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Contemporary Productions & Theater History
Contemporary productions tend to have a wealth of information online. Some information can be found through the theater's website; some can be found in newspaper articles.
Content from newspapers around the globe. Date coverage ranges from 1981-present.
Available from 1981-present using NewsBank. Older coverage can be found as included in ProQuest Historical Newspapers.
Proquest Historical Newspapers
Multi-database search interface that allows for simultaneous searching of the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Defender, Pittsbugh Courier and Wall Street Journal
Indexes thousands of periodicals, including popular magazines. Best for searching 1990s to present.
MLA International Bibliography
Journal articles about literature, languages, folklore, and linguistics, 1963-present.
Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature
Bibliographic citations with indexing for all aspects of English literature, literary culture, and linguistics. Coverage 1920-present (with content lagging behind by 1 year).
Daily Pennsylvanian Archives
Browsable scanned papers from the DP. A Google search trick: try searching for your theater or production on Google using site:http://www.library.upenn.edu/docs/kislak/dp/. An example:
"Annenberg Center" site:http://www.library.upenn.edu/docs/kislak/dp/
Historical Productions & Theater History
Finding information about the history of a play can be difficult, and often requires archival research. Students can still use primary and secondary resources to find out about production history, even without traveling to archives. Use resources from the Contemporary Productions list, plus the following:
Proquest Historical Newspapers
Search the full-text of the New York Times, Chicago Defender, LA Times, Wall Street Journal and a select few other newspapers. Date coverage ranges by newspaper, but often extends to the late 1800s. Useful for finding historical theater reviews. Consider using the print New York Times Theater Reviews discussed below.
The Internet Broadway Database
Find Broadway production dates, theater of production, playwright, and brief descriptions. Some plays have cast and crew information. A great place to start.
New York Times Theater Reviews: PN1581 .N4
An excellent resource to find theater reviews from 1920-1971. Use the index volume to look up the work, playwright, or crew member of interest, then consult individual volumes for content.
Useful for finding theater reviews for London productions. Coverage from 1785-1985.
Theatre Magazine: PN2000 .T5
An early 20th-century journal devoted to the Theatre Arts, complete with many high-quality images. Use the index
to look up the work, playwright, or director of interest. Public domain (pre-1923) volumes are have been digitized by HathiTrust
Theatre Arts Magazine: PN2000 .T45
Another 20th-century Theatre Arts journal of interest, focusing from the 1920s to 1960s. While there is no cumulative index, many titles are searchable (though not fully viewable) through HathiTrust
Theatre Arts Monthly
The continuation of Theatre Arts magazine.
Furness Collection at Penn Libraries
Use for works on Shakespearean criticism.