Marry Me a Little (musical)

Last updated
Marry Me a Little
Marry me sondheim.jpg
Original Cast Album
Music Stephen Sondheim
Lyrics Stephen Sondheim
Book Revue
BasisAn original idea by
Craig Lucas
Norman René
Productions1980 Off-Off Broadway
1981 Off Broadway
2012 Off Broadway

Marry Me a Little is a musical with lyrics and music by Stephen Sondheim, conceived by Craig Lucas and Norman René. The revue sets songs cut from Sondheim's better-known musicals, as well as songs from his then-unproduced musical Saturday Night to a dialogue-free plot about the relationship between two lonely New York single people, who are in emotional conflict during an evening in their separate one-room apartments. Despite knowing of the other's existence, they never get up the courage to talk to each other, though they imagine what such an encounter might be like. [1]

Musical theatre work that combines songs, music, spoken dialogue, acting, and dance

Musical theatre is a form of theatrical performance that combines songs, spoken dialogue, acting and dance. The story and emotional content of a musical – humor, pathos, love, anger – are communicated through the words, music, movement and technical aspects of the entertainment as an integrated whole. Although musical theatre overlaps with other theatrical forms like opera and dance, it may be distinguished by the equal importance given to the music as compared with the dialogue, movement and other elements. Since the early 20th century, musical theatre stage works have generally been called, simply, musicals.

Stephen Sondheim American composer and lyricist

Stephen Joshua Sondheim is an American composer and lyricist known for more than a half-century of contributions to musical theatre. Sondheim has received an Academy Award, eight Tony Awards, eight Grammy Awards, a Pulitzer Prize, a Laurence Olivier Award, and a 2015 Presidential Medal of Freedom. He has been described by Frank Rich of The New York Times as "now the greatest and perhaps best-known artist in the American musical theater". His best-known works as composer and lyricist include A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1962), Company (1970), Follies (1971), A Little Night Music (1973), Pacific Overtures (1976), Sweeney Todd (1979), Merrily We Roll Along (1981), Sunday in the Park with George (1984), Into the Woods (1987), Assassins (1990), and Passion (1994). He also wrote the lyrics for West Side Story (1957) and Gypsy (1959).

Craig Lucas is an American playwright, screenwriter, theatre director, musical actor, and film director.

Contents

History

The musical originally was staged by the off-off-Broadway Production Company. It opened on October 29, 1980 and closed December 28, 1980. It re-opened March 12, 1981 at the off-Broadway Actor's Playhouse, where it ran for 96 performances. Directed by Rene and choreographed by Don Johanson, it starred Craig Lucas and Suzanne Henry. On June 7, 1982 the musical opened at the King's Head Theatre, London, [2] directed by Robert Cushman and choreographed by Dennis Grimaldi. The revue has been performed in US regional theaters such as GroundWorks Theatre, Nashville, Tennessee in March 2009 [3] and the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Cincinnati, Ohio, in May 2009. [4]

An Off-Broadway theatre is any professional venue in Manhattan in New York City with a seating capacity between 100 and 499, inclusive. These theatres are smaller than Broadway theatres, but larger than Off-Off-Broadway theatres, which seat fewer than 100.

Kings Head Theatre pub theatre in Islington, London, England

The King's Head Theatre, founded in 1970 by Dan Crawford, is an off-West End venue in London. It is the second oldest operating pub theatre in the UK. In March 2010 Adam Spreadbury-Maher became Artistic Director and the theatre became home to resident company OperaUpClose for 4 years.

London Capital of the United Kingdom

London is the capital and largest city of both England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile (80 km) estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans. The City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles (2.9 km2) and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow closely its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is also an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.

In late 1998 actor Steve Gideon proposed a revival of the work with the casting of a male same-sex couple to play the leads. He approached Stephen Sondheim with the idea and was given permission. The new version of the work debuted at the Celebration Theatre in Hollywood, CA in 1999.

The Celebration Theatre is a 501(c)(3) non-profit theatre company in Los Angeles, founded in 1982. The company is located in West Hollywood, on the west end of Theatre Row, and specializes in works representing the Gay and Lesbian experience.

A version of the main title with Harry Nilsson singing can be found on bootlegs.

Harry Nilsson singer-songwriter, songwriter

Harry Edward Nilsson III, usually credited as Nilsson, was an American singer-songwriter who achieved the peak of his commercial success in the early 1970s. His work is characterized by pioneering vocal overdub experiments, returns to the Great American Songbook, and fusions of Caribbean sounds. A tenor with a 3½ octave range, Nilsson was one of the few major pop-rock recording artists of his era to achieve significant commercial success without ever performing major public concerts or undertaking regular tours. The craft of his songs and the defiant attitude he projected remains a touchstone for later generations of indie rock musicians.

