Want to listen to every episode of the Theatre History Podcast? Here are links to every one of our fascinating conversations with artists, scholars, and others whose work involves the vast history of performance and theatre.

Episode 72: The Theatre History Podcast is proud to feature a two-part episode in partnership with Stories from the Eastern West, a fellow podcast that presents “little-known histories” from Central and Eastern Europe.

Episode 71: The Theatre History Podcast is proud to feature a two-part episode in partnership with Stories from the Eastern West, a fellow podcast that presents “little-known histories” from Central and Eastern Europe. In this, the first of two parts, listeners will learn more about the work of revolutionary theatre director Jerzy Grotowski.

Episode 70: Who can forget the timeless moments in Shakespeare’s plays, such as Hamlet’s encounter with the Ghost, Beatrice and Benedick’s playful sparring, or the happy ending to King Lear? If that last example doesn’t ring a bell, it’s because it’s from a different version of the famous tragedy, one that comes from the era known as the Restoration. Coming after a period of civil war, during which English theatres had been forcibly closed, the Restoration saw the revival of Shakespeare’s work onstage. However, the plays didn’t return in quite the same way that they’d appeared before the wars: they were staged in new venues, rewritten to fit changing tastes, and featured women in roles that had previously been played by boys.

Dr. Amanda Eubanks Winkler and Dr. Richard Schoch are working to help us better understand how Shakespeare’s works changed in performance during the Restoration with their project, Performing Restoration Shakespeare. In addition to facilitating scholarship on these revised plays, Amanda and Richard have also partnered with institutions such as the Folger Shakespeare Library to produce them onstage. Amanda joins us for this episode to introduce us to the world of Restoration Shakespeare and to explain what the project has accomplished so far.

Episode 69: Popular culture has largely forgotten about the freak show – or has it? The display of so-called “freaks,” human beings with bodies that were perceived as drastically different from what was considered “normal,” was once an incredibly popular form of public entertainment, but one which we now look back on with embarrassment. However, as Dr. Matt DiCintio explains in this episode, the origins of the freak show reveal fascinations and anxieties with matters of race and physical difference that remain with us to this very day.

Episode 68: Mary Ann Yates is the best actress whom you’ve never heard of. That’s how Dr. Elaine McGirr characterizes this fascinating woman, who rose to stardom on the eighteenth-century British stage and later went on to become the first female manager of a major London theatre. As Elaine explains in this episode, Yates’s time as the reigning queen of the stage, as well as her subsequent obscurity, reveal a lot about how we write women into —and out of—theatrical history.

Episode 67: If you’ve ever tried to get permission to perform a play, you’ve probably encountered some issues having to do with theatrical copyright. But where did the concept of copyrighting theatrical works come from? What do the legal wrangles over who owns the rights to a performance say about the nature of theatre?

Episode 66: How do you depict pregnancy onstage when your cast is all-male? That was one of a number of problems that English playwrights and performers faced in the Stuart era, when plays like The Winter’s Tale frequently began to feature pregnancies as major plot points. Dr. Sara BT Thiel has been exploring this subject, and it’s resulted in a chapter entitled “’Cushion Come Forth’: Materializing Pregnancy on the Stuart Stage.” The chapter appears in the new book Stage Matters: Props, Bodies, and Spaces in Shakespearean Performance. Sara joins us to explain how Stuart-era playwrights and theatre companies created the illusion of pregnancy onstage, as well as the significance of her research to how we understand the depiction of women in Shakespeare’s time.

Episode 65: Dr. Robert Davis has been studying the world of nineteenth-century theatre in New York City for much of his career, but he’s recently engaged with that world in a new and unconventional way. Robert is the author of Broadway: 1849, an online game and app that takes the form of a multiple-choice novel. Players can explore what it was like to manage a theatre in the 1840s and navigate the outsized personalities and harrowing events that marked the theatrical world of the period. Robert joined us to talk about how his game reflects New York’s social, political, and artistic history, as well as the ways in which turning this subject matter into a game provide a new perspective on historical events.

Episode 64: When people think of Indonesia’s performing arts, traditions such as the shadow puppets of wayang kulit and the dance-drama of Bali often come to mind. However, as our guest for this episode teaches us, there’s a vibrant modern theatre scene that developed over the course of the twentieth century and continues to produce new and exciting work today. Dr. Cobina Gillitt introduces us to the work of playwright and director Putu Wijaya, as well as the larger context in which modern Indonesian theatre emerged.

