February 27, 2017
By Dr. Leonard H. Golubchick LaborPress Entertainment Editor
A Show that Provides a Perfect Painting “Sunday in the Park with George”
“Sunday in the Park with George” is the Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s musical about Georges Seurat’s painting “A Sunday on La Grande Jette”.Thus a work of art imitates a work of art.
The show first opened on Broadway in 1984 and in 1985 won the Pulitzer Prize. It was reprised by the Roundabout Theater in 2008 and this year was included the City Center Encores presentation. The show at the 113 year old Hudson was the first Broadway show at the Hudson Theater in 50 years. The Ambassador Group renovated this venerable theater as well as the Lyric Theater.
In this rendition of the musical Jake Gyllenhaal, who is a film star, magnificently plays George and Annaleigh Ashford plays Dot his love interest. Mr. Gyllenhaal’s voice surprised the audience for melodious tone and pitch by keeping pace with Sondheim’s challenging music and lyrics.
Annaleigh Ashford whom is a talented actress provides a performance that is sensitive as she integrates empathy with her comic talents and timing into the role of Dot.
Sarna Lapine delicately brings the pieces of the show together and enables the main characters Mr. Gyllenhaal and Ms. Ashford to demonstrate the right chemistry to make their performances outstanding.
Clint Ramos’ costumes perfectly depict the era of late 19th Century France with’ vibrant colors which enhances the backdrop of the tableu of Georges Seurat’s best known painting. as the show concludes..
This is a wonderful performance but the slow pace at times and the words and music may not appeal to all audiences. But, this is an experience which should emote pathos with the audience as well as satisfaction….