Bye, Bye, Bobby: Out Goes Company on Broadway, But in Comes a TV Airing | Playbill

News Bye, Bye, Bobby: Out Goes Company on Broadway, But in Comes a TV Airing John Doyle's 2007 Tony Award-winning production of Stephen Sondheim and George Furth's Company will end its Broadway run July 1, but the production has been filmed for future airing on PBS television.

Company, with Elizabeth Stanley, Kelly Jeanne Grant and Angel Desai, comes to a close.
Company, with Elizabeth Stanley, Kelly Jeanne Grant and Angel Desai, comes to a close. Photo by Paul Kolnik

The PBS series "Great Performances" joined forces with Ellen M. Krass Productions to film the musical starring Raúl Esparza during the June 30 matinee and evening performances at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre.

No air date for the TV version of the Broadway show has been announced. Esparza and his fellow actors would be eligible for Emmy Awards for their work once it appears on TV.

By close, Company will have played 34 preview performances and 247 regular performances.

Director Doyle won the 2006 Best Direction of a Musical Tony for staging Sondheim's Sweeney Todd in a similar fashion as Company — his actors doubled as the musical's musicians. Doyle's next Broadway show after Company will be the new musical A Catered Affair by Harvey Fierstein and John Bucchino. The actors will not play instruments. A spring 2008 Broadway bow follows a fall 2007 debut in California.

* A Company cast album from PS Classics and Nonesuch preserves the score and performances (including chunks of Furth's libretto) and brings to life Drama Desk Award-winner Mary-Mitchell Campbell's tremulous new orchestrations.

Company began previews Oct. 29, 2006 and opened on Nov. 29 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, 243 W. 47th Street. It began at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park in spring 2006, and commercial producers of Broadway's 2005-06 Sweeney Todd swooped in.

Doyle was a 2007 Tony nominee for Best Direction of a Musical for his fresh take on the material; he put all the characters in high-end black evening garb.

This Company, won the Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critic's Circle and Drama League Awards for Best Revival of a Musical. Despite its Tony win, the show saw only 65 percent of capacity filled at the Barrymore the week ending June 24, according to box office stats from the League of American Theatres and Producers.

Raúl Esparza, as bachelor Bobby, navigating through the emotionally foggy world of his married friends and the women he dates, earned the Drama Desk and Outer Critic's Circle Awards for Best Actor in a Musical and was Tony nommed as Best Actor in a Musical. Mary-Mitchell Campbell won the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Orchestrations (she was musical supervisor/director and orchestrator).

The cast includes Barbara Walsh as Joanne; 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; Heather Laws as Amy; Leenya Rideout as Jenny; Fred Rose as David; Bruce Sabath as Larry; Elizabeth Stanley as April.

Set design is by Tony Award winner David Gallo, costume design is by Tony Award winner Ann Hould-Ward, and lighting design by Thomas C. Hase.

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 engagement in 1995.

This new production is produced by Marc Routh, Richard Frankel, Tom Viertel, Steven Baruch, Ambassador Theatre Group, Tulchin/Bartner Productions, Darren Bagert (co-producers of the 2005 Broadway revival of Sweeney Todd) and Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park.

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Ra Photo by Paul Kolnik

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