In this lively book, Stacy Wolf illuminates the women of American musical theater--performers, creators, and characters--from the start of the cold war to the present day, creating a new, feminist history of the genre, which finds often overlooked moments of empowerment for female audience members. Moving from decade to decade, Wolf first highlights the assumptions that circulated about gender and sexuality at the time, and then looks at the leading musicals, stressing the key aspects of the plays as they relate to women. West Side Story, Guys & Dolls, Cabaret, Phantom of the Opera, and many others--with special emphasis on the Wicked. Along the way, Wolf demonstrates how the musical since the mid-1940s has actually been dominated by women--women onstage, women in the wings, and women offstage as spectators and fans.
Publisher: Oxford University Press