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One of the unforeseen pleasures of getting older is discovering that things I have loved for a long time are not only still around but thriving. Specifically, tonight I discovered that certain musicals of Stephen Sondheim are continuing to get vividly re-imagined new productions (the 2018 Company with a gender reversed Bobby/Bobbie) or in some cases simply getting the loving, attentive, rich modern production I have always felt they deserved (the 2017 National Theatre version of Follies, with Imelda Staunton (!) and Philip Quast (!)). Company has always had a certain cachet and seems to have been able to speak to people across the decades, but Follies... When I became a Sondheim fan in the mid-1990s Follies was rather an ugly duckling of the repertoire, so it was a huge pleasure when Spotify just now pointed out to me that there was this lovely new version -- not that the original is not marvelous, but it is such a very good show, it deserves to keep being re-discovered and performed with new casts of amazing older women.

Here, have Tracie Bennet performing "I'm Still Here," which is a tour-de-force piece about a showbiz career through the decades -- "First you're another sloe-eyed vamp / Then someone's mother / Then you're camp..."

April 2019

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