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Book Reviews

A Wonderful Guy: Conversations with the Great Men of Musical Theater

A Wonderful Guy: Conversations with the Great Men of Musical Theater

A Wonderful Guy: Conversations with the Great Men of Musical Theater, Eddie Shapiro’s follow up to his wildly popular Nothing Like a Dame, is available today in hardcover and digital formats on Amazon and Barnes & NobleA Wonderful Guy is published by Oxford Press.

In A Wonderful Guy, Shapiro sits down for intimate, career-encompassing conversations with 19 of Broadway’s most prolific and fascinating leading men. Full of detailed stories and reflections, the talks dig deep into each actor’s career; together, these chapters tell the story of what it means to be a leading man on Broadway over the past 60 years. 

Shapiro said, “In Nothing Like a Dame, I talked to the greatest living female stars of the American Musical Theater, weaving a tapestry of 60 years-worth of Broadway’s oral history. But, of course, the women only tell part of that story. For every Evita, there’s a Che. Mrs. Lovett is no one without Sweeny Todd. Bess only exists if Porgy’s there, too. The list of iconic male musical theater characters embodied by indelible performers is not only robust, it’s made of legends. 

Only Joel Grey can talk about creating an iconic role on Broadway, then starring in the film version, then bringing it back to Broadway. Only Michael Cerveris can detail the experience of creating iconic roles as diverse as the eponymous Tommy, and Bruce in Fun Home. Only John Cullum has appeared on Broadway in each of the last seven decades. And Brian Stokes Mitchell knows better than anyone what it feels like to be a star of today at a time when stars who work exclusively in theater are all but extinct. Their stories are unique and needed to be captured.”

Spanning three generations of luminaries from icons of the stage like Tony® and Academy Award® winner Joel Grey (Cabaret) and Tony Award winner Ben Vereen (Pippin) to the newest crop of leading men like four-time Tony Award nominee Raúl Esparza (Company) and two-time Tony Award winner Christian Borle (Something RottenPeter and the Starcatcher) along with a host of others, A Wonderful Guy brings more fly-on-the-wall opportunities for fans to savor, students to study, and even the unindoctrinated to understand the life of the performing artist.

In addition to Grey, Vereen, Esparza, and Borle, A Wonderful Guy features interviews with two-time Tony Award winner John Cullum (On the Twentieth CenturyShenandoah), Tony Award winner Len Cariou (Sweeney Todd), Tony Award winner Michael Rupert (FalsettosSweet Charity), three-time Tony Award nominee Terrence Mann (Les  Misérables), two-time Tony Award nominee Howard McGillin (The Mystery of Edwin Drood), Tony Award winner Brian Stokes Mitchell (Kiss Me, Kate), three-time Tony Award nominee Marc Kudisch (The Girl From the North Country), two-time Tony Award winner Michael Cerveris (Fun HomeAssassins), Tony Award nominee Norm Lewis (The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess), Tony Award nominee Will Chase (The Mystery of Edwin Drood), two-time Tony Award nominee Christopher Sieber (Spamalot), two-time Tony Award winner Norbert Leo Butz(Catch Me If You CanDirty Rotten Scoundrels), Tony Award winner Gavin Creel (Hello, Dolly!), two-time Drama Desk Award nominee Cheyenne Jackson (Finian’s Rainbow), and two-time Tony Award nominee Jonathan Groff (Hamilton).

Book Reviews

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

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