Archive for news

Brush Up Your Sondheim, our study weekend, is nearly upon us! And the good news is there are still tickets left to snap up! If you haven’t already booked, go straight to https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/brush-up-your-sondheim-tickets-11847449039 and book your ticket now

Remember, the event features an impressive array of Sondheim experts from serious academic researchers to light-hearted, fun items and everything in between. And where else would you get the opportunity to actually ask Stephen Sondheim himself that question you’ve been dying to ask? Well, you’ll get your chance during the EXCLUSIVE Q&A session beamed live by video link from Mr Sondheim’s home in New York! (It’s worth signing up just for that!)

The timetable for the weekend is now finalised – this is what we’ve got in store for you:

Saturday 26th July (Royal Academy of Music Concert Room)

10.00 Keynote speech – Tim Sheader (Regents Park Open Air Theatre)
10.45 Advanced workshop with professional drama students – Mary Hammond (trustee, and RAM)
11.30 Break
11.45 Interactive session about how to work on a song – Mary Hammond
12.30 Panel discussion chaired by Danielle Tarento featuring Ben Stott, Rebecca Caine, Alex Young, Katie Secombe and Emily Carewe-Jeffries
1.15 Lunch, with entertainment from “Ladies who lunch”
2.00 Working with Sondheim’s music – Alex Parker (professional MD)
2.45 Climb High – Dr Dominic McHugh, Lawrence Broomfield (Sheffield University) and Alex Young
3.30 Break
3.45 Q&A with Stephen Sondheim LIVE from his home in New York
4.30 End

Sunday 27th July

ATTENDEES CHOOSING THE ACTING PROGRAMME (Royal Academy of Music Recital Room):
10.00 Doors open
10.15 Workshop with Michael Strassen (currently directing Pacific Overtures at the Union Theatre) ,
includes practical exercises on:
The Physical Actor
The voice and connection to lyric
Character development

1.45 Audition clinic with Michael Strassen and Lucy Williamson
4.15 Plenary – join with the “Non Actors” group
4.30 End

ATTENDEES CHOOSING THE NON ACTING PROGRAMME (Concert Room):
10.00 Doors open
10.15 The SSS Archive – Katie Giles (Archivist, Kingston University)
10.45 God – video highlights of the Sondheim Society’s parody show
11.15 Origins of Into the Woods David Lardi (Trustee, Stephen Sondheim Society)
11.45 Break
12.00 Careful the Spell You Cast: uses of disenchantment in Into the Woods Ben Francis (Goldsmiths)
12.30 Give Me A Tune You Can Hum: exploring Sondheim’s melodies – Peter Auker (Trustee, Stephen Sondheim Society, and PhD student in music)
1.00 Lunch
1.45 Sweeney Todd: from melodrama to musical tragedy - Professor Millie Taylor (Winchester University)
2.30 The next generation: Sondheim in a youth theatre context – Anna Elmore (Education
Director, Grove Theatre)
3.15 Break
3.30 Sondheim’s legacy: influences on new writing. Panel discussion with Mel Atkey, Alexander Bermange, Frank Lazarus and Eammon O’Dwyer, chaired by Matt Board.
4.15 Plenary – join with the “Actors” group
4.30 End

We very much hope to welcome you to Brush Up Your Sondheim 2014!

Categories news

Elaine Stritch

by Lynne

Elaine Stritch, whom the New York Times has called “the brassy, tart-tongued Broadway actress and singer who became a living emblem of show business durability and perhaps the leading interpreter of Stephen Sondheim’s wryly acrid musings…” has died today aged 89.

“Because her persona is so strong, all that is masking her vulnerability” says Hal Prince in a recent film, Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me  in which she is called “a conduit to a golden age of theatre” and in which she says: “It’s hard enough to remember Sondheim’s lyrics when you don’t have diabetes”.

To see an excerpt of this film go to http://elainestritchshootme.com/ and click on trailer

Categories General Theatre, news

BOOK NOW for GOD – a musical celebration (and parody) of Stephen Sondheim, The Stephen Sondheim Society’s 20th anniversary show.

Directed by Alistair Knights, Musical Director Alex Parker, “GOD” runs until 12th July at London Theatre Workshop, 65 New Kings Road, SW6 4SG. Saturday night is already sold out but there are some other seats available. Click here to buy tickets <www.sondheimsociety.ticketsource.co.uk>

Categories news, shows, society news

Stephen Sondheim has been in touch to confirm that he has chosen to conduct his Q&A session at Brush Up Your Sondheim on  the Saturday 26th July, as per our provisional timetable.

The Q&A will be conducted via a live video link from his home in New York in real time (starting at 3.45 pm UK time), and will run for approximately 30-45 minutes.

Attendees will have the opportunity to put their questions to him directly – we will have a “roving” microphone to facilitate this. There will also be a facility to submit questions in advance which will be read out for Mr Sondheim to answer.

