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PRESENTSGypsyMusic by Jule Styne, Lyrics by Stephen SondheimBook by Arthur LaurentsThis study guide for Gypsy contains background informationfor the play, suggested themes and topics for discussion, andcurriculum-based lessons that are designed by educators andtheatre professionals.The lessons and themes for discussion are organized in modules that can be used independently or interdependently according to your class’s level and time availability.TABLE OF CONTENTSThe Players .3THIS GUIDE WAS WRITTEN AND COMPILED BY BARBARAWORTHY, DEBRA MCLAUCHLAN, AND DENIS JOHNSTON.ADDITIONAL MATERIALS WERE PROVIDED BY JACKIE MAXWELL AND KEVIN LAMOTTE.COVER PHOTO OF ELODIE GILLETT ANDNORA MCLELLANBY SHIN SUGINOThe Story/The Creators . 4-5Director’s Notes .6The Music .7Production History/Lighting .8Backgrounder .9Classroom ApplicationGYPSYRunning time: 2hrs.45 mins approx.including one intermissionPreviews April 12Opens May 8Closes October 29For a calendar of performances please visit:www.shawfest.comBefore Attending the Play .10-18After Attending the Play .19-23Glossary of Theatre Terms . .24Response Sheet .252

The PlayersCigar. Neil BarclayFather .Bernard BehrensWeber .Anthony BekennDolores. Cathy CurrentPastey.Kevin DennisThelma.Elodie GillettMiss Cratchitt/Rose alternate .Kate HennigTessie Tura. Lisa HornerYonkers . Jeff IrvingMazeppa .Gabrielle JonesAgnes. Chilina KennedyKansas .Andrew KushnirTulsa .Jeff LillicoJune . Trish LindstromLouise . Julie MartellMomma Rose .Nora McLellanCochon. Micheal QuerinHerbie. Ric ReidMarjorie.Kiera SangsterLA .Sam StrasfeldElectra .Patricia VanstoneJocko.William VickersAngie.Darren VorosBaby June .Alexandra Beaton & Michaela BekennBaby Louise .Jessica Benevides & Melissa PetersBalloon Girls . Katie Cambone-Mannell & Jessie HernderBoys .Nigel Inneo, Jacob Stokl, David Aiello, Alex Race,Matthew Langelaan, Zachary MurphyDirected by Jackie MaxwellMusic Direction: Paul SportelliChoreography and Associate Director: Valerie MooreDesigned by Peter HartwellCostume Designer: Judith BowdenLighting Designer: Kevin LamotteSound Designer: Peter McBoyleStage Manager: Judy FarthingAssistant Stage Manager: Dora TomassiTechnical Director: Jeff ScollonCostume design for Louise by Judith BowdenCostume design for Momma Rose by Judith Bowden3

