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Encyclopedia > Sweeney Todd (musical)
Sweeney Todd
The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Original logo
Music Stephen Sondheim
Lyrics Stephen Sondheim
Book Hugh Wheeler
Based upon Legend of Sweeney Todd (Christopher Bond's version)
Productions 1979 Broadway
1980 West End
1980 U.S. Tour
1982 U.S. Tour
1989 Broadway revival
2000 New York City concert
2001 San Francisco concert
2001 Chicago concert
2002 Lyric Opera of Chicago
2003 Royal Opera House, London
2004 West End revival
2005 Broadway revival
2007 U.S. Tour
2007 London concert
Awards Tony Award for Best Musical
Tony Award for Best Book
Tony Award for Best Score
Drama Desk Outstanding Musical
Drama Desk Outstanding Book
Drama Desk Outstanding Lyrics
Drama Desk Outstanding Music

Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street is a Tony Award-winning musical with a book by Hugh Wheeler and music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. The musical is based on the 19th-century legend of Sweeney Todd, and specifically upon the 1973 play by Christopher Bond. Sweeney Todd may mean: Sweeney Todd, a (most likely) fictional homicidal barber Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (1936 film) Sweeney Todd (musical), a musical by Stephen Sondheim based on the character Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007 film), a 2007 film adaptation of the... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Stephen Joshua Sondheim (b. ... Stephen Joshua Sondheim (b. ... Hugh Callingham Wheeler (19 March 1912 - 26 July 1987) was an English-born playwright, librettist, poet, and translator who resided in America from 1946 until his death. ... For other uses, see Legend (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Sweeney Todd (disambiguation). ... Christopher Bond (fl. ... Also: 1979 by Smashing Pumpkins. ... For other uses of Broadway, see Broadway. ... Year 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1980 Gregorian calendar). ... West End theatre is a popular term for mainstream professional theatre in London, England, or sometimes more specifically for shows staged in the large theatres of Londons Theatreland. Along with New Yorks Broadway theatre, West End theatre is usually considered to represent the highest level of commercial theatre... Year 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1980 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 1982 (MCMLXXXII) was a common year starting on Friday (link displays the 1982 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays 1989 Gregorian calendar). ... For other uses of Broadway, see Broadway. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Year 2000 (MM) was a leap year starting on Saturday (link will display full 2000 Gregorian calendar). ... New York, New York and NYC redirect here. ... Year 2001 (MMI) was a common year starting on Monday (link displays the 2001 Gregorian calendar). ... This page is a candidate for speedy deletion. ... Year 2001 (MMI) was a common year starting on Monday (link displays the 2001 Gregorian calendar). ... Nickname: Motto: Urbs in Horto (Latin: City in a Garden), I Will Location in the Chicago metro area and Illinois Coordinates: , Country State Counties Cook, DuPage Settled 1770s Incorporated March 4, 1837 Government  - Mayor Richard M. Daley (D) Area  - City 234. ... Also see: 2002 (number). ... Exterior of the Civic Opera House Lyric Opera of Chicago is one of the leading opera companies in the United States. ... Year 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Floral Hall of the Royal Opera House The Royal Opera House is a performing arts venue in London. ... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ... Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... West End theatre is a popular term for mainstream professional theatre in London, England, or sometimes more specifically for shows staged in the large theatres of Londons Theatreland. Along with New Yorks Broadway theatre, West End theatre is usually considered to represent the highest level of commercial theatre... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses of Broadway, see Broadway. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ... // 1940s 1949 Kiss Me, Kate - Music and lyrics by Cole Porter, book by Bella and Samuel Spewack. ... The Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical is the Tony awarded to the librettist(s) of the musical. ... The Tony Award for Best Original Score is the Tony Award given to the composers and lyricists of the best original score written for a musical in that year. ... Created in 1955, the Drama Desk Award was created to recognize Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway shows in addition to Broadway shows. ... Created in 1955, the Drama Desk Award was created to recognize Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway shows in addition to Broadway shows. ... Created in 1955, the Drama Desk Award was created to recognize Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway shows in addition to Broadway shows. ... Created in 1955, the Drama Desk Award was created to recognize Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway shows in addition to Broadway shows. ... What is popularly called the Tony Award (formally, the Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre) is an annual award celebrating achievements in live American theater, including musical theater, primarily honoring productions on Broadway in New York. ... Musical theater (or theatre) is a form of theatre combining music, songs, dance, and spoken dialogue. ... Antonio Ghislanzoni, nineteenth century Italian librettist. ... Hugh Callingham Wheeler (19 March 1912 - 26 July 1987) was an English-born playwright, librettist, poet, and translator who resided in America from 1946 until his death. ... For other uses, see Music (disambiguation). ... Look up lyrics in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Stephen Joshua Sondheim (b. ... For the periodical, see Nineteenth Century (periodical). ... For other uses, see Sweeney Todd (disambiguation). ... For the song by James Blunt, see 1973 (song). ... Christopher Bond (fl. ...


