by Carol de Giere

Ever wondered how WICKED went from Gregory Maguire’s novel to an award-winning musical that’s swept the world?  Carol de Giere’s exhaustive book on Stephen Schwartz’s career takes an extensive look at the world of WICKED from the musical’s conception through the opening on Broadway!

A Brief Review by Christopher Kuczewski, Founder & President of UNLIMITED

I have always loved the music, lyrics, and creative mind of Stephen Schwartz, writer of the scores for GODSPELL, PIPPIN, THE MAGIC SHOW, THE PRINCE OF EGYPT, Disney's POCAHONTAS and HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE-DAME, and the mega-hit WICKED. In fact, WICKED fast became my favorite musical theatre piece. But how did this musical go from the page to the stage? How do musicals go from an idea to readings and workshops to full productions?

The answer to these and many other questions lies in Carol De Giere's wonderfully captivating DEFYING GRAVITY: THE CREATIVE CAREER OF STEPHEN SCHWARTZ, FROM GODSPELL TO WICKED. If you've ever wondered about Schwartz's personal life, its influence on his writing, and his creative process, this book is for you. Filled with stories, some extremely touching, many humorous, DEFYING GRAVITY offers a rather candid look at a brilliant who has experienced both triumph and failure, but one whose creative process has always been strong. You will learn some interesting details about his collaborators, his family, his friends, and his shows. Never boring, always engaging, and littered with many black-and-white photos (from Schwartz's personal file as well as from productions of his shows), DEFYING GRAVITY is a treat for anyone who's ever wondered about the creative journey of a musical theatre/film writer...or ANY creative person, for that matter.

In a way, DEFYING GRAVITY is a story anyone can relate to: De Giere dedicates her work to the creative spirit that inspires each and every one of us. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves Schwartz, WICKED, musical theatre, or creating something out of nothing. Bravo, Ms. De Giere!

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