Prior to the first preview of Follies at the National Theatre on 22 August, Stephen Sondheim will taking part in a Q&A with Jeremy Sams. The talk begins at 6pm and runs for 45 minutes. Good luck if you’ve managed to get hold of tickets – seats were sold via a ballot system, owing to the overwhelming demand to see Steve in person.
Stephen Sondheim on Follies
Tuesday 22 August
The Stephen Sondheim Society is saddened to hear of the death of our patron and friend Barbara Cook, who succumbed to respiratory failure at her Manhattan home on Tuesday morning at the age of 89.
Although she never appeared in a fully staged original Sondheim musical, Barbara will be forever associated with the composer-lyricist’s work, having championed it throughout her long and illustrious career.
The young and relatively inexperienced Barbara won our hearts after taking on the role of Cunegonde in Leonard Bernstein’s Candide in 1956. It wasn’t her first stage job – she had already secured roles in New York revivals of Oklahoma! (1951) and Carousel (1954), among others – but it was the one with which she made her name.
The original production of Candide ran for...Read More »
The National Theatre has released a behind-the-scenes clip from a recent photoshoot for their upcoming Follies. In the short, 30-second video, the four leads – Imelda Staunton (Sally), Janie Dee (Phyllis), Philip Quast (Buddy) and Peter Forbes (Buddy) – ready themselves for the fashion photographer Perou (aka Ralph John Perou), before being snapped as a quartet in front of a crumbling theatre set. It’s a tantalising clip, with presumably stock-library music, but it should whet the appetite for any fan desperate to see the Sondheim-Goldman classic back on the London stage.
We’re also thrilled that two SSSSPOTY finalists are in the cast: Alex Young (2010 winner), playing the Young Sally, and Adrian Grove (2008 winner) as Sam Deems.
Follies opens on 22nd August and has had its run extended through until January 2018. It will be directed by Dominic Cooke, with Nigel Lilley as MD and Bill Deamer as choreographer....Read More »
This year’s third place winner at The Stephen Sondheim Society Student Performer of the Year competition, Oscar Conlon-Morrey, will be singing at the Phoenix Artist Club this coming Monday as part of The Stephen Sondheim Society Presents… cabaret night with Tim McArthur and Aaron Clingham. Oscar took the unprecedented third place prize after judges were unable to agree on the runner-up at this year’s event. In order to celebrate the top three students, Society patron Julia McKenzie generously donated the £250 third prize.
Part of the SSSSPOTY prize – in addition to the cash prizes of £1,000, £500 and this year £250 – the winners are invited to sing at a Society cabaret. Oscar is first up, and it’s hoped that we might hear a reprise of his winning number, “The Contest”, as sang by Adolfo Pirelli the “Italian” barber who challenges Sweeney Todd to a shave-off. Everyone was in agreement that...Read More »
Join our host TIM McARTHUR and MD AARON CLINGHAM as they welcome three new guests to The Stephen Sondheim Society’s monthly cabaret at the Phoenix Artist Club in London’s West End. As ever, you’ll enjoy a mix of Sondheim, new musical theatre writing and a selection of Broadway standards.
This month’s line up:
MADDY BANKS trained in Musical Theatre at Newcastle College and then went on to graduate from the London School of Musical Theatre in 2016. She recently made her professional debut as Alice in When Harry Met Barry (Above The Stag Theatre). Credits while training include Medea in Jason and the Argonauts (Bridewell Theatre), Cinderella in Into The Woods and Viola in excerpts of Twelfth Night. Workshops include: Lia’s Guide To Winning The Lottery...Read More »
Jeremy Chapman reports back from the 11th annual Stephen Sondheim Society Student Performer of the Year – a Sunday afternoon of Sondheim and new writing for the stage, performed by 12 of the UK’s best students of musical theatre.
There’s no stopping those glorious gals! Scots lass Izuka Hoyle made it four in a row for the fair sex at the prestigious Stephen Sondheim Society Student Performer of the Year awards by following Corrine Priest, Erin Doherty and Courtney Bowman into the winner’s enclosure at a noisy Noel Coward Theatre.
Each of the 12 finalists brought college pals with them to cheer them on in the 11th SSSSPOTY competition and the partisan support when Master of Ceremonies Clive Rowe made his introductions created a tremendous buzz.
It was a total about-turn after the guys had run up a 6-1 lead with only 2010 winner Alex Young, one of this year’s judges and joining...Read More »
Join us on Monday 5th June at 7.30 pm for another evening of Sondheim cabaret at the Phoenix Artist Club. As ever, our host Tim McArthur and MD Aaron Clingham will present a mix of Sondheim, new musical theatre writing and some songbook standards, with the help of three special guests.
To book, click here, call 0333 666 3366 or buy at the door. Tickets cost just £15, and members of The Stephen Sondheim Society can purchase them at the discounted rate of just £12.