Sweeney Todd opened on Broadway at the Uris Theatre on March 1, 1979. The musical played for 577 performances. The story centers on the character of Sweeney Todd, formerly known as Benjamin Barker, who returns from the penal colonies in Australia, where he has spent fifteen years on false charges. When he learns from Mrs. Lovett, whose meat pies are the worst in London, that his wife poisoned herself after being raped by Judge Turpin, and his daughter is the ward of Judge Turpin, who imprisoned him, he vows revenge. The two become conspirators in a dark plot that results in mass murder, booming business for Lovett's shop, and ultimately tragedy. For other uses of Broadway, see Broadway. ... The George Gershwin Theatre, located at 222 West 51st Street in New York City, was originally built as the Uris Theatre in 1972. ... is the 60th day of the year (61st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Also: 1979 by Smashing Pumpkins. ... A penal colony is a colony used to house prisoners. ... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ...

Contents

Synopsis

Prologue

An organ prelude sets the scene before being cut off by the deafening intrustion of a factory whistle. The Company comes forth and exhorts the audience to "attend the tale of Sweeney Todd" ("The Ballad of Sweeney Todd"). Image File history File links Broom_icon. ...

Act I

The story begins as Anthony Hope and Sweeney Todd disembark from a boat in London. Anthony sings of his adventures as a sailor, but notes that there's "No Place Like London." Despite Hope's enthusiasm, Todd is grim and uneasy. They are accosted by a mad Beggar Woman, who claims to recognize Todd. Todd furiously chases her away. As they are about to part ways, Todd, trance-like, tells a tragic story ("The Barber and His Wife"), about a young and naïve barber who had a beautiful and virtuous wife and the lustful judge who exiled the barber so that he could prey upon the wife. Todd leaves Hope, indicating that he will be staying near Fleet Street.


Todd searches for the apartment where he once lived, on the second floor of a meat-pie shop. The shop's proprietress, Mrs. Lovett, complains about her business competition, her own pitiful pies, and hard times ("The Worst Pies in London"). She relates the sad tale of the tenant who lived upstairs years ago: the barber, Benjamin Barker, whose wife was raped by the lecherous Judge Turpin and his corrupt cohort, the Beadle ("Poor Thing"). She tells Sweeney how the Judge sent the barber to prison on a trumped-up charge; the unhappy wife poisoned herself, and Barker's infant daughter, Johanna, became a ward of the Judge. Mrs. Lovett realizes that Sweeney is the same barber, much changed through years of deprivation (although she still finds him as alluring as she secretly did before). Mrs. Lovett has kept the barber's razors and restores them to their owner. Sweeney sings a sweet ode to his razors and their sinister possibilities ("My Friends").


After an interlude by Members of the Company ("The Ballad of Sweeney Todd: Swing Your Razor High, Sweeney!), we see Johanna, the daughter grown up, comparing her captive fate to that of a caged bird ("Green Finch and Linnet Bird"). Anthony spots her and is immediately smitten ("Ah, Miss") and pledges to woo her ("Johanna").


In the marketplace, the barber Adolfo Pirelli and his drum-beating tout, Tobias, try to sell a cure-all for hair loss ("Pirelli's Miracle Elixir"). Sweeney, after exposing the elixir as fraud, challenges Pirelli to a shaving competition and wins ("The Contest"). Sweeney invites the Beadle to drop by for a shave at his salon.


Later, at the salon, Todd impatiently waits for the Beadle's arrival, and Mrs. Lovett urges him to be patient ("Wait"). Pirelli appears and reveals that he has deduced Sweeney's real identity, and attempts to blackmail Todd. Todd kills him.


Judge Turpin is tormented by his lust for his ward ("Johanna") and announces he will marry her. This causes Anthony and Johanna to secretly plot an elopement ("Kiss Me"). Meanwhile, the Beadle suggests that the Judge spruce himself up at Todd's barbershop to better win Johanna's affections ("Ladies in Their Sensitivities").


With Turpin at his shop, Todd prepares to exact his revenge ("Pretty Women"). But before his razor can do its work, Anthony arrives to tell Sweeney about the elopement, accidentally informing the outraged Judge. Todd, furious, becomes entirely unhinged and broadens the target of his vengeance to all of society ("Epiphany"). Mrs. Lovett, always alert to a business opportunity, figures that Pirelli's body won't be the last corpse to pass through the shop and suggests that they use the meat of Todd's victims in her pies ("A Little Priest"). Todd, inspired by the practicality and poetry of the idea, agrees.

Act II

With its new menu, the pieshop is thriving; Mrs. Lovett has even hired the now-unemployed Tobias ("God, That's Good"). Todd and Mrs. Lovett have devised a new system for the meat delivery; when Todd kills someone, he sends the body parts down a chute directly to the bake house.


Things are not going as well for Anthony, however; Johanna has disappeared. Todd reflects upon the loss of his daughter, ultimately becoming more and more deadened to it as he loses himself in the revenge he exacts on his customers ("Johanna"). As more prosperity reaches Mrs. Lovett, the Beggar Woman becomes suspicious and attempts to warn the people. Mrs. Lovett daydreams about married life with Todd at the seashore ("By the Sea").


Anthony discovers the Judge has committed Johanna to an asylum. With Todd's help, he gains admission to the asylum on the pretext of being a wigmaker desiring to purchase the inmates' hair. Unbeknownst to Anthony, Todd sends a letter to the Judge letting him know about Anthony's intent to spring Johanna; with this, he hopes to lure the Judge to his shop.


