Birthday of Stephen Schwartz, 1948
Updated: Mar 7, 2021
On This Day in Jewish History: March 6, 1948
On this day in 1948, American musical book and lyricist legend, Stephen Schwartz, was born. Happy Birthday, Stephen! Stephen Schwartz has incorporated Jewish life into his work and throughout his career, dedicating time to the Jewish communities around the United States. In doing so, he has influenced popular culture with his award winning musicals. Stephen Schwartz was born in New York City and grew up in Nassau County, New York. He was raised in a traditional Jewish family in Long Island. During high school, Schwartz took piano and composition courses at Julliard School in Manhattan. Schwartz attended Carnegie Mellon University where he studied drama, graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts. Schwartz quickly succeeded in the Broadway and entertainment world, developing a career with a lengthy resume of work from musical book writing. His productions have won all kinds of awards and international recognition. Among some of the more famous stage and screen are Wicked, Godspell, Pippin, Pocahontas, the Hunchback of Norte Dame, and the Prince of Egypt. The Prince of Egypt is an important contribution by Schwartz in the context of Judaism and bringing Jewish stories and culture to the world’s eye. Prince of Egypt is a portrayal of the stories of Exodus, with Moses as the lead character. Its plot provides a simplified version of the story of Passover, that Jews celebrate yearly and is one of our most important holidays. The film includes a number of Jewish prayers, in Hebrew, such as the Mi Chamocha, presenting our religious views and culture to the world. Mr. Schwartz has won many awards, most notably the Academy, Grammy, and Tony Awards. One instance of winning the Oscar was for “When You Believe,” in the Prince of Egypt. He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame as well, established in 2008. Stephen Schwartz is a proud husband and father. He served as the elected President of the Dramatists Guild of America from 2009-2014. Once again, Happy Birthday, Stephen Schwartz!
Sources: Stephen Schwartz official web: https://www.stephenschwartz.com/ Playbill: https://www.playbill.com/person/stephen-schwartz-vault-0000007368 Music Theater International: https://www.mtishows.com/people/stephen-schwartz