’s “The Show Must Go Online” seminar on 11/17.  Register today!

The Producer’s Perspective Summer Reading List

Remember when you were in high school and you were forced to read Jane Eyre or Moby Dick over the summer?  Booooring.

Well, you’re not in school anymore (or most of you aren’t – I do get a few emails from theater-pros-to-be from time to time).  But just because you’re not prepping for the SATs doesn’t mean you can’t learn a few things from a summer reading list!

And that’s why we made one for you!

The cool thing about this list, is unlike the titles assigned to you by fascist English teachers that sometimes make you never want to pick up a book ever again, you know this list is going to be all about a subject you enjoy:  the theater.

Since the theme of this blog and the Godspell blog is to help all of us understand more of what it takes to get a show up on its feet, I only chose books that featured a behind-the-scenes perspective on the mounting of big shows.

Enjoy!  Book reports due in September!  (ok, not really, but how many of you got heart palpitations when I said that?)

THE PRODUCER’S PERSPECTIVE SUMMER READING LIST

1.  Letters from An Actor by William Redfield

William Redfield’s recollections of appearing in the 1964 production of Hamlet starring Richard Burton and directed by Sir John Gielgud.

2. Underfoot in Show Business by Helene Hanff

“Each year, hundreds of stagestruck kids arrive in New York determined to crash the theatre, firmly convinced they’re destined to be famous Broadway stars or playwrights. One in a thousand turns out to be Noel Coward. This book is about life among the other 999. By one of them.” -Helene Hanff

3. The Whorehouse Papers by Larry L. King

An account by a journeyman dramatist of the production–from phone call to first night–of his first play The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas and the attendant wranglings, clashes, and confusions.

4. The Seesaw Log by William Gibson

A day-by-day candid account of the creativity, conflict, and compromise involved in the making of a smash-hit Broadway show (Seesaw), by the playwright himself.

5. We Bombed in New London by Brian Gari

A day-by-day candid account of the creativity, conflict, and compromise involved in the making of a legendary flop Broadway show (Late Nite Comic) written by the composer-lyricist.

6. Everything Was Possible: The Birth of The Musical Follies by Ted Chapin

Ted Chapin is now Chairman of the American Theatre Wing. But when he was 22 years old, he was just a lowly Production Assistant, running around after Hal Prince, Stephen Sondheim, and Michael Bennett as they created one of the most legendary musicals of all time. This was his journal.

7. A Year With The Producers: One Actor’s Exhausting (But Worth It) Journey From Cats to Mel Brooks’ Mega-Hit by Jeffry Denman

Jeffry Denman’s journey with The Producers from audition to opening night.

8. The Show Business Nobody Knows by Earl Wilson

Earl Wilson chronicled Broadway’s Golden Age in The New York Post from 1942 to 1983. This book tells some of his sordid tales.

9. Showstopper by Abigail Pogrebin

A recent release, this mini-book is now-author Abigail Pogrebin’s story of getting cast in Merrily We Roll Along at the age of 16.

10. Making It Big: The Diary of a Broadway Musical by Barbara Isenberg

Barbara Isenberg was a fly on the wall during the out-of-town tryout and Broadway birth of the musical Big. From a review by Library Journal: “This book is not for the weak-hearted or those with illusions about Broadway as the home of art; making this musical was more like making war.”

 

Do you have a suggestion?  Comment below!

 

(Got a comment?  I love ’em, so comment below!  Email subscribers, click here, then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

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FUN STUFF

– 93 Days to Godspell!  Read the day-by-day account of producing Godspell on Broadway here.

– Win 2 tickets to Silence, Shrek or Rocky Horror. Click here!

 

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