Harry Hamm: Fantastic ‘Follies’ Bows Rep’s 50th Season

Harry Hamm

harry star 5stars Harry Hamm: Fantastic Follies Bows Reps 50th Season

When Stephen Sondheim’s “Follies” first opened in 1971, it was said to be ahead of its time. The Rep’s new production of this landmark show to begin it’s 50th Anniversary Season seems to validate that thought some 45 years later. “Follies” is as fresh, vibrant, involving and timely as if were written a year ago.

follies 11 Harry Hamm: Fantastic Follies Bows Reps 50th Season

Photo courtesy of The Rep

“Follies” is set in an abandoned, decrepit old theater scheduled for demolishing to make room for a parking lot. A reunion of cast members from “Wesimann’s Follies,” a troupe that performed there between the two great world wars, are attending after being invited by the original producer, Dimitri Weismann, played by Joneal Joplin.

follies 4 Harry Hamm: Fantastic Follies Bows Reps 50th Season

Photo courtesy of The Rep

The essence of the musical’s plot involves two couples, Buddy and Sally Durant Plummer, played by Adam Heller and Christiane Noll, and Benjamin and Phyllis Rogers Stone, played by Bradley Dean and Emily Skinner.

follies 13 Harry Hamm: Fantastic Follies Bows Reps 50th Season

Photo courtesy of The Rep

There are questions of happiness, fulfillment and love between the two couples as they both are struggling wih their marriages and the choices they have made.

follies 12 Harry Hamm: Fantastic Follies Bows Reps 50th Season

Photo courtesy of The Rep

The large company of 28, with an orchestra of 12, give every performer in the cast a chance to standout with at least one number among a song list that includes well-known titles like “Broadway Baby,” “The Road You Didn’t Take,” “I’m Still Here,” Too Many Mornings” and others. The stone-cold showstopper is a number is Act I called “Who’s That Woman,” lead by E. Faye Butler. It electrifies the audience. I’ve never seen a more effective and invigorating number ever in a Rep musical production. You have to see it to believe it.

follies 8 Harry Hamm: Fantastic Follies Bows Reps 50th Season

Photo courtesy of The Rep

The Rep’s edition of “Follies” is expensive and rich in all phases.

follies 9 Harry Hamm: Fantastic Follies Bows Reps 50th Season

Photo courtesy of The Rep.

“Follies” is about show business and performers, but it’s themes are so universal you will find yourself seeing the problems posed relative to your own life too. Director Rob Ruggiero has used all the capabilities and assets of The Rep to make “Follies” arguably the very best musical The Rep has ever presented. It took a lot of love to put together this exquisite production. If there ever was a show you do not want to miss, “Follies” is it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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