Sunday, February 21, 2016

A Little Night Music

If you (1) love Stephen Sondheim; (2) adore A Little Night Music; (3) treasure gorgeous singing; and/or (4) value a bargain, get thee to Theatre 2020 in Brooklyn Heights. Running through March 6, this lovely, unmiked production features superb voices, solid acting, and a level of intimacy that is truly a gift. In short, director Judith Jarosz and her game cast give us the heart and soul of Night Music, with $18 tickets!!!

Nearly all of this production's weaknesses are related to budget. It would be nice to have more scenery, better costumes, and certainly a larger orchestra (though music director/pianist Kevin A. Smith does an extraordinary solo job expressing the ambiance, emotions, and beauty of the music). And, okay, some performances are not quite at the level of the others. But these complaints are slight compared with the sheer pleasure of basking in the superb voices and swirling melodies in the cozy McKinney Chapel.

If by any chance you're not familiar with Night Music, here's an extremely short precis of the delightfully complicated plot. A bunch of people in early 1900's Sweden are coupled with the wrong partners. Under a never-ending midnight sun, they flirt and banter, mate and bicker, and generally act like love-struck fools. They are sweetly human, and the trip from the beginning of Act 1 to the end of Act 2 is full of humor and emotion. Oh, and did I mention how great the singing is?

The cast includes Adam Baritot, Elyse Beyer, Mary Stewart Evans, David Fuller, Jessica Rose Futran (sleek and funny as the Countess), Chloe Holgate (a charming Anne), Stephanie Jabre, Jay Aubrey Jones, Lorinne Lampert, Richard Lisenby, Christopher J. Nolan (a very real and affecting Henrik), Becky Saunders (terrific as Madame Armfeldt), Mary Thorne, and Gianna Yanelli. 

I am eternally blown away at the number of amazing performers we are have in New York City. A Little Night Music at Theater 2020 shows us yet again how blessed we are.

Wendy Caster
(first row, press ticket)

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