The StoryGypsy is one of the great musicals of all time, with some of themost memorable tunes ever written - Everything’s Coming Up Roses,Let Me Entertain You - and yet it is also the universal story of amother and her relationships with her daughters. Set in the worldof burlesque and vaudeville in the 1920s and 30s, this is a story ofa domineering mother’s determination to pursue fame and stardom for her two young daughters. Momma Rose is the classicstage-mother, outrageous, brash, tough and larger than life. Andher dream for success is a dream she lives through her daughters.Of the two young singing and dancing girls, June is perceived byBook byArthur LaurentsArthur Laurents was born in New York City in 1918, and educated at Cornell University. He is best known as the playwrightwho penned such plays as Home of the Brave (1945), West Side Story(1957) and, of course, Gypsy (1959).Laurents' career in Hollywood as a screenwriter seems almostseparate from his career in the theatre, although he has sometimesbeen involved in the adaptation of his plays and musicals. His firstscreen credit was a shared one on The Snake Pit (1948), a harrowing study of mental illness starring Olivia de Havilland. Laurentsthen adapted Patrick Hamilton's play Rope (1948) for AlfredHitchcock, which was loosely based on the Leopold-Loeb murdercase. Other adaptations include Anna Lucasta (1949), Anastasia(1956), based on the play about a woman who may or may not bethe surviving daughter of the executed Russian Czar, and BonjourTristesse (1958).Laurents co-wrote most of the film adaptations of his stage work,beginning with 1949's Home of the Brave, which altered his originalstory that centred on a Jewish soldier to that of a black soldier.her mother as the one with all the talent, while Louise remains the ugly duckling. But it is from this childhood obscurity that the awkward Louise transforms into the dynamicburlesque queen, Gypsy Rose Lee. As we witness this transformation, we see a clear-eyed celebration of the compleximpulses that drive all dreamers and wanna-be performers.Gypsy is a musical fable, suggested by the real-life memoirs ofa great entertainer, Gypsy Rose Lee, whose mother Rosedevoted herself to her children’s stage careers.“I think so many plays today stem from anotion rather than an idea. There's a greatdifference.” Arthur LaurentsWith Ernest Lehman he adapted the hugely successful WestSide Story (1961), and with Leonard Spigelgass he wrote thescreenplay of Gypsy (1962) that featured a non-singing Rosalind Russell. He also worked on the screen version of TheTime of the Cuckoo which became David Lean's Summertime(1965). In 1973, Laurents adapted his own novel, The Way WeWere, the story of the romance between a Jewish woman anda WASP gentleman broken apart by cultural and politicaldifferences. The result, starring Barbra Streisand and RobertRedford, was a huge box-office success. Laurents followedwith The Turning Point (1977) which he produced with its director Herbert Ross. Also a critical and commercial success,this film told the tale of two fortyish women, one an agingballet star (Anne Bancroft), the other (Shirley MacLaine) whogave up dancing to raise a family and have a life of regrets.Although his books for the musicals West Side Story and Gypsywere nominated for Tony Awards, Laurents did not win untilHallelujah, Baby! in 1967 and La Cage aux Folles in 1984.4

Lyrics byStephen SondheimThe name of composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim(b.1930) has become synonymous with experimentation andexcellence in the field of musical theatre. Born in New YorkCity, he moved to rural Pennsylvania with his mother whenhis parents separated, where their neighbours included thefamous lyricist Oscar Hammerstein II. Sondheim began piano lessons at age seven, wrote original musicals in highschool and college, and after graduation wrote several episodes of the television series Topper. After a couple of attempts at Broadway musicals, Sondheim was chosen to writelyrics for Leonard Bernstein’s music in West Side Story (1957),one of the great landmarks of the American musical theatre.The success of Sondheim’s lyrics for Gypsy (1959) and Do IHear a Waltz (1965), and of his music and lyrics for A FunnyThing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1962), established himas a new leader on the Broadway scene. Soon came a spectacularly successful series of productions with music and lyrics by Sondheim and directed by another Broadway legend,The ComposerJule StyneIt was 1912 when the young Londoner Julius Stein, whowould become Jule Styne, arrived in America’s heartland,Chicago. Several years before, the youngster had been takento the London Hippodrome to see the great Scottish starHarry Lauder, and was so excited by the music that hejumped onto the stage and began prancing about withLauder. Amused and impressed, the singer advised musicaltraining for the lad. And so, once in Chicago, his father, Isadore Stein, virtually bankrupted himself on a second-handupright piano. From that moment on Julius began performing. He showed such a talent for the piano that he performedwith the Chicago, St Louis, and Detroit symphonies beforeage 10.By 1934 Styne and his wife of six years were tired of the gangwars of Chicago and moved to New York. There, he wasdiscovered by 20th Century Fox president, Joseph Schenck,who brought him to Hollywood; the world has been listeningBroadway will celebrate StephenSondheim’s 75th birthday in March2005 with a gala celebration featuring aparade of stars.Hal Prince. These included Company (1970), Follies (1971), ALittle Night Music (1973), Pacific Overtures (1976), and SweeneyTodd (1979). In 1981, the failure of the Broadway premiere ofMerrily We Roll Along brought an end to the Sondheim-Princepartnership, though both continued to have successful showswith other collaborators. Sondheim’s subsequent hits included three productions with director/writer James Lapine Sunday in the Park with George (1984), which won the PulitzerPrize for drama, Into the Woods (1987), and Passion (1994). Hislatest works include Frogs and Assassins. Among the manytributes Sondheim has received was in Toronto in 2001 for aWorld Leaders Festival “hommage” with musical direction byPaul Sportelli, the Shaw Festival’s Music Director. In 2000Sondheim was honoured with the Praemium Imperiale awardby the Japan Art Association for his work in film and theatre.In addition to his Pulitzer Prize, Sondheim has won six Tonyawards, seven Grammy awards, an Edgar award (for a mystery screenplay written with Anthony Perkins) and an Oscar(for the song “Sooner or Later” from Dick Tracy, 1990).Did you know that Jule Styne wasalso the composer of that seasonalclassic, “Let It Snow, Let It Snow,Let It Snow”?to Styne songs ever since - 1,500 published songs, to be exact. In Hollywood, where Styne found a champion in FrankSinatra, his collaboration with Sammy Cahn yielded a stringof unforgettable hits plus the exuberant score for MGM'sAnchors Away and the Oscar-winning Three Coins in a Fountain.The genius of Jule Styne has sparked the theatrical careers ofBroadway legends such as Carol Channing, Judy Holliday,Mary Martin, Ethel Merman, Carol Burnett, Nanette Fabray,Phil Silvers, and Barbra Streisand. His unforgettable hits include some of Broadway’s most memorable songs "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend," "The Party's Over,""Don't Rain On My Parade" “ People” and of course, fromhis collaboration with Stephen Sondheim, "Let Me EntertainYou,” “Everything’s Coming Up Roses,” and “Some People”from Gypsy, (1959).Jule Styne was one of America's most prolific songwriters; hedied, aged 88, of heart failure on September 21, 1994, in NewYork City.5

