May 3rd is the opening night of the annual Canterbury spring musical production, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”. The show runs May 3rd and 4th.
The show first opened on Broadway in 1979 and became an instant hit, winning the Tony Award for Best Musical. Music and lyrics are by Stephen Sondheim, with the book by Hugh Wheeler. It was later adapted to a film starring Johnny Depp.
The show tells the story of Sweeney Todd, a London barber who seeks revenge on those who separated him from his wife years earlier. He meets Mrs. Lovett, an owner of a struggling pie shop, who later makes meat pies out of the dead bodies of the people Sweeney murders with his razor blades. It is filled with suspense, blood, plot twists and dramatic music.
The play includes a cast of twenty people cast and stars Margaret Melich ‘19 and Giorgio Carpidis Soto ‘19 as the two leads. The show is directed by Mrs. Armstrong and Mrs. Mathewson with Lisa Bonelli, Technical Theater Director.
Students have been working hard since January on and off stage for the perfect opening night. Students in the Technical Theater Department created costumes, painted sets and built props. Lighting and sound are also run by students, including placing an overwhelming 20 individual body mics on performers that the sound department has to manage.
“What people don’t understand about musical productions is just how much commitment everyone puts into it,” said Mrs. Armstrong. “Light designs, sound directing, building sets, learning the music…making all this magic come alive does not happen overnight. It’s a truly rewarding experience.”
How should we enjoy this magnificent show? Here’s a tip from Mrs. Armstrong: “Please see this as an opportunity to block out the outside world and leave your experience to the mercy of live theater. Also, please save your commentary to the intermission because the show is very fast paced and you can’t miss a single scene.”