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The "Lord of the Rings" Official Stage Companion: Staging the Greatest Show on Middle-Earth Hardcover – June 4, 2007
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"The concept of the show is daring, the choreography is superb -- I mean superb -- the costumes are fabulous, the special effects stunning, and the sets and the way they dovetail into the action are nothing short of stupendous. I have never seen anything like it -- ever." --Brian May, Ottawa Citizen "Breathtaking ! a stirring triumph of theatrical magic." -- The Times "A breathtaking theatrical adaptation." -- Daily Mail "Ingenious ! a definitive mega-musical." -- TIME Magazine "Thrilling and irresistible ! an intelligent musical." -- Guardian Stunning ! a big, bold piece of popular musical theatre." -- Sunday Express "The greatest show on Middle Earth. The parade of images is ceaseless and astonishing. This show, reputedly the most expensive ever, has spent its millions wisely." The Guardian "From whimsical to magical and majestic, the stage production of Lord of the Rings is lavishly designed to appeal to Rings newcomers as well as diehard fans of Tolkien's trilogy. The epic fantasy is full of energy and wonder. There isn't a weak link in all the elements -- the sound, music, lighting, costumes. Innovative stage designs seamlessly carry the audience through transitions of mood and locale for this grand, mythic journey." Toronto National Post
About the Author
Gary Russell has worked widely in media, as a television actor, script consultant, magazine editor, reviewer, novelist and audio producer. He is the author of various film and television books, including four highly acclaimed books on 'The Art of The Lord of the Rings' movies, as well as the Doctor Who books, 'Regeneration' and 'The Inside Story'.
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
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This "Official Stage Companion" details the process of translating Tolkien's masterpiece into a live performance on a stage, and all of the limitations and possibilities therein. It's one thing to have a multi-million-dollar budget, cameras and crew that can travel anywhere in the world, and multiple three-hour installments with which to make a movie; it is another altogether to produce an epic tale of this magnitude in one single location night after night.
For Tolkien fans, this book is fascinating in seeing what parts of the story were kept and which were cut - and why (time constraints, production capability, etc.) - as well as how this team of creative folks envisioned the characters and setting (see Galadriel's London production costume, and the orcs!). This is not the Peter Jackson movie, and while the film was beautiful, the production chronicled here stands as a masterpiece in its own right.
For theatre fans (and aspiring directors/costumers/set designers), this book is a must-have. Walk beside the team as they work through the process from initial concept to opening night, garner ideas for your own show, see just what it takes to put something like this together. The process of producing a play/musical/production is a quest of its own, complete with its own joys and frustrations, and this book lovingly shares all of these.
The photographs are high quality, although some are a bit too dark to see all of the details - this due to the lighting during the show, and thus unavoidable - and if you like pretty pictures, this book has them in spades. It's a beautifully arranged book, worthy of display as well as reading again and again.
"Lothlorien is no more but her beauty is here reborn, you have used my gift well Samwise Gamgee...Frodo Baggins, jewel among Hobbits, if your hurts grieve you still and the memory or your burden is heavy come with us ... all your wounds and weariness will be healed ..."