Monday, July 12, 2010
The Queens of Broadway Are Back!
No, I am not talking about La Cage Aux Folles, I am speaking of Bernadette Peters and Elaine Stritch opening the second company of the current revival of Stephen Sondheim's A Little Night Music. These two dames of the theatre are finally returning to the Great White Way after several years on hiatus to do concert work. I did not see the first cast with Catherine Zeta-Jones and Angela Lansbury and I am so glad I waited (even though I love you Angie)! Tomorrow, July 13th, marks the Broadway debut of the Peters/Stritch tandem and I can only imagine it will be phenomenal. Bernadette will bring nuance, subtlety, and that glorious voice to the role of Desiree and Stritch will certainly perform a brassy, brazen rendition of the wheelchair-bound Madame Armfeldt. Based on video interviews, it appears that Stritch is most intrigued by the mother-daughter dynamic between the characters while Peters seems enamored with Sondheim's score and the way in which it gradually reveals its magic to the actors throughout the rehearsal process. Elaine Stritch's rendition of Liaisons will certainly be a highlight in the show and I am certain that Bernadette Peters' Send In the Clowns will be simply heartbreaking. This casting is the stuff of dreams, just ask any longtime theatre fan. It was wonderful that Catharine Zeta-Jones' starpower allowed this revival to make it to Broadway, and now that the production has had success, we can see it in the way it was truly meant to be performed, with two of the finest Sondheim interpreters of our time.