Stephen Sondheim Collection (Into the Woods, Company, Sunday in the Park With George, Follies In Concert, Sweeney Todd, Sondheim: The Birthday Concert)
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INTO THE WOODS (1990, NR, 153 Mins, Full Frame)-A baker and his wife journey into the woods in search of a cow, a red cape, a pair of golden slippers and some magic beans to lift a curse that has kept them childless. Tony Award winners Bernadette Peters, Joanna Gleason and the rest of the original Broadway cast weave their magic spell over you in Stephen Sondheim's masterpiece, directed by James Lapine, a seamless fusion of fairy tale characters and what happens after "happily ever after." With oft-recorded songs such as "Children Will Listen" and "No One Is Alone," INTO THE WOODS is a music lover's delight from start to finish--and will forever cement Stephen Sondheim's unparalleled position as the giant of the American musical theater.
COMPANY (2011, NR, 145 Mins, Widescreen)- Set firmly in, and often about, New York, COMPANY follows five married, once married, or soon to be married couples and their mutual friend, Robert, a 35 year old bachelor who has been unable to connect in a long-term relationship. The relationships are presented in a series of vignettes, primarily through Bobby's eyes, so that we see the less than ideal aspects of commitment. However, it is obvious to the audience that the committed are happy. Eventually, Bobby learns that while relationships aren't perfect, they are a necessary part of "Being Alive."
SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE (1986, NR, 147 Mins, Full Frame)- A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grand Jatte by Georges Seurat is one of the great paintings of the world, book writer James Lapine and composer/lyricist Stephen Sondheim bring a story based on the work brilliantly to life. While the painting depicts people gathered on an island in the Seine, the musical goes beyond simply describing their lives. It is an exploration of art, of love, of commitment. Seurat connected dots to create images; Lapine and Sondheim use connection as the heart of all our relationships. Winner of the 1985 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
FOLLIES IN CONCERT (1985, NR, 90 Mins, Full Frame) - The incomparable Stephen Sondheim brought his sensational Follies to the stage in 1971 where it was hailed as "monumental theater" by The New York Times. Fourteen years later, the magic was recreated by an unparalleled gathering of stage and screen luminaries performing with the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln Center for a wildly enthusiastic audience. This one-night-only performance became a legendary event in Broadway history! The evolution of this unique, historic event is exclusively captured in this film, from the first rehearsal--just four days before the show--to the last second butterflies just before the curtain rose. This is a rare treasure for all fans of musical theater. Includes the memorable songs "Losing My Mind" and "I'm Still Here" and an all-star cast!
SWEENEY TODD: IN CONCERT (2001, NR, 132 Mins, Full Frame)- This delicious production, is a musical thriller of revenge and romance set in Victorian England, features Broadway diva Patti LuPone as Mrs. Lovett and veteran stage actor George Hearn in the title role. Premiering in 1979, the legendary Sweeney Todd--winner of nine New York Drama Critics Circle Awards and eight Tony Awards--is recorded with the San Francisco Symphony as conducted by Rob Fisher.
SONDHEIM: THE BIRTHDAY (2010, NR, 116 Mins, Widescreen)- Join us for a rousing celebration of the life and work of one of Broadway’s greatest legends – the one and only Stephen Sondheim. For the master composer and lyricist’s 80th birthday, many of musical theater’s brightest stars gathered to perform more than two dozen sensational numbers from Sondheim’s illustrious career. Many of these enduring songs are rarely heard and several are performed by the original Broadway cast members. David Hyde Pierce hosts this magical event with Stephen Sondheim’s longtime collaborator Paul Gemignani conducting the New York Philharmonic. Filmed live, March 15–16, 2010 at Avery Fisher Hall, New York City.
Performances Include: "America" (Dancers– West Side Story), "Something’s Coming" (Alexander Gemingnani– West Side Story), "We’re Gonna Be Alright" (Marin Mazzie, Jason Danieley– Do I Hear a Waltz?), "Don’t Laugh" (Victoria Clark– Hot Spot), "Johanna"(Nathan Gunn– Sweeney Todd), "You’re Gonna Love Tomorrow" and "Love Will See Us Through" (Matt Cavenaugh, Jenn Colella, Laura Osnes, Bobby Steggert– Follies), "Too Many Mornings" (Nathan Gunn, Audra McDonald– Follies), "The Road You Didn’t Take" (John McMartin– Follies), "It Takes Two" (Joanna Gleason, Chip Zien– Into the Woods), "Growing Up" (Jim Walton– Merrily We Roll Along), "Finishing the Hat" (Mandy Patinkin– Sunday in the Park with George), "Move On" (Mandy Patinkin, Bernadette Peters– Sunday in the Park with George), "Pretty Women"(Michael Cerveris, George Hearn– Sweeney Todd), "A Little Priest" (Michael Cerveris, George Hearn, Patti LuPone– Sweeney Todd), “Theme from ‘Reds’” with Pas De Deux (NY Philharmonic, Two ABT Dancers Maria and Blaine), "So Many People" (Laura Benanti– Saturday Night), "Beautiful Girls" (David Hyde Pierce), "Ladies Who Lunch" (Patti LuPone– Company), "Losing My Mind" (Marin Mazzie– Follies), "The Glamorous Life" (Audra McDonald– A Little Night Music), "Could I Leave You?" (Donna Murphy– Follies), "Not a Day Goes By" (Bernadette Peters– Merrily We Roll Along), "I’m Still Here" (Elaine Stritch– Follies), "Sunday" (Broadway Chorus– Sunday in the Park with George), "Happy Birthday" (All Cast)
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Top Customer Reviews
This week, I did find a set of 6 CDs at one of those global, membership only mega-warehouses...the one that rhymes with bosco. lol The cost is just under 60 US dollars, and includes INTO THE WOODS (original Bway production), COMPANY w/NY Philharmonic, SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE, FOLLIES: IN CONCERT, SWEENY TODD: IN CONCERT, and SONDHEIM: THE BIRTHDAY CONCERT. You would have to purchase PASSIONS separately, as it is not included in this set.
My only wish is that a bigger box set were available! Would be nice to have available some of the videos recorded of Passion, Pacific Overtures, and maybe some other things. I also kind of wish it had the original cast of Sweeney Todd.
I would recommend this set to anyone who has a love for the American Musical Theatre and especially an appreciation for Stephen Sondheim.
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