Playbill Listening: Stephen Sondheim's 1971 Lyrics & Lyricists Talk

Film & TV Features   Playbill Listening: Stephen Sondheim's 1971 Lyrics & Lyricists Talk
The composer, who recently celebrated his 90th birthday, was the final speaker in the inaugural season of the 92nd Street Y series.
Stephen Sondheim Friedman-Abeles/©New York Public Library

Less than a month after Follies premiered in Broadway in 1971, Stephen Sondheim delivered a two-plus hour talk at the 92nd Street Y for the fifth and final installment of the inaugural season of Lyrics & Lyricists. Introduced by Lehman Engel, Sondheim held forth on his partnership with director-producer Harold Prince, his reluctance at delivering a talk versus participating in a Q&A, and why microphones destroyed our ability to really listen in the theatre.

He also plays songs, including "Is There a Parade in Town?" from Anyone Can Whistle, a (very funny) rejected version of "Getting Married Today" from Company, and "Can That Boy Foxtrot," a cut song from Follies.

After you listen to the talk, explore the 92nd Street Y's archives for more inside looks at the theatre!

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