"Sunday in the Park With George," inspired by the pointillist painting "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte," is now on view for a different kind of audience.
The Pulitzer Prize-winning musical, from Sondheim and book writer
George Seurat's masterpiece, measuring about 7 by 10 feet, is packed with almost 50 people not to mention eight boats, three dogs and a monkey--yes, a monkey. And the show itself is just as colorful as his grand work which now hangs at
With wonderful songs full of sweeping musical gestures and playful little notes, "Sunday in the Park With George" is a certainly a feast for the ears and eyes. Scenic designer
George's exchanges with his mother, played by
The second act--notably shorter--is a sharp contrast to the musical's earlier setting. No longer basking in the sun on La Grande Jatte on the Seine, the story has jumped far into the future--a hundred years to be exact--to an art gallery celebration. And the focus is now on a different George, the painter's great-grandson, who has his own artistic challenges to face.
The cast, last seen in long jackets, prim-and-proper dresses and parasols, has transformed themselves into a modern-day group of art lovers. While it's fun to figure out who's who from the past, it's also interesting to see how this all pans out for new George.
As the quiet closed-off artist who was better with his paints than people,
The rest of the cast is enjoyable as the nutty characters captured in that painting. With all craziness caused by the silly, boy-crazy shop girls; the cranky boatman and his cutout dog; loud-mouthed American visitors; and bickering couples, this idyllic park setting can turn into a zoo. But when George enters the scene and quietly goes from character to character--moving a piece of hair here, adjusting an arm there or removing a little girl's glasses--it's simply mesmerizing to see the artist at work.
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What: "Sunday in the Park With George"
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