Stephen Schwartz Musicals
Godspell - New Book, Albums, and More
Stephen Schwartz launched his songwriting career at age 23 with the score for Godspell. Over the years, so many albums have been released--how do you choose which to buy? Read all about albums, sheet music, production tips, and all things Godspell on our Godspell pages. Now a new book, The Godspell Experience, reveals the whole story of the show.
For Wicked See our Wicked the Musical pages.
The Stephen Schwartz - Winnie Holzman musical Wicked is the 10th longest running show on Broadway. It is also one of the longest running musicals on London's West end and continues to tour.
Read all about it on this site and visit our Wicked shop for souvenir and gift suggestions including autographed books.
Everything else by Stephen Schwartz
For other musicals, see the menu on the right. Hunchback of Notre Dame for Stage, Pippin, Working, Children of Eden, and so many more - find cast albums, sheet music, and show details. ---->
Also check the MORE SHOWS AND SONGS page for other musicals and new projects. This includes Magic to Do cast album from the Princess Cruise line, Schikaneder - a new musical, Mumbai Musical movie, Disney's My Son Pinocchio [Formerly Geppetto and Son], My Fairy Tale, Bernstein's Mass, Schwartz choral pieces: "Keramos," "Testimony" and a section of the "Tyler Suite," and more.
Stephen Schwartz News & Concerts
Keep up with Mr. Schwartz, meet him in person, hear him in concert. Visit our news page and subscribe to the Schwartz Scene newsletter.
SUBSCRIBE: Free Newsletter The Schwartz Scene
Catch up with Schwartz's latest news, upcoming events where you can meet him, and more with this free quarterly email newsletter unique to MusicalSchwartz.com Free newsletter - The Schwartz Scene.
Defying Gravity Schwartz biography
Discover the world of Stephen Schwartz and his musicals by reading behind-the-scenes stories in Defying Gravity: The Creative Career of Stephen Schwartz, from Godspell to Wicked Defying Gravity - by Carol de Giere.
(Stephen Schwartz and Friends concert photo by Maryann Lopinto)
MusicalSchwartz.com features hundreds of pages about the work of the legendary composer and lyricist Stephen Schwartz. Mr. Schwartz is best known for his musicals Wicked, Godspell, and Pippin as well as his work for film for Disney and DreamWorks studios, such as for Disney's Enchanted and DreamWorks's film The Prince of Egypt. MusicalSchwartz.com is an independent site, recognized by the Schwartz office, and built by Carol and Terry de Giere. Carol is the author of the Stephen Schwartz biography Defying Gravity and is an authority on Schwartz.
If you want help finding information about Schwartz musicals, please feel free email me at email@example.com but be sure to put the word "COMMENT" or "QUESTION" in the subject line of your email so that I'll notice it. (If you don't hear from me, try again).
An Introduction to Stephen Schwartz
Schwartz's musical hits for the stage include:
Schwartz is the only songwriter with three Broadway shows running more than 1900 performances on Broadway. On MusicalSchwartz.com you'll find the cast albums for these shows, so you can listen to their music wherever you are. One of the major factors in Schwartz's appeal is the accessibility of his music.
Theatre writer Stanley Green, in his book The World of Musical Comedy, says of Schwartz: "What the composer has brought to the theater is a modern, youthful, crisp sound, primarily influenced by rock but also endowed with sensitivity and melodic grace."
Wicked Producer Marc Platt became a fan of Schwartz's music while performed in Godspell in college. He is quoted in Defying Gravity as commenting on the accessibility. "The wonderful thing about music is that it has no filter for people. Music seeps into you somehow. And Stephen's music, however you want to label it, is music that people love. It is emotional music and it wears its emotion on its sleeve."
Schwartz also stands out as one of the few who has worked as a composer-lyricist, a lyricist (for Disney and Dreamworks films, Bernstein's Mass and other projects), and as a composer.
With a career in the theater lasting over forty years thus far, Stephen Schwartz (born March 6, 1948) can be considered to be among the three most successful American musical theater composer of his generation. Other steller songwriters or songwriting teams for Broadway came before him, such as Cy Coleman, Kander & Ebb, Jerry Herman, Schmidt & Jones, and Stephen Sondheim (whose longest running show – Forum – opened in 1962). Younger songwriters rose to success after him: Jonathan Larson (Rent), Marc Shaiman (Hairspray), Ahrens and Flaherty (Ragtime).
