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Jermyn St Revives Sondheim Saturday, New Songs

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In addition to Trevor Nunn’s planned revival of A Little Night Music at the Menier Chocolate Factory (See The Goss, 30 Apr 2008), fans of Stephen Sondheim now have something else to look forward to in London in the new year. The American composer/lyricist’s rarely seen musical Saturday Night will receive its first UK revival at the Jermyn Street Theatre for a limited five-week season from 12 February 2009 (previews from 10 February).

In 1954, the 24-year-old Sondheim wrote his first Broadway show, Saturday Night, a musical, based on the Julius and Philip Epstein play Front Porch in Flatbush, about a group of friends in 1929 New York just before the Wall Street Crash. However, the planned 1955 Broadway premiere was cancelled when producer Lemuel Ayers died, leaving the piece unperformed professionally until 1997, when it had its world premiere at London’s Bridewell Theatre.

This new production will include the UK premiere of two songs - “Montana Chem” and “Delighted, I’m Sure” - written by Sondheim when he revised Saturday Night for its Off-Broadway premiere in 1999.

At Jermyn Street, Saturday Night is directed by Tom Littler and produced by Primavera Productions, the company founded by Littler and producer Chantelle Staynings to revive neglected plays, operas and musicals. Casting and further creative team details have yet to be announced.

- by Terri Paddock


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