Episode 63: The classic circus, featuring performing animals in three rings under the big top, has passed away. What’s taken its place? That’s the question that CarlosAlexis Cruz is exploring with his studies in the rise of acrobatics and the modern circus. He joins us for this episode to explain how the circus has increasingly become a place where performers use their bodies to tell stories and invite the audience to join with them in celebrating the amazing physical potential of the human form.

Episode 62: How did African American theatre and the struggle for civil rights intersect? For many critics in the 1950s and ’60s, they didn’t, at least not in a meaningful way. But, as Dr. Julie Burrell points out in a recent essay for Black Perspectives, the blog of the African American Intellectual History Society, some of the works produced in the 1940s and ’50s are far more radical than we might expect. She explores the story of William Branch’s A Medal for Willie, a 1951 one-act that impressed Lorraine Hansberry and demonstrated the subversive potential for Black theatre before the 1960s.

Episode 61: Back in 2016, playwright Chantal Bilodeau announced that she was breaking up with Aristotle. In addition to her work writing plays, Chantal is also a translator and the Artistic Director of the Arctic Cycle, which aims to create theatre that engages with the ongoing climate crisis. That latter role, in particular, has led her to rethink how we write plays and how we approach the legacy of the famous ancient Greek theorist. Chantal joined the podcast to discuss her feelings towards Aristotle, as well as to discuss how we might begin to move past his strictures in creating new theatre.

Episode 60: When we think of operetta, words like “edgy” and “sexy” rarely come to mind. Dr. Kevin Clarke is hoping to change that through his work with the Operetta Research Center, which focuses on studying and reevaluating works from the first half of the twentieth century. These had long been denigrated as “silver operetta,” as opposed to the supposed Golden Age of the late nineteenth century, when composers like Johann Strauss and Gilbert & Sullivan created some of the most famous examples of the genre. Weimar operetta was a vibrant expression of international culture and sexual liberation, incorporating new musical influences such as jazz and frequently showcasing the work of Jewish artists, which made it a particular target of the Nazi regime. After World War II, social conservatives sought to keep these operettas in obscurity, repelled by their freewheeling and tolerant-minded explorations of sexuality.

Now, these hidden gems of musical theatre are making a comeback, thanks to the efforts of scholars like Kevin and directors like Barrie Kosky. Kevin joined us to talk about the ongoing reevaluation of this long-neglected part of operetta history.

Episode 59: Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure has long had a reputation as a “problem play.” Structurally, it’s a comedy, but because its plot goes to some dark places, some of its characters’ actions are utterly repugnant, and its thematic concerns are so serious, its ostensibly happy ending doesn’t leave audiences feeling satisfied.

Rather than shy away from Measure for Measure and its uncomfortable elements, Dr. Nora Williams is using them to further discussions about sexual consent, rape culture, and power. Her devised theatre project, Measure (Still) for Measure, invites participants to revise the original play in order to focus on these themes. She joined us to talk about the play and how she’s using the devising process to find ways to make it speak to our present-day concerns.

Episode 58: Theatre nerds spend a lot of time obsessing over casting choices: who’s going to play this classic role in the latest revival of a Broadway musical? How might an unconventional casting choice up-end our assumptions about who a character is and what they look like? Dr. Amy Cook of Stony Brook University looks at what’s going on in our heads when we ask these questions. Her forthcoming book, Building Character: The Art and Science of Casting, examines the cognitive processes that allow us to understand what’s happening in, say, an all-female version of The Taming of the Shrew, or the casting choices behind a modern hit like Hamilton.

Episode 57: Tolpavakoothu is a traditional form of shadow puppetry from Kerala, in southern India. Like many similar performance traditions, tolpavakoothu faces an uncertain future because of social and cultural changes. However, it’s facing up to those challenges in some unique ways. Dr. Claudia Orenstein of Hunter College joins us to explain what tolpavakoothu is, and to introduce us to the Pulavars, the family of puppeteers who are finding new and surprising ways to keep their tradition alive while bringing it into the twenty-first century.

