Look I Made a Hat Collected Lyrics With Attendant Comments Amplifications Dogmas Harangues Digressions Anecdotes and Miscellany After his acclaimed and best selling Finishing the Hat named one of the New York Times Best Books of Stephen Sondheim returns with the second volume of his collected lyrics Look I Made a H

  • Title: Look, I Made a Hat: Collected Lyrics, 1981-2011, With Attendant Comments, Amplifications, Dogmas, Harangues, Digressions, Anecdotes, and Miscellany
  • Author: Stephen Sondheim
  • ISBN: 9780307593412
  • Page: 486
  • Format: Hardcover
  • After his acclaimed and best selling Finishing the Hat named one of the New York Times 10 Best Books of 2010 , Stephen Sondheim returns with the second volume of his collected lyrics, Look, I Made a Hat, giving us another remarkable glimpse into the brilliant mind of this living legend, and his life s work Picking up where he left off in Finishing the Hat, Sondheim giAfter his acclaimed and best selling Finishing the Hat named one of the New York Times 10 Best Books of 2010 , Stephen Sondheim returns with the second volume of his collected lyrics, Look, I Made a Hat, giving us another remarkable glimpse into the brilliant mind of this living legend, and his life s work Picking up where he left off in Finishing the Hat, Sondheim gives us all the lyrics, along with excluded songs and early drafts, of the Pulitzer Prize winning Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, Assassins and Passion Here, too, is an in depth look at the evolution of Wise Guys, which subsequently was transformed into Bounce and eventually became Road Show Sondheim takes us through his contributions to both television and film, some of which may surprise you, and covers plenty of never before seen material from unproduced projects as well There are abundant anecdotes about his many collaborations, and readers are treated to rare personal material in this volume, as Sondheim includes songs culled from commissions, parodies and personal special occasions over the years such as a hilarious song for Leonard Bernstein s seventieth birthday As he did in the previous volume, Sondheim richly annotates his lyrics with invaluable advice on songwriting, discussions of theater history and the state of the industry today, and exacting dissections of his work, both the successes and the failures Filled with even behind the scenes photographs and illustrations from Sondheim s original manuscripts, Look, I Made a Hat is fascinating, devourable and essential reading for any fan of the theater or this great man s work.

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      Stephen Sondheim

    About "Stephen Sondheim"

    1. Stephen Sondheim

      Stephen Joshua Sondheim is an American musical and film composer and lyricist, winner of an Academy Award, multiple Tony Awards seven, than any other composer , multiple Grammy Awards, and a Pulitzer Prize He has been described by Frank Rich in the The New York Times as the greatest and perhaps best known artist in the American musical theater His most famous scores include as composer lyricist A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd, Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, and Assassins, as well as the lyrics for West Side Story and Gypsy He was president of the Dramatists Guild from 1973 to 1981.

    287 thoughts on “Look, I Made a Hat: Collected Lyrics, 1981-2011, With Attendant Comments, Amplifications, Dogmas, Harangues, Digressions, Anecdotes, and Miscellany”

    1. Look, I Made a Hat is only slightly less successful for me than Sondheim s first book of collected lyrics I still say Sondheim is the best lyricist the stage has ever seen, and for any stage aficionado, both books are required reading However, sections of this book are spent on songs that haven t been recorded, shows that have no music to reference In that sense, I often had a hard time understanding or loving Sondheim s work here, struggling to put it in context.About a third of the book four c [...]


    2. Look, I Made a Hat completes the publication of Sondheim s collected lyrics, picking up where Finishing the Hat left off and then backfilling those gaps in the record Sondheim deemed noteworthy incidental songs from movies, unproduced shows including selected examples of juvenilia , and ditties he wrote to fete friends at birthday parties, pageants, and salons As with the earlier book, Sondheim not only annotates and contextualizes his lyrics, but throws in assorted essays on various subjects pe [...]


    3. Worth it just for Into the Woods Assassins I didn t read the whole thing, I haven t seen Passions and skipped most of the movie section except for Dick Tracy In some ways this volume feels lighter, but since Sunday, Woods, and Assassins are my favorite Sondheim shows I still liked it Interestingly I felt like he was harder on his work in Volume 1 Maybe it s just that he got better as he got older Or is it that the shows aren t as old I ve always had extremely mixed feelings about Act II of Sund [...]