An Interview with the DirectorJackie MaxwellFrom an Interview with Jackie Maxwell, Artistic Director of the Shaw Festival and director of Gypsy.Q: How appropriate is Gypsy for student audiences?A: There is no doubt in my mind that Gypsyshould be seen by all teens. It’s all about a family, and every teen I know will be able to identify with the dynamics in this play. It’s timeless.The play is really two stories - one is the backstage life of theatre and vaudeville in the 20sand 30s. And the other story, the one that Ithink is the heart of the play, is the classic storyof a mother who believes she knows what’sbest for her children. Of course every teenagerwill recognize the problems with that, and inthe play you see how each of her two daughters react to their mother’s determination.Momma Rose is an incredibly powerfulwoman, overwhelmingly so. We had a domineering father last year in Rutherford and Son,and now this year we have Momma Rose. She’s played byNora McLellan, who has both the voice and acting ‘chops’Nora McLellan as Momma Rose.(as we call it), to handle this woman. She’s powerful! But isshe tyrannical? I mean, is she doing this for herself, or for herdaughters? You have to look at why she makes the choicesshe does. She’s not planning on deserting those kids, like herown mother did; she’s determined to see themthrough everything. There is something bothscary and attractive about her behaviour.In the song “If Momma Was Married” you getto see what it’s like for the sisters, what it’s likebeing the daughter of such a strong-willedwoman and how it both pulls the girls togetherand drives them apart. And it’s funny, the songis very funny. You have to see the positive andthe negative. So teachers shouldn’t be fearfulabout bringing their students to see Gypsy.Sure, we visit the backstage world of burlesque,but just wait till you see Momma Rose’s reaction when she’s confronted with that world!Gypsy is a real story. It’s set in the world ofvaudeville and burlesque, but the real heart ofit is the relationship between a mother and her two daughters- that can happen anywhere.Photo by Shin Sugino6

