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Key to success: Vision Key to success: Passion Key to success: Perseverance Key to success: Preparation Key to success: Courage Key to success: Integrity Key to success: The American Dream Keys to success homepage More quotes on Passion More quotes on Vision More quotes on Courage More quotes on Integrity More quotes on Preparation More quotes on Perseverance More quotes on The American Dream

Harold Prince

Broadway Producer and Director

There is one definitive moment in the road. It is the moment when you as a producer, or even a director, decide that you are giving the audience what it wants rather than taking the audience on a journey you wanted to take. West Side Story is a perfect example of taking the audience somewhere. When it first opened, 100 people walked out on that show every night for a year. Lots of people didn't get it. It didn't win the Tony Awards or any of that stuff, but here it is, and it did pay off, and it made a film that they benefited from. The point is, I still believe you have to take your audience somewhere, and don't underestimate how damn smart they are and how willing to be stimulated. But the situation was parlous at the moment.
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Harold Prince

Broadway Producer and Director

Monday morning, I heard a shout from his office, and he said, "Will you come in here? I just got this script from California. Damn, I have to write a whole half-hour television show," and I said, "I wrote one over the weekend, in case you'd like to see it," and he said, "Give it to me," and I gave it to him and he said, "It's fine. Let's do it just your way, and why don't you direct it?" I said, "What are you saying?" He said, "You can direct. I've been watching you. Go direct it." So I said, "Are you going to the actors No one is going to listen to a 20-year-old!" and he said -- I was probably 21 by then -- he said, "No, go ahead. Direct it. I'll come on Thursday and make some comments." So the actors did look at me strangely. It bore his name, the script. So we didn't have to go over that, and I directed the show. He came in and made a nip or a tuck there or something, not much, and the show went on the air. But I was a very abrasive kid. The energy level was just too high. I was trying hard to be tactful, but I had a lot of ambition.
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Dan Rather

Broadcast Journalist

Controversy? You can't be any kind of reporter worthy of the name and avoid controversy completely. You can't be a good reporter and not be fairly regularly involved in some kind of controversy. And I don't think you can be a great reporter and avoid controversy very often, because one of the roles a good journalist plays is to tell the tough truths as well as the easy truths. And the tough truths will lead you to controversy, and even a search for the tough truths will cost you something. Please don't make this play or read as any complaint, it's trying to explain this goes with the territory if you're a journalist of integrity. That if you start out a journalist or if you reach a point in journalism where you say, "Listen, I'm just not going not touch anything that could possibly be controversial," then you ought to get out.
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George Rathmann

Founding Chairman, Amgen

I didn't know much about recombinant DNA. I was certainly in the dark. I just liked the thrill of the thought that you could actually make human proteins. Now, for the first time, you could create them. They could be safely made, and made commercially interesting. So although there weren't very many examples of that, it was clear that's where the science was going. And of course, the other part of the science was that you'd actually have a basis of looking at and having a true molecular understanding of the human being, instead of, as biology had been up 'til that time, "There's a factor one and a factor two and a factor three," all the way up to factor eight in the coagulation family. And not a single one of those chemicals could have been identified by the people who had named them. By the time recombinant DNA came along, you could pinpoint the exact chemical structures of every one of those things. And every other molecule in the body was available for that decoding, and that's exactly what made it exciting. So I wanted to do it, and I decided I'd better do it with an independent company. So it was a fairly tough call, but what made it easy was that after I worried about it for a while, I finally decided to do it on a friendly basis. Came back to Abbott and got a $5 million investment from Abbott to help us get started. And $5 million from Abbott, that was the ticket to success, because immediately the venture capitalists all lined up. And we raised $19 million because they said, "If that tightfisted, conservative organization in the Midwest put in $5 million, that must be a great start." So we raised a lot of money. And that made the difference. That made Amgen successful enough to pass up all the previous companies that were already out there.
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