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Without You: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and the…
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Without You: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and the Musical Rent (utgåvan 2006)

av Anthony Rapp (Författare)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
6381427,606 (4.04)6
Actor Rapp recounts his life-changing experience in the original cast of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Rent. Rapp had a special feeling about Jonathan Larson's rock musical from his first audition, so he was thrilled when he landed a starring role. When Rent opened to thunderous acclaim off Broadway, the cast members knew that something extraordinary had taken shape. But even as friends and family were celebrating the show's success, they were also mourning Larson's sudden death. When Anthony's mom began to lose her battle with cancer, he struggled to balance the demands of life in the theatre with his responsibility to his family. Here, Anthony recounts the show's magnificent success and his overwhelming loss. He also shares his first experiences discovering his gayness, the tension it created with his mother, and his struggle into adulthood to gain her acceptance.--From publisher description.… (mer)
Medlem:WilDel4
Titel:Without You: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and the Musical Rent
Författare:Anthony Rapp (Författare)
Info:Simon & Schuster (2006), Edition: Illustrated, 320 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
Betyg:
Taggar:Ingen/inga

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Without You: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and the Musical Rent av Anthony Rapp

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[review written 2011]

So today I finished Without You by Anthony Rapp. I got this in New York as a rather large fan of the musical RENT but after reading it within a day (and even taking it with me to the Metropolitan Museum of Art) I realized it was much, much more than just a memoir of my favorite musical. It deals with Anthony’s mother’s battle with cancer, his relationships with friends and family, and of course with the musical as well. I loved the book as soon as I got it, and I’m grateful since it was a spur-of-the-moment purchase. It was inspiring and gave me chills, and Anthony Rapp’s writing style is powerful and flows really well, unlike this sentence. ( )
  jwmchen | Nov 4, 2017 |
At first there’s mainly talk about Rent as Anthony’s one of the original cast members from the workshop production before it went on broadway. It was great to read about those early days of the show and how much changed. One of the roughest parts to get through was Jonathan Larson’s death. Jonathan Larson was the creative genius behind Rent. He died the night before their off-broadway opening night of an aortic aneurysm. He was young and talented and full of life. It was a very emotional section.

I hoped that it was the most emotional part of the book, I was wrong. Through most of the book Anthony’s mother fights a long, and, in the end, losing battle with cancer. In the early days of Rent she relapses from her remission and her deterioration is a major part of the book.
When the cancer won the battle, I was so glad I was at home. Up until then I was reading it in the car and at work, fighting back the tears. I could just let them fall as I read about how he got through it and dealt with the grief. If you read this book, have a box of tissues close at hand!

This is a great book for anyone to read. Although, if you don’t like Rent, I wouldn’t pick it up as it is a huge part of his life. He’s been a part of the show in every stage it’s been through. I don’t think I’ll ever listen to or watch it the same way again. ( )
  pirogoeth | Jul 11, 2017 |
Bold and honest, this is one of the most amazing memoirs I have ever read. Everyone needs to read this book! ( )
  cknick | Dec 14, 2016 |
Read my review on my book blog! ( )
  csmirl | May 1, 2011 |
Without You, A Memoir of Love, Loss, and the Musical Rent, by Anthony Rapp

"Anthony Rapp captures the passion and grit unique to the theatre world as he recounts his life-changing experience in the original cast of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Rent."

This description, taken from the flap copy of the book, does not do it justice and does not let the reader know what kind of emotional ride he is in for.

Rapp gives fans and readers a glimpse behind the scenes of the evolution of a Broadway musical and his professional journey with the show. We begin, through his words, to understand the relationship among the cast, and the relationship that Rapp and the others shared with writer Jonathan Larson. The cast truly becomes a family, a group whose whole is indeed greater than the sum of its parts. This is evident when Rapp describes the feeling he gets hearing all of their voices and individual talents blending together perfectly to sing the songs from Rent: "And we sang, our bodies pulsing to the rhythm of the song, our voices hushed and rich. The progression of the song felt perfect... our voices growing in passion and volume, the melodies and harmonies taking us to new notes and new heights of emotion."