This month’s line up:
Abigail Carter-Simpson trained at the Guildford School of Acting, graduating with a BA (Hons) in Musical Theatre.
She is currently appearing in ‘Cream!’ at The Canal Cafe Theatre until 11th June 2017. Her next venture is Newsrevue at the Pleasance Theatre for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this coming August.
Recent credits include: Breaking Up Is Hard To...Read More »
Claybourne Elder has just finished portraying the character of the soldier Napoleon in Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Sunday in the Park with George at the Hudson Theatre on Broadway – the first Sondheim production to ever gross more than $1 million in a single week. The fact that its leading man is Jake Gyllenhaal probably has something to do with its financial success, and Elder has the (unenviable?) task of covering for the Hollywood star.
Just before the show’s final matinee, under the din of the microphone tests – and the technical check for the incredible Chromolume light show invention that appears in Act 2 – Craig Glenday spoke to Elder about his experience on the musical, his history with Sondheim, and also his upcoming visit to London for a one-night-only cabaret entitled You and Me and Sondheim, scheduled for Sunday 30th...Read More »
The Stephen Sondheim Society Presents… returns with another great Monday night cabaret line up, hosted as ever by Tim McArthur and with the incredible MD Aaron Clingham at the piano. This month’s special guests are all from the sell-out hit production of The Frogs at the Jermyn Street so don’t miss it!
The show starts at 7.30 pm at The Phoenix Artist Club beneath the Phoenix Theatre on Charing Cross Road. Tickets are £12 to Society members and £15 to non-members. How better to end your Bank Holiday May Day than by enjoying a night of Sondheim, show-tune classics and some new writing for the stage?!
EMMA RALSTON: Emma trained at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. Theatre credits include: Pluto in The Frogs (Jermyn Street Theatre), News Revue (Canal Cafe Theatre), Fairy BowBelles in Jack & The Beanstalk, Destiny in Mars Rover (Park Theatre/ Beam16), Sarah in Jog On (Soho Theatre/ So & So Arts Club), Little Red Ridinghood in Into the...Read More »
The National Theatre has issued the complete cast list for their upcoming production of Follies, which will play at the Olivier from 22 August until 3 January. The dates of special talks have also been announced (see Events). Among the cast is SSSSPOTY winners Alex Young, who will play the young Sally, and Adrian Grove (Sam Deems). Also featured is Tracie Bennett, who sang “Broadway Baby” at the Society’s gala in honour of Sondheim’s 85th birthday (which was directed by Bill Deamer, who is choreographing Follies).
The original production of Follies was directed by Hal Prince and premiered on Broadway in 1971, where it was nominated for eleven Tony Awards, and won seven. The show made it to London in Cameron Mackintosh’s production of 1987, and has been revived around the world many times. The 2017 staging will be the first time Follies has been performed at the National Theatre.
|Norma Attallah||Emily Whitman|
|Josephine Barstow||Heidi Schiller|
|Jeremy...Read More »|
On behalf of all members of The Stephen Sondheim Society, we’d like to wish a very happy birthday to our patron, Steve. Many happy returns!...Read More »
Don’t miss the chance to hear some of the West End’s best talents performing their favourite Sondheim numbers this coming Monday 13th March. The Stephen Sondheim Society Presents… returns with Tim McArthur and Aaron Clingham, joined by guest stars Valerie Cutko, Robert Irons and Madeleine MacMahon.
BOOK HERE NOW! At just £15 a seat, or £12 for Sondheim Society members, it’s great value, and a delightful way to pass an otherwise miserable Monday night!
VALERIE CUTKO has appeared in the West End as Fraulein Kost in Cabaret, Madame Egorova in Beautiful and Damned, Marlene Dietrich in Piaf and The Queen of Transylvania in My Fair Lady (National Theatre, Theatre Royal Drury Lane and for the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall). She played Madame Giry in The Phantom of the Opera (UK Tour), Mrs Mullin in Carousel at the Arcola Theatre, Ninotchka...Read More »
Hollywood actor Jake Gyllenhaal, who is currently in rehearsal for Sunday in the Park with George at the Hudson Theatre on Broadway, has posted a video to his Facebook page showing him singing through “Finishing The Hat”. The stylish video, filmed by Cary Joji Fukunaga, shows Gyllenhaal walking down through the Hudson’s fly system as he sings, finally arriving on stage to join musical director Chris Fenwick and his band. The 36-year-old Academy-Award-nominated actor is due to make his Broadway debut in the newly re-opened Hudson on Saturday 11th Feb for a 10-week run.
He previously performed the lead role of Georges Seurat to much acclaim in a three-night New York City Center concert production in October last year. Reprising her role as Dot will be Annaleigh Ashford. If you didn’t catch them then, now’s your chance, and as this newly posted video shows, Jake can certainly sing!