In 2005, to celebrate Stephen Sondheim’s 75th Birthday, musicworks teamed up with Operating Theatre to produce his one act, two-hander ‘Marry Me A Little’ and a concert including four medleys of his work arranged by Nottingham composer Stephen Williams, incorporating every musical of Mr. Sondheim’s up to that point – ‘The Complete Works of Sondheim’.
Marry Me A Little was conceived by Craig Lucas and Norma Rene. It is a staged revue of songs cut from Sondheim’s better-known musicals to a dialogue-free plot about the relationship between two lonely New York single people, who are in emotional conflict during an evening in their separate one-room apartments.
Him – Dan Armstrong
Her – Kate Williams
Concert Performers – Stephen Williams, Emma Shute, Catherine Orton, Jayne Russell, Shaun Hanrahan
Double-header joy (Peter Jordan – Nottingham Evening Post)
As a celebration of Stephen Sondheim’s 75th birthday the newly-formed musicworks and the well-established Operating Theatre combine to serve up a fitting tribute to a masterly composer.
Eight of Nottingham’s brightest talents shine in this appealing double header which was made up of the rarely performed Revuesical ‘Marry Me A Little’ and a concert programme entitled ‘The Complete Works of Sondheim’.
Operating Theatre stars Kate Williams and Dan Armstrong, portraying a young couple living in neighbouring apartments and looking for love, sing no less that 17 songs between them in ‘Marry Me a Little’, a bitter-sweet tale of love, loneliness and survival.
There can be no finer performer on the amateur stage than Kate Williams and her renditions of ‘Can That Boy Fox Trot’, ‘The Girls of Summer’ and ‘There Won’t Be Trumpets’ were a joy, while Armstrong confirmed his huge potential, impressing with ‘Uptown, Downtown’ and the two duetting in some great numbers including ‘Pour Le Sport’.
In a frenzied second half Stephen Williams, Emma Shute, Catherine Hart, Shaun Hanrahan and Jayne Russell delivered ‘The Complete Works of Sondheim’ in just over 30 minutes.
The ensemble sang with style and perfect pitch. Accompaniment was by Jonathan Orton while Lynne Chapman gave an informative pre-show talk.