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Razzle Dazzle
Razzle Dazzle: The Battle for Broadway | Michael Riedel
22 posts | 4 read | 36 to read
Broadways most respected (and feared) commentator pulls back the curtain on its stars, its producers, and its mega-hits to reveal all the shocking drama, intrigue, and power plays that happened off stage. Razzle Dazzle is a provocative, no-holds-barred narrative account of the people and the money and the power that re-invented an iconic quarter of New York City, turning its gritty back alleys and sex-shops into the glitzy, dazzling Great White Wayand bringing a crippled New York from the brink of bankruptcy to its glittering glory. In the mid-1970s Times Square was the seedy symbol of New Yorks economic decline. Its once shining star, the renowned Shubert Organization, was losing theaters to make way for parking lots. Bernard Jacobs and Jerry Schoenfeld, two ambitious board members, saw the crumbling company was ripe for takeover and staged a coup amidst corporate intrigue, personal betrayals, and criminal investigations. Once Jacobs and Schoenfeld solidified their power, they turned a collapsed theater-owning holding company into one of the most successful entertainment empires in the world, ultimately backing many of Broadways biggest hits, including A Chorus Line, Cats, Les Miserables, Phantom of the Opera, and Mamma Mia! They also sparked the revitalization of Broadway and the renewal of Times Square. Now Michael Riedel tells the stories of the Shubert Organization and the shows that re-built a city in grand style, revealing the backstage drama that often rivaled what transpired onstage, exposing bitter rivalries, unlikely alliances, andof coursescintillating gossip. This is a great story, told with wit and passion.
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Lynnsoprano
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As the #LitsyPartyofOne and #24b4Monday crews get ready to host the #mrbook1inamillion celebration, I thought I‘d borrow his graphic and ask a question of my own. Do you have a #blameMrBook book? Or one you‘ve read based on his #TBRtemptation posts? We‘d love to hear what they are. My first was the tagged book, but I know there have been others. What about you?

ljuliel I bought one that he recommended quite awhile back in one of his “library stack” posts. I have yet to read it. 2w
Lynnsoprano @ljuliel I‘m guessing he‘s influenced a lot of Littens in their choice of books. 👍 2w
ljuliel Yes, I like his posts when he shows stacks of books from work. That way you get to see a whole new selection. 2w
mrp27 I can't think of any off the top of my head but I'm sure I've added a book recommended by him to my tbr. 2w
38 likes4 comments
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WanderingBookaneer
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Current listen.

Lcsmcat Sounds intriguing! 2y
Lynnsoprano I hope you enjoy that as much as I did! 2y
69 likes4 stack adds2 comments
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danimgill
Pickpick

I'm a big fan of musicals but didn't know much about the history of the business side of Broadway - this was the perfect primer on it! Michael Riedel's writing is accessible and the stories flow into one another nicely. Now I'm craving a rewatch of The Producers...

This was my "about music/theater" for the #litsyreadingchallenge ?

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TheKidUpstairs
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TheKidUpstairs
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TheKidUpstairs
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A couple stacks of #redswhitesandblues for #jubilantjuly

Happy 4th of July, everyone!

@RealLifeReading

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TheKidUpstairs
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🎶🎶 Give 'em the ol' Razzle Dazzle 🎶🎶

When I was 4 years old, my parents took me to see Cats at the Pantages Theatre in Toronto. The idea that you could get paid to dress up and pretend to be a cat settled it for me, I WOULD work in theatre when I grew up. #theatrenerdsunite

#musicaltitle #maybookflowers
@RealLifeReading

Cinfhen That's incredible! How lucky to know what you wanted at such a young age & then make it happen!!! 3y
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shelf-improvement
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That is a fantastic name, but you have to wonder what the A stood for if he chose to go by Toxen.

