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Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!

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Looking for something new to read while staying inside, but still need your Broadway fix? We've rounded up 10 of our favorite books on producing!

Some of the books on this list provide insight on directing for musicals and plays, from a business standpoint. Others include written pieces and essays from other producers, to help inspire you to get your foot in the door. Whether you are brand new, or just want to learn more about the business, there is something on this list for you!

Not a producer? Check out our list of 10 books on acting here, playwriting here, and directing here!


Producing Musicals: A Practical Guide

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!by John Gardyne

The principles and procedures described in this book can be applied to shows of any size and complexity, from one-off cabaret entertainments to large-scale, multi-media extravaganzas. An invaluable companion for those new and experience in theater, it covers such topics as suggested approaches for producing, directing, designing, and casting shows; a breakdown of the rehearsal process; a detailed analysis of the procedures for moving a production from the rehearsal room into the theater; and much more. John Gardyne is an award-winning playwright as well as a director, writer, and producer; he has produced and directed shows in London's West End, in small fringe theaters, and in major opera houses. He teaches and directs at drama schools and music colleges in Britain and abroad, including The Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.

About the Author: John Gardyne is an award-winning playwright as well as a director, writer, and producer; he has produced and directed shows in London's West End, in small fringe theaters, and in major opera houses. He teaches and directs at drama schools and music colleges in Britain and abroad, including The Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.

Purchase on Amazon here.

Producing Theatre : A Comprehensive and Legal Business Guide

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!by Donald C. Farber

Whether you are a theatrical entrepreneur, an investor, an attorney, or a student, and whether the production is on Broadway, off Broadway, Off Off Broadway, instock or repertory, the revised edition of this standard theatrical reference work tells you everything you need to know about raising money, obtaining rights, and bringing a play to the stage. Written by one of the country's leading theatrical attorneys, this easy-to-use guide includes all new budgets and has been brought up-to-date to cover all the important changes over the past seven years in the legal and business aspects of producing theater. Topics include: how to obtain a property, raising money and the necessary filings, contracts with producers and theaters, licensing for Broadway and out-of-town theater. Especially useful are the updated and expanded appendixes, which include actual examples of today's commonly used legal forms and contracts.

About the Author: Donald C. Farber served as legal counsel to The Fantasticks when it first opened off-Broadway in 1960. Author of several books, including Producing Theatre: A Comprehensive Legal and Business Guide; Producing on Broadway: A Comprehensive Guide; From Option to Opening: A Guide to Producing Plays Off-Broadway; Producing, Financing, and Distributing Film: A Comprehensive Legal and Business Guide; I Hated to Do It: Stories of a Life; co-author, along with Robert Viagas, of The Amazing Story of The Fantasticks: America's Longest-Running Play. Received his J.D. from the University of Nebraska in 1950.

Purchase on Amazon here.

The Commercial Theater Institute Guide to Producing Plays and Musicals

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!Edited by Ben Hodges and Frederic B. Vogel

Now in its 25th year, the Commercial Theater Institute sponsors an annual intensive program in New York for individuals interested in producing or investing in the theatre that attracts people from all over the world. The top Working Theatre professionals offer hard, factual information to those interested in producing for Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway, anywhere in North America, as well as in the United Kingdom.

The Commercial Theater Institute Guide to Producing Plays and Musicals now collects for the first time the cream of the crop of that advice, from the noted theatre professionals who participate in the program, in their own words. Interviews, contributions, and a resource directory are included from 30 theatre professionals who have won a total of 45 Tony Awards. Agents, directors, production designers, general managers, fundraisers, marketing directors, producers, and theatrical attorneys all offer invaluable advice in a book that will be the definitive resource in its field.

About the Author: Frederic Vogel is the late founder of the Commercial Theatre Institute, which has trained some of America's most talented and highly respected theatre producers. Ben Hodges is a graduate of the CTI, the coeditor of The Commercial Institute Guide to Producing Plays and Musicals, the editor of Forbidden Acts: Pioneering Gay & Lesbian Plays of the Twentieth Century and The Play That Changed My Life, The American Theatre Wing Presents The Play That Changed My Life: America's Foremost Playwrights on the Plays That Most Influenced Them, Outplays: Landmark Gay and Lesbian Plays of the Twentieth Century, and eleven previous volumes of the Theatre World annual.

Purchase on Amazon here.