Schwartz's notable peers include Alan Menken and Marvin Hamlisch. Alan Menken, born in 1949, has primarily focused on Disney films although in more recent years his musicals have been staged on Broadway. Marvin Hamlisch (A Chorus Line), four years older than Schwartz, also has his longest list of credits in film.
Stephen Schwartz grew up on Long Island in Roslyn Heights, NY. As a child, when he was called "Steve Schwartz," he auditioned for the Juilliard School of Music's preparatory division piano and composition lessons, and was admitted. He studied there on weekends for four years. Not destined to be a piano prodigy, he loved to improvise his own songs even from an early age. He attended Carnegie Mellon Unversity where he received a BFA in drama in 1968. While at Carnegie, he co-wrote four musicals for the extracurricular Scotch 'n' Soda club that were produced in the spring, including Pippin, Pippin, an early version of his future hit musical Pippin.
After finding an agent, Shirley Bernstein, Stephen Schwartz started his career in 1969 by writing a song for Butterfies Are Free. In 1971, he wrote music and new lyrics for Godspell. Next came his music and lyrics for Pippin and The Magic Show. When Godspell moved from off-Broadway to Broadway in 1976, Schwartz then had three successful shows running on Broadway at the same time.
Schwartz's songs on the cast albums for The Baker's Wife helped keep the show in motion ever since it failed to reach Broadway in 1976. Working with Charles Lisanby and then John Caird, Schwartz created a new musical, Children of Eden. It has never played on Broadway but a cast recording was made in 1998 and the show is quite popular for regional theatres. Schwartz co-adapted Working and wrote lyrics for Rags before transferring some of his creative energy to Hollywood.
For Disney, Stephen Schwartz wrote lyrics for the film scores for Pocahontas, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and later Enchanted, and for DreamWorks, he wrote both music and lyrics for teh songs of The Prince of Egypt.
Opening in 2003, the Stephen Schwartz-Winnie Holzman musical Wicked became a hit on Broadway and soon thereafter, around the world. Read all about Wicked.
He completed a stage version of his Disney TV movie Geppetto, which later was renamed Disney's My Son Pinocchio. It's a version of the Pinocchio tale told from the father's point of view. It has since become a popular musical for local productions, even though it has never played on Broadway.
Other work includes songs for a Hans Christian Anderson celebration--a musical called My Fairy Tale, and more: See More Schwartz songs. His family musical, Captain Louie ran twice Off-Broadway, toured the USA, and is now being made available for local groups to perform.
Find over sixty Schwartz songs or songbooks at Sheet Music Plus [new browser window] (opens new browser window)
More Songs by Stephen Schwartz
Songs: Butterflies are Free theme song, Life with Mikey "Cold Enough to Snow" (lyrics) (on Uncharted Territory, Personals (Music for several songs), A My Name is Still Alice (one song), "Manchild Lullaby" (music), and "Rewriting History" (music) See recordings list.
Features of this independent Web site include:
Stephen Schwartz bio, awards, Schwartz interviews, and all about his musicals
Note on official sites
For official data on Broadway musicals and plays, go to IBDB.com Internet Broadway Database. You can search under "Stephen Schwartz" to find details on Godspell when it played on Broadway, Pippin, The Magic Show, Working, Rags, and Wicked. If you search under performances, you can find out which shows are the longest running on Broadway.
See StephenSchwartz.com for the composer's official website.
ABOUT STEPHEN'S MUSIC: David Gauci, a Cabaret performer in Australia who helped create a Stephen Schwartz show, praises the range of Stephen's music. "While most cabaret performers cram their shows with Sondheim songs, which challenge your brain, Stephen Schwartz' songs feature powerful lyrics with strong and memorable melodies that directly engage your heart. His music crosses many styles, from traditional Broadway foot-tappers to tender ballads and contemporary pop, drawing on universal themes that make you smile, cry and laugh."
From Noah B. of Oregon: For me, Wicked has been an incredibly eye-opening musical. I have felt so many of the songs impact me in an emotional profoundness I never expected. I can feel Elphaba's excitement in the prospect of acceptance in "The Wizard and I", I can tap into my own formula for sociability while singing "Popular" with Galinda, I can feel the liberty of Elphie's first flight in "Defying Gravity", and I can cry with the agony of separation in "For Good".
All in all, Stephen Schwartz's music has become a frame to the world I look at daily, giving everything an accent of beauty, poignancy, and just a little bit of beautiful, green-tinted, enchantment.
A truly astounding musical, Wicked will always hold a special place in my heart.