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Stephen Sondheim's "Company" DVD


Neil
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This was done recently. I don't know the story: if it was meant to run or was just a concert version limited run. As far as I know this was not shown on TV. I thought it had been released in theaters, but now sure.

 

In the DVD liner notes was a comment about an all star cast that might have been:

 

The producer: "I learned later that Hal Prince had had the same idea decades earlier doing "Company" on television using the roster of CBS sitcom stars of the 70s"

 

Lucille Ball as Joanna: PLEEEASSEEEE!!

 

That's the Elaine Stritch role. Can you imagine Lucy letting loose in the "Ladies Who Lunch"?

 

"Everybody RISE..

..........

 

RISE..

...........

 

RI-I-I-ISE!!!"

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The Company concert was done at Lincoln Center in New York in the spring of 2011. The concert was just done for one weekend. The cast members (among them Neil Patrick Harris, Martha Plimpton, Stephen Colbert) were so busy that there was very little rehearsing and I don't think the cast worked all together until the first performance on stage. It got a theatrical release last summer. I saw it and thought it was terrific. Excellent cast. Christina Hendricks was the standout for me.

 

I never heard before about a TV version in the '70s. That could have been great. Lucy would have been a very interesting choice for Joanne. If they were casting '70s CBS stars, I think Cloris Leachman would have also been a fantastic choice. Sylvia Fine Kaye (Danny's wife) did a series of PBS specials in the '70s and '80s called "Musical Comedy Tonight" and they did a mini-Company concert with Richard Chamberlian as Bobby, Bernadette Peters as April ("Barcelona"), Sandy Duncan as Marta ("Another Hundred People"), and Carol Burnett as Joanne.

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I never heard before about a TV version in the '70s. That could have been great. Lucy would have been a very interesting choice for Joanne. If they were casting '70s CBS stars, I think Cloris Leachman would have also been a fantastic choice. Sylvia Fine Kaye (Danny's wife) did a series of PBS specials in the '70s and '80s called "Musical Comedy Tonight" and they did a mini-Company concert with Richard Chamberlian as Bobby, Bernadette Peters as April ("Barcelona"), Sandy Duncan as Marta ("Another Hundred People"), and Carol Burnett as Joanne.

 

How convenient to leave out the version starring Mitzi Gaynor, Suzanne Pleshette, Jane Withers, Cliff Norton, Ted Knight, and Jerry Orbach. :P

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How convenient to leave out the version starring Mitzi Gaynor, Suzanne Pleshette, Jane Withers, Cliff Norton, Ted Knight, and Jerry Orbach. :P

 

And I thought you were KIDDING!!

I never miss a Jane Withers/Cliff Norton musical.

 

I just watched this. I remember Mitzi had a string of specials in the 70s. This is very well done except.....that annoying canned laughter ruins it for me. The whole segment is enjoyable (sans canned laughs) but not laugh out loud funny.

 

But Jane Withers is surprisingly good.

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And I thought you were KIDDING!!

I never miss a Jane Withers/Cliff Norton musical.

 

I just watched this. I remember Mitzi had a string of specials in the 70s. This is very well done except.....that annoying canned laughter ruins it for me. The whole segment is enjoyable (sans canned laughs) but not laugh out loud funny.

 

But Jane Withers is surprisingly good.

Jane was the one who bought their ranchito in the Valley, right?

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