Justin Guarini & Ensemble Playing now through June 21st at the Bucks County Playhouse is Stephen Sondheim’s, Company starring Bucks County’s own, Justin Guarini of American Idol Fame.
Based on a book by George Furth, “Company” was first performed on Broadway in 1970 and was nominated for a record setting fourteen Tony Awards, going on to win six. A concept musical, composed of short vignettes, the plot centers around Robert (Bobby) on his 35th birthday, a single man who can’t commit to a serious relationship. Surrounded by five married couples, who are his best friends and his three girlfriends, Bobby questions his path and the choices he has made.
There are so many great songs in the score it’s hard to pick out only a few but here goes: Being Alive, The Ladies Who Lunch, Side by Side by Side, The Little Things You do Together, Getting Married Today, Sorry Grateful . . .etc. etc. They’re all so exciting, I’m just going to have to put on the original Original Cast album and enjoy them all over again.
Though Justin Guarini does not possess a very big voice, he does have a beautiful one. Combine that with being a sensitive actor and you have the right mélange for playing the lead role of Bobby. Director Hunter Foster has wisely surrounded the young Guarini with a troupe of well-seasoned Broadway actors producing a vibrant production. Strong performances are turned in by the entire cast with highlights being John Bolton and Jennifer Cody in their Karate match as competitive husband and wife Harry and Sarah (due in no small part to Lorin Latarro’s choreography), Candy Buckley belting out, The Ladies Who Lunch as Joanne, Kate Wetherhead as Amy with her perfectly frenetic rendition of Getting Married Today, and Mr. Guarini’s tearful yearning as Robert recounts his paean to the universe in Being Alive.
I was actually shocked to discover that my neighbor, whom I had brought to the show, had not only never seen a production of “Company” before, but had never evenheard any of the music! (Some people do have to get out more.) Of course she loved it. So, if you are like my neighbor, do yourself a favor. Get out to the playhouse. It’s right on the river and during intermission you can have a drink and look at the twinkling lights of Lambertville across the water. I can’t think of a better way to spend a balmy, summer evening.
For tickets call the box office at 215-862-2121 or visit: www.bcptheater.org . John Caliendo – Kate Wetherhead Return to Home Page
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