The MusicHere are some of the memorable song titles from GypsyLet Me Entertain YouMusical Director Paul SportelliSome PeopleSmall WorldMr GoldstoneYou’ll Never Get Away From MeIf Momma Was MarriedAll I Need Is The GirlEverything’s Coming Up RosesTogether Wherever We GoYou Gotta Get a GimmickRose’s TurnCostume Design for Louise by Judith BowdenCostume Design for Dainty June by Judith BowdenAnd here are the words to one of the greatshowstoppers: Everything’s Coming Up Roses(Styne/Sondheim)You’ll be swell, you’ll be great,Gonna have the whole world on a plate!Starting here, starting now,Honey, everything’s coming up roses!Clear the decks, clear the tracks,You got nothing to do but relax!Blow a kiss, take a bow –Honey, everything’s coming up roses!Now’s your inning –Stand the world on its ear!Set it spinning,That’ll be just the beginning!Curtain up, light the lights,You got nothing to hit but the heights!You’ll be swell,You’ll be great,I can tell –Just you wait!That lucky star I talk about is due!Honey, everything’s coming up roses for me and for you!You can do it,All you need is a hand.We can do it,Momma is gonna see to it!Curtain up, light the lights,We got nothing to hit but the heights!I can tell,Wait and see!There’s the bell,Follow me,And nothing’s gonna stop us till we’re through!Honey, everything’s coming up roses and daffodils,Everything’s coming up sunshine and Santa Claus,Everything’s coming up bright lights and lollipops,Everything’s coming up roses for me and for you!7

ProductionHistoryGypsy’s original production in 1959 was directed by the legendary director/choreographer Jerome Robbins, and starredEthel Merman as Momma Rose. It has been revived severaltimes: a 1973 London production, featuring Angela Lansburyas Rose, transferred to Broadway the next year, while subsequent Broadway revivals starred Tyne Daly (1989) and Bernadette Peters (2003). (Both Lansbury and Daly won Tonyawards for their performances, and Merman and Peters tooreceived nominations.) Gypsy was made into a motion picturewith Rosalind Russell as Rose and Natalie Wood as Louise in1962, and into a TV movie starring Bette Midler in 1993.Below is a rendering for Act One, Scene One for the Shaw Festival’sproduction of Gypsy 2005, complete with set notes.Set Designer: Peter HartwellLighting Designer: Kevin LamotteOn LightingKevin Lamotte, Director of Lighting Design for theShaw Festival, and Lighting Designer for Gypsy, discusses a career in LightingQ: What do you do? I oversee the lighting departments atthe Shaw Festival and design the lighting for three productions each year. I also freelance with many other theatre,dance and opera companies. The Shaw Festival employs asmany as six lighting designers, three lighting design assistantsand 12 electricians each season. Lighting designers are responsible for the intensity, colour, distribution and control ofthe lighting for a production. In artistic terms - visibility,composition, mood, movement, form.Q: In your field, what schools or training do you recommend? In Toronto I recommend Ryerson, York, or the University of Toronto; across the country, the University of Alberta, University of Victoria (BC), National Theatre School(Que.), and the Banff Centre (Alta.); in the US, Yale, orNYU, and UCLA for design. And for some good ‘tech’ programs, I’d say Ryerson, the National Theatre School, Sheridan College (Ont.) and Red Deer College (Alta.).Q: What do you NOT recommend? Dropping out andnot completing a post-secondary education.Q: In your field, if you were hiring someone, what doyou look for? I look for experience and a good reputationwith other peers that I respect. Mostly I look for enthusiasm,self-motivation and curiosity.Q: What DON’T you want? Complainers - cynical andpessimistic points of view don't help when you’re creatingsomething new.Q: In your field, where do you find the most work?Stage? Film? Ontario? Community theatres? I work entirely in live theatre on plays, modern dance/ballet and opera.My career is mostly national although I do work in the US afew times each year.Q: Best job/Worst job? Best: Lighting design - I enjoy thecollaboration with other artists. It's very rewarding to createsomething new and know that it’s good. And when the finallighting looks as if it couldn't be better any other way.Worst: Jobs I had during high school - loading thousands oflive chickens on a truck by hand. Picking tomatoes in the sunall day, all week, all month.8