    4. I didn t read this as thoroughly as the first volume, because I m only familiar with two shows in it Into the Woods and Candide But everything I did read was interesting, though I got a bit of a grumpy old man vibe rrom this one Still, a must read for anyone interested in lyric writing or musical theatre.


    5. My favorite part of this book was the four chapters talking about his failed musical Road Show It reads almost like a mystery can you spot what is wrong with these lyrics Can you figure out how they re going to fix them, or at least try What new problems will that cause It gives part of this book something of a plot, and was the only time in either volume I found myself wanting to read the next chapter right away, to find out what happens next.My other favorite parts are his commissioned works, [...]


    6. See the review I gave for Finishing the Hat This one especially stands out for me because it deals with three of my favorite musicals OF ALL TIME Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods and Assassins Seeing how much work is crafted in to every lyric only deepened my already deep appreciation for these works of art I also absolutely loved all of Sondheim s behind the scene stories he has a wonderfully dry and funny sense of humor He also endears you with his admissions that he doesn t get [...]


    7. Not as engaging as the first book, if only because the musicals being featured are not as compelling as the early works with the exception of Passion, Sondheim s last Masterpiece.


    8. Loved learning about Sondheims process and his behind the scenes moments If you love musicals, you ll love this book.


    9. This is excellent for use in research As in most celebrity writings, I sometimes wonder what I am supposed to think of this person.


    10. I rated the first volume of this 5 stars before I finished it 2 or 3 years ago I wanted to save the final Merrily We Roll Along chapter until I d experienced that show as a whole no cast recording could ever hope to capture the story there fortunately now we have the Digital Theatre production which stands up there with the 80s 90s James Lapine productions of Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods and Passion recorded for PBS When I finally read that chapter toward the end of last year, [...]


    11. This review is for both Volume 1 Finishing the Hat and Volume 2 Look I Made a Hat of Stephen Sondheim s reflections and commentary on his lyrics.These are necessary tools for any serious theatre goer who wants to fully understand Sondheim s body of work It is not overstating to say that Sondheim is to American musical theatre what Tennesse Williams is to American Drama ocassionally dark and always provocative and smart Obviously the flavors and tones are different and Sondheim s intelligence is [...]


    12. Look, I Made a Hat is the second volume in Stephen Sondheim s collection of lyrics This installment gives us his newest musicals Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, Assassins, and Passion , as well the much revised Wise Guys and songs written for movies and special occasions I enjoyed this installment almost as much as the first one The first book is entirely musicals, which I enjoyed because it makes it easy to get into the lyrics and he spends time being focused on one thing After [...]


    13. After finishing the first book Finishing the Hat, I was beyond excited to get my hands on this second book, which features a string of awesomeness, if not popular successes Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Wood, and Assassins my personal favorite Sondheim And those sections were great I loved finding out their origins and following their development I was already pretty familiar with most of the lyrics but reading them over brought new pleasures It was great to linger over and savor my i [...]


    14. Extremely interesting on the process of lyric writing and the sheer amount of effort that goes into the writing of a musical a bull headed refusal to be beaten seems to be the primary attribute required I have to say though that his interruptions with anecdotes and digressions were by far the most entertaining and interesting part of the book in fact, I would have preferred a straight memoir or book about the art of lyric writing with a few examples of his lyrics This was especially true when it [...]


    15. The first volume followed Sondheim s career from the beginning to 1980, and so it benefitted from the logical progression and growth of his experiences This second one was a little less compelling for me because, although it contains two of my favorites Into the Woods and Sunday in the Park , there is also a long section on the various iterations of Road Show plus bits and pieces from musicals that were never made, and individual songs for movies I found myself skimming these parts although I en [...]


    16. This and his previous volume, Finishing the Hat Collected Lyrics, 1954 1981, With Attendant Comments, Principles, Heresies, Grudges, Whines, and Anecdotes are a must for any serious student or fan of Stephen Sondheim The sidebars are fewer in this volume, but there s a lot of odds and ends, plus a fascinating chapter where you see a musical evolve through several workshops and productions.


