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Light Fantastic: Adventures in Theatre

Lahr, John

ISBN 10: 0385315465 / ISBN 13: 9780385315463
Published by Dial, 1996
Used Condition: Fine Hardcover
From Daniel Montemarano (Newfield, NJ, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

1st Edition/1st Printing. SIGNED by author on a bookplate decal on front end page. $23.95 price present on DJ flap. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 011325

Bibliographic Details

Title: Light Fantastic: Adventures in Theatre

Publisher: Dial

Publication Date: 1996

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Signed: Signed by Author

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


A timeless collection of essays about the theatre  by the celebrated biographer and drama critic at  The New Yorker.
Theatre criticism,  writes John Lahr in his introduction to  Light Fantastic, should conjure "the  life of the theatre as well as the life of the  play. We are in danger of losing our theatre  culture; and these essays are my little rear-guard action  to keep the public gaze focused on the lively  language and maverick thoughts of  theatricals--performers, playwrights, directors, designers--who are  the abstracts and brief chronicles of the time.'  "
Most of the essays to be found in  this, Lahr's first collection, come from  The New Yorker, where Lahr has been drama  critic since 1992. Here, the reader will find  over forty pieces that represent Lahr's remarkable  knowledge of theatrical and cultural history, his  astute observations about comics (Roseanne Barr,  Peter Cook, Bill Hicks), playwrights (Oscar Wilde,  Tennessee Williams, Tony Kushner, Arthur Miller,  Neil Simon, Tom Stoppard), composers (Stephen  Sondheim, George and Ira Gershwin, Julie Styne), and  directors (George C. Wolfe, Ingmar Bergman, Peter  Brook). Most particularly, however, these  wide-ranging essays showcase Lahr's unique insight into human  nature that has made him an acclaimed, bestselling  biographer on both sides of the Atlantic.

From Booklist:

Lahr is that rare bird in theatrical journalism--the prolific, witty, literate independent scholar. The regular New Yorker contributor creates exhaustively researched profiles that never descend into mere puffery and well-considered reviews that never resort to the glib, cruel, ad hominem attacks found in too much contemporary criticism. Reading these 41 pieces, it is hard not to be struck by Lahr's range, too, for his subjects span the spectrum of contemporary theater, from Harold Pinter to the politically engaged Anna Deavere Smith and even rebel stand-up comedian Bill Hicks. As you might expect from the son of the great clown Bert Lahr, he seems especially at home plumbing comedy's depths, and he has a great ear for great comic lines, both his own and others, but this expertise does not dim his eye for more somber work. Indeed, his discussions of serious comic playwrights Joe Orton and Tony Kushner (as well as of Barry Humphries--"Dame Edna Everage" ) make a dip into this book well worthwhile. Jack Helbig

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