Meanwhile, Tobias proclaims his affection for Mrs. Lovett and his suspicion of Sweeney Todd's behavior ("Not While I'm Around"). Worried that he knows too much, Mrs. Lovett locks him in the bakehouse and shows him how to grind meat. Because neighbors have noticed strange smells from the bakehouse's chimney, the Beadle arrives to investigate. He and Mrs. Lovett wait for Sweeney ("Parlor Songs").


Todd takes the Beadle upstairs for a free shave. Tobias is still in the basement grinding meat, just as the corpse of the Beadle comes down the chute. Horrified, he tries to escape but realizes that he is locked in.


At the Asylum, Hope enters and he and Johanna escape. They flee the asylum and return to Todd's shop ("City on Fire"). Hope leaves Johanna there to chart their escape. The Beggar Woman appears, and Johanna, frightened, hides. Todd discovers the Beggar Woman in his parlor, and she desperately tries to warn him about Mrs. Lovett. As Judge Turpin arrives, Todd frantically slits the Beggar Woman's throat and sends her down the chute before Turpin can see her. "Hey, don't I know you, Mister?" are her dying words.


Judge Turpin enters the shop looking for Johanna. Todd convinces him that she is safe with Mrs. Lovett and ready to be reunited with him. Excited, the judge asks for a shave ("Pretty Women Reprise"). Once again overjoyed to have Turpin in his clutches, Todd reveals his identity to the judge and slits his throat. As Todd leaves the parlor to kill Tobias, Johanna emerges from her hiding place and escapes.


In the bakehouse, Mrs. Lovett struggles with the still-living Judge, who finally gives up the ghost. She then becomes distraught at the sight of the Beggar Woman. Todd bursts in, sees the Beggar Woman in the light, and realizes that she is his wife Lucy, whom he believed was dead. Todd furiously accuses Mrs. Lovett of deceiving him. Mrs. Lovett confesses the truth to Sweeney, but insists that she never lied, that Lucy had indeed taken poison, but it didn't kill her - it drove her insane. Todd calms Mrs. Lovett down, and begins to waltz with her, proclaiming his love for her. But it is only a ploy - Todd waltzes Mrs. Lovett to the oven and traps her in a fiery grave.


Distraught at the cost of his vengeance, Todd sinks to the floor and cradles his beloved wife Lucy in his arms. Tobias enters and stumbles towards the barber, killing the compliant Todd with his own razor. Tobias has lost his mind; he is unable to stop grinding the meat grinder.

Epilogue

The Company emerges again and retells the "The Ballad of Sweeney Todd." The show concludes as Sweeney Todd and his accomplice, Mrs. Lovett, declare that "to seek revenge may lead to hell, but everyone does it, and seldom as well ... as Sweeney Todd, the demon barber of Fleet Street..."


List of musical numbers

Prologue
  • Organ Prelude
  • The Ballad of Sweeney Todd - Company
Act I
  • No Place Like London - Sweeney Todd, Anthony Hope
  • The Barber and His Wife - Beggar Woman
  • The Worst Pies in London - Mrs. Lovett
  • Poor Thing - Mrs. Lovett
  • My Friends - Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett
  • The Ballad of Sweeney Todd (reprise)
  • Green Finch and Linnet Bird - Johanna
  • Ah, Miss - Anthony Hope and Beggar Woman
  • Johanna - Anthony Hope
  • Pirelli's Miracle Elixir - Tobias Ragg, Sweeney Todd, Mrs. Lovett and Company
  • The Contest - Pirelli
  • The Ballad of Sweeney Todd (reprise)
  • Mea Culpa - Judge Turpin
  • Wait - Mrs. Lovett
  • The Ballad of Sweeney Todd (Three Tenors)
  • Kiss Me - Johanna and Anthony Hope
  • Ladies in Their Sensitivities - The Beadle
  • Kiss Me (Quartet) - Johanna, Anthony Hope, The Beadle and Judge Turpin
  • Pretty Women - Sweeney Todd and Judge Turpin
  • Epiphany - Sweeney Todd
  • A Little Priest - Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett
Act II
  • God, That's Good! - Tobias Ragg, Mrs. Lovett, Sweeney Todd, Beggar Woman and Customers
  • Johanna (Quartet) - Anthony Hope, Sweeney Todd, Johanna, Beggar Woman
  • By the Sea - Mrs. Lovett
  • Wigmaker Sequence; The Ballad of Sweeney Todd (reprise) - Sweeney Tood, Anthony Hope, Ensemble
  • The Letter - Ensemble
  • Not While I'm Around - Tobias Ragg, Mrs. Lovett
  • Parlor Songs - The Beadle, Mrs. Lovett
  • The Ballad of Sweeney Todd (reprise) - Ensemble
  • Fogg's Asylum; Fogg's Passacaglia - Ensemble
  • City On Fire - Lunatics, Johanna, Anthony Hope
  • Searching - Sweeney Todd, Mrs. Lovett, Anthony Hope, Johanna
  • The Judge's Return - Sweeney Todd, Judge Turpin
  • Final Sequence - Sweeney Todd, Mrs. Lovett
  • The Ballad of Sweeney Todd (Epilogue) - Company

