Blog

The Roar Of The Greasepaint - The Smell Of The Crowd_1500x1500

IT SURELY ROARS, BUT CERTAINLY DOESN’T SMELL

By Peter Filichia Fifty years ago this week, after the lights went down at Broadway’s Shubert Theatre, the audience may well have recognized the first twenty-three notes of the Overture to The Roar of the Greasepaint — the Smell of the Crowd. They offered a preview of the song that had already been established as […]

If at First You Don't Succeed on Broadway ...

FLORA’S FIFTY!

By Peter Filichia It was hardly George Abbott’s first Broadway show. In fact, he already worked on or at least had his name on more than a hundred. But it certainly was the first Broadway effort for the musical’s star and songwriting team. All experienced bittersweet results from this musical called Flora, the Red Menace […]

888750875921 Twos Company with bleed

TWO’S COMPANY, THREE CHEERS

By Peter Filichia God love these legendary Oscar-winning actresses who felt they hadn’t run the entire entertainment gauntlet until they’d done a Broadway musical. Katharine Hepburn, Vivien Leigh and Shelley Winters all tried their luck singin’ and dancin’ long after they’d won their gold statuettes. And so did Bette Davis, the 1935 Oscar-winner for Dangerous […]

Half a Sixpence

HAPPY 50TH BIRTHDAY, HALF A SIXPENCE

By Peter Filichia We’ve missed the fiftieth anniversary of Half a Sixpence, but let’s not allow it to go by without mentioning this “big, blooming hit” (John McClain, Journal American). The happy-go-lucky musical, which celebrated its semicentennial on April 25, wound up as Broadway’s fourth-longest-running British musical import – or maybe even third-longest, depending on […]

Dames At Sea_CV_5x5

DAMES AT SEA SAILS TO LONDON

By Peter Filichia There have been 1,025 recordings of Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides Now,” 1,604 renditions of Hoagy Carmichael and Mitchell Parish’s “Star Dust” and over 2,200 covers of Paul McCartney’s “Yesterday.” But there have been precious few recordings of “Good Times Are Here to Stay,” the marvelous cheer-up song that’s the Act One closer […]

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 www.mtishows.com and www.kritzerland.com.

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, Theater.com, 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.