Friedman will perform an all-Sondheim repertoire for her third extended engagement at the famed cabaret. Backed by pianist Nicholas Archer and cellist Mairi Dorman, the three-time Olivier Award winner will play the posh room through June 3. About her Carlyle stint, Friedman recently told Playbill.com, "It's a month of Stephen Sondheim's work. I've got a couple of songs that have never been heard before that he's given to me out of his top and bottom drawer. Some pretty exciting stuff — stuff that he wrote when he was 19, stuff that he's just written. And, [songs from] three of the shows that I was in — I did Sunday [in the Park with George], Merrily [We Roll Along] and Passion here [in London], and I'm doing great chunks from them and also [from] Into the Woods."
Cabaretgoers can expect to hear such Sondheim gems as "I Remember," "Stay With Me," "The Girls of Summer," "Isn't He Something?," "Not a Day Goes By," "Now You Know," "Our Time," "Sunday" and "We Do Not Belong Together."
Friedman's Carlyle opening coincides with the release of her new Sony CD, "Now and Then." A reissue of an earlier Friedman recording, "Now and Then" features two bonus tracks: "Smile" and "Children and Art." The latter features piano accompaniment by Sondheim.
Friedman also told Playbill.com that she will perform a two-act Sondheim program this August at London's Haymarket Theatre.
Maria Friedman made her Broadway debut earlier this season in The Woman in White playing Marian, a role she created on the London stage. She won her third Olivier Award for her performance as Mother in the West End production of Ragtime. She also won Oliviers for her one-woman show, Maria Friedman—By Special Arrangement, and for her work as Fosca in the London production of Sondheim's Passion. She received Olivier nominations for her roles as Dot in Sunday in the Park with George and Roxie in Chicago. Friedman's other stage credits include Lady in the Dark, Blues in the Night, April in Paris, Break of Day, Square Rounds, The Witches of Eastwick and Ragtime. She can also be seen as the Narrator in the film video of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. The Café Carlyle is located within the Carlyle Hotel at Madison Avenue and 76th Street. Show times are Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8:45 PM with late shows on Fridays and Saturdays at 10:45 PM. There is a $75 music charge for all performances but no minimum. For reservations for Maria Friedman Sings Sondheim, call (212) 744-1600; visit www.thecarlyle.com for more information.