Without You

Without You

A Memoir of Love, Loss, and the Musical Rent

Book - 2006
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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." Anthony had a special feeling about Jonathan Larson's rock musical from his first audition, so he was thrilled when he landed a starring role as the filmmaker Mark Cohen. With his mom's cancer in remission and a reason to quit his newly acquired job at Starbucks, his life was looking up. When "Rent" opened to thunderous acclaim off Broadway, Rapp and his fellow cast members knew that something truly extraordinary had taken shape. But even as friends and family were celebrating the show's success, they were also mourning Jonathan Larson's sudden death from an aortic aneurysm. By the time "Rent" made its triumphant jump to Broadway, Larson had posthumously won the 1996 Pulitzer Prize. 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 sexuality, the tension it created with his mother, and his struggle into adulthood to gain her acceptance. Variously marked by fledgling love and devastating loss, piercing frustration and powerful enlightenment, "Without You" charts the course of Rapp's exhilarating journey with the cast and crew of "Rent" as well as the intimacies of his personal life behind the curtain.
Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, [2006]
Copyright Date: ©2006
ISBN: 9780743269766
0743269764
Branch Call Number: 792.028092 R182
Characteristics: vii, 309 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 25 cm

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TEENREVIEWBOARD
Apr 13, 2017

You'd think that someone who loves RENT so much would love Anthony Rapp's, AKA the original Mark Cohen's, autobiography. You'd be wrong. Without You doesn't focus much on RENT at all. Although it promises to delve deep into the development of the creation and rehearsals of the show, we are instead treated, for lack of a better word, to stories that make Mr. Rapp seem incredibly intolerable. Such stories involve him cheating on his boyfriend or casually abusing his mother, both of which are not cool things. The section where he details the death of his mother, however, is a tear-jerker, but it doesn't last long until Anthony's commentary ruins it again. I would not recommend this book to fans of RENT, which is a pretty sad sentence within itself.
- @reallylikesmusicals of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

FindingJane Oct 28, 2016

Anthony Rapp is famous for having originated and played the role of Mark in Jonathan Larson’s “Rent”, even though he’s been acting since he was nine. His treading of the boards of most of his other performances are glossed over; the main focus is on the rock opera that propelled him and the late Larson to international fame.

Mr. Rapp’s writing is incisive and at times brutal. His revelations of the anxiety, grief, heartache and personal triumphs and failures in dealing with his mother’s progressive illness are at times difficult to read and utterly riveting at the same time. His relations with his mother, family, friends and lovers are inextricably wound up with getting the musical from workshop to Broadway and then on tour and the reader is breathlessly hauled along for the ride.

Mr. Rapp is clearly a good actor, a talented singer and has an excellent knowledge of what makes for compelling storytelling. There’s not a dull note in this memoir and he makes a terrific case for showing how his acting career impacted his real life affairs and vice versa. Mr. Rapp doesn’t spare us his shameful moments; he’s done things of which he’s not proud. But we come to understand how the darker parts of his nature are as integral to his persona as his gentler, kinder feelings. His standoffishness with his family (some of them don’t hug and they definitely don’t talk about the elephants in the room) are contrasted with genuine warmth towards his fans and his undeniable charm as an inveterate flirt.

This memoir is one of the better ones out there and an invaluable addition to any musical lover’s library. If he continues his writing career, we can expect great things from him.

t
Twilightlover
Jul 27, 2008

this book will make you laugh and cry. Rent's Anthony Rapp is an amazing writer the way he words everything and the way he tells his story. It really is a book with all types of emotions, you won't want to put it down.

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Twilightlover
Jul 27, 2008

Twilightlover thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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Twilightlover
Jul 27, 2008

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

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