Look up epiphany in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

Productions

Original Broadway production

After nineteen previews, the Broadway production, directed by Hal Prince and choreographed by Larry Fuller, opened on March 1, 1979 at the Uris Theatre. Despite initial poor audience reaction -- on opening night, half the audience is said to have left in disgust at intermission -- the show ran for 557 performances, closing on June 29, 1980. The cast included Angela Lansbury (Mrs. Lovett), Len Cariou (Sweeney Todd), Victor Garber (Anthony Hope), Sarah Rice (Johanna), Merle Louise (Beggar Woman), Ken Jennings (Tobias Ragg), Edmund Lyndeck (Judge Turpin) and Craig Lucas (member of the Company). Lansbury won her fourth Tony award for her performance. For other uses of Broadway, see Broadway. ... Hal Prince (born January 30, 1928), full name Harold Smith Prince, is a American theatrical producer and director associated with many of the best-known Broadway musical productions of the past half-century. ... Choreography (also known as dance composition) is the art of making structures in which movement occurs, the term composition may also refer to the navigation or connection of these movement structures. ... Larry Fuller is an American choreographer, theatre director, dancer, and actor. ... is the 60th day of the year (61st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Also: 1979 by Smashing Pumpkins. ... The George Gershwin Theatre, located at 222 West 51st Street in New York City, was originally built as the Uris Theatre in 1972. ... is the 180th day of the year (181st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1980 Gregorian calendar). ... Angela Lansbury CBE (born October 16, 1925) is a four-time Tony-winning, six-time Golden Globe-winning, three-time Oscar-nominated, and eighteen-time Emmy-nominated English actress. ... Len Cariou (born September 30, 1939 in Saint Boniface, Manitoba) is a Canadian actor. ... Victor Joseph Garber (born on March 16, 1949 in London, Ontario, Canada) is a six-time Emmy Award-nominated Canadian film, stage and television actor and singer. ... Sarah Rice is an actress whose career in theatre has spanned across many leading theatrical productions, such as Sweeney Todd and A Little Night Music both by Stephen Sondheim. ... Merle Louise (b. ... There are several people named Ken Jennings. ... Edmund Lyndeck (born October 4, 1925) is an actor who originally started out in Broadway. ... Craig Lucas is a American playwright, screenwriter, theatre director, musical actor and film director. ...

Original West End production

The musical opened in London's West End on July 2, 1980 at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, starring Denis Quilley and Sheila Hancock and ran for 157 performances. West End theatre is a popular term for mainstream professional theatre in London, England, or sometimes more specifically for shows staged in the large theatres of Londons Theatreland. Along with New Yorks Broadway theatre, West End theatre is usually considered to represent the highest level of commercial theatre... is the 183rd day of the year (184th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1980 Gregorian calendar). ... The present-day Theatre Royal in Drury Lane, sketched when it was new, in 1813. ... Denis Quilley (December 26, 1927 - October 5, 2003) was a British theatre, television and film character actor who was long associated with the Royal National Theatre. ... Sheila Hancock OBE (born 22 February 1933) is an English actress and comedian. ...

U.S. national tour

The first U.S. national tour started on October 24, 1980 in Washington DC and ended in August 1981 in Los Angeles, California. Lansbury was joined by George Hearn, who had replaced Len Cariou in the Broadway production. A second tour started on February 23, 1982 in Wilmington, Delaware and ended on July 17, 1982 in Toronto, Canada. June Havoc and Ross Petty starred. With Angela Lansbury in Sweeney Todd George Hearn (born June 18, 1934, in St. ... Len Cariou (born September 30, 1939 in Saint Boniface, Manitoba) is a Canadian actor. ... June Havoc (born November 8, 1916) is an American actress, dancer, writer, and theater director. ...

1989 Broadway revial

The first Broadway revival opened on September 14, 1989 at the Circle in the Square Theatre, where it ran for 188 performances after 47 previews. It was produced by Theodore Mann and directed by Susan H. Schulman; the cast included Bob Gunton and Beth Fowler. is the 257th day of the year (258th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays 1989 Gregorian calendar). ... Circle in the Square Theater The Circle in the Square Theater is a Broadway theatre in New York City. ... Theodore Mann is an American theatre producer and director and the Artistic Director of the Circle in the Square Theatre School. ... Susan H. Schulman is an American theater director. ... Bob Gunton (born November 15, 1945 in Santa Monica, California) is an American actor who is known for his role as the evil Warden Norton in the 1994 movie The Shawshank Redemption. ... Beth Fowler (born November 1, 1940) is an American actress and singer. ...

