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Company - One4Review

Musicals written by Stephen Sondheim have complicated storylines, imaginative intricate melodies and lyrics and are notoriously difficult to produce and direct but when done properly are superb. At last year’s Fringe Kent-Mcardle Productions presented, Richard Maltby Junior’s ‘Closer Than Ever’, with Antonio Mcardle as Man2 and Jenny Kent as musical director. 2007 sees Jenny Kent returning as musical director for Kenmac Productions with Antonio Mcardle in the leading role of Robert (Bobby) in Sondheim’s musical Company. This show boasts of a cast of fourteen West-End performers and their experience and quality really shines through the performances. It was lovely for a change to see Company performed with a full cast, I have only seen it performed when some of the cast play two or three characters, it was therefore a refreshing change to see it performed as written. There are several numbers which stand out in particular I would like to mention ‘You Could Drive a Person Crazy’ sung by Marta (Alison Larnder), Kathy (Katherine Eames), and April (Helen George), it is quite some thing to be dumped by your girlfriend but to be dumped by three, simultaneously in song!  For comedy and spectacle this arrangement of ‘Getting Married Today’ sung by Amy (Marisa Leigh Boynton), her fiancée Paul (Paul Callen) and the wives by far surpasses anything I have seen before. Robert’s solo ‘Being Alive’ is as always very poignant. The two big production numbers which always go down well are ‘Side by Side by Side’ often seen as Sondheim’s personal theme song and ‘Company’ the title number of this show, with such an experienced cast it is no wonder that both of these are superb. Musical Staging and Direction were done cleverly by Michael Strassen whom Geoff and I have seen perform in musicals throughout the UK. Assistant Director and playing Sarah is Abigail Rosser, Jenny Kent is the musical director and assistant musical director whilst also playing David is George Rae. The Cast are Marisa Leigh Boynton, Paul Callen, Steven Craven, Katherine Eames, Helen George, Daniella Gibb, Tom Hyatt, Alison Larnder, Antonio Mcardle, Susan McCathie, Mary Anne McCormack, George Rae, Jack Reid and Abigail Rosser. The band are Nick Bartram, Jan Clark, Chris Donald, Libby Gwyther, Rosie Nichol, Lydia Pearce, David Stoneham and Adam Trisk. For further information on the cast and the show see ****

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