Paint Your Wagon_cover


The spanking new and sensational recording of Paint Your Wagon reiterates how prurient we were back in 1951. Need proof? Just dust off the original cast album and listen to “In Between.” RCA Victor’s fifth cast album had James Barton, playing San Francisco 49er prospector Ben Rumson, admit to a prospective wife that he wouldn’t necessarily be […]

Bravo Giovanni – Original Cast Recording 1962

And Bravo to Giovanni By Peter Filichia

“And the nominees for Best Musical are A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Little Me, Oliver! and Stop the World – I Want to Get Off.” So heard the elegantly dressed audience at the 17th annual Tony® Awards, April 28, 1963 at the Hotel Americana (now the Sheraton New York Times […]

Side by Side

Do I Hear a Waltz?: Encores, Encores! By Peter Filichia

I expect the applause to be pretty titanic at City Center this week when the third and final Encores! production of 2016 gets underway. Why not? We’ll be hearing a score that was written by two of the most acclaimed geniuses in the entire history of the American musical theater. One of them primarily worked […]

“The Most Happy Fella” 58th Anniversary

A Most Happy 60th Anniversary, Fella by Peter Filichia

One musical from the 1955-56 season was recorded virtually word-for-word and note-for-note. In an era when an original cast album held about forty-five minutes of music, this one weighed in at a shade under two-and-a-quarter hours. It required three long-playing records that were packaged handsomely in a box fit for a genuine opera or full-length […]

Salad Days_Cover_88875189552


How did you mark both the birth date and death date of one William Shakespeare – the 452nd anniversary of the former and the 400th of the latter? Did you play The Boys from Syracuse (based on The Comedy of Errors)? West Side Story (inspired by Romeo and Juliet)? Your Own Thing? (a loose adaptation […]

Peter Filichia is the theater critic emeritus for the Star-Ledger in Newark, New Jersey and News 12 New Jersey.

He is a columnist each Friday for and

Filichia is the author of Let’s Put on a Musical, now in its third printing; Broadway Musicals: The Biggest Hit of the Season / The Biggest Flop of the Season and Broadway Musical MVPs 1960-2010: The Most Valuable Players of the Last 50 Seasons. His new book, Strippers, Showgirls, and Sharks will be published in May, 2013 by St. Martin’s Press.

He has been a columnist for Playbill,, Theatermania and Theater Week.

Before joining the Theatre World Awards in 1996 as host and head of the selection committee, Filichia served four terms as president of the Drama Desk. He has served on an assessment panel for the National Endowment for the Arts, and is currently critic-in-residence for the University of Cincinnati-Conservatory of Music and the musical theater judge for the ASCAP Awards program.