Company (Barrington Stage Company)

Run date: August 10, 2017 – September 10, 2017
Theater: Barrington Stage Company (Pittsfield, MA)

Cast: Aaron Tveit (Robert), Lawrence Street (Harry), Kate Loprest (Susan), Jeannette Bayardelle (Sarah), Paul A. Schaefer (Peter), Jane Pfitsch (Jenny), James Ludwig (David), Lauren Marcus (Amy), Joseph Spieldenner (Paul), Ellen Harvey (Joanne), Peter Reardon (Larry), Mara Davi (April), Nora Schell (Marta), Rebecca Kuznick (Kathy)

Libretti by: George Furth
Lyrics by: Stephen Sondheim
Music by: Stephen Sondheim

Directed by: Julianne Boyd
Choreographed by: Jeffrey Page

Over a series of dinner parties, dates and conversations with his friends, the perennially single Bobby attempts to understand the pros and cons of marriage and the meaning of the word “commitment.”

ACT ONE

01. Overture
02. Company *
03. The Little Things You Do Together
04. Sorry-Grateful
05. You Could Drive a Person Crazy
06. Have I Got A Girl for You
07. Someone Is Waiting *
08. Another Hundred People
09. Getting Married Today
10. Marry Me a Little *

ACT TWO

01. Entr’acte
02. Side by Side by Side/What Would We Do Without You? *
03. Poor Baby
04. Have I Got A Girl for You
05. Tick-Tock
06. Barcelona *
07. The Ladies Who Lunch
08. Being Alive *
09. Finale Ultimo (Company) *


An asterisk (*) denotes a song featuring Aaron.

REVIEWS

“Aaron Tveit brings a riveting magnetism to the leading role of Bobby in Company[…] Tveit, returning to BSC after a decade during which he achieved significant success on Broadway, television and film, has the presence but not the remoteness of a star; he’s a standout, yet also fully part of a remarkable ensemble. It would be easy to overplay Bobby, a single man in 1970s New York City surrounded by five married couples all eager for him to join their wedded ranks. Tveit instead makes Bobby both the focus of the couples’ attention and a mirror reflecting their varied relationships. Bobby has to just be, neither too anguished about being single nor too carefree, and Tveit achieves this to perfection.

[…] By the end, there’s only one thing left to do, and that’s Bobby singing ‘Being Alive.’ It’s a song, Sondheim has said, that moves from complaint to prayer[…] As sung by Tveit, it’s neither cynical nor sappy. It’s bitter and angry, plaintive and hopeful, pleading and optimistic. It’s being alive.”
ALBANY TIMES UNION

“If you are a Sondheim enthusiast and can’t get enough of his music, lyrics, and sensibility, you will be pleased to know that Julianne Boyd has cast a strong production of Company, with an excellent Bobby (Aaron Tveit) and vibrant band and ensemble. […] Slender and likable, Aaron Tveit delivers Bobby’s songs in a lyric tenor; the performer does his best to put some flesh on this stick figure as he ponders the passage of time and lack of human connection on his 35th birthday. Tveit is a consummate performer, speaking, singing, and dancing with […] élan.”
THE ARTS FUSE

“There is a stunning ah-ha moment late, very late, in Julianne Boyd’s hugely accomplished production of Stephen Sondheim’s Company at Barrington Stage Company. It occurs in Bobby’s — and the musical’s — final number, ‘Being Alive.’

Bobby (a smart, masterly performance by Aaron Tveit) spends the first half of the song cataloging the downside of relationships, marriage in particular — the entanglements, the choking obligations, the surrenders. The tone is unforgiving. There is not an upside anywhere until Bobby comes, for the first time, to the words ‘being alive,’ which he then, as interpreted by Tveit, repeats three more times, slowing down each time as he hears and begins to consider what he is saying.

You can see a hint of something registering in Tveit’s eyes. Music director Dan Pardo holds the orchestra in a vamp while Tveit’s Bobby takes in what he is hearing; begins, finally, to put everything together and then goes back through the catalog he’s just completed, this time with surging hope and welcome. It’s a defining moment for Bobby. At 35, he has come of age, at last.

[…] Tveit wasn’t even born when Company premiered on Broadway in 1970, but watching him go to work on Barrington Stage Company’s Boyd-Quinson Mainstage feels as though he and Bobby were destined for one another. I say go to work, but in fact, Tveit’s meticulously crafted performance looks so effortless. His singing voice is a marvel of control, breadth and expression and he dances with graceful assurance. His timing, his sense of Bobby’s sense of purpose is clear and resonant, especially in his scenes with the girlfriends

[…] It’s been 17 years since Boyd first tackled Company. Barrington Stage was in Sheffield then. Tveit was 17. Just look how far they all have come.”
THE BERKSHIRE EAGLE

“This season, Boyd has taken another crack at Company, and critics appear to be unanimous that a sensational production is on the short list of her best work. Boyd is noted for loving musicals and this one is a corker. Much of that is owed to the serendipity of casting Aaron Tveit as a truly charismatic, charming, sexy and all around fabulous Bobby. He is the now 35-year-old swinging bachelor who just can’t take the plunge into marriage. The character  charmingly hovers on the cusp of maturity[…] There were chills and goose bumps all over me when Bobby belted out that final solo ‘Being Alive.’

