Top 6 Sondheim Musicals
Steve-o. He's my main man. So much of my love of musical theatre comes from this dweeb. It's super difficult but here's more or less my top six of his shows. But honestly, I love all of the top eleven so, so much.
- •Sweeney Todd (1979)My favorite musical, Sondheim or otherwise.
- •Follies (1971)It's a hard show to love, and sometimes it feels frustratingly imperfect, but dramatically, it's one of the most satisfying musicals out there in my humble opinion.
- •Sunday in the Park with George (1984)Again, maybe frustratingly imperfect, but with subject matter that easily could be masturbatory and "woe is me for being an artist," Sunday works amazingly well. I wish I could go back in time and experience the first act finale for the first time.
- •Pacific Overtures (1976)Wildly ambitious and incredibly cerebral, Sondheim and Weidman's exploration of the westernization of Japan could have easily devolved into cultural appropriation and tacky orientalism. Instead, the two men, fully aware of their seats of privilege, created an intricate, sensitively woven masterwork of theatre.
- •Assassins (1990)Boldly looking at the underbelly of the American Dream, Assassins is a chilling and singular theatrical experience. Sondheim's score is especially chameleonic here, acting as almost an auditory textbook for the history of American music.
- •Into the Woods (1987)Because I can't not do this list without it. The revisions have done this show no favors, and it will always feel long, but the entire final half hour will never fail to choke me up. A beautiful piece of work that cuts to the heart of what it means to be human.
- •Honorable mentions7) A Little Night Music; 8) Company; 9) Merrily We Roll Along; 10) Passion; 11) A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum; 12) Road Show; 13) The Frogs; 14) Anyone Can Whistle; 15) Saturday Night