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How to Find Play Reviews   Tags: play_reviews  

Last Updated: Jan 23, 2013 URL: http://guides.library.sc.edu/playreviews Print Guide RSS Updates
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Play Review Basics

When trying to locate play reviews, it is important to know when the play opened as reviews almost always appear after a play opens.  

For scholarly criticism or analysis of a play, please consult the Find Articles section of the Theatre LibGuide

If you are looking for a more recent play, try using a database such as Academic Search Complete or Lexis Nexis. You are more likely to locate a review in one of the previously mentioned databases if your play was produced after 1980. In the event that you require additional information or your play does not appear, consult the other resources described herein.

 

Suggested Databases

List below is a suggested list of databases for locating reviews of a play.  Please don't hesitate to Ask a Librarian if you need further assistance.

  • International Bibliography of Theatre & Dance with Full Text
    Enter the title of the play in the first search box. Limit your results to reviews by selecting “Entertainment Review” from the Document Type box.
  • Academic Search Complete (dates vary)
    Enter title of play in first search box. You may also want to enter "Theatrical production" in the second search box to eliminate film reviews. Limit your results to reviews by selecting “Entertainment Review” from the Document Type box.
  • Lexis Nexis Academic (1989- )
    Select the “News” tab located on the left. Click the "All News" link. Enter your search terms making sure to select date range that covers your play's opening date. Check Theatre Reviews located in the Article Type box.
  • New York Times Historical (1851 through 3 years ago)
    Enter the title of the reviewed work into the first search box and search as “All Fields + text”. Check "Review" in the Document Type box. Using the "Date Range" option, limit to the several weeks or months after the play's opening date.
  • Readers’ Guide Full Text Mega (1983- )
    Using the Advanced Search module, input your play’s title in the first search box. Limit to “Theatre Review” in Document Type menu.
  • Readers’ Guide Retrospective (1890 - 1982)
    Using the Advanced Search module, input your play’s title in the first search box. In a second search box input “Theater Reviews” and select as Subject.
 

Reference Materials

Below is a sample list of reference materials for locating reviews of a play.  All materials are located in the reference collection, Thomas Cooper Library Main Floor.  Please don't hesitate to Ask a Librarian if you need further assistance.

New York Theatre Critics' Reviews (1940-1996)
Call Number: Reference PN2000 .N76


The London Stage, 1890-1899: A Calendar of Plays and Players
Call Number: Reference PN2596.L6 W37
Located next to The London Stage, 1890-1899, are volumes for 1900-1959.


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