Defying Gravity

The Creative Career of Stephen Schwartz, from Godspell to Wicked

Revised and Updated Second Ed.

Series: Applause Books
Publisher: Applause Theatre & Cinema Books
Format: Softcover
Author: Carol de Giere

From his writing of Godspell's score at age 23 through the making of the megahit musical Wicked and beyond, Defying Gravity: The Creative Career of Stephen Schwartz, from Godspell to Wicked takes readers into the world of the legendary Broadway and film composer-lyricist. In this authorized biography, drawing from her interviews with Schwartz and his collaborators, author Carol de Giere focuses on the behind-the-scenes stories for Schwartz's hits and disappointing flops. Readers will find colorful anecdotes and insights for his licensed musicals Children of Eden, Pippin, Working, and others. Defying Gravity also includes Hollywood stories, beginning with a new foreword by composer Alan Menken.

This updated and revised second edition delves into Stephen Schwartz's creative process for the new stage musicals The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Prince of Egypt, and other shows. It provides additional insights on Schwartz's early work with Leonard Bernstein and his more recent international work on Wicked. It offers additional “Creative Notes” – a popular feature of the first edition – with comments from Schwartz about overcoming creative blocks, collaboration, and the artistic life.

$29.99 (US)
Inventory #HL 00279878
ISBN: 9781540031464
UPC: 888680757229
Width: 6.0"
Length: 9.0"
4512 pages


“Trying to reconstruct the writing process of a musical is nearly impossible. Carol de Giere has captured it.” – Winnie Holzman, bookwriter (Wicked)

“In Defying Gravity, Carol de Giere pulls back the curtain and gives us a fascinating glimpse into the creative process of one of the musical theater's greatest wizards. Enjoy!” – Stephen Flaherty, Tony Award-winning composer (Anastasia, Ragtime, Once on This Island)

“For all lovers of the works of Stephen Schwartz, this is essential reading. Thorough and well-written, it is most interesting on the complex collaborations behind his work and illuminates his particular genius for combining lyrical and melodic invention in the service of a good story.” – John Caird, writer and director (Children of Eden, Les Misérables)

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