The Real June and LouiseBurlesque, Broadway, and HollywoodGypsy Rose Lee was born in Seattle, Washington, asEllen June Hovick, the same name that was later givento her younger sister, actress June Havoc. Later, hermother Rose renamed her Louise. Rose had married JohnHovick, a newspaperman, at the age of fifteen, and became the classic example of a smothering stage mother domineering, aggressive and driven - and stories of hereccentricities abound. Her two daughters earned the family's money by appearing in vaudeville, where June's talentshone while Louise remained in the background. At 16,June married a boy in the act named Bobby Reed. Thestory is told that Rose had Bobby arrested and met him atthe police station carrying a hidden gun. Apparently shepulled the trigger, but thesafety catch was on, andBobby was freed. Notsurprisingly, June left theact. She continued towork in show businessthough, both on stageand screen, and made anumber of films for Hollywood. Her work wasmostly in comedies andmusicals, but she neverJune Havocachieved the fame (or thenotoriety) enjoyed by her big sister, Gypsy. Interestingly,Neil Barclay, who plays Cigar in the Shaw Festival production, saw June Havoc appear in Sweeney Todd at theNational Arts Centre in Ottawa in the early eighties. “Shewas an interesting kind of actress,” he remembers, “andkind of puckish.” June Havoc is currently living in theUnited States, and is the owner of a town, the Civil Wartown of Canning Crossing in Connecticut.Louise's singing and dancing talents were insufficient tosustain the act without June. Eventually though, it became apparent that Louise could earn money in burlesque. Her innovation here was her sense of humour, forwhile she stripped quite as thoroughly as any burlesquestar, she made the crowd laugh. She took the name GypsyRose Lee, became known as the “intellectual stripper”and stripped at Minsky's for four years, where she was frequently arrested, and had relationships with unsavory characters such as Rags Ragland and Eddy Braun, sometime actors/thugs. But Minsky’s also gave her the big break as aZiegfeld girl in Hot Cha, and she went on to theatre, twelvemovies and eventually her own television show, "The GypsyRose Lee Show" in 1958.In 1941, Gypsy wrote a thriller called The G-String Murders.Her second murder mystery, MotherFinds a Body, was published in 1942. Butit’s widely assumed that both bookswere ghost-penned by another author,Craig Rice. Regardless of who wrotethem, the public seemed to enjoy them.A movie adaptation of the first bookunder the title Lady of Burlesque, starringBarbara Stanwyck, did extremely well,even garnering an Oscar nomination in1944 for Best Music Score. In 1942Gypsy Rose LeeGypsy married William AlexanderKirkland, but by 1944 they were divorced. While married toKirkland, she had a son with Otto Preminger, Erik Lee, whowas known by three different names throughout his life Erik Kirkland, Erik de Diego, and Erik Preminger. Gypsywas married for a third time in 1948 to Julio de Diego. Thatmarriage also ended in divorce.In 1954, as the girls’ mother Rose was dying of colon cancer,her final words were for Gypsy: "Wherever you go. I'll beright there. When you get your own private kick in the ass,just remember - it's a present from me to you." With theirmother dead, the sisters now felt free to write about her without risking a lawsuit. Gypsy's memoirs, entitled Gypsy, werepublished in 1957, and were the inspiration for the musicalGypsy. June did not like the way she was portrayed in thepiece, and the conflict between the sisters lasted a decade.The incredible success of the play and the subsequent moviesecured Gypsy’s future. A smoker, she was diagnosed in 1969with metastatic lung cancer. "This is my present, you know,"she told June. "My present from mother." She died in LosAngeles, California, in 1970.9

Classroom ApplicationsThe following pages suggest questions and activities students might exploreBEFORE attending the play.Theme OneGYPSY IMAGESACTIVITY*In pairs, list eight words associated with the word “gypsy”.*Pair up with another pair, forming groups of 4.*Combine and/or eliminate words from each pair’s list so that the group of 4 shares a common set of eightwords associated with the word “gypsy”.*The task for each group is to portray their eight words in a two-minute scene about gypsies. All objects used in thescene are to be mimed.*Preliminary decisions include: What role will each person play? Where and when will the scene occur?*The scene begins with only one character. Decide who the character will be and what he or she will be doing.*Decide on the most appropriate second character to enter the scene.*Decide on the third and fourth character to enter.*The scene does not need to tell a complete story. The goal is to use all 4 characters to convey the eight words yourgroup has selected.*After a brief rehearsal time, show the scenes to the class.*After watching the scenes, decide on eight words that most accurately identify your class perceptions of the word“gypsy”.*How many of the words have positive connotations?*After watching Gypsy, determine which of your words apply to the play.10