Episode 56: What was the business of theatre like in Shakespeare’s time? We don’t have many records, but one fascinating document has survived: a book of accounts and memoranda (often inaccurately referred to as a diary) from Philip Henslowe, a businessman in 1590s London. Henslowe helped build the Rose Theatre, where a number of plays by Shakespeare, Christopher Marlowe, and their contemporaries received their premieres.

Now Dr. David Nicol of Dalhousie University is bringing Henslowe’s day-by-day account of early modern show business into the twenty-first century. Dave’s site, “Henslowe’s Diary … as a Blog!” follows the entries in Henslowe’s book day by day, introducing readers to plays ranging from the familiar to the forgotten, as well as trying to make sense of how financially successful each performance was. Dave joined us to talk about Henslowe’s book, the business of running a theatre in early modern England, and how he decided to turn this valuable document into a blog.

Episode 55: We know that the history of theatre and performance contains plenty of insensitive, even offensive, tropes and stereotypes. We also tend to think of ourselves as having left those stereotypes in the past, where they belong. However, as this week’s guest reveals, our popular culture still contains plenty of uncomfortable reminders of those types, and they’re often woven into the fabric of beloved cultural institutions in a way that forces us to come to terms with them, rather than simply pretend that they have nothing to do with us.

Dr. Christian DuComb, author of Haunted City: Three Centuries of Racial Impersonation in Philadelphia, joins us to talk about how these complicated issues appear in the figure of the “mummers wench,” a fixture of Philadelphia’s Mummers Parade for decades. The “wench” hearkens back to the nineteenth century and the days of the minstrel show, serving as yet another reminder that what we think is long-past is often very much still present.

Episode 54: Lorraine Hansberry’s reputation will always be inextricably bound up with her best-known work, A Raisin in the Sun. But who was the woman behind this landmark play? Filmmaker Tracy Heather Strain explores Hansberry’s life in her new documentary Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart, which premieres on PBS on 19 January 2018. Tracy’s film brings a new perspective to Hansberry, showing us not just the playwright who became the first African-American woman to have a play produced on Broadway, but also someone who was a political radical and who embraced her identity as a lesbian at a time when it was dangerous to do so. Tracy joins us to discuss her film and to give us new insights into this crucially important figure in American theatre.

Episode 53: We know Richard Brinsley Sheridan as the comic playwright responsible for The Rivals and The School for Scandal. However, one of his most important plays is a major departure from those works. His play Pizarro, an adaptation of an early melodrama by the German playwright August von Kotzebue about the Spanish invasion of Peru, became a smash hit on the London stage in 1799.

Episode 52: History can be a contentious subject, especially when it comes to determining how and what we remember. That’s especially true in Argentina, which is still trying to come to terms with the legacy of its period of military rule in the 1970s and 80s, which resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of citizens. Theatre has been an especially important way for Argentinians to remember and reflect upon this dark era, a process which Dr. Noe Montez of Tufts University explores in his new book, Memory, Transitional Justice, and Theatre in Postdictatorship Argentina. Noe joins us to talk about his book, and about how Argentina’s theatres have served as an important part of the nation’s collective memory.

Episode 51: Would you watch a pregnant woman attempt to walk a tightrope without a safety net? Many people in London decided to do just that in 1863, and their curiosity turned to horror when the tightrope walker, Selina Powell, fell to her death. The accident prompted an outcry that even drew in Queen Victoria herself.

Amy Meyer joins us this week to talk about accidents like the one that befell Powell. What drew audiences to such a risky spectacle? What did society make of woman performing such dangerous acts? The answers she’s found point to our own appetite for risk and danger—almost always at someone else’s expense—in our own favorite entertainments.

Episode 50: How do you train an actor? The answer to that question has changed over the course of theatrical history, but at least within the last century or so, standards for actor training have largely come from the teachings of theorists such as Constantin Stanislavski. However, we often don’t think about how these acting methods arose from specific historical and cultural contexts, and how they might not always meet the needs of a more diverse population of performers in the twenty-first century.

Dr. Sharrell D. Luckett and Dr. Tia M. Shaffer have co-edited a new book, Black Acting Methods: Critical Approaches, that explores some of the ways in which we can expand upon the legacy of traditional actor training to offer a more diverse array of perspectives. Sharrell joins us to talk about the book, the African roots of performance, and the legacy of Freddie Hendricks and his Hendricks Method for training young actors.

