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News & Reviews
- Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Stephen Sondheim’s “Sweeney Todd” Opens in London’s West End: “An Absolute Bleedin' Triumph” (Times, Five Stars)
Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd opened at London's Adelphi Theatre last night, a West End transfer of the acclaimed Chichester Festival production, directed by Jonathan Kent. The production, starring Imelda Staunton and Michael Ball, opened to rave reviews, earning five stars from the Guardian, which calls it "a superb achievement," and the Times of London, which calls it "an absolute bleedin' triumph." The Daily Telegraph says Sweeney Todd is "Stephen Sondheim’s best show and one of the greatest musicals of all time." Earlier this month in London, Sondheim was awarded the Critics' Circle Award for Distinguished Services to the Arts.
- Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Stephen Sondheim is due to receive the Handel Medallion, New York City's highest award for achievement in the arts, from Mayor Michael Bloomberg in a ceremony for the Mayor's Awards for Arts & Culture held this evening at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall. Sondheim is due to receive the 2011 Chicago Tribune Literary Prize for lifetime achievement in an event at the Chicago Humanities Festival this weekend. His second book of collected lyrics, Look, I Made a Hat, is due out later this month.
About this Album
Into the Woods has "moments that pierce the heart as no other musical this season does ... By all means, go. Admire the view. But, above all, listen."
—Ben Brantley, New York Times
Nonesuch Records releases the new Broadway cast recording of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's INTO THE WOODS. The cast recording is conducted by Paul Gemignani, orchestrated by Jonathan Tunick, produced by Steve Epstein and engineered by Todd Whitelock.
Blending five classic Grimms’ fairy tales with an original story of a childless Baker and his Wife, who attempt to reverse a curse on their family in order to have a child, the show features the stories of “Cinderella,” “Rapunzel,” “Little Red Riding Hood” and “Jack and the Beanstalk” as it explores what happens after the “happily ever after.”
The new Broadway production of INTO THE WOODS won the Tony award for Best Musical Revival and stars Vanessa Williams (Witch) and John McMartin (Mysterious Man/Narrator. Additional cast members include Laura Benanti (Cinderella), Gregg Edelman (Cinderella's Prince), Christopher Sieber (Rapunzel's Prince), Melissa Dye (Rapunzel), Kerry O'Malley (Baker's Wife), Stephen DeRosa (Baker), Adam Wylie (Jack), Mary Louise Burke (Jack's Mother), Molly V. Ephraim (Little Red Riding Hood), Chad Kimball (Milky-White), Trent Armand Kendall (Steward), Pamela Myers (Cinderella's Stepmother), Tracy Nicole Chapman (Florinda), Amanda Naughton (Lucinda), Dennis Kelly (Cinderella's Father). Ensemble cast members include Jennifer Malenke, Kate Reinders, Adam Brazier, Linda Mugleston and Stephen Berger.
The creative team for INTO THE WOODS is comprised of Stephen Sondheim (Music & Lyrics), James Lapine (Book and Direction), John Carrafa (Choreographer), Douglas W. Schmidt (Set Design), Susan Hilferty (Costume Design), Brian MacDevitt (Lighting), Dan Moses Schreier (Sound Designer) and Paul Gemignani (Musical Director). The producer is Dodger Theatricals together with Stage Holdings and Theater Dreams.
INTO THE WOODS originally opened on Broadway on November 5, 1987, running for 764 performances; a U.S. national tour was launched in 1988; a London production was staged in 1990 and a television production aired in 1991. Since the first Broadway run, INTO THE WOODS has been the most licensed Sondheim show for professional and amateur production.
Musical Direction: Paul Gemignani
Cast (in order of appearance)
Narrator: John McMartin
Cinderella: Laura Benanti
Jack: Adam Wylie
Milky-White: Chad Kimball
Baker: Stephen DeRosa
Baker's Wife: Kerry O’Malley
Cinderella's Stepmother: Pamela Myers
Florinda: Tracy Nicole Chapman
Lucinda: Amanda Naughton
Jack's Mother: Marylouise Burke
Little Red Ridinghood: Molly Ephraim
Witch: Vanessa Williams
Cinderella's Father: Dennis Kelly
Cinderella’s Mother: Laura Benanti
Mysterious Man: John McMartin
Wolves: Gregg Edelman, Christopher Sieber
Rapunzel: Melissa Dye
Rapunzel's Prince: Christopher Sieber
Grandmother: Pamela Myers
Cinderella's Prince: Gregg Edelman
Steward: Trent Armand Kendall
Horse: Jennifer Malenke
Paul Gemignani, conductor
Violin: Marilyn Reynolds, concertmistress; Mineko Yajima
Viola: Richard Brice, Shelley Holland-Moritz
Cello: Deborah Assael
Bass: John Beal
Woodwinds: John Campo, bassoon; Les Scott, flute, piccolo; Amy Zoloto, clarinet
Trumpet: Dominic Derasse
French Horn: Nancy Billmann; Ronald Sell, orchestral contractor
Percussion: Larry Lelli, Paul Pizzuti
Harp: Beth Robinson
Keyboard: Annbritt du Chateau, associate conductor; Mark Mitchell, assistant conductor
Premiere Performance: February 1, 2002, at the Ahmanson Theatre, Los Angeles
New York Premiere: April 30, 2002, at the Broadhurst Theatre
Recording produced by Steven Epstein
Engineered by Todd Whitelock
Editing Engineer: Robert Wolff
Recorded May 2002 at Right Track Recording, New York City
Assistant Engineers: Andrew Felluss, Timmy Olmstead and Jason Stasium
Edited and mixed at Sony Music Studios, New York City
Music Preparation: Katharine Edmonds/Emily Grishman Music Preparation
Synthesizer Programmer: Bruce Samuels
Music & lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Book by James Lapine
Design by Gabriele Wilson with Claire Williams
Cover art by Serino Coyne Inc.
Executive Producer: Robert Hurwitz