Theme TwoSTAGE MOTHERSGypsy is based on the real-life memoirs of a 1930s entertainer named Gypsy Rose Lee, whose mother Rose devoted herself to herchildren’s stage careers.DISCUSSIONThe first scene of Gypsy shows the rehearsal of a children’s talent show. The first line of the play is: “Everybody shut up.Mothers out.”*What attitude does this line convey about mothers in the theatre?*When you think of the term “stage mother”, what impressions come to mind?*Do “stage fathers” exist?*What is the difference between showing interest in your child and becoming a stage mother?*In her memoirs, Gypsy Rose Lee calls her mother a “jungle mother”. What does the expression “It’s a jungle outthere” mean to you?RESEARCHOn the internet, research one of the following:*Wanda Holloway*Jon Benet Ramsey*Thomas Junta*The Annual Stage Mother Awards11

BRAINSTORMINGACTIVITYImagine yourself as a parent whose primary goal has been achieving success in the entertainment industry for your children.In pairs, decide how you would solve the following problems:*You want your children to shine at an audition for which you have spent hours planning, rehearsing, and makingcostumes. At the theatre, you witness favoritism to an untalented child and realize that the audition is unfair. Howdo you handle the situation?*You need money to travel to Los Angeles where you hope to arrange meetings for your children with agents andproducers. Your father has given you money in the past, but refuses to give you any more. How do you get themoney from him?*You need to get your children across the country so that important theatre people can meet them. You have no carand very little money. What do you do?*You think your daughters would have a better chance of success if their act included back-up singers and dancers.Without money or connections, how will you recruit youngsters for the act?*You have rented hotel accommodation for yourself and your two daughters. When the manager discovers that youalso have three boys and a number of pets with you, he makes an angry appearance to evict you. What do you do?12

HOTSEAT ACTIVITYIn this activity, characters sit in chairs called “hotseats” at the front of the class. By questioning these characters, circumstances ofa story are gradually built.The background to the exercise is this. A single mother has been staying in a hotel with her children who have been singing anddancing in a show at a nearby theatre. After performing twice a day for three weeks, the children’s contract has now ended.While checking out of the hotel, the mother is caught with hotel silverware and linen.Characters in the “hotseats” will include:* the mother* the children* someone who wants to marry the mother and settle down* a police officer* the theatre manager* the hotel managerSelect volunteers from the class to play each of the hotseat characters.Everyone else in the class should think of a question or two to ask the hotseat characters.In asking and answering questions, remember that you are working together to build both background information and a story.After several people have been questioned, summarize the story devised by the class.13

Theme ThreeTHEATRE TERMS AND REFERENCESRESEARCHMuch of Gypsy’s action occurs in historical theatres across the United States,and characters often refer to areas or objects found within theatre settings.*Define the theatrical meaning of flies, floods, and wings.*What is meant by the line: “Kill the floods and bring in #4”?*List and describe the uses for various types of theatre curtains and lights.In chronicling events of American theatre in the 1920s and 1930s, Gypsy introduces significant names and terms in 20th century performance history. Research the following references from the play:*Vaudeville*Burlesque*The Pantages Circuit and Alexander Pantages*The Orpheum Circuit and Marcus Heiman*Louis, Billy and Harold Minsky*Ziegfeld Follies*Alfred Lunt and Lynn FontanneDISCUSSIONAdvances in audio technology, including sound recording and movie projection, were major causes of vaudeville’s decline inthe 1930s. Almost eight decades later, advances in computer technology are greatly affecting today’s music recording industry.What are your predictions for the next decade in terms of:*how music will be recorded*how recorded music will be obtained and played by the public*how recording artists will be paid, and how record companies will earn money14