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Praise for the Stephen Schwartz biography Defying Gravity

Stephen Schwartz biography Defying Gravity coverPraise from Defying Gravity readers:

Illuminates Schwartz's particular genius

"For all lovers of the works of Stephen Schwartz, this is essential reading. Thorough and well-written, it is most interesting on the complex collaborations behind his work and illuminates his particular genius for combining lyrical and melodic invention in the service of a good story." -- writer and director John Caird (Nicholas Nickleby, Les Miserables, Children of Eden)

Insightful, inspirational, and moving...

"Wow. A truly remarkable book that promises to satisfy all those that have been so moved by the work of this 'Extraordinary' composer. A must have for anyone not only in the theater, but who has struggled to realize their true potential, and share their gifts with others. Insightful, inspirational, and moving, I know I'll read it again, and again, and again!"

—Ashley Griffin, actress, New York


"I marvel at how well you tell a story, how quickly your reader gets to know Stephen Schwartz, as a person and an artist.  You have assembled an enormous amount of detail and manage to pack it all into your pages while still maintaining an easy-to-read flow.  With all this, your approach to Stephen is intimate and comfortably human, but always respectful and compassionate.  I am your admiring fan! Your book reveals so much about the enormous complexity and beauty of musical theatre: What lies behind a minute in time when an audience is moved to that special place where they have never been before. Your book is not only a journey, but an education."

Carole Demas, stage and television performer, Westchester County, NY

Best example of the genre

"I’ve read it four times now… each time reveling in the amount of quality detail and intensive research you’ve put into this book.  It’s not your usual 'tell-all' or 'gossip mongering' or 'guesswork' that one generally reads about celebrities.  It’s factual, fun, and really quite well-presented.  It’s the best example of this genre I’ve ever read."

--Jim Vokoun, composer, Holland, Pennsylvania

Chock full of fascinating quotes...

Dear Carol,

To be brief -- my initial reaction is -- "WOW". I am so pleased to tell you that your work came out EXACTLY as I always imagined it would, from inception - and was SO FULL of amazing information, that I came away garnering even greater respect for the subject at hand.

And I am not just saying that. Your book is well researched - chock full of fascinating quotes and useful information. I think you were able to achieve your goal of creating a biography that provided an insight into the creative process, and at the same time you actually were able to paint a sympathetic picture of this most interesting music man - a totally new image of him and the way he thinks.

—Tony Gonzalez, musical theatre and film fan, New York

The behind-the-scenes stories are unbelievable...

Elizabeth Boone in Times SquareMy friend Carol asked me to check out her book before it reached its no-more-editing deadline and I was ecstatic. I'd anticipated it for a while and I was more than happy to look it over to get a perspective on it that teenagers may share.

I found Defying Gravity: The Creative Career of Stephen Schwartz to be a wonderful and detailed memoir of all of Stephen Schwartz's work. It pulled me into it and gave me incredible insight to all of his shows such as Pippin, Godspell, and Wicked. The behind-the-scenes stories are unbelievable as you explore the creative processes Mr. Schwartz went through in creating musicals, which can be very difficult, but unlike anything you can imagine. It really explains how and why you get chills or thrills after listening to his music.

All of the photos, facts, and quotes were so detailed and interesting, which was something I really appreciated. It reminded me somewhat of the Grimmerie but this book focuses more on Mr. Schwartz's experience with how Wicked and other musicals evolved, and has countless details so their story is crystal clear to see. It also contains some of Stephen Schwartz's original materials which were vital to creating his musicals and were a big part of starting the process of creating a musical.

Reading this book is like being right next to Stephen Schwartz throughout life and getting to know his co-workers and watching everything he worked on grow and progress. There's nothing else like it.

I know I was completely attached to it because I'm really interested in musical theater, and Stephen Schwartz is my favorite composer. Some of Mr. Schwartz's feelings during some processes were some that I related to in certain things I've done, and watching his journey in his career gave me hope that someday I could be as great in the music business. I really enjoyed reading the book and I know it'll be something others won't want to put down as well.

—Elizabeth Boone, age 15, Florida

The entire book is a wonderful journey...

eric Brown, cabaret singerI strongly believe that this book about the career of Stephen Schwartz will prove an invaluable source for even the most casual of fans. To anyone who has even a modicum of interest in anything having to do with WICKED, I think the section on this show will stand as one of the enduring documents of the creation of a major Broadway musical. Most of all, the entire book is a wonderful journey, tracing a most extraordinary person and his equally extraordinary career.

—Eric Brown, Cabaret Singer, Florida