fri 03/04/2020

musicals

Sondheim at 90 Songs: 5 - 'Every Day A Little Death'

“Whipped cream with knives” is how Harold Prince, who directed the Broadway premiere of A Little Night Music in 1973, famously described this particular Sondheim show. And nowhere is that borne out with more exquisite agony than in this duet between...

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Sondheim at 90 Songs: 2 - 'Epiphany'/'A Little Priest'

Two numbers, one hair-raising slice of music-theatre. When Sondheim's paying homage to the older, revue type of musical, you can extract a string of top hits: Follies, from which Marianka Swain chose "I'm Still Here" yesterday, could yield at least...

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Sondheim at 90 Songs: 1 - 'I'm Still Here'

Surely there’s never been a more apt time for Sondheim’s great cry of defiance? “I’m Still Here” is sung by showgirl-turned-actress Carlotta in Follies (1971) – added during the Boston try-out in place of “Can That Boy Foxtrot”. Loosely...

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Sondheim at 90: adults will listen

Here's an irony worthy of the work of Stephen Sondheim, an artist who clearly knows a thing or two about the multiple manifestations of that word. On the same day that he turns 90, namely today, Broadway is unable to host the keenly awaited American...

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Reissue CDs Weekly: Matt Monro - Stranger In Paradise

Two years before he took on The Beatles, George Martin was working with another artiste who would go on to have success in America. Martin first encountered Matt Monro in 1960 when he signed him to the label he ran, Parlophone. The “Portrait of my...

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The Last Five Years, Southwark Playhouse review - an inspired actor-musician take on a cult classic

There’s concept on top of concept in this revival of Jason Robert Brown’s beloved 2001 musical, which charts the ebb and flow of a relationship by juggling timelines: aspiring actress Cathy’s story is told in reverse chronological order, while...

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Pretty Woman: The Musical, Piccadilly Theatre review - not so pretty, actually

It’s not so much that Pretty Woman: The Musical isn’t much good, which it isn’t. More to the point is that this West End replica of the recent Broadway musical of the 1990 film feels utterly superfluous: a gloss on a popular romcom that...

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The Prince of Egypt, Dominion Theatre review - Moses musical goes big and broad

The theatre gods rained down not fire and pestilence, but a 45-minute technical delay on opening night of this substantially revised musical – a stage adaptation of the 1998 DreamWorks animated movie. But nothing could entirely halt this juggernaut...

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Be More Chill, The Other Palace review - more exhausting than enlightening

This latest musical theatre exercise in “geek chic” has been an American phenomenon: a show propelled by social media that developed a rabid fan base taking it all the way to Broadway last year. And here Be More Chill now is in London at The Other...

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Rags: The Musical, Park Theatre review - a timely, if predictable, immigrant tale

“Take our country back!” is the rallying cry of the self-identified “real” Americans gathered to protest the arrival of immigrants. It could be a contemporary Trump rally – or, indeed, the nastier side of current British political discourse – but in...

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Les Misérables, Sondheim Theatre review - join in our crusade

Do you hear the people sing? In recent months, you're more likely to have heard news stories about the longest running West End musical than the actual music. Stephen Sondheim – who celebrates his 90th birthday in March – missed the gala opening of...

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Celebrating the musicals of Jerry Herman (1931-2019)

How is it that, in the nearly 900 pages of Sondheim's collected lyrics with extensive comments Finishing the Hat and Look, I Made a Hat, with numerous special boxes celebrating other composers and lyricists, he managed to mention Jerry Herman only...

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