Jeff Lunden | KUNC

Jeff Lunden

Jeff Lunden is a freelance arts reporter and producer whose stories have been heard on NPR's Morning Edition, All Things Considered and Weekend Edition, as well as on other public radio programs.

Lunden contributed several segments to the Peabody Award-winning series The NPR 100, and was producer of the NPR Music series Discoveries at Walt Disney Concert Hall, hosted by Renee Montagne. He has produced more than a dozen documentaries on musical theater and Tin Pan Alley for NPR — most recently A Place for Us: Fifty Years of West Side Story.

Other documentaries have profiled George and Ira Gershwin, Stephen Sondheim, Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein, Lorenz Hart, Harold Arlen and Jule Styne. Lunden has won several awards, including the Gold Medal from the New York Festival International Radio Broadcasting Awards and a CPB Award.

Lunden is also a theater composer. He wrote the score for the musical adaptation of Arthur Kopit's Wings (book and lyrics by Arthur Perlman), which won the 1994 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Off-Broadway Musical. Other works include Another Midsummer Night, Once on a Summer's Day and adaptations of The Little Prince and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn for Theatreworks/USA.

Lunden is currently working with Perlman on an adaptation of Swift as Desire, a novel of magic realism from Like Water for Chocolate author Laura Esquivel. He lives in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Police barriers have been put up by many Broadway stage doors recently to control crowds who want to catch a glimpse of some of the Hollywood stars who are appearing in shows: A-list names like Kiefer Sutherland, Daniel Radcliffe and Chris Rock, among them. Monday night, you can add three more names to that list: Ben Stiller, Edie Falco and Jennifer Jason Leigh are all opening in a revival of John Guare's play, The House of Blue Leaves.

One of the hottest tickets on Broadway is to a 50-year-old musical: How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. The Pulitzer Prize-winning corporate satire has a sparkling score by Frank Loesser, but the thing that's packing them into the Hirschfeld Theatre eight times a week is the chance to see a young wizard sing and dance — Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe.

Rajiv Joseph, 36, may just be one of the busiest playwrights in the country. This season, his play Gruesome Playground Injuries was produced off-Broadway; a new work, The North Pool, is currently running in Palo Alto, Calif.; and another play, The Medusa Body, makes its debut in Houston this May. He's a staff writer for the cable series Nurse Jackie. And, if that weren't enough, Joseph is making his Broadway debut with Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, starring Robin Williams.

Lanford Wilson, the Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright whose work made waves both on and off-Broadway, died Thursday at age 73.

Wilson's work was always personal, whether he was writing about characters from his native Missouri or the prostitutes and junkies in the greasy spoon across the street from his New York apartment. In 1965, that coffee shop became the setting for his first major success.

In a career that's encompassed four decades, Tom Stoppard has written many witty, challenging and provocative plays — and the masterpiece among them, many critics feel, is Arcadia, which premiered in London in 1993, came to Broadway in 1995 and opens March 17 in its first New York revival.

But like many of Stoppard's plays, Arcadia isn't easily described: He's somehow managed to take on themes as divergent as chaos theory, academic ambition, the second law of thermodynamics, sex and gardening.

"And then," Stoppard notes, "there's the Byron thing."

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RENEE MONTAGNE, Host:

And Jeff, first, why the delay, and what is the new opening date?

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