“I have been incredibly fortunate over the course of my career to have been associated with some extraordinary dramatic and musical productions, and also some rather spectacular disasters. Looking back, I can find gifts and life lessons in every one.”
The legendary Patti LuPone is one of the theatre’s most beloved leading ladies. Now she lays it all bare, sharing the intimate story of her life both onstage and off--through the dizzying highs and darkest lows--with the humor and outspokenness that have become her trademarks.
With nearly 100 photographs, including an 8-page four-color insert, and illuminating details about the life of a working actor, from inspired costars and demanding directors to her distinct perspective on how she developed and honed her Tony Award–winning performances, Patti LuPone: A Memoir is as inspirational as it is entertaining. And though the title might say “a memoir,” this is ultimately a love letter to the theatre by a unique American artist.
Raised on Long Island’s North Shore, Patti discovered her calling at the age of four and knew that she was destined for the stage. A prodigiously gifted child, she was one of only 36 young actors chosen for the inaugural class of The Juilliard School’s Drama Division, where she fought near-constant criticism from her instructors, and here describes those early years with disarming frankness.
From the heady days of her early twenties—crisscrossing the country as a founding member of the classical repertory theatre ensemble, The Acting Company--to her early success on Broadway, her four-year stint as Libby Thacher on the television series Life Goes On, her loving marriage to Matt Johnston, and much, much more, Patti chronicles her professional and personal life with inimitable candor and wit.
With its insightful retrospective of her career-defining turns, both on Broadway and abroad, in Evita, Les Misérables, Anything Goes, Sunset Boulevard, Sweeney Todd, and Gypsy, Patti LuPone: A Memoir reveals the artist’s deeply felt passion for music and the theatre and is, in the end, the compelling and quintessential tale of an exceptional life well lived.
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Carol Burnett Reviews Patti LuPone: A Memoir
Carol Burnett is an American actress, comedienne, singer, dancer, and writer. Read her review of Patti LuPone: A Memoir:
Patti's story had me from the moment I turned to page one of the prologue until the absolutely triumphant final chapter. The passion with which she writes about the theatre and her love of it found me, at various times, crying and laughing. I thoroughly enjoyed her backstage tales that were both victorious and horror-filled. The lady pulls no punches in describing her most humiliating moments, such as the backstabbing that unfortunately happens all too often in this business. She recreates her failures and even includes quotes from her worst reviews. She writes about her loves and losses without a tone of self-pity. The chapter about her struggles with bringing Evita to life gave me goose bumps. It was definitely not an easy journey. She persevered and that role made her a bona fide Broadway star. The chapter about the backstage goings on during the production of Sunset Boulevard are even more harrowing. The fact that she could take such slings and still remain standing is proof that this is a woman of great strength and grit...and talent. God gave her the gifts of being able to brilliantly bring characters to life onstage. She’s a wonderful actress...and, oh yes, she can sing like nobody’s business. This is a heartfelt memoir that exposes Patti’s innermost feelings, fervor, temper, and humor. There’s no "censorship." She tells it like it is, warts and all. And by the time I finished reading the last chapter, I found myself giving Patti a standing ovation in the privacy of my very own living room.About the Author:
PATTI LuPONE swept the 2008 theater awards winning the Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle Awards for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance as Rose in the critically acclaimed Broadway production of the classic musical Gypsy. LuPone has twice been nominated for an Emmy Award, has won two Grammy awards, and has numerous film, television, and on- and off-Broadway stage credits to her name. A five-time Tony nominee and two-time winner, LuPone was the first American actor to win Britain’s Olivier Award.
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