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Blog Posts by Subject: Theatre

Kate Claxton Head Shots: This Week Only

The cartes de visite, cabinet photographs and stereograms of Kate Claxton, an intensely photogenic actress.Read More ›

Musical of the Month: Little Nemo

Little Nemo opened on Broadway at the opulent New Amsterdam Theatre on October 20, 1908, after a three-week tryout in Philadelphia. According to the New York Times, the city had “seen nothing bigger or better in extravaganza than ‘Little Nemo.’” It had also never seen a theatrical production more expensive.Read More ›

The Jitney Players, The Traveling Theater Troupe

During the Elizabethan era, traveling troupes of actors would perform in different towns throughout the United Kingdom. Inspired by these theatrical artists, Horace Bushnell Cheney and his wife Alice Keating Cheney established the Jitney Players in the United States in 1923.Read More ›

Remembering Ruby Dee, Celebrating the American Negro Theatre

Our former pre-professional, Farrah Lopez, pays tribute to American Negro Theatre alum Ruby Dee as we celebrate its 75th anniversary. Read More ›

Podcast #67: Werner Herzog on Greece and Wrestlemania

At this point, it's safe to call Werner Herzog a cinema legend. Born in Munich, the director, screenwriter, and producer has directed sixty-seven films. He has won four awards at the Cannes Film Festival and been nominated for one Academy Award. Read More ›

Podcast #61: Alan Cumming on NYC and Acting

He's Eli Gold on The Good Wife. He's been Nightcrawler in X-2: Men United and Hamlet and Mr. Elton in the film adaptation of Jane Austen's Emma. Alan Cumming has also written a memoir, Not My Father's Son. He recently spoke to us at Books at Noon.Read More ›

Ask the Author: Alan Cumming

Alan Cumming comes to Books at Noon next Wednesday, May 6 to discuss his latest work, Not My Father's Son. We asked him six questions about what he likes to read.Read More ›

How the Vote Was Won, and Exported

The history behind these comedic British Suffrage plays and their warm reception in the United States.Read More ›

Podcast #47: Ntozake Shange on Inspiration and Harlem

As we begin Black History Month, The New York Public Library Podcast welcomes the great American playwright and poet Ntozake Shange, creator of the Obie-Award-winning play “for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf.”Read More ›

Yiddish Theater Posters of the 1890s

Our Digital Collection includes Yiddish theater posters dating back more than a hundred years. These ephemeral pieces, with their bold titles, portraits of actors, and exuberant descriptions of plays, illustrate the dynamic Yiddish theater tradition.Read More ›

Shakespeare 101: How to Use the Library to Learn about the Bard

Shakespeare is so important that he is the only author to have his own Dewey Decimal number! The works of Shakespeare and their criticism all live under call number 822.33. With countless editions of the same play, and even more works written about that same play, it’s no wonder Shakespeare requires a number all to himself. This handy guide will de-mystify Shakespeare’s home in your library, and help you find the right book on the Bard for you.Read More ›

Musical of the Month: Tenderloin

The show opened at the 46th Street (now the Richard Rodgers) Theater in October 1960 to mixed reviews and closed the following spring after only 271 performances. It has received respectful attention in performances off-Broadway and in City Center’s Encores! series, but has never been revived on Broadway. What exactly went wrong?Read More ›

From Stage to Page with the Cranach Press's Hamlet

The Cranach Press enlisted the help of an international stable of artists and scholars to produce hand-made books that doubled as works of art. My favorite is an edition of Hamlet based on the text of Shakespeare’s Second Quarto. Read More ›

Happy 101st, Vivien!

Vivien Leigh, who was born November 5, 1913, may not have lived to see her 54th birthday, but she is one of the rare performers whose fame has long outlasted her death. Leigh's distinctive blend of delicacy and power as an actress, coupled with her great beauty, have helped to enshrine her.Read More ›

Jerry Bock's Demo Recordings: Fiddler on the Roof

A few months ago, I posted three demo recordings of Fiorello! from the Jerry Bock recordings in the Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound. This month, in honor of Fiddler's 50th anniversary, I am happy to share six demos of Fiddler on the Roof. Read More ›

Musical of the Month: Fiddler on the Roof

In the following blog post, Alisa Solomon examines three typescripts of Fiddler on the Roof that can be studied at the Library for the Performing Arts. Her book, Wonder of Wonders: A Cultural History of Fiddler on the Roof, is available to borrow.Read More ›

Robin Williams on Stage

While reading about riots in my hometown last night, I saw, out of the corner of my eye, a headline announcing the shocking death of Robin Williams. I really can add very little to the many expressions of grief from those whose for whom his films were foundational stories of childhood. Read More ›

Hirschfeld's Play of the Week

On exhibition on the 3rd floor currently are 3 of the lithographs—illustrating the Play of the Week productions of Henry IV, part 1, The Dybbuk, and Rashomon.Read More ›

How Much is a TONY Worth to a Broadway Show?

In the week following the announcement of the TONY awards, the winner for best musical, Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, enjoyed its best week ever, bringing in more than $100,000 than the week before. The winner for best play, All The Way, seems to have been helped even more by the award, bringing in $200,000 more than the previous week. If it ever was in doubt, a TONY award is clearly good for business. At least if you win the big one.

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Big Deal: Researching Bob Fosse at the Library

The life and career of Fosse, the only director to win the triple crown of show business awards in one year (an Oscar for Cabaret, a Tony Award for Pippin, and an Emmy Award for Liza With a Z—all in 1973) is well-documented through the holdings of The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts (LPA) and elsewhere. Clippings, reviews, posters and lobby cards, Playbills and programs—all the standard theatrical ephemera—on Fosse's shows and films are easily available in the Billy Rose Theatre Division and Jerome Robbins Dance Division. Read More ›
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