Publication Date- late August 2013
“How do you recognize your soulmate?
In glittery 1980’s Los Angeles, Beau Kellogg is a brilliant Broadway lyricist now writing advertising jingles and yearning for one more hit to compensate for his miserable marriage and disappointing life.
Amanda Harary, a young singer out of synch with her contemporaries, works at a small New York hotel, while she dreams of singing on Broadway.
When they meet late at night over the hotel switchboard, what begins will bring them each unexpected success, untold joy, and piercing heartache ... until they learn that some connections, however improbable, are meant to last forever.
STEALING FIRE is, at its heart, a story for romantics everywhere, who believe in the transformative power of love.”
STEALING FIRE was a 2012 quarter-finalist in the amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest.
And now, we bring you Susan Sloate's Top Ten Broadway Musicals!
Since I can’t really pick favorites, these are in no particular order:
1) BRIGADOON - 1947 Lerner & Loewe musical about a Scottish village that comes to live one day every hundred years and the two Americans who stumble on it during that one day. Incredibly romantic and the songs are amazing - funny as well as lyrical.
2) GUYS & DOLLS - For my money, the movie version is way better than the show! But either way, some of the best characters (courtesy of Damon Runyon, whose short stories inspired the show) and marvelous songs and dances ever, plus a really touching love story (I’m a sucker for great love stories, esp. those in musicals!)
3) SHOW BOAT - One of my favorites as a child. Based on the superb Edna Ferber novel, this 1927 musical featured music by Jerome Kern, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein, and the classic song “Ole Man River”. This also had one of the first truly integrated scores (music and lyrics blended smoothly with the text), along with a serious subplot involving miscegenation. It was moving, romantic and very beautiful.
4) SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS - Okay - I’m cheating here, because I never did see the stage play (based on the spectacular MGM musical film), but I DID see the film, over and over, so I’m including it. Probably the best dancing EVER in an MGM musical, and the songs are beautiful and lyrical. The barn-raising sequence alone is famous, and justifiably so. Watch it and enjoy!
5) OKLAHOMA! - Hugh Jackman played Curly in London before he became famous as Wolverine. ‘Nuff said. Get hold of the DVD of that production and enjoy one of the best librettos and scores ever written, sung or danced!
6) KISS ME KATE - My favorite Cole Porter score by far, and a wonderful romantic backstage story that proves Shakespeare can be fun, even when gangsters sing about him!
7) BARNUM - Not the best show I’ve ever seen, but Jim Dale as P.T. Barnum was one of the best performances I’ve ever seen, and while most people would identify him more with the HARRY POTTER audio books, I’ve adored him since BARNUM in 1980. The show, about Barnum’s life and spectacular career, was written (appropriately) as a circus performance, and watching Dale sing, dance, juggle and walk a tightrope (in the middle of a song) is one of my cherished Broadway memories. The show score is still a favorite too, and oh, yeah - the role of Barnum’s quiet wife, who was such a contrast to the flamboyant showman, was played by an actress I had never heard of up to that time. Her name is Glenn Close.
8) CITY OF ANGELS - A musical that came and went in the ‘80’s, I still think it was a clever and under-appreciated show - a story within a story about a novelist whose latest noir detective novel is bought by a Hollywood studio (in the ‘40’s) for adaptation to a movie. The novelist is hired as the screenwriter, and while he negotiates the tricky world of Hollywood, he is also writing the detective’s story, and we see both on a stage split in half: the color side is the novelist’s story, the black and white is the detective, who’s a lot like the novelist, except taller, better looking and more successful with women! The book was by Larry Gelbart, one of the famous names in film and TV comedy, and my favorite scene starts with the detective in a shootout with the bad guys, one of whom is killed and thrown on a gurney with a sheet over him. In the next scene, the ‘body’ of the bad guy is the body of the studio head, who’s alive and well and having a massage while discussing the story with the novelist! Clever, clever stuff.
9) CABARET - Because it was a great show with a wonderful score, and the lyricist just happened to be my cousin, Fred Ebb, who was the family ne’er-do-well until the night this show opened. My family felt a lot different about him afterwards!
10) BABES IN ARMS - I saw it in a school production many years ago and loved it - one of the most melodious scores ever, with some of the most memorable songs - “My Funny Valentine”, “I Wish I Were in Love Again”, “Where or When” and “The Lady is a Tramp” were just a few of the hits - and while it was a backstage musical with a thin plot, the romance was fine. That’s enough to make me happy!
About the Author-
Susan Sloate is the author or co-author of more than 20 books, including Realizing You(with Ronald Doades), a recent self-help novel, and the 2003 #6 Amazon bestseller, Forward to Camelot (with Kevin Finn), which took honors in 3 literary competitions and was optioned by a Hollywood company for film production.
She has written young-adult fiction and non-fiction, including the children’s biography Ray Charles: Find Another Way!, which was honored in the 2007 Children’s Moonbeam Book Awards. Mysteries Unwrapped: The Secrets of Alcatraz led to her 2009 appearance on the TV series MysteryQuest on The History Channel. Amelia Earhart: Challenging the Skies is a perennial young-adult Amazon bestseller. She has also been a sportswriter and screenwriter, managed two recent political campaigns, and founded an author’s festival in her hometown outside Charleston, SC.
Stealing Fire was a Quarter-Finalist in the 2012 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest and combines autobiographical experience with her lifelong love of the musical theater. She is proud to be distantly related to Broadway legend Fred Ebb, the lyricist for Cabaret,Chicago, All That Jazz and New York, New York.
Visit Susan online at http://susansloate.com.