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Real Life Drama

4.55  ·  Rating Details  ·  22 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Paperback, 482 pages
Published January 13th 1994 by Grove Press (first published November 21st 1990)
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Apr 21, 2016 Kyle rated it liked it
Both exhaustive and exhausting, this is the definitive history of one of the most important ensembles in the history of American theater. And while there is a wealth of well-written and well-researched detail, there is also an overabundance of gossip and chatter that detracts from the strong narrative. (I'm really not interested in who was sleeping with whom and who was mad at whom for being nasty and so on.)

There is also less context than I would like, given that the 1930's was a major period i
Tom Joyner
Jul 21, 2013 Tom Joyner rated it it was amazing
I've had this book on my shelf for years, but never had the time and focus to read it until recently.

As a theatre history lover, I have to say I was missing out by not reading this earlier. The Group is one of the great stories of the American theatre, and Smith tells it well, in lucid, unshowy prose that never bogs down as it also provides restrained, balanced critique of the key moments, productions, and personalities that defined the company. Someone else reviewing the book mentions the "inf
Sep 29, 2011 Susan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theatre
I read this fascinating and well-written history of the Group Theatre when I was processing the Eunice Stoddard papers for The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts (Stoddard was a little-heralded but active member). Smith expertly presides over a tumultuous tour of this pivotal American theatre of the 1930s: the idealism, the passion, the alliances, the compromises, the technique, talent, rivalries, betrayals, affairs, disillusion, and finally dissolution. On a stage with a foundation ...more
Oct 05, 2009 Mark rated it really liked it
Really informative, in depth and inspiring on so many levels. Not a quick b/c of the level of detail but so engaging because of it. I knew the name and the names attached to the group theater but none of the particulars. This book not only makes people out of the icons but gives such detail to their personalities, their acheivements and the world in which they lived and worked. Truly inspiring to note that theater always forges together divergent personalities who believe in the same things for ...more
Mar 19, 2007 Rolls rated it it was amazing
Utterly essential to anyone who has ever thought of starting a theatre. This is an inspiring and infuriating story.
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