Martin Gottfried, winner of the George Jean Nathan Award for dramatic criticism, is the author of Sondheim and All His Jazz, among other books. He lives in New York City, and Amagansett, NY.
Former Women's Wear Daily drama critic Gottfried traces the life and career of director/choreographer Fosse (1927-1987), who rose to fame with The Pajama Game , Damn Yankees , Sweet Charity and other shows and films. Fosse's life was full of conflict--a desire (unfulfilled) to star as performer as well as director, painful personal relationships, obsession with sex and a preoccupation with death that led him to recount the details of his heart attack in the movie All That Jazz . Basing his text on interviews, Gottfried examines Fosse's numerous unsatisfactory marriages and love affairs, and his tense dealings with collaborators and colleagues, revealing much about the backstage intrigues and vicissitudes of show business, but offering little of substance about either the shows themselves or Fosse's talent. Photos not seen by PW. (Nov.)
Drama critic Gottfried, author of Broadway Musicals (Abrams, 1989), brings a wealth of Broadway lore to his biography of choreographer/director Fosse, who made a lasting impact on the dancing style of Broadway musicals. Fosse was a driving perfectionist who had such mega-hits as Broadway's Sweet Charity and the movie version of Cabaret , and such colossal failures as the movie version of Sweet Charity and his last movie, Star 80 , which combines his lifelong obsessions, sex and death. Three times married, the last to Gwen Verdon with whom he had his string of Broadway hits, Fosse was a compulsive womanizer. He remains a likable character despite this and other negative traits which Gottfried does not soften. Gottfried gives a more complete psychological portrait of this contradictory man than Kevin Grubb's Razzle Dazzle ( LJ 10/1/89), which was heavily illustrated. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 8/1/90.-- Marcia L. Perry, Berkshire Athenaeum, Pittsfield, Mass.