Sweeney Todd at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre, New York City, 2006
1994 Los Angeles production

In 1994, East West Players in Los Angeles staged a revival directed by Tim Dang, featuring a largely Asian Pacific American cast. It was also the first time the show had been presented in an intimate house (Equity 99-seat). The production received 5 Ovation Awards including the Franklin Levy Award for Best Musical (Smaller Theatre) and Best Director (Musical) for Dang. Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1024 × 768 pixel, file size: 485 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Uploaded 27 July 2006 to flickR by flickR user m!les. File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1024 × 768 pixel, file size: 485 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Uploaded 27 July 2006 to flickR by flickR user m!les. File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev... The Eugene ONeill Theater is a Broadway theatre. ... Category: ... Timothy Dang is an actor and the artistic director at East West Players in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles, California, USA. He graduated in 1980 with a bachelor of Fine Arts degree in theatre from the University of Southern California. ... An Asian American is a person of Asian ancestry or origin who was born in or is an immigrant to the United States. ... The Actors Equity Association (commonly simply Equity) is the trade union of American theatrical performers and stage managers. ... Established in 1989, the LA Stage Alliance Ovation Awards are Southern Californias premiere awards for excellence in theatre. ...

Opera house performances

In the early 2000s, Sweeney Todd gained acceptance with opera companies throughout the United States, Canada, Japan, Germany, Israel, Spain, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Australia. Bryn Terfel, the popular Welsh bass-baritone, performed the title role at Lyric Opera of Chicago in 2002. It was performed at the Royal Opera House in London as part of the Royal Opera season (December 2003-January 2004). The Israeli National Opera has performed Sweeney Todd twice. This article is about the first decade of the 21st century. ... Bryn Terfel The Welsh baritone Bryn Terfel, CBE (born November 9, 1965) is one of the best-known contemporary opera and concert singers. ... This article is about the country. ... A bass-baritone is a singing voice that shares certain qualities of both the baritone and the bass. ... Exterior of the Civic Opera House Lyric Opera of Chicago is one of the leading opera companies in the United States. ... The Floral Hall of the Royal Opera House The Royal Opera House is a performing arts venue in London. ... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ...

Concert productions
Hearn and LuPone in the 2001 San Francisco concert version
Hearn and LuPone in the 2001 San Francisco concert version

The show also had major concert productions with George Hearn, Patti LuPone, Neil Patrick Harris, and Audra McDonald joining the New York Philharmonic in May 2000; Hearn, LuPone, and Harris reuniting with the San Francisco Symphony in July 2001; and at the Ravinia Festival in Chicago on August 24, 2001 with most of the cast from the preceding concerts. London's Royal Festival Hall is hosting a four-day concert production in July 2007 starring Bryn Terfel, Maria Friedman, Daniel Boys, Steve Elias and Philip Quast.[1] Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Neil Patrick Harris (born June 15, 1973) is an Emmy-nominated American actor. ... Audra Ann McDonald (born July 3, 1970) is a four-time Tony Award-winning American actress and singer. ... The New York Philharmonic is the oldest active symphony orchestra in the United States, organized during 1842. ... The San Francisco Symphony (SFS) is a leading orchestra based in San Francisco, California. ... The Ravinia Festival is the summer music program offered at Ravinia Park in Highland Park, Illinois. ... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ... The Royal Festival Hall reopening celebrations The Royal Festival Hall is a concert, dance and talks venue within Southbank Centre in London, England. ... Bryn Terfel The Welsh baritone Bryn Terfel, CBE (born November 9, 1965) is one of the best-known contemporary opera and concert singers. ... The introduction to this article provides insufficient context for those unfamiliar with the subject matter. ... Daniel Boys (born 26 March 1979) is a British musical theatre actor, best known for his popular appearance in the BBC series Any Dream Will Do! in 2007. ... Philip Quast is an Australian actor perhaps best known for his role as Inspector Javert in the 10th Anniversary production of Les Misérables at the Royal Albert Hall, London. ...

Kennedy Center Sondheim Celebration

As part of the Kennedy Center Sondheim Celebration, a production of Sweeney Todd ran from May 10, 2002 until June 30, 2002, starring Brian Stokes Mitchell and Christine Baranski. [2] The Kennedy Center as seen from the Potomac River. ... Brian Stokes Mitchell (b. ... Christine Baranski Christine Baranski (born 2 May 1952) is an American actress. ...

2004-05 West End and Broadway revivals and 2007 tour

In 2004 John Doyle directed a revival of the musical at the Watermill Theatre in Newbury, England, which subsequently transferred to the West End's Trafalgar Studios and then the New Ambassadors Theatre. The production was notable for having no orchestra, with the actors themselves playing the score. This marked the first time in nearly ten years that a Sondheim show had been presented in the commercial West End. This production transferred to Broadway, with a new cast which starred Michael Cerveris and Patti LuPone. It opened on November 3, 2005 at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre, where it ran for 384 performances. The cast, as in London, accompanied themselves on the instruments. John Doyle may refer to: John Doyle (comedian), Australian John Doyle (lawyer) (born 1945), Chief Justice of South Australia John Doyle (soccer) (born 1966), American soccer player John Doyle (critic) (born 1957), Canadian television critic John Doyle (baseball player), Canadian Major League Baseball player John Doyle (announcer), whose voice is... The Watermill Theatre is a privately owned repertory theatre in England. ... West End theatre is a popular term for mainstream professional theatre in London, England, or sometimes more specifically for shows staged in the large theatres of Londons Theatreland. Along with New Yorks Broadway theatre, West End theatre is usually considered to represent the highest level of commercial theatre... Trafalgar Studios is a West End theatre in Whitehall in the City of Westminster. ... The Ambassadors Theatre in April 2007 The Ambassadors Theatre (previously New Ambassadors Theatre), is a West End theatre located in West Street, near Charing Cross Road in the City of Westminster. ... Michael Cerveris (born November 6, 1960 in Bethesda, Maryland, USA) is a singer and actor. ... Patti LuPone in her Tony Award winning role as Eva Perón in the Broadway musical Evita. ... is the 307th day of the year (308th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Eugene ONeill Theater is a Broadway theatre. ...