These deep connections with loved ones and new heights of emotion are evident in Rapp's personal life as well as his acting career. While Rapp is "making it big" in the Big Apple, his mother is back home in Illinois, slowly dying of cancer. Rapp struggles with the demands of his newfound fame, juggling work and family to make repeated trips home. It seems he feels a certain disconnect from his mother and the rest of his family, due in large part to Rapp’s un-addressed sexuality.

Rapp shares with the reader his first homosexual experiences as a teenager and his mother’s unwillingness to accept it as more than a passing phase. Even as an adult, when Rapp begins acting in many small-bit performances in which he plays a homosexual character, his mother tells him she doesn’t understand why he can’t choose to play a “normal person” for once.

Again and again throughout the book, Rapp discovers parallels between Mark, his character in Rent, and his own life. Mark hides from his problems and grief by detaching and documenting life on film rather than immersing himself in it; Rapp does the same by pretending to be someone else in an endless string of plays and acting jobs. Each has trouble speaking up for himself and relating to the people he loves most dearly.

When Rapp’s mother loses her battle with cancer and passes away, and when Jonathan Larson, writer of Rent, passes away as well, grief and loss become another parallel that Rapp and his character Mark must share. As the characters in Rent deal with the loss of their friend Angel in the play, the cast members deal with the loss of Larson, who dies suddenly, at age 35, of an aortic aneurysm on dress rehearsal night—the day before the play is to begin its off-Broadway run.

The most moving scene in the book by far is when Rapp and the other cast members cancel the show’s opening night performance and instead perform privately for all of Larson’s family members and friends, who had come together for this night in celebration but ended up gathered in mourning instead. Here, Rapp uses the grief he feels over his mother’s illness, the loss of Larson, and the grief that is a part of the play itself and blends it all together onstage to carry Rapp and his fellow cast members through the performance.

Rapp describes singing “Seasons of Love,” a song about joy and loss performed at a funeral in the play, for Larson’s parents and loved ones that night: “As we sang ‘Seasons,’ its lyrics resonating through me in a thousand new ways, I began to cry, and my throat began to close up, and then I could hear others in the cast crying as they sang, which made my tears run even faster and hotter. But somehow we all managed to keep singing, we all managed to open our throats back up, and let our hearts up and out through our voices, and we sang about love and joy and remembrance. Gwen Stewart miraculously led us through the final chorus, her voice wailing up to heaven for Jonathan.”

Rapp’s two lives—onstage and off—conflict, overlap, and intertwine with one another until finally they cannot be separated, and Rapp must learn to reconcile the two to become one whole person. Both stories recount a tale of love, loss, grief, conflict, fear, hope, success, uncertainty, and joy. While readers who have seen Rent may be more drawn to the story as fans for the inside look it offers, it is ultimately a story of learning to make sense of life and to find happiness in the world, which all of us can relate to.

(Please visit www.jenniferringler.weebly.com for more of my book reviews and other writing samples. Contact me at Jennifer_Ringler@yahoo.com to send me a review copy of your book, or to recommend other books you think I should review). ( )
  JenniferRingler | Aug 26, 2010 |
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Actor Rapp recounts his life-changing experience in the original cast of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Rent. Rapp had a special feeling about Jonathan Larson's rock musical from his first audition, so he was thrilled when he landed a starring role. When Rent opened to thunderous acclaim off Broadway, the cast members knew that something extraordinary had taken shape. But even as friends and family were celebrating the show's success, they were also mourning Larson's sudden death. When Anthony's mom began to lose her battle with cancer, he struggled to balance the demands of life in the theatre with his responsibility to his family. Here, Anthony recounts the show's magnificent success and his overwhelming loss. He also shares his first experiences discovering his gayness, the tension it created with his mother, and his struggle into adulthood to gain her acceptance.--From publisher description.

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