Meet Polkadots: The Cool Kids Musical By Peter Filichia

If your taste in show music runs to Rodgers and Hammerstein as well as Stephen Sondheim, you’ll find that Polkadots is a good cast album for your young children, nieces and nephews. If your taste in show music runs to Rodgers and Hammerstein as well as Stephen Sondheim, you’ll find that Polkadots is a good […]


My Apologies to Wright and Forrest By Peter Filichia

In 1999 — literally the 70th anniversary of Robert Wright’s meeting George “Chet” Forrest — I interviewed the gentlemen at their impressive apartment at 100 West 57th Street. I loved that the place was a veritable Wright-and Forrest Museum. The walls were covered to the square inch with memorabilia from their Hollywood films, Copacabana days […]

Gypsy – Original London Cast 1973

GYPSY II By Peter Filichia

Could it really already be forty-two years later? Figures don’t lie. On Sept. 8, 1974, I saw Angela Lansbury try out her Rose in Gypsy at the Shubert Theatre in Boston – the first professional production of that landmark musical that I’d see. I knew she’d be marvelous. By then I had gleaned what Lansbury […]

Alice Through The Looking Glass

Another Look at ALICE THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS By Peter Filichia

Some songs inspire us: “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” “(You Gotta Have) Heart.” Some make us feel optimistic: “Good Times Are Here to Stay.” “Happy Talk.” But how many songs actually help an individual while he’s working? And yet, Ken Bloom says that a song from the 1966 TV special Alice Through the Looking Glass actually […]

Kismet Cover_Lincoln Center Cast Recording_1500x1500

Kismet’s Lovelier, the Second Time Around By Peter Filichia

And just how important was stereo to 1960s record-buyers? The Music Theater of Lincoln Center’s 1965 production of Kismet, recently re-released by Masterworks Broadway, once again reiterates how potent the Stereo Revolution was. Eleven years earlier, the original cast album of Kismet was issued in monaural, which was then the only option for any recording […]

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.