Blog: Theatre Biographies - What to Read and Who By

We wanted to share with you some of our favourite biographies by theatremakers with you and also share with you some of those that we want most to read!


If you know of other great biographies that should be added to this list by theatremakers, we would love to hear from you!!


These are listed in no particular order.


Happy reading!


Home Work

By: Julie Andrews

From: The UK

Best Known For: The Sound of Music, Mary Poppins and My Fair Lady (stage)

Profession: Performer


Steps in Time: An Autobiography

By: Fred Astaire

From: USA

Best Known For: Top Hat, Funny Face, Swing Time and Easter Parade

Profession: Performer and Choreographer


Master of Ceremonies

By: Joel Grey

From: USA

Best Known For: Cabaret

Profession: Performer and Director


Too Much is Not Enough

By: Andrew Rannells

From: USA

Best Known For: The Book of Mormon

Profession: Performer


Come Along and Listen to My Life in Theatre

By: Martin Markinson

From: USA

Best Known For: Torch Song Trilogy

Profession: Theatre Owner and Producer


Failing Up

By: Leslie Odom Jr

From: USA

Best Known For: Hamilton

Profession: Performer


Life Isn’t Everything: Mike Nichols as Remembered by 150 of His Closest Friends

By: Ash Carter and Sam Kashner

From: Germany

Best Known For: Barefoot in the Park, The Odd Couple, The Graduate (Film)

Profession: EGOT winning Director (including 8 Tonys for Directing) and Produce


A Chorus Line and the Musicals of Michael Bennett

By: Ken Madelbaum

From: USA

Best Known For: A Chorus Line, Dreamgirls, Follies and Promises Promises

Profession: Director, Writer, Choreographer and Dancer


Bowerbird: The Art of Making Theatre Drawn From Life

By: Alana Valentine

From: Australia

Best Known For: Parramatta Girls and Run Rabbit Run

Profession: Playwright


Time Steps: My Musical Comedy Life

By: Donna McKechnie

From: USA

Best Known For: A Chorus Line, How to Succeed in Business and Promises Promises

Profession: Performer


Just as I Am

By: Cicely Tyson

From: USA

Best Known For: The Trip to Bountiful and the The Corn is Green

Profession: Performer


Stages: A Theater Memoir

By: Albert Poland

From: USA

Best Known For: Little Shop of Horrors and Boy From Oz

Profession: Producer and General Manager


Up in the Cheap Seats

By : Ron Fassler

From: USA

Profession: Audience


Still Here: The Madcap, Nervy, Singular Life of Elaine Stritch

By: Alexandra Jacobs

From: USA

Best Known For: Company and Show Boat

Profession: Performer


Unmasked: A Memoir

By: Andrew Lloyd Webber

From: The UK

Best Known For: Cats, Evita, The Phantom of the Opera and Jesus Christ Superstar

Profession: Composer, Producer and Theatre Owner


White Hot Grief Parade

By: Alexandra Silber

From: USA

Best Known For: Fiddler on the Roof

Profession: Performer


Rita Moreno: A Memoir

By: Rita Moreno

From: Puerto Rico

Best Known For: The Ritz, Romeo and Juliet and Skydrift

Profession: EGOT winning performer


Top End Girl

By: Miranda Tapsell

From: Australia

Best Known For: The Sapphires and The Secret River

Profession: Performer


Bossypants

By: Tina Fey

From: USA

Best Known For: Mean Girls

Profession: Comedian and Book Writer

** Note: This was written in 2011, pre-Mean Girls the Musical


A Little Bit Wicked: Life, Love and Faith in Stages

By: Kristin Chenoweth

From: USA

Best Known For: Wicked and You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown

Profession: Performer

** Note: This book celebrates its 10th anniversary this year (2020)


How I Learned To Act

By: Francis Greenslade

From: Australia

Best Known For: Mad As Hell

Profession: Performer


Magic time: A Memoir, Notes on Theatre & Other Entertainment

By: Edwin Wilson

From: USA

Best Known For: Theatre Criticism

Profession: Director, Teacher, Playwright and Critic


Simple Gifts (A Life in the Theatre)

By: George Ogilvie

From: Australia

Best Known For: Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (Film) and Artistic Director of State Theatre Company, SA

Profession: Director


Jerome Robbins, by Himself: Selections from His Letters, Journals, Drawings, Photographs, and an Unfinished Memoir

By: Jerome Robbins

From: USA

Best Known For: West Side Story and Fiddler on the Roof

Profession: Choreographer, Director, Producer and Show Doctor


Life In Motion

By: Misty Copeland

From: USA

Best Known For: Becoming the first African American Female Principal Ballerina at ABT

Profession: Ballerina

** Note: Misty Copeland has a series of books for all ages.


Keith Bain - The Principles of Movement

By: Michael Campbell

From: Australia

Best Known For: Founding Member of AusDance

Profession: Choreographer, Dancer and Actor


Stars in Their Underwear: My unpredictable journey from Broadway dancer to costume designer for some of Hollywood's biggest stars

By: Diana Eden

From: USA

Best Known For: Jubilee and Tamara

Profession: Costume Designer, Dancer, Actress


David Williamson: A Celebration

By: Katharine Brisbane

From: Australia

Best Known For: The Removalists and Don’s Party

Profession: Playwright


It's Always Loud in the Balcony: A Life in Black Theater, from Harlem to Hollywood and Back

By: Richard Wesley

From: USA

Best Known For: Autumn, Black Terror and The Sirens

Profession: Playwright, Screenwriter, Professor and Writer on Political Theater


Without You

By: Anthony Rapp

From: USA

Best Known For: Rent

Profession: Performer


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