Jerry Herman, still smiling

I first met and talked with Jerry Herman when his most personal musical, La Cage Aux Folles, was revived. We did a question-and-answer feature for City Paper then, and I continued talking with him, developing this longer piece.

Herman was born July 10, 1931, in New York City. He wrote words and music for some of America’s most popular stage …

Hunchback of Notre Dame: a darker Disney

Hunchback of Notre Dame. Music & lyrics by Alan Menken & Stephen Schwartz. Paper Mill Playhouse, 2015.

*

Another Disney cartoon film is aiming for Broadway. But this adaptation eschews cuteness in favor of medieval darkness, and its score is more choral and symphonic than you might expect.

This is due to the desires of two musical titans, Stephen Schwartz (…

Finn de Siecle, the finite joy of William Finn

“All I’m asking for is a tune/
Something itchy to tap my toes to…/
I’ll tell you why I love to make music:/
I feel like I belong.”

That’s William Finn expressing his love affair with music. It’s part of his lyric for “Mister Make Me a Song,” which was issued by RCA on an album …

Other THEATER Stories:
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Painting, architecture and other visual art. A list of highlights from our two decades of coverage. Read More

Notable books on all subjects, with an emphasis on the arts. A list of highlights from our two decades of… Read More

Orchestral, opera and chamber music in live performance and on recordings. A list of highlights from our two decades of… Read More

Musical and spoken stage performances. A list of highlights from our two decades of coverage. Read More

In-depth descriptions of journeys with an emphasis on cultural experiences in each place. A list of highlights from our two… Read More