Revenge is Best Served in a Musical Thriller—Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street at South Coast Repertory
COSTA MESA, Calif. (Jan. 10, 2019)—Nearly 40 years ago, Stephen Sondheim’s bent-on-revenge barber, Sweeney Todd, sliced his way into the canon of musical theatre. The multi-award-winning Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is next up on the Segerstrom Stage at South Coast Repertory, Jan. 19-Feb. 16. Kent Nicholson directs the production. Tickets are available at www.scr.org.
With its razor-sharp wit and extraordinary songs, this Tony Award-winner has been called “more fun than a graveyard on the night of the annual skeleton’s ball” (New York Daily News). The story follows Sweeney Todd as he settles into a barber shop, above Mrs. Lovett’s struggling pie shop, and plots revenge on the lecherous judge who wronged Todd and his family. The barber’s strange alliance with the pie-maker seems to provide the perfect solution to their problems. The themes in Sweeney—power, abuse of power, revenge and responsibility—continue to resonate with 21st-century audiences, Nicholson noted.
For the look and feel of SCR’s production, Nicholson found inspiration in several 19th-century elements including penny dreadfuls (popular, cheap serial stories that embellished the deeds of criminals, detectives and even supernatural creatures; the character of Sweeney Todd actually appeared in a penny dreadful titled The String of Pearls) and Victorian-era theatrical techniques.
“In that spirit, we’re approaching Sweeney Todd as being told by a troupe of 19th-century itinerant actors and we’re weaving some magic into it,” he said. He also is drawing out more of the comedic elements from Sondheim’s script.
The cast includes Devin Archer (Anthony); Erica Hanrahan-Ball (Beggar Woman); Juliana Hansen (Johanna); Jamey Hood (Mrs. Lovett); Conlan Ledwith (Tobias Ragg); Robert Mammana (Judge Turpin);Nicholas Mongiardo-Cooper (Beadle Bamford); Roland Rusinek (Adolfo Pirrelli); Brent Schindele (Jonas Fogg); David St. Louis (Sweeney Todd); and Katy Tang (ensemble).
The creative team includes David O, music director; John Iacovelli, scenic design; Melanie Watnick, costume design; Lap Chi Chu, lighting design; Cricket Myers, sound design; Kelly Todd, choreographer; Philip D. Thompson, accent coach; and Joanne DeNaut, CSA, casting. The production manager is Joshua Marchesi and the stage manager is Jamie A. Tucker.
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street has generous support from Honorary Producers Sophie and Larry Cripe, and James, Kimberly, Haley and Colby Jacobs. The Corporate Honorary Associate Producer is Haskell & White LLP. South Coast Plaza is a season sponsor for the Segerstrom Stage.
The musicians include David O (conductor), Larry Hughes, Robert Carr, Erin Breene, Mary Keating, Tim Jensen, Dustin McKinney, Danielle Ondarza and Louis Allee.
Related Information for Sweeney Todd
Tickets: May be purchased online at www.scr.org, by phone at (714) 708-5555 or by visiting the Box Office at 655 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa. Performances run Jan. 19-Feb. 16. Ticket prices start at $26. Low-priced previews run Jan. 19-24.
Performance Dates, Times
- Previews run Jan. 19-24
- Saturday, Jan. 19, at 8 p.m.
- Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, Jan. 20, 22, 23 and 24 at 7:30 p.m.
- Regular performances run Jan. 26-Feb. 16.
Note: There are no Monday performances. The performance on Friday, Jan. 25, is invitation-only.
- Evening Performances:
- Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Jan. 27, 29, 30 and 31; Feb. 3, 5, 6 and 7; and Feb. 10, 12, 13 and 14, at 7:30 p.m.
- Fridays-Saturdays, Jan. 26, Feb. 1-2; Feb. 8-9; and Feb. 15-16, at 8 p.m.
- Saturdays-Sundays, Jan. 26-27; Feb. 2-3; Feb. 9-10; Feb. 16, at 2:30 p.m.
- ASL-interpreted: Saturday, Feb. 9, at 2:30 p.m.
- Post-Show Discussions: Wednesday, Jan. 30, and Tuesday, Feb. 5. Discuss the play with cast members of Sweeney Todd during free post-show discussions led by South Coast Repertory’s literary team. Segerstrom Stage.
- Inside the Season: Saturday, Feb. 2, from, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Led by members of SCR’s literary staff, this lively two-hour session includes in-depth interviews with cast members and artists from the production staff, revealing secrets and offering insights into SCR’s production of Sweeney Todd. Segerstrom Stage. Tickets are $12 and may be purchased in advance or at the door.
Location: South Coast Repertory is located at 655 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa, at the Bristol Street/Avenue of the Arts exit off the San Diego (405) Freeway in the David Emmes/Martin Benson Theatre Center, part of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Parking is available on Park Center Drive, off Anton Boulevard.
Current and Upcoming Productions: Culture Clash (Still) In America written and performed by Richard Montoya, Ricardo Salinas and Herbert Siguenza, through Jan. 20; Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed: The Rock Experience by Mo Willems, with music by Deborah Wicks La Puma, Feb. 1-17 (Theatre for Young Audiences); Photograph 51 by Anna Ziegler, March 3-24; Poor Yella Rednecks by Qui Nguyen, March 30-April 27; Sheepdog by Kevin Artigue, April 14-May 5; Pacific Playwrights Festival, April 26-28; M. Butterfly by David Henry Hwang, May 11-June 8; and The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams, May 24-June 9 (Theatre for Young Audiences). Complete information is available at www.scr.org.
ABOUT SOUTH COAST REPERTORY: Tony Award-winning South Coast Repertory, founded in 1964 by David Emmes and Martin Benson, is widely recognized as one of the leading professional theatres in the United States. While its productions represent a balance of classic and modern theatre, SCR is renowned for its extensive new-play development program, which includes the nation’s largest commissioning program for emerging and established writers. One-quarter of SCR’s 525 productions have been world premieres. SCR-developed works have garnered two Pulitzer Prizes and eight Pulitzer nominations, several Obie Awards and scores of major new-play awards. Located in Costa Mesa, Calif., SCR is home to the 507-seat Segerstrom Stage, the 336-seat Julianne Argyros Stage and the 94-seat Nicholas Studio. www.scr.org