In 2008, Marry Me a Little was performed in South Africa in a production starring David Fick opposite Talia Egelhof and then Nathan Fredericks in two successive runs of the show at the Intimate Theatre in Cape Town from 28 June - 5 July. The production was directed by Jacqui Kowen, with musical direction by Victor Tichart. [5]

In 2012, the Off-Broadway Keen Company presented a new version of Marry Me a Little starring Jason Tam and Lauren Molina. This production included several new songs and a new concept. The production was directed by Jonathan Silverstein and started previews September 11, 2012, opening October 2, 2012 at the Clurman Theatre at Theatre Row. Both Stephen Sondheim and Craig Lucas were involved in the project.

Jason Tam is an actor and dancer. His most notable roles include Markko Rivera on the daytime soap opera One Life to Live, Paul in the 2006 revival of the Broadway musical A Chorus Line, Xander in Lysistrata Jones on Broadway and Shoe on the teen drama Beyond the Break. His other stage performances include Les Misérables on Broadway, She Loves Me at The Guthrie Theatre, West Side Story,Oklahoma!,Footloose the Sacramento Music Circus, and King and I at Casa Manana. He is also a frequent collaborator with musical theatre writer Joe Iconis. In 2014 he joined the original cast of the Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey collaboration "If/Then" at the Richard Rodgers Theater as David. He played the role for the entire run of If/Then. He can be heard on the 2014 Broadway’s Carols for a Cure album.

Lauren Molina is an American actress, singer, songwriter, and musician. A Detroit native, Lauren received her BFA from the University of Michigan in musical theatre. She resides in New York City. She made her Broadway debut as Johanna in the 2005 revival of Sweeney Todd, Described as a "sweet-voiced soprano who...plays the cello beautifully" by The New York Times, she received the Independent Reviewers of New England Award Best Supporting Actress, while performing on the first national tour, and was named as one of the "30 Under 30" featured on Broadwayspace.com.

Theatre Row (New York City) human settlement in Manhattan, New York, United States of America

Theatre Row is an entertainment district of Off Broadway theatres on 42nd Street in Midtown Manhattan west of Ninth Avenue. The space originally referred to a 1977 redevelopment project to convert adult entertainment venues into theatres between 9th and Tenth Avenues on the south side of 42nd Street. However with the success of the district the name is often used to describe any theatre on either side of the street from Ninth Avenue to the Hudson River as more theatres have been built along the street.

In January, 2013, The New Repertory Theatre in Watertown, Massachusetts, under the direction of Ilyse Robbins, received permission to do a gender-neutral staging of Marry Me a Little, using four actors—two women and two men—and two pianists. The action here takes place in four apartments in Manhattan, with varying pairing up on songs as man and woman, woman and woman, and man and man (this latter pairing effectively used especially in the lyrics of "So Many People" from Saturday Night). At the end of the performance the four actors do meet for a closing finale.

In March, 2014, a Canadian production of Marry Me a Little opened at the Tarragon Theatre in Toronto, directed by Adam Brazier and starring Elodie Gillett and Adrian Marchuk. The production showed the two characters living together in a relationship that eventually comes to an end.

From June 29 to August 10, 2014, [6] a British production opened at the St James Theatre in London, directed by Hannah Chissick, under the musical direction of David Randall, and starring Simon Bailey and Laura Pitt-Pulford. The critically acclaimed, sell-out production went on to get another week at the St James Theatre's Studio from October 6 to October 11, 2014. [7]

From January 28 to February 13, 2017, the show will be presented at The Gallery Players directed by Barrie Gelles and starring Jesse Manocherian, Alyson Leigh Rosenfeld, Adrian Rifat, Paul Williams, Cassandra Dupler and Laura Cetti. A first for this show, there will be three rotating casts performing each weekend: one duo is male and female, one is an all-male duo, and one is an all-female duo. [8]

Song list

Notes

  1. Sommer, Elyse.Marry Me a Little review curtainup.com, October 19, 1997
  2. http://www.sondheimguide.com/marry.html
  3. Listing for Marry Me a Little groundworkstheatre.blogspot.com, retrieved December 10, 2009
  4. Hetrick, Adam. "Marry Me a Little Opens at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park May 14" playbill.com, May 14, 2009.
  5. 1.87 https://web.archive.org/web/20141129022241/http://152.111.1.87/argief/berigte/dieburger/2008/06/20/NJ/7/WESteater20.html. Archived from the original on 2014-11-29. Retrieved 18 March 2015.Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. "Marry Me a Little". St James Theatre. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
  7. "Marry Me a Little". St James Theatre. Retrieved 18 March 2015.
  8. http://www.broadwayworld.com/brooklyn/article/The-Gallery-Players-PresentsStephen-SondheimsMARRY-ME-A-LITTLE-20170112.Missing or empty |title= (help)

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References

International website