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Company sondheim youtube

Focusing on Robert, a confirmed bachelor, being feted by his mostly married friends for his 35th birthday, this musical forgoes a traditional plot structure. This show made a huge impact in , placing Sondheim on the map with the Broadway elite. Somehow Doyle keeps the action moving, even though there is no real choreography, except for natural staging and a few shifts in positions when an actor has to wield their cello or saxophone. The performances are uniformly strong, starting with the headliner, Raul Esparza as Bobby. There are times when Robert just watches his friends or lovers intently, sphinx-like, taking in their petty arguments, romantic babble, and other banter as a keen observer. Advisory: Video is not rated but there are mild adult situations and language that might not be suitable to children under age Click here for access. Lee Jeffreys enjoys the opportunity to experience the rich and diverse theatre offerings in the Washington, DC, Virginia, and Maryland area. He is constantly stunned by the level of talent on display from theatres large and small in the region. Jeffreys has worked in the non-profit arena and for media companies off and on for many years.

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However, that does make this the perfect time to scour YouTube for our favourite renditions of his songs to take us away to happier places and happier times. Here is an abridged run-through of the major works of his career, including my personal picks for essential performances of his songs. I encourage you all to comment and tweet your own favourites so I can kick myself for forgetting to include them here. The film version is rightfully regarded as a classic and subsequent productions continue to find new beauty in the endlessly rich raw material. And of course — as for any given piece of art — The Muppets make it even better. This time they teamed up with composer Jule Styne to tell the story of Rose, the quintessential stage mom. Keen to not be pigeonholed as a lyricist, Sondheim composed both the music and lyrics for this Ancient Roman farce, with a book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart. In Sondheim changed the game once more with Company. This concept musical with a book by George Furth has a loose plot revolving around a man called Robert: a bachelor in his thirties struggling to understand romantic love while surrounded by his coupled-up yet clearly still bonkers friends. Hopefully soon to reopen on Broadway with Katrina Lenk, this interpretation works so well that it feels strange the show was ever anything but.

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Sondheim, the most important living Broadway composer, turned ninety last month, at a time when gala concerts are not just impossible but almost unimaginable : a thing New York once had, often in springtime, with audiences in their nice shoes and dresses, saving their programs for posterity. An expectant crowd gathered around their screens at 8 p. Things did not start off promisingly. The first two singers to appear, Sutton Foster and Neil Patrick Harris, gave cameos to their adorable children, lending the concert the vibe of a T. Zoom meeting. Where was all the disillusionment and bitterness? The experiments have been worthy. The 24 Hour Plays, which usually stages live plays and musicals that were written in a day, has been rolling out virtual monologues. But can musical theatre, that most extroverted of forms, succeed under quarantine? Certain lyrics cut deep, given the circumstances.

However, that does make this the perfect time to scour YouTube for our favourite renditions of his songs to take us away to happier places and happier times.

Here is an abridged run-through of the major works of his career, including my personal picks for essential performances of his songs. I encourage you all to comment and tweet your own favourites so I can kick myself for forgetting to include them here. The film version is rightfully regarded as a classic and subsequent productions continue to find new beauty in the endlessly rich raw material. And of course — as for any given piece of art — The Muppets make it even better.

This time they teamed up with composer Jule Styne to tell the story of Rose, the quintessential stage mom. Keen to not be pigeonholed as a lyricist, Sondheim composed both the music and lyrics for this Ancient Roman farce, with a book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart.

In Sondheim changed the game once more with Company. This concept musical with a book by George Furth has a loose plot revolving around a man called Robert: a bachelor in his thirties struggling to understand romantic love while surrounded by his coupled-up yet clearly still bonkers friends. Hopefully soon to reopen on Broadway with Katrina Lenk, this interpretation works so well that it feels strange the show was ever anything but. Only one year later in , Sondheim collaborated with bookwriter James Goldman on Follies , a show about retired revue dancers confronting the life-altering decisions they made in their youth, decisions that still haunt them.

There is a disco cover of this number by Liza Minnelli and Pet Shop Boys that is absolutely bananas and is important to note for no other reason than the sheer audacity of its existence. On the surface, it is a light and accessibly comic work that you are bound to fall in love with. However, the Broadway revival with revisions by Sondheim and Nathan Lane reveals a marvellously buoyant show, packed with Greek mythology jokes, catchy songs anyone can whistle along with, and no signs of the backstage dramas of its original inception.

Why exactly should a musical based on 19th century Japanese trade policies, built around obscure Eastern musical scales, and performed in the strict Kabuki tradition end up so accessible for a Western audience? A horror musical? Of course, the ending is bloody, and utterly thrilling as a result.

Sweeney has become a musical theatre staple, with many big names taking on the iconic roles of the titular murderer and his pie-baking accomplice Mrs Lovett on stage and on film. Okay, how can Sondheim make brilliant art from an even more impossible premise?

Do an entire show backwards? Sure, why not. Sondheim was incredibly disheartened and even considered retiring afterwards. He eventually returned to musical theatre only to make a smaller scale, Off-Broadway show a full three years later. However, after a few small but important revisions, Merrily has grown in critical esteem to become a much-beloved and revived show.

When done well, it is as funny, as joyous, and as powerfully sad as anything else Sondheim has written. It is tragic to end a show with a person disappointed at how their life has turned out, but it is absolutely devastating to end a show with that same character in their youth, full of wonder, enthusiasm, and hope for a future the audience knows will not be kind.

That smaller Off-Broadway show Sondheim did next? It was this musical about two artists connected across a century of creative and technological advance: French pointillist pioneer Georges Seurat and a fictional, laser-wielding American, also called George. At its core, this is a show about how amazingly special and important artists are, in a way that could easily come across as self-aggrandising. However, in the hands of Sondheim and bookwriter and director James Lapine, the whole production shines with moments of such incredible beauty that anybody who has ever been moved by a piece of art can relate to its transcendent truth.

A rare full-scale West End production starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Annaleigh Ashford is scheduled to open this summer, and we should all pray it is able to. Act one tells the intertwining stories of familiar characters in pursuit of their respective happy endings. However, the genius twist of act two shows us the consequences of every happy conclusion, imparting yet deeper morals for each familiar parable: lessons that should be taken from all such fairytales to help adventurers of any age on their journey through the dark woods of life.

Passion is a dark show about Fosca, a deeply sick, emotionally-troubled woman ruining the life of the only man kind enough to show her pity, despite his attempts to escape her clutches. Yet, after decades of perfecting the art of writing complex characters, Sondheim is able to imbue Fosca with an authentic humanity, and the story itself with a depth that makes moral judgement far from black and white.

Like its lead character, although this show is initially uninviting it reveals beauty when given a chance. The original Broadway production starring Donna Murphy is utterly sublime and anybody who has ever felt love or mourned its absence owes it to themselves to pour themselves a glass of wine and sit down to watch this show of an evening. This show went through many revisions and title changes and never quite established itself at the same level of commercial success as previous Sondheim musicals.

However, it is beloved by musical theatre aficionados and is rich with fantastic music and truly touching character moments. And that pretty much brings us up-to-date. Until that day comes, what are your favourite pieces of Sondheim?

Please do share your picks in the comments and on twitter so we can spend some the next few weeks enjoying the very best of our greatest musical theatre treasure, instead of worrying about the world outside. Finally, of course, thank you to the maestro himself for crafting these brilliant works and bringing so much joy to so many theatre, music, and movie fans over the years. Sign up to receive news and updates from Musical Theatre Review. You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the link in the footer of our emails. For information about our privacy practices, click here.

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