“What if you wrote a series of articles about what takes place on the other side of the proscenium arch while in an actual production?” proposed Mark, the Assistant Managing Editor of the Cleveland Jewish Chronicle, the weekly newspaper that hired me as its theater critic. “You know, do a Plimpton.” So begins All the World’s a Stage Fright, a laugh-out-loud fictional memoir about a clandestine critic embedded in a professional production of As You Like It with the intent of driving up the paper’s readership. Soon the stunt becomes one man’s personal battle with the Bard, his anti-Semitic content, his infuriating iambic pentameter verse and sharing the stage with actors he has panned in the past results in more of a story than Asher Kaufman expected. Full of twists and turns, endearing characters, and behind-the-curtain action, All the World’s a Stage Fright is a fun-filled and fast-paced novella. It is written for those who love theater and, perhaps, need Shakespeare’s gorgeous prose and poetry now more than ever.
All the World’s a Stage Fright: Misadventures of a Clandestine Critic
September 1, 2020
Courtesy of Bob Abelman
- What was the inspiration for ALL THE WORLD’S A STAGE FRIGHT?
- This book is a fictionalized memoir. What does that mean?
- Why this book now?
- Why write a novella rather than a full-length novel?
- How did being a theater critic in life impact on the writing process for this book?
- Why does the book take place in Cleveland?
- Why an arts critic as your protagonist?
- Your book addresses whether or not Shakespeare was anti-Semitic. Was he?
- Do you have a favorite chapter?
- Do you think there should be a sequel in the works?
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