Follies


[Blue] Mask, David Moore, 1971

[Blue] Mask, David Moore, 1971

Another day, another play, well really another evening, this time it was at the Rep and the evening’s show was the Stephen Sondheim musical, Follies. This offering is the Rep’s season opener in what is director Steve Woolf and his company’s 50th anniversary season. A hearty job well done is in order for everyone involved. Anne and I have been going to the Rep through most this fifty year run and have enjoyed almost all of their offerings. This particular play is quite the extravaganza, befitting its rather prestigious role. It boasts a large cast, a beautiful set and many stunning costumes. Another special shoutout is in order for Joneal Joplin, the hardest working actor in Saint Louis. The play’s story is:

Follies Poster

Follies Poster

The story concerns a reunion in a crumbling Broadway theatre, scheduled for demolition, of the past performers of the “Weismann’s Follies”, a musical revue (based on the Ziegfeld Follies), that played in that theatre between the world wars. It focuses on two couples, Buddy & Sally and Benjamin & Phyllis, who are attending the reunion. Sally and Phyllis were showgirls in the Follies. Both couples are deeply unhappy with their marriages. Buddy, a traveling salesman, is having an affair with a girl on the road; Sally is still as much in love with Ben as she was years ago; and Ben is so self-absorbed that Phyllis feels emotionally abandoned. Several of the former showgirls perform their old numbers, sometimes accompanied by the ghosts of their former selves.

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