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Colón, Willie  

Lise Waxer

[Colón Román jr, William Anthony; ‘El malo’]

(b South Bronx, New York, April 28, 1950). American bandleader, composer, arranger, trombonist, popular singer, producer and actor. Dubbed ‘El malo’ (the ‘bad boy’) of salsa, he began playing the trumpet in 1963 with the teenage band the Dandees. Switching to trombone, he made his professional début at 17 with the album El malo (Fania, 1967). Both as a bandleader and a member of the Fania All-Stars, he quickly moved to the fore of the burgeoning New York salsa scene, cementing the raw, trombone-heavy ‘New York sound’ inspired by earlier artists such as Eddie Palmieri and Mon Rivera. Between 1967 and 1973 he made a series of important recordings with vocalist Hector Lavoe, which included the albums Asalto Navideño I and II (Fania, 1972 and 1973) with cuatro virtuoso Yomo Toro, where traditional Puerto Rican Christmas aguinaldos were fused with salsa. During his second period (...


Nunn, Trevor  

Robert Howie

(Robert )

(b Ipswich, Jan 14, 1940). English director . After studying at Cambridge and gaining a director’s scholarship to the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, he joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1965, becoming its youngest artistic director in 1968, a post he held until 1986. His early success at the company made generous use of original music and choreographed movement. For The Comedy of Errors (1976) Nunn and composer Guy Woolfenden used the text as the book for a musical comedy. In 1981 he directed Lloyd Webber’s Cats, employing many of his stylistic solutions to its staging from his Dickens production, The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby (1980): a troupe of performers playing many parts, the use of shared narration, ingenious use of ‘fringe’ techniques, and designs by John Napier, which literally thrust the performance into the heart of the audience.

Subsequent collaborations with Lloyd Webber on ...


Prince, Hal  

Robert Howie

[Harold] (Smith)

(b New York, Jan 30, 1928). American director and producer . At the age of 20 he began a theatrical apprenticeship with George Abbott, learning from Abbott’s staging of Berlin’s Call Me Madam (1950) and Bernstein’s Wonderful Town (1953). In 1954 he went into production with Robert E. Griffith and scored an immediate hit with The Pajama Game by Adler and Ross, whose Damn Yankees (1955) also ran for more than 1000 performances, establishing Prince as a creative force. With Bernstein and Sondheim’s West Side Story (1957), and Bock and Harnick’s Pulitzer prize-winning Fiorello! (1959), he combined commercial success with innovation. His greatest influence at the time was Jerome Robbins; West Side Story had been their third collaboration, but the next, Fiddler on the Roof (Bock and Harnick, 1964), demonstrated through Robbins’s staging how a particular, almost conventional musical-comedy story can take on a universal significance. The search for the universality or metaphor in any show became a priority for Prince....