SWEENEY TODD – Choreographed by ADAM BARRUCH

8:00 PM | Friday Sep 25, 2015
Lobero Theatre

Adam Barruch, the New York choreographer and recipient of the 2015 DANCEworks residency at the Lobero Theatre, has received Stephen Sondheim’s approval to create a new theatrical experience using the score of the Tony award winning musical, Sweeney Todd.

“Barruch’s new project was spawned by a 2011 signature solo he created to a recording of the Sweeney Todd song: ‘The Worst Pies in London.’ After seeing Barruch’s fluid, frenetic, and surprising take on the song, Sondheim gave Barruch his personal blessing to choreograph the full score.”

Sweeney Todd, regarded as one of Sondheim's masterpieces, centers on a barber who, after getting out of prison, seeks revenge through murder and, alongside his accomplice Mrs. Lovett, bakes his victims into meat pies. The production took home eight 1979 Tony Awards — out of the nine it was nominated for.” (Rachel Howard, sbdanceworks.com)

More recently, the production of Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler's Tony Award-winning musical created concerns over the ‘nature of the story’ at a New Hampshire school in 2014 and preparation for the school edition of Sweeney Todd was halted. In response to this decision, students and parents took aggressive action over social media. They created a Facebook page, community survey, and school-circulated petition that paved the way for a public forum attended by over 300 individuals. Consequently, the decision was overturned and the production of Sweeney Todd was reinstated on the school's calendar. (playbill.com)

Sondheim responded to this incident by writing a letter of thanks to the cast of the play. The following is an excerpt from that letter:

I've never understood why Sweeney Todd is considered ‘controversial.’ The incidents in the plot may be lurid, but the show's themes are primarily injustice, morality and greed, as Howard Sherman pointed out. More important, it's a wonderful, scary story — what Sweeney Todd is really about is having a good time.

And that's what the arts are about. That's why students should take part in them as much and as often as possible — arts with as many different attitudes and genres as they can open themselves to. That's also why the school made the right decision.”
Thank you-

Stephen Sondheim (playbill.com)
You won’t want to miss this opportunity to see Adam Barruch’s new physical theater production of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street at the Lobero Theatre on Friday, September 25th at 8:00 PM.

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