Sweeney Todd: A Musical Thriller

Sweeney Todd: A Musical Thriller

by Patti LuPone



Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd has often been acclaimed his masterpiece, and if ever there was a production to prove it, it’s the 2005 revival. Stripped down in musical arrangement from a fully orchestrated version to a chamber score (with the instruments played primarily by the actors themselves!), the musical reveals itself even more fully as a brilliant mating of words and music. The minimal yet exquisitely scored arrangements highlight Sondheim’s dark drama and black comedy by bringing his noted wordcraft to center stage, while keeping an equally bright spotlight on the nuances and elegance of his expert musical compositions. The celebrated melodious jewels of the work shine as ever -- “The Ballad of Sweeney Todd,” “Pretty Women,” “Not While I’m Around” -- but each song has its delights of attention-grabbing melody and strikingly clever lyrics. The cast, led by Michael Cerveris as Sweeney and Patti LuPone as Mrs. Lovett, is up to the demands of the grand score, relishing the ingenious swings of mood and melody. Reduced in scale but not in vision, this Sweeney is indeed a masterwork.

Product Details

Release Date: 01/31/2006
Label: Nonesuch
UPC: 0075597994629
catalogNumber: 79946

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Patti LuPone   Primary Artist,Percussion,Tuba,Vocals
John Arbo   Bass,Vocals
Michael Cerveris   Guitar,Vocals
Hugh Wheeler   Dialogue
Mark Jacoby   Percussion,Trumpet,Vocals
Diana DiMarzio   Clarinet,Vocals
Donna Lynne Champlin   Flute,Piano,Accordion,Vocals
Alexander Gemignani   Piano,Trumpet,Vocals
Benjamin Magnuson   Piano,Cello,Vocals
Lauren Molina   Cello,Vocals
Manoel Felciano   Clarinet,Piano,Violin,Vocals

Technical Credits

Stephen Sondheim   Composer,Lyricist
Christopher Bond   Adaptation
John Doyle   Liner Notes,Stage Design,Stage Direction
Robert Hurwitz   Executive Producer
Tommy Krasker   Producer
Tom Lazarus   Engineer
Hugh Wheeler   Book
Jeremy Sams   Liner Notes
Sarah Eagle Feather Travis   Liner Notes
Sean Patrick Flahaven   Synopsis
Sarah Travis   Liner Notes
Robert Edridge-Waks   Editorial Coordinator
Christopher K. Bond   Adaptation

Customer Reviews

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Sweeney Todd: A Musical Thriller 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I saw the current production on Broadway. It was an astonishing performance both for the virtuosity of the musician-cast as well as for the emotional jolt of the play itself. The spare arrangement focuses attention on the singers and the songs and less on the spectacle of theatre. Listening to this CD always reminds me of the excitement I felt seeing it in person.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This recording of Sondheim's masterpiece is truly my favorite yet. It's truly found the purpose of this piece and has worked beautifully without any force. Each song is beautiful with its simple orchestrations, making it much clearer to listen to and not having layer upon layer of sound drown out the vocalists. A must for any theatre lover's collection. This is a true piece of art.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My girlfriend wanted to buy a version of Sweeney Todd after I took her to see the show in San Diego. I told her to get the revival CD because I often enjoy the beefed up scores, an added song, or just more contemporary singers. My mistake. Not only are many numbers not included on the CD, they also messed with the structure of the two acts by moving around some songs. Lastly, the show falls flat. The "distanced" approach comes across as slow direction. The witty banter in "Have a Little Priest" is slowed down to embarrassing terms. The elixer song is painfully slow as well, making the last measure where it speeds up seem incredibly odd. I'm all for alternative theatre, but only when the text can handle it. And its very clear that this approach stretched the show too thin.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Michael Cerveris is great as Sweeney Todd! I saw him in new York city when it was previewing. The show was fantasic. I want to see it again. There was only ten people on stage. When I first heard about that I was afriad that I wouldn't like it. Starring: Michael Cerveris,Sweeney Todd Patti Lupone,Mrs.Lovett (Order of apperance): Mark Jacoby, Judge Turpin Donna Lynne Champlin, Pirelli Manoel Felciano, Tobias Alexander Gemignani, Beadle John Arbo, Jonas Fogg Diana DiMarzio, Beggar Woman Lauren Molina, Johanna - Broadway Debut Benjamin Magnuson, Anthony - Broadway Debut
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have seen this show and it is great! The music, everything is fantasic. Michael Cerveris who portrays Sweeney Todd and Patti Lupone who portrays Mrs.Lovett do an amazing job. Patti Lupone is very funny in the show. If you haven't seen the show you should go to New York and See it for yourself it is amazing.
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