Opened: August 22, 2017
Book by: James Goldman
Music & Lyrics by: Stephen Sondheim
West End Revival Cast: Imelda Staunton, Gary Raymond, Tracie Bennett, Philip Quast, Di Botcher, Norma Atallah, Janie Dee, Zizi Strallen, Geraldine Fitzgerald, Gemma Page, Dawn Hope, Peter Forbes, Billy Boyle, Liz Ewing, Allison Langer, Ian McLarnon, Adrian Grove, Emily Langham, Emily Goodenough, Julie Armstrong, Fred Haig, Michael Vinsen, Josephine Barstow, Liz Izen, Edwin Ray, Barnaby Thompson, Christine Tucker, Sarah-Marie Maxwell, Alex Young, Jeremy Batt, Jordan Shaw, Aimee Hodnett, Kate Parr, Adam Rhys-Charles, Bruce Graham, Leisha Mollyneaux & Anouska Eaton
Though it may not be as recognizable as some of Stephen Sondheim’s other shows, Follies is a magnificently written piece that provides solid roles for theater actors long past their supposed prime.
As the Weismann Theatre is about to be demolished, Sally Durant Plummer (Imelda Staunton) and her husband Buddy (Peter Forbes) reunite with old friends Benjamin Stone (Philip Quast) and Phyllis Rogers Stone (Janie Dee). Over the course of the night, emotions once held secret are revealed.
Unlike many other Broadway musicals, the two songs that stand out the most here – “Broadway Baby” and “I’m Still Here” – aren’t sung by any of the main characters. In fact, their performed by characters who remain in the background a majority of the time. Tracie Bennett’s “I’m Still Here” is the obvious showstopper.
Final say: The staging will transport you back. ★★★★★