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A Theater of Our Own: A History and a Memoir of 1,001 Nights in Chicago
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A Theater of Our Own: A History and a Memoir of 1,001 Nights in Chicago

4.21 of 5 stars 4.21  ·  rating details  ·  19 ratings  ·  6 reviews
Winner of the Illinois State Historical Society Book Award for Superior Achievement

Who produced the first stage adaptation of "The Wizard of Oz" in 1902-nearly forty years before the movie classic? What entertainment juggernaut began in a converted Chinese laundry on Wells Street in 1959? Where did Louis (Studs) Terkel make his stage debut? When did the original productio
Hardcover, 300 pages
Published November 15th 2004 by Northwestern University Press
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This is a brief history of Chicago theater, written by a guy who was there for a lot of it. I liked this book more than it deserved to be liked, because it took me back to the heady days of the 70s and 80s, when I was young and Chicago theater was exploding on to the scene. Christiansen devotes full chapters to Second City, the Organic, St Nicholas, the Remains, and of course Steppenwolf, because how could you not? He fully admits that when his memory clashes with the "truth," he sticks to his m ...more
If you are a Chicago theatre artist, this will make you fall in love with the history of this great town. It made me so proud to be a part of this town's theatre community.
Scrappy artists making theatre in Chicago - Christiansen gives a comprehensive history (with some great quotes.)
Starr Hardgrove
Just finished reading this great account of the theatre scene in Chicago. Having left the scene after a year of living and trying to break in, it was a refreshing tale to be connected to this work. I enjoyed the history that not only embraced the challenges that each theatre faced, but gave a perspective of each company and stayed true to the spirit of Chicago theatre with it's stories and anecdotes.
My favorite parts of the book were hearing the stories of St. Nicholas Theatre, Bob Sickenger an
Mixed feelings. On the one hand, it's a concise, easy-reading history of Chicago theater. On the other hand, it mostly amounts to a list of productions Christiansen found memorable plus some historical context and some fun anecdotes -- despite its authoritative authorial voice, it's more memoir than history. It's a very white history at that. It sparked my interest but left me wanting much, much more.
Very good, very detailed. Extremely detailed --- almost list-like in its telling. I wish I had this book in college as it would've been a great resource in my history if American theatre courses.
Christopher Kielbasa
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