I Wanna Be a Producer: How to Make a Killing on Broadway...or Get Killed

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!by John Breglio

Part memoir, part handbook, I Wanna Be a Producer is a road map to the hows and wherefores, the dos and don'ts of producing a Broadway play, written by a Broadway veteran with more than 40 years of experience. This comprehensive and highly informative book features practical analysis and concepts for the producer - and is filled with entertaining anecdotes from Breglio's illustrious career as a leading theatrical lawyer and producer. Breglio recounts not only his first-hand knowledge of the crucial legal and business issues faced by a producer, but also his experiences behind the scenes with literally hundreds of producers, playwrights, composers, and directors, including such theatre luminaries as Michael Bennett, Joe Papp, Stephen Sondheim, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Patti LuPone, August Wilson, and Mel Brooks.

About the Author: John Breglio has spent over three decades working in all sectors of the entertainment industry, including theater, motion pictures, publishing, and music. As an entertainment lawyer, he was instrumental in helping his clients to produce and finance plays, musicals, and films for nearly four decades. In 2008, he retired from his law practice and since then has been producing plays, musicals, and films independently, including the critically acclaimed revival of A Chorus Line and Dreamgirls. Breglio has served as chair of the Theatre Development Fund and has sat on the boards of the American Foundation for AIDS Research, the Alliance for the Arts, the John Golden Fund, and Young Playwrights.

Purchase on Amazon here.

The Business of Broadway

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!by Mitch Weiss and Perri Gaffney

New York's Broadway theatre scene has long been viewed as the "top of the heap" in the world theatre community. Taking lessons from the very best, this innovative guide delves into the business side of the renowned industry to explain just how its system functions. For anyone interested in pursuing a career on Broadway, or who wants to grow a theatre in any other part of the world, The Business of Broadway offers an in-depth analysis of the infrastructure at the core of successful theatre.

Manager/producer Mitch Weiss and actor/writer Perri Gaffney take readers behind the scenes to reveal what the audience-and even the players and many producers-don't know about how Broadway works, describing more than 200 jobs that become available for every show. A variety of performers, producers, managers, and others involved with the Broadway network share valuable personal experience in interviews discussing what made a show a hit or a miss, and how some of the rules, regulations, and practices that are in place today were pioneered.

About the Authors: Mitch Weiss has managed several hundred Broadway and off-Broadway shows including Tony Award-winners A Chorus Line, The Grapes of Wrath, and Beauty and the Beast, and has over forty years of management and producing experience with such clients as Disney Theatrical Productions, New York Shakespeare Festival, and Big Apple Circus, as well as many other successful and well-known recording, sports, and theatrical artists. He has been a certified ATPAM manager since 1985 and teaches management courses at New York University. He is the author of Managing Artists in Pop Music with Perri Gaffney (Allworth Press). He lives in New York City.

Perri Gaffney is the author of several books. She adapted her debut novel The Resurrection of Alice into a Helen Hayes Award-nominated one-woman play, wrote and performed in Josephine, a multi-media monodrama based on Josephine Baker, and has written and contributed to numerous plays, independent films, and TV shows. She lives in New York City.

Purchase on Amazon here.

So You Want To Be A Theatre Producer?

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!by James Seabright

Packed full of insights and tricks of the trade, this book will give you the inspiration and confidence you need, whether you are taking your first steps in the profession or simply want to know what it takes to get a show on the stage.

About the Author: James Seabright is one of the UK's fastest-rising and most exciting theatre producers. He has produced nearly one hundred shows on UK tours, in the West End and at the Edinburgh Festival where he is the most prolific producer on the Fringe (with seventeen productions scheduled for the 2009 Festival). His productions have included the premiere English language adaptation of The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho which toured and played off-West End in 2005, 2006 and 2007, and the phenomenally successful Potted Potter, a parody of the Harry Potter novels, which has toured internationally for several years, including runs in the West End. He lives in South London

Purchase on Amazon here.

The Palgrave Handbook of Musical Theatre Producers

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!Edited by Laura MacDonald and William A. Everett

This handbook is the first to provide a systematic investigation of the various roles of producers in commercial and not-for-profit musical theatre. Featuring fifty-one essays written by international specialists in the field, it offers new insights into the world of musical theatre, its creation and its promotion. Key areas of investigation include the lives and works of producers whose work is part of a US and worldwide musical theatre legacy, as well as the largely critically-neglected role of the musical theatre producer in the making, marketing, and performance of musicals. Also explored are the shifting roles of producers in musical theatre and their popular portrayals, offering a reader-friendly collection for fans, scholars, students, and practitioners of musical theatre alike.

