Review by Choice Review
An updated, corrected version of the 1994 edition (CH, Oct'94), this set presents an interesting collection of information about people and productions of the 19th and 20th centuries. The coverage is limited to productions originating in France, Austria, Britain, the US, and Hungary, is restricted to musical theater, and excludes opera. Each entry includes significant dates and places, as well as logically arranged biographical and historical details. A chronological list of significant works is given for writers and composers; historical illustrations (some in color) are an interesting addition. Although coverage is fairly broad and the large number of details nicely presented, Ganzl restricts his focus to people he considers "the most successful, most prolific and most extensively heard" and plays that were "the most successful, interesting and ... widely traveled." The writing style is personal, as is the choice of entries, but the information presents musical theater over two centuries and includes details not found in most comparable references. Recommended for most collections. M. Lawler Louisiana State University in Shreveport
Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Library Journal Review
Whether you need to know about a specific composer, from birth and death dates to a chronology of his or her works; the location of the first metropolitan production of a show; or a discarded alternate title, you'll find the answer here. This second edition of a fine reference work published in two volumes nearly a decade ago (LJ 6/1/94) is the most complete, thoroughly researched, and readable resource available on musical theater. Its three volumes contain over 4000 entries, including 500 new ones covering shows and artists that have debuted since the previous edition; updates and additions have also been made to the original entries. In the past 15 years, the author has written eight books on different aspects of musical theater, and the research process he describes here is astonishing in its thoroughness and dedication. The writing style is clear and accessible, even to those new to the topic. Casual readers, scholars, and lovers of musical theater should consider themselves lucky to have this informative and engaging set. Manya Chylinski, Ctr. for Business Knowledge, Ernst & Young, Boston (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.