Music is a Time Machine - thoughts on 'Follies in Concert' at the Royal Albert Hall

Follies is a musical about time. A theatre is being demolished to make way for a car park, and an old empresario calls the first and last reunion of his Weismann Follies showgirls. This reunion stirs ghosts for many attending, including Sally and Phyllis, who look back on a time before their unhappy marriages, when ‘life was fun but oh, so intense. Everything was possible and nothing made sense’. Muddling its way through pastiche numbers and ending with a set of fantastical ‘follies’, the music of Follies is as evocative of the past as its plot.

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A Little Night Music

I was first introduced to A Little Night Music when I heard a 10 second snippet of the glorious 'Night Waltz' provide a neat segue into the Sondheim 'section' of Hey, Mr Producer. I was hooked by the show's sumptuous three-four time, so when it came to London in 2008 (first at the Menier Chocolate Factory and later at the Garrick) I booked immediately. I always measure a musical on whether I head home to listen to the cast recording straight away and I remember listening to the continual theme and variation of this seductive score on repeat for weeks, wishing for another chance to see it on stage.

Last night that wish was fulfilled in Alex Parker's one night only 40th Anniversary Concert Production at the Palace Theatre, and what a treat it was!

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