Friday, August 04, 2006

Doyle’s Amazing Sweeney

Who ever heard of a musical without a pit orchestra? Well, the actors ARE the orchestra…and the cast…and the stage crew. John Doyle’s revival of Sweeney Todd is nothing short of amazing. Yes, it's a Steven Sondheim musical, but this takes that fact to the next level. Michael Cerveris as the evil, misunderstood Sweeney has you believing by the end of the play that his horrendous acts of murder are justified. With the help of Patti LuPone’s gutter rat Mrs. Lovett, he propels you through his world on Fleet Street until you are breathless with the excitement of wondering what will happen next (even if you do know the show). Besides, who knew Patti LuPone played the tuba?!

Sweeney Todd can hardly be called a revival. Only the book and music have been revived. The concept is darker, more sinester and far more interesting. This is not your mother’s Sweeney. Go see it and prepare to sleep with the lights on for many nights thereafter.

(Note: Sweeney Todd is closing in September, 2006! I'm not surprised. It seems anything brilliant on Broadway closes much too quickly. Go see this production quickly! If you don't, you will miss out on Broadway history.)

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