    17. I love Sondheim, in that his hits far outweigh his misses for me The main problem with this book is the format it is huge, heavy, and the typeface is tiny It cannot be read in bed if you don t want to be crushed to death I feel like it is intended to be put on a special stand with a pair of magnifying glasses so you can actually read the text, like the OED Perhaps this is how the two tomes of his work will be beatified one day I did really enjoy the alternate lyrics, thoughts he gives on how to [...]


    18. The tone of this second volume seemed to me a bit reflective, and even regretful in places But there was still plenty of Mr Sondheim s wit and some fascinating recollections of the talented people he knew and worked with The section about the work that became Road Show had an interesting feature for me it started out interesting in the first incarnation, dragged through the permutations of Bounce, and then became really absorbing by the time the finished product came along At the end of the boo [...]


    19. I read the first part of Stephen Sondheim s collected lyrics with attendant comments, principles, heresies, grudges, whines and anecdotes about a year ago and eagerly awaited this second planned to be concluding volume Like the first book, you won t get much out of this unless you re a fan of musical theatre or poetry lyric writing I found it difficult to make myself read through lyrics of shows I hadn t seen, but I really enjoyed reading Sondheim s sometimes cutting but always insightful views [...]


    20. A lyrics writer can learn all she needs to know just by reading the footnotes in this magnificent memoir teaching manual by the master lyricist of our tim Stephen Sondheim is generous in sharing not only the way he arrived at his successes, but mistakes along the way, illuminating the difficult process of shaping words to music in a song in such a way as to make it memorable and singable if you re Mandy Patinkin or Bernadette Peters anyway Bravo And great gratitude to Mr Sondheim for his two par [...]


    21. A worthy successor to the first volume which feature three of my all time favorites Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, Assassins I thought the case study of the 4 different versions of WiseGuys Bounce RoadShow was a really interesting case study in artistic problem solving Sondheim is brilliant and it s fantastic that he left the analysis, advice, etc behind to future generations.


    22. Just like the first volume, Finishing the Hat, this is a highly essential read for both theatre fans and creative writers, as the notoriously brilliant but prickly Stephen Sondheim explores his complete works while giving an object lesson in the creative process Casual fans are most likely to know this volume, as it contains Into the Woods, possibly his most popular mainstream show with Sweeney Todd, from the first volume, in second place.


    23. Not as fascinating as the first book, but still interesting Like the first time, I didn t actually read the lyrics, but just read the intro, the stand alone essays and some of the comments anecdotes scattered throughout the book What incredible experiences he s had The book well reflects the collaborative nature of creating a show for the musical theater I also liked his three listed principles and reflecting on how well they apply to other artistic disciplines.


    24. If you are any kind of musical theatre geek, this is a must read I love some Sondheim shows than others, but having his insight and some of his anecdotes make going back through his lyrics such a great experience Definitely start with his first volume Finishing the Hat, but continue to this one, it s worth it Not only does he address some of his famous shows, but shows that were never produced, show that went through multiple incarnations, as well as television and movie work.


    25. Volume 2 doesn t succeed as well for me as volume 1 I think part of this is because there is time spent on items outside of the theatre or on a show that still has not seen the light of day.That said, Sondheim is one of the greatest living writers in the US What he can do with a lyric to explain feeling, character, tone, and setting is remarkable This books, together with volume 1 is a must have for anyone who likes to play with words.


    26. Another chance to sit at the feet of the master as he pulls back the curtain on of his great hits Particularly instructive is his discussion of his working relationship with James Lapine, his analysis of the relationship between music and language in Passion, and long gestation of what became Road Show.


    27. Filled with some inconsequential back matter about writing songs for friends, this second appraisal of Sondheim s work is worth the price of admission for his insights into classic musicals, and his own misconstrued and re envisioned pieces i.e Road Show One for any musical theatre fan, or any fan of craft out there.


    28. I enjoyed this book very much I am fascinated by the inner workings of broadway and lyricists and all of that stuff The only reason I am not giving it 5 stars is because one of his particular film projects that he covers was extremely hard to follow for me The rest of it I absolutely loved If this subject matter interests you, start with Finishing the Hat and then read this one


    29. Behind the scenes with Sondheim Interesting, but I wasn t as familiar with the music for just the lyrics alone to recall it for me I suspect I m not really the target audience for this book, and I grabbed it off the new shelf at the library on a whim Most fascinating was the evolution of the piece that eventually became Road Show, and the various snippets of commentary.


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