Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Putting It Together 

Lean on plot, but full of the work of one of musical theater's greatest lyricists

Wednesday, Aug 2 2006
Though it's essentially a revue of more than 30 Stephen Sondheim songs from his classic musicals (such as Follies, Company, and A Little Night Music), Putting It Together still tells the somewhat coherent (if thin) story of the intoxicating rush of new love juxtaposed against the ruts, infidelities, and boredom of an older relationship. Set at a ritzy cocktail party, the show is introduced by the tuxedoed usher (an infectiously entertaining Brian Yates Sharber), who instructs us via song to turn off our pesky cell phones, and pleads melodically, "Please don't fart. There's very little air, and this is art." This is Sondheim, of course, whose lyrical witticisms don't shy away from the wonderfully lewd and carnal. Mary-Pat Green stands out as the love-jaded older woman; sparks fly as she verbally clashes with the beautiful yet dim ingenue (Kate Del Castillo), with barbs such as, "She cannot sew, or cook, or read, or write her name — but she's lovely." Through the tunes we experience the seduction, chase, war, and eventual desperation that romantic love can induce. The ensemble of five, rounded out by Michael Brown and Jeff Leibow, lacks the chemistry required for a show that's this lean on plot; fortunately, we still have the irresistible intellectual wordplay of one of musical theater's greatest lyricists.

About The Author

Nathaniel Eaton


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"