Elizabeth Wollman, American musical theater scholar and professor at Baruch College, will present a lecture on “Broadway and the Generation Gap in the 1960s” as part of Theater Professor Stacy Wolf ‘s fall course “Isn’t It Romantic: The Broadway Musical from Rodgers and Hammerstein to Sondheim.” The discussion will take place on Tuesday, October 11 at 3:00 p.m. in Room 219 at 185 Nassau Street. Presented by the Lewis Center for the Arts’ new Program in Music Theater and cosponsored by Princeton’s Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies, the event is free and open to the public.

Wolf’s course examines the performances of gender, sexuality, and romance in the Broadway musical theater since the 1940s, including, for example, In the Heights and West Side Story. The semester includes a trip to the Performing Arts Library at Lincoln Center in New York City, as well as discussions with visiting figures in musical theater.

liz wollman

Elizabeth L. Wollman, musical theater scholar and professor at Baruch College. Photo courtesy Wollman.

Elizabeth L. Wollman is an associate professor of music at Baruch College, CUNY, where her teaching interests range from the American musical theater to gender studies to the cultural history of New York City. Wollman has published two books, The Theater Will Rock: A History of the Rock Musical from Hair to Hedwig and Hard Times: The Adult Musical in 1970s New York City, both of which are widely recognized in the field of musical theater. She has published numerous articles examining gender stereotypes in the context of rock radio programming, socioeconomic influences on Broadway musicals, and the “adult” musical in New York City in the 1970s. Currently, Wollman is working on her next book, The Critical Companion to the American Stage Musical.

Wolf teaches courses in American musical theater history, dramaturgy and dramatic literature, histories of U.S. performance, performance theory, and performance studies. She is the author of Changed for Good: A Feminist History of the Broadway Musical (recently named one of the “top ten books every theater lover should read” by Marissa Friedman); A Problem Like Maria: Gender and Sexuality in the American Musical; and the co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of the American Musical. She is currently working on Beyond Broadway: Four Seasons of Amateur Musical Theatre in the U.S., which examines amateur musical theater at high schools, summer camps, community centers, and afterschool programs across the country. Wolf is also director of the Princeton Arts Fellows program in the Lewis Center.

Wolf’s course will be hosting discussions with other musical theater scholar and practitioners throughout the semester. On October 25, Broadway actress Rema Webb will discuss her career and performances, including in the musicals The Color Purple, The Lion King, and The Book of Mormon. Also on October 25, alumnus Lorraine Goodman, Princeton Class of 1983, will lead a workshop on performing musicals across gender. On November 15, the musical director, composer, and conductor Paul Bogaev will teach a master class. All of these events will be free and open to the public.

The new Program in Music Theater is a collaboration among the Lewis Center for the Arts’ Program in Theater and Program in Dance and the Department of Music, which brings together students, faculty, and guest artists in the creation, study, and performance of music theater to support and develop all forms of music theater—that is, any theatrical form that combines singing, acting, and movement—as both an artistic practice and a field of scholarly study.

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