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Show Spotlight: ‘Company’

Live the NYC glam life with the new Broadway production Company. The musical comedy has been a staple in the Broadway world with several Tony Awards and many revivals. See what Company is all about!

Company history 

Playwright and actor George Furth had originally devised 11 one-act plays and planned to have actress Kim Stanley lead each one. However, when Stephen Sondheim read over the plays and received advice from successful directors and producers, he decided to create a musical from these different stories. 

The original plot synopsis follows Robert, on his 35th birthday, who is single but surrounded by his married friends. As Robert thinks about his future, he wonders if he should just be happy with his friendships now or wish for a romantic partner of his own. The show has no linear plot, with its story created from mini vignettes. 

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In the 1970 Broadway debut, Dean Jones starred as Robert while Larry Kert took over the role months later. Charles Kimbrough, Barbara Barrie, Merle Louise, Elaine Stritch, and George Coe played supporting parts. This production went on to have 705 performances and ended its Broadway run in 1972.  At the 1971 Tony Awards, Company earned 14 nominations and won Best Musical. 

After its original Broadway run, the musical had a U.S. National tour (1971), West End production (1972), Broadway revival (1995), West End revival (1996), Kennedy Center production (2002), another Broadway revival (2006), New York Philanthropic Concert (2011), and a second gender-swapped West End revival (2018). A third Broadway revival is currently playing on Broadway.

Company Broadway 2021 revival 

In the newest production, like the 2018 West End show, director Marianne Elliott goes in a different direction. Robert is now Bobbie, a 35-year-old single woman who isn’t ready to settle down just yet. Tony winner Katrina Lenk stars as bachelorette Bobbie while Patti LuPone takes on the role of Joanne, an older and brassy friend of Bobbie. 

The cast includes Matt Doyle, Christopher Fitzgerald, Christopher Sieber, Nikki Renée Daniels, Claybourne Elder, and Greg Hildreth. The creative team features choreography by Liam Steel, sets and costumes by Bunny Christie, lighting by Neil Austin, sound by Ian Dickinson, music supervision by Joel Fram, and casting by Cindy Tolan

The revival performed 9 preview performances in March of 2020 before closing because of the pandemic. In November 2021, the show reopened, with Stephen Sondheim in the audience just over a week before his death. 

 

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Why you should see Company

Company addresses the reality of dating, marriage, and divorce that some other musicals forget to mention. While some people come to the theater to forget life, art that reinforces the world we live in adds a new perspective. It validates our experiences and helps us know we’re not alone.  In this revival, audiences get to watch a modern 21st-century approach to dating and romance. 

 

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If you’re a massive fan of the late Stephen Sondheim or don’t know much about his work, this musical will offer you all the magic of his musical mind. The award-winning songs to look out for include “You Could Drive a Person Crazy,” “The Ladies Who Lunch,” “Side by Side by Side,” and “Being Alive.”

You’ll also be able to see the iconic Patti LuPone on stage. The actress has made her mark on Broadway, television, and film. Getting to watch Patti perform live is a bucket list-worthy goal for diehard Broadway fans.

The Wrap’s Robert Hofler praises the revival in his review. 

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“Director Marianne Elliott puts the fun and the sex back into Stephen Sondheim’s Company. The switch from male to female works, but more important is the light, sexy touch of Elliott’s direction and how it frees the musical from the year of its world premiere, 1970.”

In a review by Vulture theater critic Helen Shaw, she describes the absolute power of Patti LuPone. “LuPone is not just a showstopper here, not just a gravitational force, not just a plummy, hammy delight, dressed (by Bunny Christie) in a fur coat as subtle and spherical as a Hostess Sno Ball,” Helen writes. “She’s also an ideal expositor of the maestro’s work.” 

Theater fans react to the new Company

Fans have been sharing their love for this new production all over social media.

Company is playing at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre.

Buy Broadway tickets from Hollywood.com here!

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