+3 Interview: Merrily We Roll Along

“The musical score is punchy, lyrical and contains some of Sondheim’s most sparkling narrative writing…”

WHO: Bridget Biggar, Artistic Director

WHAT: “Following last year’s five-star reviews for Sondheim’s Assassins at the Fringe, BB Theatre Productions present a poignant, uplifting musical which explores friendship, ambition and the pressures of showbusiness, capturing the life turning points of three friends. A unique musical, portraying the disintegration of a friendship back through time to youthful confidence and hope. Sondheim’s hummable melodies and Furth’s powerful yet funny script interpreted by a professionally trained cast and live band.”

WHERE: C venues – C (Venue 34) 

WHEN: 12:10 (130 min)

MORE: Click Here!

Is this your first time to Edinburgh?

We are very excited to return to The Edinburgh Fringe after our inaugural production of Sondheim’s Assassins in 2016. This year we are excited to present another Sondheim classic, Merrily We Roll along. A poignant and uplifting musical, this heart-rending show explores friendship, ambition and the pressures of show business.

Tell us about your show.

Founded in 2015, BPTP’s mission is to bring local talent to the national stage, producing shows with professional production values, a stellar cast and professional band, and this show is no exception. We were thrilled to preview it at The Wilde Theatre, South Hill Park earlier in July. Next year we are planning on moving away from Sondheim – watch this space!

With a very short, intensive rehearsal period, we cast only those who have played leading roles in other productions and are perfectly suited to the role: we make no compromises. The chemistry and creative energy from putting top talent together to work intensively on inspirational yet stretching music theatre produces memorable and electric performances. We also work as a team with the professional musicians rather than adding them as an accompaniment.

Starting at a hedonistic Hollywood showbiz party in 1976 and working its way back to the New York rooftop in 1957, Merrily We Roll Along portrays the story of three friends who we join at the end of their friendship, tussling with disappointment, heartbreak and disillusionment with fame. The story moves back through time, each musical number perfectly scored to reflect the genre of its era and the emotional roller-coaster of its characters.

The musical score is punchy, lyrical and contains some of Sondheim’s most sparkling narrative writing including Our Time and Old Friends. As two of the friends try to make it into show business, we hear some of Sondheim’s own early frustrations with agents not daring to make the break from traditional musicals. The reverse chronology time structure heightens audience emotion, wistfully pointing out the artistic and personal compromises faced by the characters along the way. A must see, both for Sondheim aficionados, but also for anyone with a passion for musical theatre.

What should your audience see at the festivals after they’ve seen your show?

Ordinary Days – it’s one of our favourites and every time we see it, we spot something new! A witty, poignant, and ultimately very relatable story about human connection and finding beauty in unexpected places.

Animalphabet – perfect for everyone with music by the Hoosiers. What’s not to like!!