Ten years ago, Tveit last performed at Barrington Stage. Since then, he has emerged as a star of stage and screen. He returned to the Berkshires enticed by the challenge of a great role in an iconic American musical.”
BERKSHIRE FINE ARTS

“Bobby is a tricky character to play, largely because he’s a protagonist who is more reactive than active (perhaps only Hamlet is more paralyzed by indecision than this guy). Though he is the obsessive center of attention for his friends and his lovers, virtually the apple of their collective eye, Bobby’s posture is largely that of a detached observer[…] If anything, the Barrington Stage production further emphasizes Bobby’s apartness; while the rest of the cast are attired in garish ’70s clothes, Tveit wears a tastefully understated blue jacket that would not look out of place in 2017.

That apartness means that an actor playing Bobby can seem remote or passive, and Tveit does not entirely avoid that trap. His Bobby is urbane, enigmatic, bemused, sometimes amused, sometimes amusing, but he does not come across as terribly conflicted. Except, crucially, in song. There, Tveit shines. He powerfully nails the yearning in Bobby’s solo ‘Someone is Waiting,’ and he captures his character’s confusion and ambivalence in ‘Marry Me a Little,’ in which Bobby insists he’s ready for marriage while stipulating rigid conditions that suggest he’s not at all ready. In the climactic ‘Being Alive,’ Tveit passionately conveys the liberation achieved, paradoxically, when a gregarious loner like Bobby finally surrenders, unconditionally, to his need for another person.”
BOSTON GLOBE

“You can’t talk about Aaron Tveit; you have to hear and see him on the stage. One minute he’s brilliantly acting and all of a sudden you realize you’re hearing his glorious voice singing. One minute he’s walking and all of a sudden you’re watching a handsome guy moving like Fred Astaire. It’s a Tony Award Winning performance, although in this case it will probably garner a Berky Award given by the Berkshire Critics Association.”
BROADWAY WORLD BOSTON

“The show’s glue is Aaron Tveit. Boyd rightly sets him down stage center on ‘Someone is Waiting,’ ‘Marry Me a Little,’ and ‘Being Alive’ because he’s such a great communicator. Listen to the phrasing. Read his body language. In these songs and elsewhere, Tveit convincingly reveals why people like Bobby and why what they like may not be what he wants.”
THE DAILY GAZETTE

“Hugh Jackman has it. The young Robert Redford had it –- that preternatural ability to exude charisma and magnetic sexiness even when standing stone still. Aaron Tveit has it, too, in addition to his impressive singing, dancing and acting skills.

Tveit is the star of Barrington Stage’s Company, one of Stephen Sondheim’s biggest hits, and he is just the tip of the talent iceberg in this simply fantastic production[…] Those of us in the audience who knew the show eagerly awaited ‘Being Alive,’ Bobby’s final song that sets his inner realization to music. As we all suspected he would, Tveit knocked this iconic musical song out of the ballpark.”
iBERKSHIRES

“Directed by Julianne Boyd, [Company] stars Aaron Tveit as Robert, the commitment-phobic New York bachelor whose role was created by Dean Jones in the original 1970 production. I doubt there’s been a better Robert since Mr. Jones left the show. A true tenor with brilliantly gleaming high notes, Mr. Tveit is also a superior actor whose interpretation of the part is a volatile mix of charm, reserve and well-concealed fear. Not since Ben Platt opened in Dear Evan Hansen have I seen a musical performance as exciting as this one. In a way, though, what’s most surprising about Barrington Stage’s production is that Mr. Tveit doesn’t stand out nearly as much as you’d expect given the remarkable quality of his performance. Role for role, this is the best-sung Company I’ve ever heard—not just in regional theater, but anywhere.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

Company is one of those shows that cannot succeed without the lead role of Robert being sensitively interpreted – including his two musical show-stoppers: “Someone is Waiting” and “Being Alive.” The leading man must be charming, dashing, vulnerable, disarming, wistful. This production has such a star in Aaron Tveit, who proves up to the task from opening to closing curtain.”
WAMC

“Aaron Tveit is a superb Robert, a difficult character to portray, since he’s primarily an observer with little outward emotion, until he breaks his barriers with the emotional Sondheim song ‘Being Alive,’ which is the heart and soul of Company. Tveit is a fine singer, dancer, and actor, and he makes Robert an appealing leading man[…] Company has been one of the highlights of my summer.”
THE WESTFIELD NEWS

“Tveit, in particular, turns out to be an inspired choice for Bobby. Tveit has a chiseled everyman look, pretty but not ethically specific, which actually works well for Bobby, who’s meant to be a sort of cipher. Tveit has a powerful voice, great scene presence, and a terrific, focused way with interpreting a song. Tveit appears to have come a long way since […] Frank Abagnale, Jr. in Broadway’s Catch Me If You Can. Plus, he’s so damned good-looking, he can even make a ’70s leisure suit look hot. Tveit wisely sings most of the songs pretty straight, although he couldn’t seem to help himself during ‘Being Alive,’ during which he threw in a few vocal flourishes and Elphaba riffs.”
ZEALNYC

PHOTOS

Trivia

Not available.