Episode 49: In our previous episode, we spoke with Dr. Erin Mee of New York University about kutiyattam, a style of theatre from southwest India that brings ancient Sanskrit plays to life. But what about the more recent history of Indian theatre? Erin joins us for the second part of our series to talk about how British colonialism, independence, and contemporary debates about gender and sexuality have shaped the development of Indian theatre over the past century.

Episode 48: How can a play whose script covers less than ten pages take weeks to perform? That’s just one of the many questions we delve into when we explore the world of kutiyattam, which is a particular way of performing Sanskrit drama in the southern Indian region of Kerala. Dr. Erin Mee of New York University introduces us to this fascinating art form, which keeps bringing classical Sanskrit plays back to life thousands of years after they were first performed. This is the first of a two-part series on theatre in India: join us next week, when Erin leads us on an exploration of how Indian theatre has developed in the decades since independence.

Episode 47: Environmental catastrophe. Political conflict. The ugly breakdown of a society that had previously seemed harmonious and peaceful. Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People contains much that speaks to our present-day anxieties. Dr. Paul Walsh of the Yale School of Drama has been thinking about this play a lot recently, because he’s the translator for a brand-new version of the play, which recently premiered as the first production of the Yale Repertory Theatre’s 52nd season and runs through October 28, 2017. Paul joined us to talk about Ibsen’s surprisingly comic take on serious issues, as well as the process of translation itself.

Episode 46: How do we make Shakespeare’s works fit into a 21st-century world that’s increasingly aware of the importance of diversity? Madeline Sayet joins us to talk about how she’s produced Shakespeare’s play with Native American performers and artists, and how doing so can recontextualize this theatrical mainstay.

Episode 45: Many of us got hooked on theatre by participating in amateur performances, whether at school or in our local community theatre group. David Coates is exploring the history of this phenomenon, focusing on Britain in the century before the First World War.

Episode 44: How do we learn more about theatre history, and where do they keep the materials that help us to do that learning? This week’s guest, Dr. Eric Colleary, is the Cline Curator of Theatre and Performing Arts at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin, and he shares some of his favorite treasures from the collection.

Episode 43: Has anyone ever told you to “stop being melodramatic”? As this episode’s guests teach us, “melodrama” is a term that refers to a fascinating eighteenth- and nineteenth-century theatrical genre. Dr. Katherine Astbury, Dr. Diane Tisdall, and Dr. Sarah Burdett join us.

Episode 42: We don’t tend to think of most Broadway musicals as feminist, but, as Dr. Stacy Wolf tells us in this episode, there are some surprisingly feminist undertones in prominent examples of the genre.

Episode 41: Bryan Doerries and Theater of War Productions have been bringing classical drama to bear on contemporary social issues, such as veterans’ experiences and relations between police and African-American communities, for nearly a decade. Bryan joined us to talk about this work, and to explain how the theatre of ancient Greece continues to offer us lessons for our own time.

Episode 40: Early modern English playwright John Marston “was the Kinks to Shakespeare’s Beatles,” according to Dr. Jose A. Perez Diez & Dr. Matthew Steggle. They’re working on The Complete Works of John Marston, a project which will collect Marston’s works in the first comprehensive scholarly edition.

Episode 39: How can medieval morality plays expand our understanding of what theatre is, and what it can do? Dr. Matthew Sergi joins us to talk about his work producing examples of the genre such as Mankind.

Episode 38: Oscar Wilde’s Salome seems like an uncharacteristic departure for a playwright known for his sparkling society comedies. Eleanor Fitzsimons joins us to explain how Wilde came to write his dark biblical drama, and how his admiration for and relationship to Sarah Bernhardt shaped the title role.

Episode 37: What was life like for a working actor in the nineteenth century? Dr. Amy Hughes, Dr. Naomi Stubbs, and Dr. Scott D. Dexter are finding some answers in the diary of Harry Watkins, who acted, wrote, and stage managed for theatres in the decades before the Civil War. They joined the podcast to tell us about their work editing and digitizing Watkins’s account of his life, revealing triumphs and struggles that will sound familiar to anyone who has tried to make a living on the stage.

