A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

Ethan Mordden

in Coming up Roses

Published in print November 2000 | ISBN: 9780195140583
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199848867 | DOI:
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

Show Summary Details


George Abbott, former actor and playwright, virtually steered musical comedy through the 1940s and 1950s, when he was the director of everyone's first choice. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn was based on Betty Smith's book about growing up poor yet hopeful in turn-of-the-century Brooklyn. It is not a readily adaptable novel, episodic and almost epic as it follows three generations of an Irish family in Williamsburg. A very American saga, it has a taste of Carousel, perhaps. But the musical play's salient feature was its emphasis on character development within the social background of a particular time and place, something Abbott had no patience for.

Keywords: musical comedy; Betty Smith; character development; George Abbott; Carousel

Chapter.  3943 words. 

Subjects: Popular Music

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.