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Publisher's Summary

We see Bob Fosse's legacy everywhere - from Broadway to "Billy Jean" to Beyoncé's moves in the "Single Ladies" video. Yet in spite of Fosse'sdeep cultural significance, no biography has ever brought him fully to life, unveiling the man behind the bowler hat and the swaggering sex appeal. Now acclaimed cultural historian Sam Wasson traces Fosse's numberless reinventions of himself over a career that would spawn The Pajama Game, Cabaret, Pippin, Chicago, All That Jazz, and other iconic works of art andearn him Tonys, Emmys, and an Oscar.

Wasson traces not only Fosse's prodigious professional life but his intense relationships with everyone from Liza Minnelli, FredAstaire, and Neil Simon to Shirley MacLaine, Jessica Lange, and Dustin Hoffman.Through extensive interviews with collaborators and lovers and unprecedented access to Fosse's archives, Wasson also reveals the deep wounds that propelled his subject's excessive appetites - for spotlights, women, and life itself. In Fosse, Wasson's stylish, effervescent prose proves the ideal vehicle for reanimating Bob Fosse as he truly was - after hours, close up, and in vibrant color.

©2013 Blackstone Audio; 2013 Sam Wasson

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

High concept biography, well executed

Wasson does more than just chart the life and career of Bob Fosse. He uses the dancer/choreographer/director to paint a sprawling picture of the sea change in the performing arts from vaudeville to MTV. Fosse is interesting in his own right, but the connection to so many aspects of American culture that is particularly compelling. The worlds of dance, theatre, television, and film are all deftly handled. The paradoxes of the man are front and center throughout, with Wasson being alternately critical and forgiving of his shortcomings. There are hints of mythologizing throughout, but they're often balanced by acknowledging Fosse's insecurities and contradictions. Fosse is an innovator and a relic, an artist and a hack, kind and cruel, selfish and selfless. This biography is informative, but its value doesn't come from learning the details of Fosse's life. It's Wasson's ability to contextualize and synthesize his 60 years that make this book essential reading.

The reader Jim Meskimen is excellent. Confident, articulate, expressive, and a great tone. A wonderful audiobook experience on all fronts.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Didn't want it to end.

A must for anyone who loves American musical theater. Made me want to see all his shows.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Well researched, well written, well narrated

While Fosse is a tragic tale, it includes the highs and lows of one of Broadway's legends. I enjoyed all of the history this book strung together for me. Meskimen is a master narrator and he kept me engaged and interested throughout.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Glad to not be a genius

Where does Fosse rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

One of the best!

What other book might you compare Fosse to and why?

I would compare it to other Broadway biographies I've read, Meryl Secrest's on Sondheim for instance, but it's looser and sharper and less reverent.

What does Jim Meskimen bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Jim's voice provides warmth and humor to an otherwise lurid tale.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

The man behind the razzle dazzle

Any additional comments?

A must read for anyone thinking of going into the business...a cautionary tale.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Chris
  • New York, NY, United States
  • 02-16-14

Entertaining and In-Depth

A very enjoyable listen of a fascinating career. Well written, read, and realized, this is a great downloads for fans of the American musical.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • David
  • Richmond Heights, MO, United States
  • 03-23-14

what a fascinating man

Would you consider the audio edition of Fosse to be better than the print version?

I didn't read the print version

What was one of the most memorable moments of Fosse?

The creative process behind some iconic moments in show business

Have you listened to any of Jim Meskimen’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

no

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

what a complicated man

Any additional comments?

I loved the behind the scenes stories

0 of 1 people found this review helpful