Stephen Sondheim is arguably one of the best ever composers in the field of musical theatre and certainly the best of his generation. "It has been my privilege to have had many professional experiences and collaborations with Steve Sondheim. Omissions? The sophisticated composer and his snappy songs have migrated from stage to … Why Stephen Sondheim’s ‘Assassins’ is essential viewing for every American by Amy Lynn Smith This bold musical depicts the dark side of the American Dream and reflects the work yet to be done to ensure life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all. Leonard Bernstein, Arthur Laurents, Stephen Sondheim, Jerome Robbins- all giants in the world of music and musical theatre- it is a story that despite a seemingly archaic plot continues to inspire and be an ideological food-for-thought in 21st Century America. Having served as lyricist for West Side Story, young Sondheim was itching for the chance to work as a composer, too, and his friend playwright Arthur Laurents recommended him for that role with a new show based on the fanciful memoirs of striptease artist Gypsy Rose Lee. It ran for 964 performances and won the Tony Award for best musical. Stephen Sondheim, in full Stephen Joshua Sondheim, (born March 22, 1930, New York City, New York, U.S.), American composer and lyricist whose brilliance in matching words and music in dramatic situations broke new ground for Broadway musical theatre. After contributing lyrics to Do I Hear a Waltz? Two new characters, a baker and his wife whove been cursed with barrenness, help to tie everything together. Stephen Sondheim Summary 951 Words | 4 Pages. In 2000 he received the Japan Art Association’s Praemium Imperiale prize for theatre/film, and in 2008 he was honoured with a special Tony Award for lifetime achievement in the theatre. He did his pre college training at George School, Newtown then was in a class of 50 at Williams College majoring in music as an undergraduate distinguishing himself by writing a book, lyrics and music for two college shows based on the adaption of 'Beggar on Horseback'. Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Get exclusive access to content from our 1768 First Edition with your subscription. Stephen Sondheim is in a tie and a loud, boxy sports jacket, his hair slicked back, his grin forced -- a geek trying to cut it with the popular crowd. But there was a stumbling block: The show was being built around legendary star Ethel Merman, and she wasn’t willing to take a chance … Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. Composer Leonard Bernstein and his co-creators, Jerome Robbins (director, choreographer and original idea-man) Arthur Laurents (who wrote the book) and Stephen Sondheim (lyricist) aimed for lofty ideals in the show’s themes and every detail of its production. In the late 20th century, Sondheim and the Englishman Andrew Lloyd Webber became the most important figures in American musical theatre. Sondheim next collaborated with playwright-director James Lapine to create Sunday in the Park with George (1984), a musical inspired by the painting Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte by pointillist Georges Seurat. Claim: Stephen Sondheim can be considered "the father of the modern American musical". Precocious as a child, Sondheim showed an early musical aptitude among other wide-ranging interests. Stephen Sondheim, in full Stephen Joshua Sondheim, (born March 22, 1930, New York City, New York, U.S.), American composer and lyricist whose brilliance in matching words and music in dramatic situations broke new ground for Broadway musical theatre. The reason why his experiences while he was young are important is because it eventually led Sondheim to meet his first musical theatre mentor, Oscar Hammerstein II, who taught some of Sondheim’s most important musical theatre lessons. He also studied music at Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts, and wrote college shows there. Stephen Sondheim was born in New York in 1930. Sondheim’s acerbic lyrics hit responsive chords with many theatregoers. Assassins. Most critics agree that his work marked a break from more traditional and sentimental musical comedies of the earlier decades of the century. Hammerstein II, he 's the greatest musical why is stephen sondheim important composer of all.... 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