New York City previews for Doyle's unique take on the Stephen Sondheim-George Furth musical begin Oct. 30 toward a Nov. 29 opening. Doyle won the 2006 Tony for Best Direction of a Musical for the current hit production of Sweeney Todd. As with his Sweeney, the new Company will have the actors playing their own accompaniment on stage.
This Company premiered at Cincinnati's Playhouse in the Park in March-April 2006 and will again star Raúl Esparza as 35-year-old bachelor Robert, reuniting with members of the Ohio production. That troupe was populated by Broadway veterans (such as Barbara Walsh as sour Joanne) and fresh faces (such as Heather Laws as nervous Amy).
Company features musical direction and orchestrations by Mary-Mitchell Campbell, set design by Tony Award winner David Gallo, costume design by Tony Award winner Ann Hould-Ward, and lighting design by Thomas C. Hase.
The cast will also include Keith Buterbaugh as Harry; Matt Castle as Peter; Robert Cunningham as Paul; Angel Desai as Marta; Kelly Jeanne Grant as Kathy; Kristin Huffman as Sarah; Amy Justman as Susan; Leenya Rideout as Jenny; Fred Rose as David; Bruce Sabath as Larry; Elizabeth Stanley as April.
Here's how producers characterize the groundbreaking 1970 musical: "Long before 'Sex and the City,' Company took an unconventional look at love and commitment in a complex modern New York. The show is an honest, funny and sophisticated portrayal of five married couples as seen through the eyes of their mutual friend Robert, a bachelor evaluating the pros and cons of wedded life." The original production of Company opened on Broadway at the Alvin (now the Neil Simon) Theatre on April 26, 1970. The musical garnered 14 Tony Award nominations (the record until The Producers in 2001), winning six, including Best Musical. The show was last seen on Broadway for a limited Roundabout Theatre Company engagement in 1995. It is considered one of the American musical theatre's major concept musicals, expanding the musical theatre form with its fractured storytelling and nervous rhythms. Robert's experience is refracted through his relationships with his married pals and the women he (unsuccessfully) dates.
The new Broadway production is produced by The Routh/ Frankel/Viertel/Baruch Group and the Ambassador Theatre Group, Tulchin/Bartner, Darren Bagert (co-producers of the current Broadway production of Sweeney Todd) and Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park.
An on-sale date will be announced shortly. Sweeney Todd, at the O'Neill, ends its Broadway run Sept. 3, having recouped its investment.