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shelf-improvement
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I made the tough decision​ that I probably shouldn't drop a grand on two packages of theater tickets this week (so, so tough given that the package includes Mean Girls AND Hamilton), so I'm consoling myself with some sunshine and a sparkly book about theater. #LitsyReadingChallenge

MarriedtoMrT Adult choices really suck sometimes. (edited) 3y
Crewgurl Mean Girls?!?!? 3y
shelf-improvement @Crewgurl Yes, it's premiering in DC this fall! Hitting Broadway next year! 3y
Crewgurl So excited! I hope it's more on par with Legally Blonde than Bring It On! 3y
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shelf-improvement
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I've got an ambitious #TBR for April...and there's a few more tagged in the comments that I'll read on my Nook. Wish me luck! 📚 #AprilBookShowers

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Hollie A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is my favorite book in the whole wide world! 3y
shelf-improvement @Hollie I've never read it. It's part of my 'catching up on classics' project. 3y
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shelf-improvement
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#AllTheWorldsAStage, and this Broadway backstage peek is on my TBR for the year. I love musicals, but know relatively little about them, so I can't wait. #FeistyFeb

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MicheleinPhilly
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#FeistyFeb All the world's a stage...#TBR

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Lynnsoprano
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#bestofnovember My reading this month was limited because of our trip, and dominated by this book. But I enjoyed every minute I spent reading it, which is not my usual response to nonfiction. It also prodded me to pull out and sing through some of the music from shows discussed is the book. #photoadaynov16

GlitteryOtters LOVE that song so much! 💕 3y
moranadatter 🎶💗 3y
56 likes2 comments
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Lynnsoprano
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Pickpick

This was not a fast read, but definitely worth the time and effort if you are interested in Broadway. A lot of history, but also a font of information about how new shows, especially musicals, are produced. Thank you, @MrBook for suggesting this. #blameMrBook

Merethebookgal I recognize those anthologies! *jazz hands* 🤗 3y
MrBook My job here is done 😎👍🏻! 😁👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 3y
Lynnsoprano @Merethebookgal Can't live without them 😄 3y
Lynnsoprano @mrbook Mille grazie 3y
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Lynnsoprano
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Almost done with this. It's been a slow read because it is so densely packed with information, and because my reading time was limited on our trip. I figured it was time to quit posting travel pics, but the reality of being home makes me want to keep looking at them. #currentlyreading #photoadaynov16

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seebiscan
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Pickpick

Need a break from politics? Love Broadway? This is the book for you!

Not at all what I expected, as it was an account of the big players behind the scenes--theater owners, producers, choreographers, and composers--instead of stories about the plays and musicals themselves. But it gave a fascinating look into how Broadway operates as a business and how we got to the Broadway we know and love today. Highly recommend!

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Lynnsoprano
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#photoadaynov16 #dysfunctionalfamilies The Schubert family is a focus of this book, and they were about as dysfunctional a family as you could find. In the meantime, my son lit the gas heater so I could continue to read outside, but the cold is about to drive me in, unless he lights a fire in the outdoor fireplace. Yes, this lodge has one of those, too.

RealLifeReading How lovely it looks! 3y
MyNamesParadise Whoa!!! So pretty! 3y
UwannaPublishme Stay warm and happy reading! 🌞📚 3y
71 likes3 comments
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Lynnsoprano
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We don't have books at dinner. It goes back to when our kids were young. Dinner time is conversation time, although there are many book discussions. Tonight's dinner was a new recipe: steak in beer sauce with roasted sweet potatoes and red onion. Now I'm in a food coma and doubt I'll get any more reading done tonight.