Episode 36: There’s a mysterious play manuscript, entitled The Dutch Lady, at the Boston Public Library. We don’t know who wrote it (although it’s been incorrectly attributed to Aphra Behn, arguably the first professional female playwright in history) or whether it was staged, but Dr. Joseph F. Stephenson is taking a fresh look at it. He’s helping Fred Theatre bring the Restoration comedy to the stage for the first time in over three centuries, and he’s also working on a scholarly edition, slated for release in 2018.

Episode 35: Did you know that women created and staged plays throughout the Middle Ages? We’re joined by Dr. Elisabeth Dutton, Dr. Olivia Robinson, Dr. Matthew Cheung Salisbury, and Aurelie Blanc, who tell us about the fascinating – and sadly neglected – history of medieval convent drama.

Episode 34: Dr. Mary Chinery and Dr. Laura Rattray talk about their work with Edith Wharton’s The Shadow of a Doubt, a play that, while catalogued in a number of performing arts collections, had largely been forgotten by Wharton scholars. Working with a manuscript at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas, Austin, Mary and Laura have brought the play back into the public eye.

Episode 33: Curator James White tells us about the restoration of the Victorian-era theatre at the Alexandra Palace, the “People’s Palace” north of London that’s being restored to its former status as an entertainment venue.

Episode 32: Seret Scott, star of My Sister, My Sister on Broadway and a member of the original cast of for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow if enuf, talks about her work with the Free Southern Theater, an important performing arts group that worked on behalf of the Civil Rights Movement.

Episode 31: What does a curator in a performing arts collection do? Annemarie van Roessel, assistant curator at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, joins us to talk about her library’s recent acquisition of work by famed stage designer Jo Mielziner, as well as her job at NYPL.

Episode 30: Did you know about the Siglo de Oro Festival at Chamizal National Memorial? Dr. Esther Fernandez introduces us to this celebration of theatre from Spain’s Golden Age.

Episode 29: Monte Cristo Cottage, the summer home of Eugene O’Neill’s family, has gone down in theatrical legend because it’s the setting of the famous playwright’s masterwork, Long Day’s Journey Into Night. Anne G. Morgan of the Eugene O’Neill Center tells us about the cottage’s history.

Episode 28: How do we learn about ancient theatres? Dr. Craig Barker joins us to talk about his work at the archaeological site of Nea Paphos.

Episode 27: Theatre history has largely ignored the performance traditions of the Muslim world, but there are many vibrant ones, including ta’ziyeh. Native to what is now Iran, ta’ziyeh fuses artistry with religious devotion to create an incredible theatrical experience. Dr. William O. Beeman tells us about ta’ziyeh and its place in Iranian culture.

Episode 26: Jack Viertel of New York City Center Encores! talks about The New Yorkers, the musical that gave us Cole Porter’s early hit “Love for Sale.”

Episode 25: How did Chinese theatre change during its tumultuous twentieth-century history? Dr. Siyuan Liu tells us about some of the major figures and plays of the modern Chinese stage.

Episode 24: “Ireland” usually evokes visions of rolling green hills and picturesque cottages, but there’s another, more urbanized side to the country, which is depicted in the plays of early twentieth-century playwright Sean O’Casey and his contemporaries. Dr. Beth Mannion tells us about urban Irish drama beyond O’Casey’s work.

Episode 23: How do the shocking political events of 2016 reflect American theatrical history? Dr. Paul Gagliardi joins us to talk about the stage history of It Can’t Happen Here, the theatrical adaptation of Sinclair Lewis’s frighteningly prescient 1930s novel about the rise of fascism in the United States.

Episode 22: Dr. Mac Test is working on a translation of a surprising play from Spain’s Golden Age, entitled La monja alferez. It follows the adventures of a cross-dressing nun, upending many of our assumptions about gender relations in the days of the Spanish Empire.

Episode 21: George Drance, director of the Magis Theatre Company, talks about his production of Calderon’s Two Dreams. Pedro Calderon de la Barca’s Life Is a Dream is one of the best-known plays of the Spanish Golden Age, but few English-speakers know about the later version that he wrote. Now, Drance and his company are bringing both versions to the stage.

Episode 20: Dr. Alejandro Garcia-Reidy made the discovery of a lifetime when he found a copy of the previously-unknown Lope de Vega play Mujeres y criados. Alejandro discusses the play and its context with us, and explains how it helps us to better understand Lope’s work.

