Dan Dietz is a former professor of composition, world literature, and modern drama at Western Carolina University, and the author of Off Broadway Musicals, 1910-2007 (2010). Dietz is also the author of The Complete Book of 1940s Broadway Musicals (2015), The Complete Book of 1950s Broadway Musicals (2014), The Complete Book of 1960s Broadway Musicals (2014), The Complete Book of 1970s Broadway Musicals (2015), and The Complete Book of 1980s Broadway Musicals (2016), all published by Rowman & Littlefield.
With this book, Dietz continues his decade-by-decade encyclopedic treatment of Broadway musicals, which started with The Complete Book of 1940s Broadway Musicals. In the present volume, he underscores the decline of the medium. The 1990s brought in the era of what he calls `the new Broadway,' with family friendly and other feel-good musicals dominating traditional `adult-oriented' fare. The 203 featured revues and musicals that opened from January 1, 1990, to December 31, 1999 (compare 271 openings in the 1960s) cover the gamut of possibilities: 32 featured new music, 12 had preexisting scores, 32 were imports, 57 were revivals, and 16 closed pre-Broadway. As in the previous volumes, Dietz provides plot summaries, casts and crews, run dates, critical commentary, musical numbers and performers, source material, and awards and nominations, among other data. The volume concludes with 11 useful appendixes. Dietz does not hold back his own opinion-pretentious and politically correct crop up often-and though readers may find themselves disagreeing with Dietz's analyses, his diatribes complement the narratives and make for an enjoyable read. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through professionals; general readers. * CHOICE *