Alfoster Looks delicious! 3y
BooksForYears Looks amazing!!! 3y
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Texreader Same history about reading at mealtime. So it is a guilty pleasure to do it when I'm alone. That looks delish! 3y
Lynnsoprano @Texreader That's the only time I read at dinner, too. 3y
Bookzombie That looks delicious! 3y
Bette Looks amazing. 😛 3y
Faibka Looks delicious! 3y
Lynnsoprano @faibka @Bette @Bookzombie @RealLifeReading @BooksForYears @Alfoster @BookishMarginalia Thanks! It's from the October issue of Food Network magazine. It's the third recipe we've cooked out of that issue, and they've all been great. May be time to subscribe. 3y
Alfoster Or maybe you could just cook for all of us?😂😂😂😂! 3y
Lynnsoprano @Alfoster I live to cook for others😄 Come to South Florida and I'll make it for you. 3y
Faibka @Alfoster Lol! I second that 😆 3y
ErickaS_Flyleafunfurled Steak in beer sauce?! Where has this been all my life?! 😍 3y
Alfoster @Lynnsoprano and @Faibka Don't tempt us--we may take you up on that!😀😀😀 3y
Faibka @Alfoster @Lynnsoprano yup! 😁😁😁 3y
I-read-and-eat This looks amazing! 3y
britt_brooke Yum! (PS. We don't read at dinner either. I threw my book in just for the photo 😉). 3y
52 likes18 comments
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Lynnsoprano
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I am loving this book about Broadway. It isn't quite what I expected, less about the shows themselves and more about the theaters/organizations/politics affecting a specific period of theatrical history. Fascinating stuff, and thanks to @MrBook for putting me on to this. It's also spurred me to sing through some of my Broadway rep and take a break from the legit repertoire I usually work on.

MrBook 😎👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👍🏻🙌🏻!!! 3y
SharonGoforth Is this a new book? My daughter sings and is a music teacher. She would love this 🎤 3y
seebiscan Just got this from the library! Super excited to start it. 3y
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Lynnsoprano @SharonGoforth It came out last year. I think it helps to already have some background about Broadway, but as a singer and semi-retired music teacher, I think she'd enjoy it. 3y
Lynnsoprano @seebiscan 👏👏 We'll have to compare notes. 3y
SharonGoforth @Lynnsoprano She loves broadway musicals and has directed several productions of them for a children's theater. So I'm sure this is something she would enjoy 😊. Good to know that it's recent so hopefully I won't have a hard time finding a copy 😊. 3y
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Lynnsoprano
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@MrBook , look what i picked up at the library. 😄🎶🎶 #blameMrBook

MrBook 😁👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻🙌🏻!!! Eager to hear your thoughts when done 😊👍🏻. 3y
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MrBook
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#TBRtemptation post! This book just came out in paperback. Looks *very* tempting indeeeed. Any Broadway enthusiasts here in the @Litsy Family?! Wanted to get your thoughts on whether this would qualify as a definitive work on the vivacious and incredible subject. Anyone want to read this along with me...whenever I get around to it 😆😂? #blameLitsy #blameMrBook 😜

Desha Actually sounds very interesting to me! The bummer about San Diego is no Great White Way...but we do have Shakespeare at The Old Globe Theater which "kinda" makes up for it lol ??? 3y
Lynnsoprano Absolutely a Broadway enthusiast, and some of my favorite music to sing. Not familiar with this book, so it's definitely going on my TBR. 🎶🎶 3y
jpmcwisemorgan Wait, we're blaming you for our reading addictions now? 😉 3y
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Graciouswarriorprincess Ok, I will blame you for adding to be TBR pile. I am intrigued as well by this book. 3y
Crewgurl Love Broadway, but only what happens on stage. I don't want to know the drama, it ruins the illusion lol. Probably why I could never get into Smash... 3y
shelf-improvement @MrBook I'm dying to read this. Have heard nothing but great things! 3y
MrBook @Desha Niice 😁👏🏻! @Lynnsoprano Awesome 😁👏🏻👏🏻! 3y
MrBook @jpmcwisemorgan @Graciouswarriorprincess Blame @angrylilasian and @Karkar , they started it ???. @Crewgurl Completely agree. I know set designers, and when they tell us what they do over a pint I'm thinking, "Ohh, reeaally? You've got to ruin this for me, don't you" ?. 3y
MrBook @shelf-improvement 😁👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 3y
Crewgurl @shelf-improvement I haven't but it looks good! Do you recommend? 3y
angrylilasian 😂 #blameMrBook 📚📚📚 3y
shelf-improvement @Crewgurl If you're versed in Broadway, yes. It's not ideal for newbies. 3y
Crewgurl @shelf-improvement I'll check it out. Thanks! 3y
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bookishkris
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Tony Awards this weekend makes this the perfect time to settle in with this. It'll be my reward for surviving a 90 degree morning outside with The Munchkin.