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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 […]

It's A Bird

It’s Superman – Meaning Bob Holiday By Peter Filichia

We’ve seen books that celebrate the making of Annie, The Producers, Hairspray and No, No, Nanette – but did you know that there’s also one on It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s Superman? Indeed, in 2003, Bob Holiday and Chuck Harter wrote Superman on Broadway. The former of the two certainly knew the territory, […]


My Essential Stephen Sondheim: Disc Two By Peter Filichia

If you’ve been following me the last three Tuesdays, then you know I’ve been dealing with the new (and excellent) two-CD retrospective The Essential Stephen Sondheim that Masterworks Broadway recently issued. As I stated last week, the powers-that-be did a fine job in culling two-and-a-half-dozen Sondheim cuts from cast albums and other sources. Still, I […]


My Essential Stephen Sondheim: Disc One By Peter Filichia

As I mentioned two Tuesdays ago, I can only imagine the anguish of those Sony executives who chose the thirty selections for the new two-CD retrospective The Essential Stephen Sondheim. True, the job had to be done, but how could they possibly choose so few and ignore so many others? I’m not saying that the […]


Let’s Keep Celebrating Sondheim’s Eighty-Sixth Birthday By Peter Filichia

When Stephen Sondheim was growing up, “eighty-six” was a popular expression that meant “to throw out or get rid of.” Well, although Stephen Sondheim recently turned eighty-six, we here at Masterworks Broadway certainly aren’t interested in throwing out any of his work. But we ARE throwing some Sondheim your way in a nice two-disc collection […]

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.