Links & Suggested Reading
Compiled by John Kenrick
This ad for the Follies of 1911 appeared in the program for
The Pink Lady (1911), a hit musical produced by Ziegfeld's sometime partners,
Klaw and Erlanger. You can click on this thumbnail photo to see the full size
Baral, Robert. Revue: A Nostalgic Reprise of the Great Broadway Period.
New York: Fleet Publishing Company, 1962. A veteran
Variety columnist spent ten years compiling this well-researched and
nostalgic look back at the classic Broadway revues. Affectionate, lavishly illustrated,
and a fine read.
Bordman, Gerald. Jerome Kern: His Life and
Music. New York: Oxford University Press, 1980. The
definitive resource on Kern and his work it is all here, a magnificent example of
research. Includes extensive coverage of Show Boat.
Burke, Billie With a Feather On My Nose. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts,
1948. From wife of Ziegfeld to playing Glinda in MGM's Wizard of Oz, Burke
recalls her fascinating life in this enjoyable memoir. Lots of fun anecdotes,
particularly about Ziegfeld's habits and lifestyle.
Carter, Randolph. The World of Flo Ziegfeld. New York: Praeger Publishers,
1974. Although Carter has a tendency to accept myth as fact, this is a quick,
enjoyable overview of the Ziegfeld legend.
Davis, Lee. Scandals and Follies: The Rise
and Fall of the Great Broadway Revue. New York: Limelight Editions, 2000.An entertaining overview of the history of American
variety stage entertainment, focusing on the legendary Broadway revues of the
early 20th Century. Includes extensive coverage of Ziegfeld and his
Fordin, Hugh. Getting To Know Him: Oscar Hammerstein II. New York: Ungar
Publishing Company, 1977. Sensitive and superb, the definitive
biography of a gentle giant. One of the best theatrical biographies ever. Covers
Show Boat and Ziegfeld's role in its development.
Farnsworth, Marjorie. The Ziegfeld Follies: A History in Pictures and Text.
New York: Bonanza Books, 1956. An affectionate look back at the Follies, with
an assist from many series alumni. Not factually flawless, but tremendous fun.
Glenn, Susan A. Female Spectacle: The Theatrical Roots of Modern Feminism.
Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2000. A insightful, clearly written academic
look at how theatre helped redefine the role of women in American society. Includes
extensive discussion of Ziegfeld and the Follies.
Golden, Eve. Anna Held and The Birth of Ziegfeld's Broadway. Louisville, KY:
University Press of Kentucky, 2000. A readable and well-researched biography that
debunks myths and gives a fresh look at the way Ziegfeld's theatrical career took off.
A well-deserved tribute to the historically underrated Held.
Goldman, Howard. Fanny Brice: The Original Funny Girl. New York: Oxford
University Press, 1992. A well researched and refreshingly readable biography of
the woman who inspired Funny Girl – proof that truth can be far more fun than
fiction. Great insights into the show business world of the early 20th Century. The
appendix includes Fanny's detailed performance catalog.
Higham, Charles. Ziegfeld. Henry Regnery Co., Chicago.
1972. Easily the most readable Ziegfeld biography to date.
Debunks some myths, but perpetuates a few too. Higham tries to give some sense of
this complex character's personality.
Kruger, Miles. Show Boat: The Story of a Classic American Musical.
New York: Oxford University Press, 1977. A landmark in the field of musical
theater research. Kruger gives a detailed look at how Ziegfeld's greatest production
came to be, and how the show has evolved over the years. A theater scholar's dream
Mizejewski, Linda. Ziegfeld Girl: Image and Icon in Culture and Cinema.
Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1999. An academic approach with refreshingly
readable text make this an enjoyable and insightful examination of how the Ziegfeld legacy spread through
the pop culture of the 20th Century.
Smith, Eric Lelell. Bert Williams. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland
& Co., 1992. A scholarly bio of the groundbreaking black comic, from variety to
Broadway and beyond.
Wodehouse, P.G and Guy Bolton. Bring On the Girls. New York: Simon &
Shuster, 1953. Two of the most successful librettists of Broadway's golden age share
reminiscences and anecdotes. More a pleasant hodgepodge than a formal autobiography,
Ziegfeld makes several appearances.
Ziegfeld, Patricia. The Ziegfeld's Girl: Confessions of an Abnormally Happy
Childhood. Boston, MA: Little, Brown & Company, 1963. The only child of
Ziegfeld and Billie Burke takes a sometimes candid but clearly affectionate look back
at life with her celebrated parents. She buys into some of Ziegfeld's most questionable
legends and gets some facts out of proper order, but her first hand recollections
(including some truly hilarious family conversations) make this fun reading.
Ziegfeld, Richard and Paulette. The Ziegfeld Touch: The Life and Times of Florenz
Ziegfeld, Jr. New York: Harry N. Abrams Inc., 1993. Cousins of "the great
glorifier" put together this exhaustive and long overdue compendium of
photos and data. While covering the major points of his private life, they
concentrate on his 83 productions, with cast lists, plots and hundreds of
photos. Unlike most oversized "coffee table" books, this is a serious bit of scholarship
and an archival treasure chest.
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