Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler’s musical thriller, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street comes to the UTC Roland Hayes Concert Hall. Co-produced by UTC’s Music Department and the Department of Theatre and Speech, Sweeney Todd tells the story of Benjamin Barker through haunting music and sly lyrics. Wrongly convicted and sentenced to banishment in Australia by villain Judge Turpin, Barker returns as Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber, seeking vengeance for his dead wife and lost daughter.
Watch the Sweeney Todd featurette here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xfLdWIoxnM
Watch the Sweeney Todd promo here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqTw-X5lztc
“This show strikes at the heart of something that is true about human nature—how our desire for power or revenge can poison and destroy us,” said Steve Ray, director and UTC Theatre professor. “Our production will be quite unique. It will be high spectacle, of course, but with a twist—as if a fancy Victorian aesthetic meets Artaud’s Theatre of Cruelty. It will be confrontational, beautiful and, hopefully, cathartic.”
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street runs for five performances in February. Performance times are: Feb. 15, 21, and 22, at 7:30 p.m. and Feb. 17 and 24, at 3 p.m. All performances are in the Roland Hayes Concert Hall, in the UTC Fine Arts Center, on the corner of Palmetto and Vine Streets. Free parking is available in nearby University lots.
Perry Ward, assistant professor for Voice in the UTC Music Department, who serves as musical director and conductor for the musical, calls the production “one of the great works of American musical theater.”
“It has been a good challenge to work on this piece with a group of students. To get them to fully buy into and take ownership of this project has been very exciting. To see them respond and grow and bring life to the music and the story has been very gratifying,” he explained.
Mr. Ray expressed his excitement about the talent pool in both UTC departments.
“This collaboration between UTC Opera and UTC Theatre Company allows us to showcase the best from both departments. We have a talented cast of singers and actors from both the Music Department and the Theatre Department. The Music Department is providing the orchestra from their many talented instrumentalists and the Theatre Department is providing the design elements,” he said.
Tickets to the show are $20, $15 for Students with ID and Senior Citizens. The UTC Box Office is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and one hour before performances.
Additional faculty and staff on the creative team are John R. Burgess, UTC Theatre professor, who created the Lighting Design and provided Technical Direction. Scenic Design is by Gaye Jeffers, UTC Theatre professor and Costume Design is by Samantha Johnson, a UTC junior art major with a minor in Theatre, and Dottie May Youells, a UTC Theatre Department staff member. Choreography is by Kristin Nalley, local choreographer and UTC staff member.
Please call 423 425-4269 for reservations and your tickets will be waiting for you at the Will Call window. Tickets are also available online at Tickettracks.com.
Sweeney Todd: Jason Ryan O’Neal
Mrs. Lovett: Maggie McNulty
Anthony Hope: Garrett Henson
Johanna: Kala Cisson
Judge Turpin: Jeromie Gentry
Tobias Ragg: Connor Behrman
Beadle Bamford: Brandon McCravy
Beggar Woman: Nicole Pavol
Adolfo Pirelli: Jesse Blue O’Neal
Jonas Fogg: Michael Haggarty
Calvin Forrest, Jake Chapman, Ellie Bloodworth, Megan Cobb, Erin England, Brittany Fong, Taylor Anne Goode, Trevor Miles, John Nichols, Falcian Page, Kinawa Kaitibi, Courtney Tucker, Laura Cofer, Ty Dill, and Sophia Zinkann
Conductor: Perry Ward
Clarinet: Dr. Nikolasa Tejero
Bassoon: Sarah Snyder-Shone
Horn: Tiffany Feltner
Trumpet: Dr. Erika Shafer
Violin: Laura Minor
Cello: Jenny Wilkes
Bass: Eric Hanson
Keyboard: Terry Sanford
Percussion: Dr. Monte Coulter, Jared Horner
SWEENEY TODD: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, A Musical Thriller with Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, Book by Hugh Wheeler, from an adaptation by Christopher Bond. Harold Prince originally directed SWEENEY TODD on Broadway. The Orchestrations are by Jonathan Tunick. The musical was originally produced on Broadway by Richard Barr, Charles Woodward, Robert Fryer, Mary Lea Johnson, and Martin Richards, in association with Dean and Judy Manos.
SWEENEY TODD is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI, 421 West 54th Street, New York, N.Y. 10019. Phone, 212 541-4684 Fax: 212 397-4684, www.MTIShows.com