Saturday, September 19, 2009

ArtsBuzz: Caldwell to present concert version of Sondheim's 'Sunday'

Sunday Afternoon on the Island of Grand Jatte (1884),
by Georges Seurat (1859-1891).



By Hap Erstein

In his few short months on the job as artistic director of the Caldwell Theatre Company, Clive Cholerton has learned a great deal about “the art of making art.” So it should come as no surprise that he says his favorite musical is Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Sunday in the Park With George.

The surprise is that he has found a way to bring to Palm Beach County that pointillist musical about post-Impressionist painter Georges Seurat, his modern-day disciples, the creation of his masterwork Sunday Afternoon on the Island of Grand Jatte and the process of making and marketing art.

The show, which premiered on Broadway in 1984, presents some distinct production challenges, which makes it an ideal candidate for the Caldwell’s new Broadway Concert Series, staged readings of shows that the theater wants to “beta test” to gauge audience acceptance for a future larger production or simply to produce as a concert because it would otherwise be beyond the casting or production limitations of the Caldwell.

Sunday in the Park With George will be presented for five performances only, Oct. 8-11, at the Count de Hoernle Theatre in Boca Raton, with tickets ranging from $25-$35, available by calling (561) 241-7432 or (877) 245-7432, or by ordering online at www.caldwelltheatre.com.

Casting is not yet set, but Cholerton has signed local favories Elizabeth Dimon and Laura Turnbull, as well as Broadway veteran Melissa Minyard (Les Miserables) in the pivotal role of Dot.

To tantalize us further, Cholerton mentions a few other shows he is considering for future Broadway Concert Series performances -- Ragtime, Most Happy Fella and City of Angels. Further proof of Cholerton’s good taste.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hap... This is South Florida. No theatre "signs" anybody until the first day of rehearsal. This is not NY or LA. Don't romanticize. Just state the facts. Thanks.