A tour of this production starring Judy Kaye (who temporarily replaced Patti Lupone in the Broadway run) as Mrs. Lovett and David Hess as Sweeney Todd began its pre-tour performances on August 30, 2007 at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco. This production is currently scheduled to tour Canada and the United States through June 2008. [3] Appeared with the Santa Fe Opera (1985, 1990), the NYC opera (1989), NY Philharmonic (1990), Boston Pops Orchestra (1990) and the London Symphony Orchestra (1990). ... David Alexander Hess (born September 19, 1942) is an American actor and songwriter. ... American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) is a prestigious theater company in San Francisco, USA that offers both contemporary and classical theater productions and a wide range of classes. ... This page is a candidate for speedy deletion. ...


Film

Theatrical release poster for the Tim Burton film
Theatrical release poster for the Tim Burton film

A feature film adaptation of Sondheim's Sweeney Todd began principal production on February 5, 2007. Tim Burton directs from a screenplay by John Logan. It stars Johnny Depp as Sweeney Todd, Helena Bonham Carter as Mrs. Lovett, Alan Rickman as Judge Turpin, Sacha Baron Cohen as Signor Adolfo Pirelli, Laura Michelle Kelly as The Beggar Woman, and Timothy Spall as Beadle Bamford. The Dreamworks/Warner Bros. production is slated for release on December 21, 2007. It has been alleged that Depp's image from the film is directly taken from Dave Vanian's well documented Phantasmagoria image. This is however unsubstantiated and, according to Dreamworks Pictures, coincidental. Depp has attributed the white streak in his hair to Sweeney’s “torment,” a pigmentation that his own nephew shares. Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 405 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (973 × 1440 pixel, file size: 1. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 405 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (973 × 1440 pixel, file size: 1. ... Timothy Tim William Burton (born August 25, 1958) is an Academy Award-nominated American film director, writer and designer notable for the quirky and gothic atmosphere of his films. ... For other uses, see Sweeney Todd (disambiguation). ... Timothy Tim William Burton (born August 25, 1958) is an Academy Award-nominated American film director, writer and designer notable for the quirky and gothic atmosphere of his films. ... John Logan is a noted American screenwriter of the 1990s and early 2000s. ... John Christopher Depp II[1] (born June 9, 1963) is an American actor, best known for his frequent portrayals of offbeat and eccentric characters such as Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy and the titular character of Tim Burtons Edward Scissorhands. ... Helena Bonham Carter (born May 26, 1966) is an Academy Award-nominated British actress, known for her roles in the films A Room with a View, Howards End, and Fight Club. ... Alan Sidney Patrick Rickman (born February 21, 1946) is an acclaimed, award-winning English film, television and stage actor. ... This article is about the British comedian. ... Kelly with husband Nick Winston Laura Michelle Kelly (born 4 March 1981) is an English actress and singer who achieved critical acclaim in the role of Mary Poppins in the musical of the same name. ... Timothy Leonard Spall OBE (born February 27, 1957) is an English BAFTA award-nominated film, stage and television actor. ... David Vanian is and has always been the core of the seminal alternative punk band; The Damned. ... Phantasmagoria has many meanings. ...


Themes

Sweeney Todd can be interpreted in several respects. Stephen Sondheim believes it to be a story of revenge and how it consumes a vengeful person, while Prince believed it to be an allegory of capitalism and its selfish qualities. [1] Both themes are supported throughout the play. Image File history File links Emblem-important. ...



Hal Prince: "It was only when I realized that the show was about revenge...And then came the factory, and the class struggle-the terrible struggle to move out of the class in which you're born..." Sondheim: "...what the show is really about is obsession." [4]

Capitalism

Mrs. Lovett can be seen as an allegory of capitalism: although she is lovable in a bizarre way, she only does what benefits herself, and rarely thinks of others. The obvious exception to this, of course, is her saving Barker/ Todd's razors.

Revenge

The revenge theme is found in Sweeney Todd in particular; He begins to forget his daughter in his own quest for retribution: "Although I'll think of you, I guess, Until the day I die, I think I miss you less and less as every day goes by, Johanna" [5]


Todd now kills for the sake of killing, and has lost his humanity. The final example of this is his killing of the beggar woman so as to destroy the judge. He later discovers that he has killed his beloved Lucy. Thus, he has killed his wife in order to kill the man who ruined her life. As a result of his lust for vengeance, he has lost everything.


However, another interpretation may be taken that Todd is killing to prevent such actions taking place again, to another man. This can be taken from "No Place Like London" and "A Little Priest"

Loss of Innocence

Tobias is one of the key symbols of corruption in the play. Tobias cheerfully lies to the shoppers about miracle elixir with a lack of conscience, emphasizing corruption of innocence and greed.


