By George Basler The Southern Tier, during the past year, wallowed in revenge, murder, cannibalism and lust. Don’t panic: We’re not talking real life here, but the world of the stage. For whatever reason, Broome and neighboring counties were treated to three productions of Sweeney Todd, Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler’s classic musical horror story about a naïve barber who becomes a revengeful serial killer. The Endicott Performing Arts Center mounted a production last fall and Tri-Cities Opera in the spring. The Glimmerglass Festival in Cooperstown is currently staging the bloody...Read more
Tag Archives: “Sweeney Todd”
By George Basler Stephen Sondheim is not a big opera fan. That’s one discovery I made while attending an appearance by Sondheim last weekend at the Glimmerglass Festival in Cooperstown. The renowned composer was interviewed by Jamie Bernstein, Leonard Bernstein’s daughter. The two have known each other from the time Jamie, now 63, was a child. Sondheim, of course, worked with her father on the groundbreaking Broadway classic West Side Story. The question-and-answer session, which drew a capacity audience, dovetailed with the Glimmerglass staging of Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd as...Read more
It's such a busy time right now with so many arts organizations winding up their seasons. I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to revive our readers' query: "What did you do in the arts this week?". On Friday, I heard a lovely concert by the combined vocal ensembles of SUNY Broome. On Sunday, I caught the really fine Tri-Cities Opera production of one of my favorite Broadway shows, Sweeney Todd. How about you?Read more
-- Barb Van Atta, BAMirror Editor...
Reviewed by Sherri Strichman Tri-Cities Opera's Sweeney Todd opened last night (April 29) at The Forum to the enthusiastic reception of the audience. This dark musical thriller by Stephen Sondheim (book by Hugh Wheeler) is a departure from TCO's standard operatic fare, yet it seemed to be the largest house in attendance since I began reviewing performances here. The story: A wrongfully convicted barber, Benjamin Barker, returns to London. He’d had a beautiful wife whom he loved, and the judge who desired her had him transported to a penal...Read more
Reviewed by George Basler In the 37 years since it was first staged, Sweeney Todd has become one of Stephen Sondheim’s most produced musicals. It’s also one of the darkest musicals ever to grace the Broadway stage. Hearts and flowers aren’t on display here. Instead, hatred, lust and depravity take center stage in the penny-dreadful tale of bloody revenge in Victorian London. The musical requires the cast to convey the right tone and also perform a difficult score with complex lyrical passages, atonal melodies and counterpoint. So it...Read more
By Barb Van Atta To belabor a tonsorial metaphor, Tri-Cities Opera plans to continue grooming musical students and highlight rising stars in a 2015-2016 season bookended by the theatrical world’s most famous barbers: Figaro and Sweeney Todd. At a press conference today (March 24) at the 66-year-old company’s headquarters in Binghamton, Susan S. Ashbaker, general director since July 2014, announced, not only the nuts and bolts of next year’s season, but a series of changes and improvements designed to boost the opera-going audience in Broome County and...Read more