About the Editors: Laura MacDonald is Senior Lecturer in Musical Theatre at the University of Portsmouth, UK, where she teaches musical theatre, dramaturgy, and critical theory. Her articles and reviews have appeared in Studies in Musical Theatre, The Journal of American Drama and Theatre, New England Theatre Journal, Theatre Research International, the SDC Journal, Theatre Journal and Theatre Survey.

William A. Everett is Curators' Professor of Musicology at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance, USA, where he teaches courses on a variety of subjects, including musical theatre and nineteenth-century music. He is author, editor, or co-editor of numerous books on musical theatre and various other topics.

Purchase on Amazon here.

The Stage Producer's Business and Legal Guide

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!by Charles Grippo

The entire range of individuals involved in entertainment-performers, writers, and directors to box office managers, theater board members, and theater owners-will find comprehensive answers to questions on every aspect of theater business and law. Written by attorney, producer, and playwright, this book reveals hundreds of insider strategies for minimizing legal costs, negotiating contracts, and licensing and producing plays. It also features expert, practical advice on such topics as tax risks and liabilities, safety regulations, organizing the theater company, financing, box office management, not-for-profit management, and much more. Plus everything is explained clearly, written without a lot of legal jargon.

About the Author: Charles Grippo is an attorney, producer, and playwright. He owns New Lincoln Theatre Productions, Holiday Road, and Charles Grippo Productions. In Chicago, he has produced plays by Neil Simon, David Mamet, and Kathleen Tolan. His plays, which include Sex Marks the Spot, Bedroom Follies, A Wife's Tale, Santa's Children, The Tooth of the Matter, Salvage Job, and Wait for the Wind, have been produced by theater companies in New York, Chicago, and California. His adaptation of Wait for the Wind was published in Hardboiled Detective in 1995. He has written articles on theater law for the Chicago Alliance for Playwrights and is currently working on a novel in the legal thriller genre about a female attorney. A member of the Dramatists Guild and director emeritus of Chicago Alliance for Playwrights, he practices entertainment and real estate law.

Purchase on Amazon here.

From Option to Opening: a Guide to Producing Plays Off Broadway

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!by Donald C. Farber

For the potential, as well as the professional, producer and for writers, actors, directors, and investors, this book is for anyone wanting or needing to understand the process of producing Off Broadway plays from start to finish. Written in crisp, clear, nonlegal language that the layman can easily understand, every page reflects the experience and expertise of Farber, a well-known and highly respected theatrical attorney. The book contains detailed information on how to: option a property, raise money, obtain a theater, deal with the cast and other personnel, the art of negotiation, partnerships and co-production agreements, and much more. Especially useful are the updated and expanded appendixes, which include all new budgets and actual examples of today's commonly used legal forms and contracts.

About the Author: Donald C. Farber served as legal counsel to The Fantasticks when it first opened off-Broadway in 1960. Author of several books, including Producing Theatre: A Comprehensive Legal and Business Guide; Producing on Broadway: A Comprehensive Guide; From Option to Opening: A Guide to Producing Plays Off-Broadway; Producing, Financing, and Distributing Film: A Comprehensive Legal and Business Guide; I Hated to Do It: Stories of a Life; co-author, along with Robert Viagas, of The Amazing Story of The Fantasticks: America's Longest-Running Play. Received his J.D. from the University of Nebraska in 1950.

Purchase on Amazon here.

A More Perfect Ten: Writing and Producing the Ten-Minute Play

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Producing to Read While Staying Inside!by Gary Garrison

A More Perfect Ten is a revision of Gary Garrison's pioneering book on writing and producing the 10-minute play, and it is now the most authoritative book on this emerging play form. The 10-minute play has become a regular feature of theatre companies and festivals from coast to coast, and Garrison has distilled the advice of many of those people who had been instrumental in promoting the ten minute play for the last few years.

Replete with advice and tips on creating the successful 10-minute play, and cautions for avoiding the pitfalls, this new edition also includes addresses for the biggest and most important 10-minute festival opportunities, new sample 10-minute plays and questions for thought and discussion, and sample layout templates for laying out the play for submission. The savvy playwright at any level of skill can use this little book to great advantage. Plus Gary Garrison is warm, funny, irreverent, and essential.

About the Author: Gary Garrison is a playwright and author, as well as the Executive Director for Creative Affairs of the Dramatists Guild of America and the Artistic Director and Division Head of Playwriting for the Goldberg Department of Dramatic Writing at the Tisch School of Arts. He is also the former National Chair of Playwrighting for the Kennedy Center's American College Theater Festival, as well as the Artistic Director for the First Look Theatre Company and the recently formed Playwrights PlayGround.

Purchase on Amazon here.



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