However, Tobias still has innocence; He sings to Mrs. Lovett that "nothin's gonna harm you, not while I'm around" with love, pure innocence, and sincerity. However, Mrs. Lovett, plotting to kill him, sings the same with a subtly sinister, corrupt change in tone, again emphasizing the corruption of innocence.


Musical analysis

Sondheim's score is one of his most complex to date. It relies heavily on counterpoint and rich, angular harmonies in the show. Its compositional style has been compared to those of Maurice Ravel, Sergei Prokofiev, and Bernard Herrmann (scores for horror films). Sondheim also quotes the ancient Dies Irae Gregorian chant, both as part of the eponymous ballad that runs throughout the score, in a musical inversion later on, and in the accompaniment to "Epiphany". He also relies heavily on leitmotif - at least twenty distinct ones can be identified throughout the score. Depending on how and where the show is presented, it is sometimes considered an opera. [6] For other uses, see Counterpoint (disambiguation). ... Harmony is the use and study of pitch simultaneity, and therefore chords, actual or implied, in music. ... Maurice Ravel. ... Sergei Sergeyevich Prokofiev (Russian: , Sergej Sergejevič Prokofijev; April 27 (April 151 O.S.), 1891–March 5, 1953) was a Russian and Soviet composer who mastered numerous musical genres and came to be admired as one of the greatest composers of the 20th century. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... For other uses, see Dies Irae (disambiguation). ... Gregorian chant is the central tradition of Western plainchant, a form of monophonic, unaccompanied sacred song of the Roman Catholic Church. ... An eponym is the name of a person, whether real or fictitious, who has (or is thought to have) given rise to the name of a particular place, tribe, discovery, or other item. ... In music theory, the word inversion has several meanings. ... A typical accompaniment pattern of a Mozart concert or aria. ... A leitmotif (IPA pronunciation: ) (also leitmotiv; lit. ... For other uses, see Opera (disambiguation). ...


In his essay for the 2005 cast album, Jeremy Sams finds it most relevant to compare Sondheim's work with operas that similarly explore the psyche of a mad murderer or social outcast, such as Alban Berg's Wozzeck (based on the 1925 play by Georg Buchner) and Benjamin Britten's Peter Grimes (1945). On the other hand, it can be seen as a precursor to the later trend of musicals based on horror themes, The Phantom of the Opera (1986) and Dance of the Vampires (1997), which used the description of the trend, "grusical", as its commercial label. Jeremy Sams Jeremy Sams (born January 12, 1957 in London, England) is a British director, writer, translator, orchestrator, musical director, film composer, and lyricist. ... Bust of Alban Berg at Schiefling, Carinthia, Austria Alban Maria Johannes Berg (February 9, 1885 – December 24, 1935) was an Austrian composer. ... Wozzeck is the first opera by the Austrian composer Alban Berg (1885-1935). ... Georg Büchner (October 17, 1813 - February 19, 1837) was a German dramatist and writer of prose. ... Edward Benjamin Britten, Baron Britten, OM CH (November 22, 1913 Lowestoft, Suffolk - December 4, 1976 Aldeburgh, Suffolk) was a British composer, conductor, and pianist. ... Peter Grimes is an opera by Benjamin Britten, with a libretto adapted by Montagu Slater from George Crabbes poem The Borough. ... This article is about the Gaston Leroux novel. ... Dance of the Vampires (or Tanz der Vampire as the original German version is named) is a musical remake of a 1967 Roman Polanski film called The Fearless Vampire Killers. ...


Awards and nominations

Original Broadway production

  • Tony Award for Best Musical (winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical (winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Original Score (winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical (Cariou, winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical (Lansbury, winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical (winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Scenic Design (winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Costume Design (winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Lighting Design (nominee)
  • Drama Desk Award
  • Outstanding Musical (winner)
  • Outstanding Book (winner)
  • Outstanding Actor in a Musical (Cariou, winner)
  • Outstanding Actress in a Musical (Lansbury, winner)
  • Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical (Jennings, winner)
  • Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical (Merle Louise, winner)
  • Outstanding Choreography (nominee)
  • Outstanding Director of a Musical (winner)
  • Outstanding Lyrics (winner)
  • Outstanding Music (winner)
  • Outstanding Costume Design (nominee)
  • Outstanding Lighting Design (nominee)
  • Outstanding Set Design (nominee)

1989 Broadway revival What is popularly called the Tony Award (formally, the Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre) is an annual award celebrating achievements in live American theater, including musical theater, primarily honoring productions on Broadway in New York. ... The Theatre World Award is an American honor given annually to an actor or an actress in recognition of an outstanding breakout performance in their New York City stage debut. ... Created in 1955, the Drama Desk Award was created to recognize Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway shows in addition to Broadway shows. ...

  • Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical (Gunton, nominee)
  • Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical (Fowler, nominee)
  • Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical (nominee)
  • Tony Award for Best Revival (nominee)
  • Drama Desk Award
  • Outstanding Actor in a Musical (Gunton, nominee)
  • Outstanding Actress in a Musical (Fowler, nominee)
  • Outstanding Lighting Design (nominee)
  • Outstanding Set Design (nominee)
  • Outstanding Revival (nominee)

2005 Broadway revival What is popularly called the Tony Award (formally, the Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre) is an annual award celebrating achievements in live American theater, including musical theater, primarily honoring productions on Broadway in New York. ... Created in 1955, the Drama Desk Award was created to recognize Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway shows in addition to Broadway shows. ...

  • Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical (nominee)
  • Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical (Cerveris, nominee)
  • Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical (LuPone, nominee)
  • Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical (Manoel Felciano, nominee)
  • Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical (winner)
  • Tony Award for Best Orchestrations (winner)
  • Drama Desk Award
  • Outstanding Revival of a Musical (winner)
  • Outstanding Actor in a Musical (Cerveris, nominee)
  • Outstanding Actress in a Musical (LuPone, nominee)
  • Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical (Alexander Gemignani, nominee)
  • Outstanding Director of a Musical (winner)
  • Outstanding Orchestrations (winner)
  • Outstanding Set Design of a Musical (nominee)
  • Outstanding Lighting Design (winner)
  • Outstanding Sound Design (nominee)

Recordings and broadcasts

An original Broadway cast recording was released in 1979. It included the Judge's "Johanna" from Act 1, which had been cut in previews. [2] A cast recording or original cast recording is a recording of a musical that is intended to document the songs as they were performed in the show and experienced by the audience. ...


A performance of the 1980 touring company was taped before an audience at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles during the first national tour, with additional taping done in an empty theatre. It was televised on September 12, 1982 on The Entertainment Channel and broadcast on PBS. (http://www.sondheimguide.com/sweeney.html#TV )It was later released on both VHS and DVD. (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00005JL6V/imdb-adbox/] The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion is one of the halls in the Los Angeles Music Center (which is one of the three largest performing arts centers in the nation). ... Not to be confused with Public Broadcasting Services in Malta. ...


In July 1994, the Royal National Theatre revival production starring Denis Quilley and Julia McKenzie was broadcast by the BBC.[7] Opera North's production was also broadcast by the BBC on March 30, 1998 as was the Royal Opera House production in 2003. Denis Quilley (December 26, 1927 - October 5, 2003) was a British theatre, television and film character actor who was long associated with the Royal National Theatre. ... Julia McKenzie (born 17 February 1941, Enfield, Middlesex, England) is a British actor and theatre director. ... is the 89th day of the year (90th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1998 (MCMXCVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display full 1998 Gregorian calendar). ...


In 1995, the Barcelona cast recorded a cast album sung in Catalan. This production was also broadcast on Spanish television. Location Coordinates : Time Zone : CET (GMT +1) - summer: CEST (GMT +2) General information Native name Barcelona (Catalan) Spanish name Barcelona Nickname Ciutat Comtal (City of Counts) Postal code 08001–08080 Area code 34 (Spain) + 93 (Barcelona) Website http://www. ... Catalan IPA: (català IPA: or []) is a Romance language, the national language of Andorra, and a co-official language in the Spanish autonomous communities of Balearic Islands, Catalonia and Valencia, and in the city of LAlguer in the Italian island of Sardinia. ...


The 2000 New York City Concert was recorded and released in a deluxe 2-CD set. [3]


In 2001, the same concert was held in San Francisco with the same leads and minor cast changes. It was also videotaped and broadcast on PBS, and then was released to VHS and DVD in 2001. [4]


The 2005 Broadway revival also was recorded [5]. The producers originally planned only a single-disk "highlights" version; however, they soon realized that they had recorded more music than what could be fit on one disk and it was not financially feasible to bring the performers back in to re-record. The followings songs were cut: Wigmaker Sequence, The Letter, Parlour Songs, City On Fire, and half of the final sequence (which includes The Judge's Return).[8]


References

  1. ^ Gans, Andrew (2007-06-13), Terfel, Friedman, Evans and Quast to Star in London Sweeney Todd, Playbill.com, <http://www.playbill.com/news/article/108765.html>. Retrieved on 2007-06-14
  2. ^ http://www.sondheimguide.com/concerts3.html#Kennedy
  3. ^ http://www.broadwayworld.com/viewcolumn.cfm?colid=21225 broadwayworld.com article, 9/08/07
  4. ^ Sondheim & Co., Second Edition, 1986, Zadan, Craig, p. 245, Harper & Row, ISBN 006015649-X
  5. ^ From the lyrics to 'Johanna (Quartet)', sung by the character Sweeney Todd
  6. ^ New York Times, Richard Eder, March 2, 1979, pg. C3
  7. ^ Hutchins, Michael H. Sweeney Todd at the Sondheim Guide. Retrieved on 2006-09-25.
  8. ^ Fanning, Frank. Sweeney Todd at the Cast Album Database. Retrieved on 2006-09-25.

Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 268th day of the year (269th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 268th day of the year (269th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

Awards
Preceded by
Ain't Misbehavin'
Tony Award for Best Musical
1979
Succeeded by
Evita
Preceded by
On the Twentieth Century
by Cy Coleman
Tony Award for Best Original Score
1979
by Stephen Sondheim
Succeeded by
Evita
by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice
Preceded by
On the Twentieth Century
by Betty Comden and Adolph Green
Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical
1979
by Hugh Wheeler
Succeeded by
Evita
by Tim Rice

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