In today’s Wall Street Journal “Sightings” column, I commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of William Goldman’s The Season: A Candid Look at Broadway. Here’s an excerpt.
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What’s it like to put on a show, and what kinds of people do so? I can think of any number of theatrical memoirs and biographies that are as readable as good novels, starting with Moss Hart’s “Act One.” But if what you want to know is how Broadway works, and why it usually doesn’t, the best book to read was written 50 years ago by a man who never managed to write a successful play. It’s William Goldman’s “The Season: A Candid Look at Broadway,” still in print and as relevant as ever. Smart, catty and comprehensively well-informed, “The Season” tells truths that have withstood the cruel test of time, which is another way of saying that when it comes down to basics, nothing much changes on Broadway….
A half-century after the fact, it’s startling how contemporary “The Season” sounds….
* * *Read the whole thing here.