Musical theater is known as the domain of certain super-talents with strings of hits: Stephen Sondheim, Rodgers and Hammerstein, the Gershwins, etc. Most of the writers who create one great show go on to create another. But there is a fascinating subset of writers who, for one reason or another, hit it big once and never repeated. Whatever the reason, we often refer to individuals or composing teams that had only a single acclaimed show as One-Hit Wonders.
This lecture presented by Sean Hartley will examine iconic shows like The Music Man, Hair, Oliver!, Grease, Man of La Mancha and others to understand what made them great, and why their creators couldn’t or didn’t repeat. Professor Hartley will provide commentary, insights, anecdotes, and conjecture to explore this fascinating anomaly in American musical history.
Sean Hartley is the director at the Kaufman Music Center’s Theater Wing, the chair of the SMS Admissions Assessment Committee, and on the faculty of the SMS Chorus and LMS Dalcroze. He is the Producer/Host of Broadway Close Up as well as Broadway Playhouse. Sean is also a playwright, composer, and lyricist: Cupid And Psyche (Drama Desk nomination,) Little Women; Snow (ASCAP Harold Arlen Award); Leaving Home. He is in residence at the Hermitage Artist Retreat in Sarasota.