[Sca-cooks] OT & OOP: Sweeney Todd movie
Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius
adamantius1 at verizon.net
Thu Nov 29 20:36:40 PST 2007
On Nov 29, 2007, at 10:38 PM, Caointiarn wrote:
> So for us who may not know of this musical, is there an "original"
> recording we should find and view? Or does such a thing exist?
There's a 1982 road company performance of the original 1979 Harold
Prince production (which is a version of the original Broadway
production) that was broadcast on PBS and later appeared on home video
But it's basically the same production, with the wonderful rotating
split-level set, scene changes done by chorus members in costume, lots
of trap doors, steam-powered machinery, etc. It's got some of the
original cast members: Angela Lansbury as Mrs. Lovett, Edmund Lyndeck
as Judge Turpin, Joaquin Romaguera as Pirelli, Ken Jennings as Tobias.
Len Cariou is replaced by George Hearn, who is pretty good, and can
sing, but knows not the meaning of the word "subtle". Ingénue heroine
type, bland young hero type, and fifth-business/plot catalyst beggar
woman are replacements. The hero, Antony, _had_ been played by Victor
Garber, whose face seems inescapable to anyone watching broadcast TV
for a couple hours today.
Well, anyway, this is available on DVD, and there's also a concert
performance (basically a version staged without sets and period
costumes) with George Hearn and Patti Lupone in the lead roles. As far
as I know, those are the only video options for the musical, both are
pretty good in their own way. Cast albums on audio CD for various
productions are also available, but you really want the 1979 Broadway
production, with the full cast and full orchestra. It's just the way
the show was written. There was a popular 2005 or 2006 revival with
Michael Cerveris and Patti Lupone (and a bunch of wooden boxes) with
an alleged high-quality cast album, but it just sounds all tinny and
There's a bunch of footage from various productions available on
YouTube (mostly individual scenes/songs), for those whose impatience
outweighs their dedication to quality...
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