Author Carol de Giere penned the 544-page authorized biography that is culled from 80 hours of interviews with the songwriter who has delivered such thrilling songs as "Meadowlark," "Defying Gravity," "Corner of the Sky” and "West End Avenue" to Broadway audiences.
Beginning with Schwartz's early years and love of musicals in his childhood, the book transitions to a 23-year-old Schwartz penning Godspell Off-Off Broadway. De Giere reveals new insights about the genesis of such musicals as Pippin, The Magic Show, The Baker's Wife, Working and Rags, as well as the films "Pocahontas," "The Hunchback of Notre Dame," "The Prince of Egypt" and "Enchanted."
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De Giere has devoted 130 pages of the paperback to the 2003 hit musical Wicked. The section features original handwritten sheet music from the score, as well as Schwartz's initial outline for the musical. The book also includes a series of "Creativity Notes," in which Schwartz shares with readers his creative strategies and his thoughts on inspiration and dealing with criticism.
"Defying Gravity: the Creative Career of Stephen Schwartz, from Godspell to Wicked" includes 200 black and white photographs and illustrations and over 100 interviews with Schwartz's Broadway colleagues, friends and family members.
Schwartz, a five-time Tony nominee for the scores of Pippin, Godspell, Working, Wicked and his lyrics for Rags, has earned Academy Awards for "Pocahontas" and "The Prince of Egypt." He earned three Academy Award nominations for his work on this past season's "Enchanted." Schwartz has earned Grammy Awards for the recordings of Wicked, Godspell and "Pocahontas." "Defying Gravity: the Creative Career of Stephen Schwartz, from Godspell to Wicked," priced $24.95, is currently available in bookstores.