From the company that has brought us the 2013 best musical production (Avenue Q) is another Breath taking musical, Stephen Sondheim’s “COMPANY.” Company is the story of Bobby, who is a bachelor living in a married world, the last holdout of his friends to still be single, and they all want to set him up for marital success. The Show is a clever and thought provoking look at what really makes a marriage successful, and what just makes a marriage. However for this theatre viewer it is not about the great story it is about the outstanding and breathtaking music by one of, if not the greatest composers and lyricist in the history of Musical Theatre, Stephen Sondheim.
Austin Theatre Project’s cast is a well-rounded and talented cast of some of the best singers and performers of the Austin Theatre Community. Some are returning to ATP and a lot are brand new to this prestigious theatre company. While they were all excellent there is well over a dozen of them and in order to keep from making this a cattle call of names, I will just mention the real standouts. Leading the Pack as Bobby is the talented and brilliant Andrew Bossworth, who is quickly becoming the new face of Austin Theatre. Then there is the ever beautiful and bubbly Kimberly Wilson who performs stellar as April one of Bobby’s many girlfriends. Austin newcomer Bryan Burrets will surely make you fall in love with his performance in “Getting Married Today.” But the most amazing performance of the night has to go to Michelle Cheney as Joanne, whose performance of “Ladies Who Lunch” should be given a Tony award TODAY!
The Accompaniment was stellar with a full 11 piece orchestra under the leadership of the talented and humble David Blackburn was truly the epitome of professional theatre. Barbara Schuler as Director did a great job of creating charming and funny vignettes for each of the couples to woo Bobby. There was a couple of places however where it felt like she was not prepared to handle such a large cast all on stage at one time. However, that is really just a minor detail though in the grand scheme of things. Kudos to Meghan Bowman for her stellar job with the choreography, as it was top notch, especially in “Side by Side by Side” as well as throughout the show.
This Production is a MUST see! There is no part of this cast or show that is not totally 5 out of 5 stars. Please go enjoy a toast with Company! Company runs through April 27 at the Doughtery Arts Center. For more information please log on to http://www.austintheatreproject.org