Episode 19: Did you know about Bert Williams, the accomplished African-American performer who struggled against racism to establish himself as one of the most famous black entertainers of his time? Actor and playwright Jeremy Morris joins us to talk about his play, The Top of Bravery, which explores Williams’s life.

Episode 18: American theatre and foreign policy often went hand-in-hand during the Cold War. Dr. Charlotte Canning joins us to explain how internationalism, theatre, and superpower rivalry intersected in the years after World War II.

Episode 17: The nineteenth century was a much more globally-connected time than we might imagine. Star performers criss-crossed the Atlantic on epic tours of Europe and North America, prefiguring the jet-setting celebrities of today. Dr. Anita Gonzalez has mapped some of these journeys on her website, 19thcenturyacts.com, and she explains her work with the project in this episode.

Episode 16: Did you know that “Jingle Bells,” that perennial Christmastime favorite, has a dark and disturbing past? Dr. Kyna Hamill explains how this holiday song emerged from the tradition of the minstrel show.

Episode 15: We tend to think of Northern Ireland in terms of its late-twentieth-century political troubles, which usually makes for a narrative dominated by men. However, as Dr. Fiona Coffey shows us, women have played a crucial role in Northern Irish theatre, both during and after the conflict.

Episode 14: Paula Vogel’s Tony-nominated Indecent tells the story of God of Vengeance, a controversial Yiddish-language play. David Mandelbaum of New Yiddish Rep joins us to talk about his company’s staging of the original play, as well as its significance for the history of Yiddish theatre.

Episode 13: The concerns of medieval drama might seem remote from ours, but it’s surprisingly relevant today. Kyle A. Thomas and Dr. Carol Symes talk about staging The Play of Adam at the Met Cloisters in New York City.

Episode 12: Adam Roberts, whose version of the “Black Crook Gallop” provides the intro and outro music for this podcast, joins us to talk about how music theory affects our understanding of classic musicals.

Episode 11: Latinx performers have traditionally been relegated to an uncertain place in American theatre and film, fitting uncomfortably into our society’s simplistic racial dichotomy between “black” and “white.” Dr. Brian Herrera talks about how some prominent twentieth-century Latinx performers tried to navigate this difficult situation.

Episode 10: Dr. Gibson Cima tells us about Sizwe Banzi Is Dead, the pivotal South African play that explores the absurdities and indignities of life under apartheid.

Episode 9: Many of us are familiar with the tumultuous events of the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago, but have we ever considered them as a sort of street theatre? Dr. Susanne Shawyer joins us to explain how many of the activists involved in the protests saw them as a chance to put the theories of people like Antonin Artaud into practice.

Episode 8: Dr. Jorge Huerta looks back on 50 years of Chicano theatrical activism, including his own work with El Teatro de la Esperanza, which performed politically- and socially-engaged community theatre in the 1970s.

Episode 7: The 1930s was a period of politically-charged theatre, and one of the most controversial productions was the Federal Theatre Project’s The Sun Rises in the West. Dr. Amy Brady explains what this play was about, and why it became such a hot-button issue.

Episode 6: Does the handful of plays from the Spanish Golden Age that English-speakers usually encounter provide an adequate representation of the era? Dr. Barbara Fuchs doesn’t think so, and her Diversifying the Classics project is trying to show us new, unexpected facets of the culture that brought us Calderon, Lope de Vega, and their contemporaries.

Episode 5: Dr. Joel Berkowitz takes us on a tour of Yiddish theatre, past and present, explaining the origins and significance of this proud and vibrant performance tradition.

Episode 4The Black Crook often appears (somewhat inaccurately) in history books as the first American musical. Joshua William Gelb has reimagined this important play, rewriting it to place it in its historical context.

Episode 3: Eric Swanson talks about his new musical, Edwin: The Story of Edwin Booth, which follows the life of the famous American Shakespearean actor.

Episode 2: The musicals of the 1940s feature an intriguing figure: the “boss lady.” Reflecting the social changes brought about by World War II, this figure showed women as competent, tough, and capable of taking charge. Dr. Maya Cantu explains where the “boss lady” came from, and how she takes a dominant role in some of the major musicals of the period.

Episode 1: Drug use isn’t exactly a new topic on the stage. Dr. Max Shulman joins us to tell the story of Madame X, the shocking play that served as a star vehicle for stage legend Sarah Bernhardt.