Sondheim's Meaty Musical reinvented
A grisly, blood-curdling classic, Stephen Sondheim's masterpiece Sweeney Tood: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street arrives Off-Broadway in 2017 in an devious new production straight from London's West End. Created by the Tooting Arts Club, this Sweeney Todd originally premiered in London's oldest pie shop, Harrington's, where the 32 person audience were treated to pies (we're hoping they weren't too authentic) during the show and an incredibly intimate performance from the Demon Barber and Co. The reviews were ecstatic, with the Stage calling it "the most unique of any production I've ever seen," and Mr Sondheim himself stopped by on the last night.
For this Off-Broadway transfer, the cosy Barrow Street Theatre has been reconfigured to capture the close atmosphere of Harrington's, and pies will once again be served up for those brave enough to sample Mrs Lovett's culinary skills. Bill Buckhurst, who oversaw the London staging, will direct.
A History Of The Demon Barber
Based on a play by Christopher Bond, and adapted for the stage by Hugh Wheeler, Sweeney Todd debuted on Broadway in 1979. One of Sondheim's greatest and most ambitious scores, with a measly twenty percent actual spoken-word, the show won eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and has since gone down as a musical theatre and cultural touchstone. It was later adapted for the big screen by Tim Burton, with Johnny Depp in the lead role.
What is sweeney todd About?
The year is 1846, and a man by the name of Sweeney Todd steps off a boat at London's docks. He has returned to right the wrongs done unto him and his family by a corrupt judge, who twenty years ago, sentenced Sweeney to transportation out of the country so that he could take his wife for himself. Sweeney's first port of call is his old dwellings, where his former landlady, pie-maker Mrs Lovett, tells him that his wife killed herself to escape the judge's clutches, yet their daughter remains in the judge's 'care'.
His dark heart set on vengeance, Sweeney Todd enlists the help of Mrs Lovett in his terrible plan. Sweeney will reopen his old barbershop, and use his razor to slit the throats of every man who helped the judge carry out his wicked deed. Meanwhile Mrs Lovett will dispose of the bodies by baking them into her pies. It's a horrifying plan that might just be crazy enough to succeed, but as the bodies begin piling up in the cellar of the pie-shop, Todd's insatiable bloodlust threatens to both drive him insane, and blow the pair's grisly operation.