This is a rare and unique opportunity to interact with Stephen Sondheim – so don’t miss out, book your ticket without delay by going to https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/brush-up-your-sondheim-tickets-11847449039

New names recently added to our impressive list of experts sharing their knowledge and experience during the weekend include Professor Millie Taylor (University of Winchester), Kingston University archivist Katie Giles and Dunstable’s Grove Theatre Director of Education, Anna Elmore. They join award winning directors Timothy Sheader and Michael Strassen, performers Rebecca Caine and Ben Stott, top vocal coach Mary Hammond and producer Danielle Tarento.

For further details of what’s on at the weekend, please go to our Brush Up Your Sondheim page – click HERE

Categories news, Summer School

A photograph of the talented cast of ‘God’ has been released. From left to right Corrine Priest (SSSSPOTY Winner 2014) , Kris Olsen (SSSSPOTY Winner 2012), Emma Odell (SSSSPOTY finalist 2009) and Jay Worley (SSSSPOTY finalist 2014)

‘God’ is running to the 12th July at London Theatre Workshop, 65 New Kings Road, SW6 4SG.

There are only 6 performances and Saturday night has already sold out so if you’ve not booked already, do so now at http://www.ticketsource.co.uk/event/60789. Tickets £15 + booking fee, concessions £12.50 + booking fee (Society members £10 + booking fee)

Special Offers: Non Members can join the Society at the discounted rate of £17.50 (normally £20 per annum) and receive their GOD ticket at the members’ rate Non Members can also buy 6 tickets and get one FREE (which equates to concession price of £12.50 each

Categories news

The Stephen Sondheim Society and London Theatre Workshop presentation of GOD: a musical celebration (and parody) of Stephen Sondheim opens tonight at the LTW’s renovated space in Fulham, London.

This specially created piece affectionately celebrates and reflects our love for the great man himself.

With tongue very firmly in cheek, there will be gentle parodies that serve to demonstrate and appreciate his art, together with songs that remind us why we all love Sondheim.

Cast members Emma Odell (SSSSPOTY finalist 2009), Kris Olsen (SSSSPOTY Winner 2012), Corrine Priest (SSSSPOTY Winner 2014) and Jay Worley (SSSSPOTY finalist 2014) have an extraordinary array of material to perform, which like Sondheim’s, challenges them with complex lyrics and harmonies. There are songs from such diverse writers as Jonathan Larson (Rent and winner of the Stephen Sondheim Award); Andrew Lippa (Addams Family, whose work was showcased to such acclaim in The Life of the Party at the Menier); and John Bucchino (whose songs are sung by musical theatre legends such as Liza Minelli, Patti Lupone, Audra Macdonald and Kristin Chenoweth) plus many others.

In keeping with the Society’s desire to support new Musical Theatre talent, three new songs have been written especially for this show by Stiles and Drewe New Song finalists: Matt Board and Eamonn O’Dwyer, plus one from Alex Parker, the show’s Musical Director himself, who only recently premiered his own musical, Amateur Dramatics: A Musical Comedy at the Electric Theatre, Guildford. Alastair Knights (Director) says: ‘I am excited that not only do we have such an incredibly talented young cast – but we also have some wonderful new songs from up and coming composers such as Eamonn O’Dwyer, Matt Board and Alex Parker which are beautiful, funny and touching. These are the Musical Theatre Stars of Tomorrow and I feel privileged to be working with them on a show that honours Sondheim’s achievements and legacy.’

GOD will run from the 8th to the 12th July at London Theatre Workshop, 65 New Kings Road, SW6 4SG.

There are only 6 performances and Saturday night has already sold out so if you’ve not booked already, do so now at http://www.ticketsource.co.uk/event/60789. Tickets £15 + booking fee, concessions £12.50 + booking fee (Society members £10 + booking fee)

Special Offers: Non Members can join the Society at the discounted rate of £17.50 (normally £20 per annum) and receive their GOD ticket at the members’ rate Non Members can also buy 6 tickets and get one FREE (which equates to concession price of £12.50 each

Categories news, shows

Our next informal cabaret concert at Leicester Square Theatre Lounge will feature renowned MD Alex Parker, along with some very special guests.

We’ve had to slightly re-name the series just for this one concert from “An Evening With…” to An Afternoon With Alex Parker, as it starts at 2.30pm on Sunday 26th October.

Alex will present a great programme of musical theatre, and his guests for the afternoon will be Janie Dee, Lucy Schaufer, Laura Pitt Pulford, Alex Young and Alastair Knights.

Tickets (£15, or £12.50 for members of the Society) are on sale now from the box office – call 08448 733433, or book online from this link:

http://leicestersquaretheatre.ticketsolve.com/shows/873517465/events

October seems a long way off, but we’ve a feeling this will sell out quickly – so you’re advised to book early!